Ghostlight Coffee is scheduled to open its second location to the public Thursday, Nov. 14. The business will sell coffee, baked goods and an assortment of breakfast and lunch items, including an impossible meatloaf sandwich, Yemeni toast and Keener Farm sage sausage sandwiches. The grand opening of the second Ghostlight location will mark the eighth anniversary of the opening of the first. Shane Anderson opened Ghostlight Coffee in Dayton’s South Park neighborhood Nov. 14, 2011. The original location remains open. The new location is at 800 S Patterson Boulevard next to Old Scratch Pizza and across from Grismer Tire.
Photo: Amelia Robinson
Photo: Amelia Robinson

BEST OF DAYTON: The 3 best coffee shops to try in Dayton

Rise and shine! Don’t wake up with just any cup of coffee.

Treat yourself to the BEST local brew Dayton has to offer.

These are the top three places to grab coffee in Dayton, as voted on by the community in Dayton.com’s Best of Dayton 2019-20 contest.

>> BEST OF DAYTON: Complete list of winners

🥇WINNER: GHOSTLIGHT COFFEE

South Park: 1201 Wayne Ave., Dayton | Midtown: 800 S. Patterson Blvd. | WebsiteFacebook

Ghostlight Coffee is scheduled to open its second location to the public Thursday, Nov. 14. The business will sell coffee, baked goods and an assortment of breakfast and lunch items, including an impossible meatloaf sandwich, Yemeni toast and Keener Farm sage sausage sandwiches. The grand opening of the second Ghostlight location will mark the eighth anniversary of the opening of the first. Shane Anderson opened Ghostlight Coffee in Dayton’s South Park neighborhood Nov. 14, 2011. The original location remains open. The new location is at 800 S Patterson Boulevard next to Old Scratch Pizza and across from Grismer Tire.
Photo: Amelia Robinson

Ghostlight Coffee, four-time Best of Dayton Best Coffeehouse winner, opened its first location in Dayton’s South Park neighborhood on Nov. 14, 2011.

Shane Anderson says the community has wholeheartedly embraced what he and his staff are working to do in bringing new flavor profiles and options to coffee cups across the Dayton community. 

>> Daytonians of the Week: Shane Anderson and Lezley Pison of Ghostlight Coffee

“What I thought would be the South Park neighborhood coffeehouse quickly turned into a great gathering place for the whole city. I am so grateful to the people of this city for their continued support of our shop,” he said.

The Lumberjack latte from Ghostlight Coffee in Dayton offers all the familiar flavors of fall without relying on pumpkin. Instead, cinnamon and maple flavors take the forefront in this comforting, cozy drink.
Photo: Allegra Czerwinski

There’s always something brewing at Ghostlight it seems — figuratively and literally. The coffee shop continues to expand its breakfast offerings and has launched a coffee mobile truck that serves coffee, tea, iced coffee and an assortment of cookies, muffins and other baked goods from Ghostlight’s bakery. Ghostlight offers catering services as well. Their pies are pretty incredible, if you ask us.

Ghostlight opened its second location on Patterson Boulevard in November 2019.

>> Ghostlight Coffee’s second location is now open

🥉2ND PLACE: Winans Chocolates + Coffees

Multiple Dayton-area locationsWebsiteFacebook

Winans Chocolate and Coffee in downtown Springfield. BILL LACKEY/STAFF
Photo: Contributing Writers

Piqua-based Winans traces its roots to the late 1800s, and is now under the fourth generation of family ownership of Joe Reiser and Laurie Winans Reiser. Winans has 18 stores, including in the Dayton area, Columbus and Wapakoneta.

Winans brings in both chocolate and coffee beans directly from producers in Central America, and is a “bean-to-cup” coffee producer. 

>> 7 things you need to know about Winans Chocolates + Coffees

But the business originally focused on its chocolates. Some of its signature collection includes Buckeyes, Bourbon Cherries and Cherry Cordials.

>> Winans is an official stop on the Ohio Buckeye Candy Trail

>> The best places to get chocolate in Dayton

When Joe Reiser, a self-described coffee addict, added coffee to the chocolate shop in 1994, his father-in-law and former owner of the business declared, “It will never work.” today, coffee accounts for 50 percent of Winans’ business.

The Winans Easter line includes a three-foot-tall, 20-pound chocolate Easter bunny that sells for about $200. Really!

>> Local chocolate shop wins national award (2017)

🥈3RD PLACE: Boston Stoker

Multiple Dayton-area locationsWebsiteFacebook

Boston Stoker: Starting in 1973 as a cigar store that offered free coffee to customers, Boston Stoker has evolved over the years into Dayton’s premier coffee brand. In fact, they roast more than 150,000 pounds of coffee each year. (Source: Facebook)

Boston Stoker recently celebrated its 45th anniversary as one of Ohio’s leading and longest running independent coffee roasters since 1973. 

“The business of coffee has changed a lot in 45 years and though we have too by developing direct relationships with farmers and expanding our sourcing, our commitment to delivering the best roast on the best beans has remained constant,” said Henry Dean, president of Boston Stoker. 

The local coffee chain offers a number of single origin coffees.

>> 4 ways that Dayton’s local coffee scene is growing

Boston Stoker is celebrating 45 years in Dayton. Source: Photo from Boston Stoker Facebook page

Boston Stoker was founded in Englewood in 1973 by Don and Sally Dean as a pipe and tobacco shop. As a strategy to build their customer base in a new business, the Deans started offering free, freshly brewed specialty coffee to customers while they shopped, according to the company’s web site. 

The demand began to grow to buy the coffee to take it home, eventually leading Boston Stoker into the specialty coffee industry.

“An independent business like our’s doesn’t last as long as it has without great customers, and we’re excited to mark the milestone with all of you,” Dean said

>> Boston Stoker now serving breakfast sandwiches at all of its coffee shops

In this 2006 file photo, freshly roasted coffee beans pour from the cooling tray at a Boston Stoker facility in Vandalia. FILE
Photo: susan carroll

PAST WINNERS: BEST OF DAYTON BEST COFFEEHOUSE

2018

WINNER: Ghostlight Coffee

2nd Place: Boston Stoker

3rd Place: Winan’s Chocolates + Coffees

2017

WINNER: Ghostlight Coffee

2nd Place: Boston Stoker

3rd Place: Press

2016

WINNER: Ghostlight Coffee

2nd Place: 3rd Perk Coffeehouse

3rd Place: Boston Stoker

2015

WINNER: Winans Chocolates + Coffees

2nd Place: Ghostlight Coffee

3rd Place: 3rd Perk Coffeehouse

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