If you haven’t yet, it is high time for some fall dining adventures.
The air is crisp, cool and invigorating, and this is a great time to change up your dining routine.
Warm up and find some comfort.
There are plenty of awesome options out there to make the most of these fresh, chilly days before the holiday chaos settles in along with winter hibernation.
Here are 10 ideas for tasty treks with sweet rewards.
1) Plan an excursion to the 2nd Street Market for brunch. You can’t go wrong with the crepes from Crepe Boheme. While you’re in the neighborhood, make a side trip and grab a beer afterwards at the awesome patio area at Dayton Beer Company. Bonus: Check out a Link Bike and get a little exercise in while you are at it.
2) Grab lunch or dinner on the patio at Basil’s on Market restaurant in the Water Street Development, located across from downtown Dayton’s RiverScape downtown. It’s beautiful, scenic and a perfect spot to enjoy the crisp breeze. The Sweet Chili Salmon Salad is a fantastic, healthy option that will refresh you for lunch or dinner.
3) Take a meandering drive over to the wonderful Coldwater Cafe restaurant at 27 E. Main St. in Tipp City for dinner that’s a real treat. This dining destination combines flavorful food, interesting atmosphere, smart décor and delightful service. While you are there, check out Bodega Wine and Specialty Foods Market that just opened up next door and shop for wine, craft beer and an array of sausage and cheese to take home and enjoy.
4) Head to Yellow Springs for some delicious food and a gorgeous fall hike. Top of my list is always Winds Cafe and Sunrise Cafe, but there are many others as well. Go someplace you haven’t been or order something you’ve never tried — there’s no time like the present. A stop at Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve or John Bryan State Park for a hike and to soak up the fall foliage is a great stop to plan before or after.
>> RELATED: 12 hiking trails in Dayton and nearby
5) Go somewhere that’s off the beaten path and maybe out of the ordinary. These little gems are everywhere. They don’t look like much, but the brave diners willing to give them a try are deliciously rewarded. The Dock in Enon, The Tavernette in Medway, Guerra’s Krazy Taco in Springfield and Combs BBQ in Middletown are just a few ideas. Take a fall drive and keep your eyes open — you never know where your next big food find will take place.
6) Take a stroll through Oakwood and skip right to dessert when you stop in at Madame Delluc (www.francoiseimports.com). There are nine of these shops in Belgium and one in Dayton at 510 Far Hills Ave. (Ohio 48) in Oakwood. It’s so good that Conde Nast Traveler magazine’s web site has listed it as one of the nine “Best Chocolates in the World.” Founded in Brussels in 1919, the company produces its confections using original recipes developed by founder Marie Delluc in the 1920s. You will never feel more special than when you receive a box of these. They make for great hostess and holiday gifts for the person in your life that has everything.
7) Every season is the right season for good barbecue. Barbecue is in season all year. But some barbecue spots are worth the trip. Head to Englewood for a fall hike at Englewood MetroPark then reward yourself with some of the best barbecue in town. Dayton isn’t alone in its love for Company 7 BBQ, always one of the top vote-getters in Dayton.com’s Best of Dayton. The restaurant has been named one of the “Best of the Best Barbecue Restaurants in America" for the eighth consecutive year by the industry trade publication National Barbecue News. And it was the only restaurant in Ohio to make the list. In fact, Company 7 BBQ was one of only 28 restaurants in the country to make the magazine’s “Best of the Best” list.
>> RELATED: Guide to the best barbecue in Dayton
8) It’s chili season! The chili and the taco salad at Tank’s Bar & Grill are always a perennial favorite for me, but especially satisfying when fall hits. Tank’s Award Winning Road Kill chili is sweet and spicy
9) Soup’s on! Warm up with a delicious bowl of soup. You can never go wrong with a supersized bowl of Pho from Linh’s Bistro. It’s one of Dayton’s best hidden gems tucked away in a plaza in Riverside. Another favorite is El Meson’s Mexican Tortilla Soup ($9). This traditional soup made with chicken, rice, hominy, avocado, cheese and spices served with tortilla strips and broth on the side will instantly warm you up and the atmosphere couldn’t be any more bright and welcoming.
10) Try somewhere new. Dayton has tons of new dining destinations worth a try. Hoshi Ramen (ramen eatery near Wright State run by the former owners of Flying Tiger restaurant), Club Oceano (new seafood restaurant at The Greene) and Cooper’s Hawk (wine bar and full-service fine dining restaurant) are a few at the top of our list.
>> SNEAK PEEK: A look inside the new Hoshi Ramen