Lee’s Ltd. Tenders & Dips moves into the space vacated by Arby’s.

New restaurant opens near UD, offering chicken tenders & dips

New ‘Lee’s Ltd.’ concept from Lee’s Famous Recipe moves into Brown Street space vacated by Arby’s

***UPDATE (Aug. 5, 2019)***

“Lee’s Ltd. Tenders & Dips,” the first of its kind restaurant for the Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken franchisee in the region, will open its doors to the public at 10:30 am. today, Monday Aug. 5, at 1200 Brown St. near the University of Dayton.

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The new restaurant will serve a streamlined menu with a focus on boneless fried chicken tenders accompanied by multiple sauce options. It moved into space vacated by Arby’s, just north of East Stewart Street.

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Here’s how Ken Riddle, the co-franchise owner of Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken’s Miami Valley restaurants, described the new restaurant and the Lee’s Ltd. concept earlier this year:

“We will not be offering any bone-in chicken at the Brown Street store. Our menu will be scaled down. We will offer Chicken Tenders in a Spicy version (exclusive to the Brown Street location) as well as the current version (called Famous) we sell now. Our side dishes will be limited to Potato Wedges, and Cole Slaw. We'll offer a chocolate chip cookie for dessert served warm right off a grill that will be visible to our guests. We will also offer several unique gourmet sauce options to go along with all of the sauces we currently offer in our restaurants.” 

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 “The boneless side of our business is growing, and we felt it would have particular appeal to the students at UD,” Riddle said. “We're proud to have been a part of the Miami Valley for over 50 years now, and we're excited to see what our guests think of this new concept.”

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The restaurant has applied for a license to serve beer, but that license application is on a waiting list, Riddle said.

Lee’s Ltd. Tenders & Dips employs 40 people and seats about 44. It has a drive-through window, and is open from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.

>> PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Arby’s abruptly closes its Brown Street/UD restaurant

Lee's Ltd. Tenders & Dips opens to the public today, Aug. 4, 2019, on Brown Street near the University of Dayton.
Photo: Mark Fisher

***PREVIOUS UPDATE (June 17, 2019)***

The new “Lee’s Ltd.” restaurant in the works on Brown Street near the University of Dayton will be the first Lee’s to offer beer if the restaurant franchisee’s beer-license application to the Ohio Division of Liquor Control is approved, according to Ken Riddle, co-franchise owner for Dayton-area Lee’s Famous Recipe chicken restaurants.

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Riddle told this news outlet that he applied for the D1 beer license last week “so we would have the option of selling beer at the location. Our intention would be to sell it from taps in the restaurant, no cans or bottles.”

“Space is tight there, so we would have a limited beer lineup,” Riddle said.

“We would be the first Lee's to offer beer, and we have no intention of adding it to our other locations.”

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***ORIGINAL STORY (June 11, 2019)***

The new restaurant in the works in the former Arby’s space on Brown Street near the University of Dayton will be the first of its kind for the Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken chain in the region. 

“Lee’s Ltd.” is now hiring, and is scheduled to open in the coming weeks at 1200 Brown St. It will offer a streamlined menu with a focus on chicken tenders and multiple sauce options. 

 

Here’s what  Ken Riddle, the co-franchise owner of Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken’s Miami Valley restaurants, said about the new restaurant and the Lee’s Ltd. concept. 

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“We are hopeful that the name Lee's Ltd. will communicate to our guests that we aren't their typical Lee's restaurant,” Riddle said. “We will not be offering any bone-in chicken at the Brown Street store. Our menu will be very scaled down and limited. We will offer Chicken Tenders in a Spicy version (exclusive to the Brown Street location) as well as the current version (called Famous) we sell now. Our side dishes will be limited to Potato Wedges, and Cole Slaw. We'll offer a chocolate chip cookie for dessert served warm right off a grill that will be visible to our guests. We will also offer several unique gourmet sauce options to go along with all of the sauces we currently offer in our restaurants.” 

>> Arby’s abruptly closes its Brown Street/UD restaurant

 Riddle said the concept came about in part because of Lee’s sponsorship of UD and UD basketball.

“We offer our boneless products at UD Arena and have for many years,” he said. “But we didn't have a location close to the campus, and that's something we've tried to find for a while now. When the former Arby's space became available on Brown Street, we were interested, but the space is too small to house one of our typical restaurants. Hence the scaled-down version.”

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“Another factor is that the boneless side of our business is growing, and we felt it would have particular appeal to the students at UD. Most of them didn't grow up eating bone-in chicken at Grandma's house every Sunday after church like people in my generation did. Our younger customers are drawn to the boneless offerings.”

“And then the last factor is cost. It is a lot less expensive to open a scaled down version of Lee's than it is to open a regular location. This concept offers a growth vehicle for the Lee's brand overall and would allow stores to be opened in locations that can't support a stand-alone restaurant.”

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The restaurant will seat 44 and will employ about 40. Those interested in applying can call (937) 388-4197 or can go to www.leesmiamivalley.com and use the” Contact Us” button to send a message, Riddle said. 

“We're proud to have been a part of the Miami Valley for over 50 years now, and we're excited to see what our guests think of this new concept,” Riddle said.

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