Sometimes you can be steered wrong, but asking a question of your server or bartender to discover information will almost always work in your favor.
Burgers are great, but you can only have so many of them without requiring a break, and with this week wrapping up I’m craving something other than red meat.
👩🍳👨🍳CHEFS SHARE THEIR PICKS
I asked MVRA’s Burger Week restaurants where to look on their menus for inspiration and got a lot of really great ideas for what to order the next time I’m back. Here’s what they had to say.
🍽️AMBER ROSE RESTAURANT AND CATERING
1400 Valley St., Dayton
937-228-2511 or www.theamberrose.com
Dish to try: Homemade Pot Roast — slow-cooked tender and flavorful with smashed Yukon gold potatoes and fresh vegetables.
My response: I can personally vouch for this dish. I’ve had it many times over the course of many years, and it has always been deeply satisfying.
>> PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Amber Rose restaurant gets a makeover
8880 Meeker Road, Dayton
937-890-3261 or buckhorndaytontavern.com
Dish to try: A tribute to the Buckhorn Tavern California restaurant that closed, we present the Green Chile Burger, a half-pound ground beef, roasted green chiles and poblano peppers, pickled red onions. The irony is this is the award-winning burger on Food Network and Bobby Flay's throwdown from California and New Mexico.
My response: Owner Debbie Vanderhule has a fantastic sense of humor. After a local website mistakenly ran a story that the Buckhorn Tavern, which has been running strong since 1981 had closed, Vanderhule has tried to turn lemons into lemonade and this is the sweetest twist yet. A spicy, flavorful inspired burger that screams — “we’re open!!” — for a mere $9.
🍽️BULLWINKLE’S TOP HAT BISTRO
19 N. Main St., Miamisburg
937-859-7677 or www.bullwinklestophatbistro.com
Dish to try: Downtown Mac & Cheese. Five, yes FIVE cheeses with a little onion and bacon made from scratch with penne noodles.
My response: You had me at five cheeses.
🍽️BUNKERS SPORTS BAR & GRILL
893 E. National Road, Vandalia
937-890-8899 or www.bunkersbarandgrill.com
Dish to try: Bunker's Walleye Sandwich.
My response: That’s the extent of what they gave me, but one look at this monster in person and you can see why it was recommended. It’s like a fish frisbee sticking off the bun on all sides to the extent that you may think they delivered a pork tenderloin sandwich to the wrong table. Just know, they didn’t. If you love fish, this is the sandwich for you.
1106 Brown St., Dayton
937-985-9917 or www.buttercafedayton.com
Dish to try: The cinnamon crunch French toast. House blend organic coconut oil cinnamon and sugar grilled for a slight crispness on both sides.
My response: I feel a breakfast in my future.
🍽️CHAPPYS SOCIAL HOUSE
7880 Washington Village Drive, Dayton
937-439-9200 or chappysocialhouse.com
Dish to try: Fried chicken. Marinated for 24 hours, hand-battered and fried to order. Chappy's Fried Chicken is served with cornbread or a roll and comes in original recipe, Cajun fried for a little spice or Nashville Hot.
My response: Chappy’s is known for their fried chicken and for good reason. It’s fantastic. Go with the Nashville Hot — it’s warm, crispy and delightful.
250 Warren St., Dayton
937-228-2626 or https://228coco.com
Dish to try: Bourbon Street Salad. Mixed greens, Bourbon glazed shrimp, Applewood smoked bacon, fontana, toasted pecan vinaigrette, spicy onion straws.
My response: This is a really great salad, one of my favorites. I was glad to see it make the list.
🍽️DOUBLE 18 LOUNGE / TIMOTHY’S BAR
1818 Brown St., Dayton
937-222-7666 or https://timothys-bar-grill.myshopify.com
Dish to try: Quesadillas.
My response: Not the loaded tots??? OK, I’ll have both then.
5531 Far Hills Ave., Centerville
937-434-4750 or www.meadowlarkrestaurant.com
Dish to try: Mediterranean Spiced Lamb Pita Sandwich. Spice-crusted, slow-roasted lamb breast is sliced and tucked into warm pita bread for a savory, satisfying sandwich, dressed generously with cucumber, tomato, cilantro and yogurt. So good. Served with fries or vinaigrette-dressed greens. Sub a grilled chicken breast instead of lamb to make a dynamite Chicken Pita Sandwich.
My response: Chef Wiley… I need this in my life!
🍽️MR. BORO’S TAVERN
495 N. Main St., Springboro
937-806-3105 or www.mrborostavern.com
Dish to try: Avocado Goat Cheese BLT. Our signature house avocado goat cheese spread, peppered bacon, lettuce and tomatoes served on our baked farmhouse sourdough bread.
My response: This is music to my ears. A summer sandwich that is hearty enough to fill you up but light enough not to overwhelm you.
1443 N. Detroit St., Xenia
937-372-3202 or https://gotonicks.com
Dish to try: Nick's Reuben. House-made, slow-simmered corned beef, sauerkraut, swiss cheese, and creamy thousand island all on a locally sourced fresh marbled rye bread.
My response: This is another one that I can vouch for. Between this and Nick’s wings, I feel a visit in my future.
🍽️RIP RAP ROADHOUSE
6024 Rip Rap Road, Huber Heights
937-236-4329 or www.ripraproadhouse.com
Dish to try: Our Rip Rap Cheesy Tater Burger is unique to the Roadhouse. There is a 1/2 lb. black Angus choice beef burger, covered with 1/4 lb. smoked pulled pork, a scoop of cheesy potatoes instead of a bun, covered in cheese sauce, and sprinkled with bacon bits. Served with fries.
My response: Wowzas. I may need to see my doctor after eating this, but I’ll do what I must in the way of research.
🍽️ROMER’S BAR & GRILL
4439 E. Franklin St., Bellbrook
937-848-7676 or www.romersbar.com
Dish to try: Turkey Balls. A homemade savory blend of turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, lightly coated with panko bread crumbs and fried to a golden brown and served with turkey gravy.
My response: These are seriously fantastic. So delicious. If you haven’t ever had them before you are in for a serious treat. Go. Now.
🍽️SALAR RESTAURANT AND LOUNGE
400 E. Fifth St., Dayton
937-203-3999 or www.salarrestaurant.com
Dish to try: Seared Mahi Mahi served with a creamy tomato basil sauce, grilled asparagus and Yukon potato and leek puree.
My response: Salar Chef and owner Margot Blondet knows flavor. Her dishes sing off the plate and this one is no exception.
250 W. Main St., Enon
937-864-5011 or www.thedockenon.com
The restaurant response: Poor Man's Grouper. Under the radar at The Dock.
My response: I would argue it’s their lobster bisque, but clearly I need to head back and revisit this fish sandwich.
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21 W. Market St., Germantown
937-855-7759 or www.theflorentinerestaurant.com
Dish to try: The unsung hero on The Florentine's menu is the Orange Roughy. The Orange Roughy has a mild, delicate flavor and is available as an entrée cooked either pan-fried or beer-battered, and also available as a sandwich served on a brioche bun with lettuce, tomato, and housemade tartar sauce.
My response: If you are not a fish eater, their Burger Week featured burger is a staple menu item. The mushroom and Merlot burger topped with a reduction of … you guessed it and topped with Swiss cheese. That said, if you eat fish this is a pretty sterling recommendation.
🍽️THE WANDERING GRIFFIN
3725 Presidential Drive, Beavercreek
937-369-0058 or www.wanderinggriffin.com
Dish to try: Blue Jacket Fried Cheese Curds.
My response: There aren’t enough fried cheese curds for my taste. I’m all in on this one.
🍽️WHEAT PENNY OVEN AND BAR
515 Wayne Ave., Dayton
937-496-5268 or www.wheatpennydayton.com
Dish to try: Grilled shrimp, broccolini and peppers with polenta. Grilled with the vegetables, tumbled over polenta parmigiana and garnished with lemon oil and a drizzle of salsa verde, this is a "shrimp and grits" your mama never dreamed of.
My response: SOLD! I love everything about this description and I can’t wait to try it.
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MARK YOUR CALENDARS
I hope you are feeling as inspired as I am. And mark your calendars now for MVRA’s Wing Week presented by Heidelberg happening July 11-18 and MVRA’s Summer Restaurant Week presented by Morgan Services happening July 19-26.