Seared Tuna appetizer, with white wine at jay's Seafood, 225 E. Sixth St. Photo by Jim Witmer
Photo: Jim Witmer/Dayton Daily News
Photo: Jim Witmer/Dayton Daily News

3 places to go for killer seafood in Dayton 

Dayton might be landlocked, but that doesn’t mean our local restaurants don’t know how to do seafood right.

There are still plenty of local options when you get that craving for a taste of the sea. 

>> Best of Dayton 2017 food and dining winners

You voted in our Best of Dayton 2017 and told us these are the top 3 places for seafood in the area.

1.) Jay’s Seafood Restaurant

Photo: File Photo

Would you believe that when Jay's Seafood Restaurant opened over 40 years ago on Feb. 26, 1976, it was a gamble?! 

>>Jay’s Seafood offers to validate customers parking fees 

Since then, Jay’s has managed to establish itself as a staple of the downtown Dayton dining scene by staying consistent over the years and retaining many of its favorite menu items.

>>40 things we love about Jay's Seafood

It’s located in a former grist mill in the Oregon District , which features a majestic 32-foot mahogany bar commissioned by James Ritty, the Daytonian who invented the first cash register. Some have even called it the oldest bar in Dayton. 

>>What are the oldest bars in downtown Dayton?

Some dishes worth trying are the bourbon salmonsteamed whole lobster or calamari strips. To get the full retro feeling, order “the wedge,” an iceberg lettuce salad. Wash everything down with a perfect martini and save room for the flourless chocolate cake with chocolate ganache. 

>>Our favorite old-school restaurants

Want to go?

What: Jay’s Seafood Restaurant 

Where: 225 E. 6th St., Dayton 

Hours: Every day from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. 

Info: Website or call 937-222-2892

2.) Bonefish Grill

This American casual chain specializing in seafood keeps things simple, but delicious.

Their menu is focused on fresh dishes, including seasonal fresh fish and indulgent appetizers like diner favorite “Bang Bang Shrimp.”

Want to go?

What: Bonefish Grill

Where: 2818 Miamisburg Centerville Rd, Dayton

Hours: 4-10:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 4-11:30 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m.-11:30 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday


3.) Sweeney’s Seafood

The classic oysters Rockefeller ($12) in the foreground is one of the highlights of the Sweeney’s menu as well as the large Chesapeake Bay oysters served on the half shell over ice ($2.50 each). The seared ahi tuna ($13) and Captain s Seafood Platter ($23) can be seen in the background. ALEXIS LARSEN/CONTRIBUTED
Photo: Contributing Writer

Sweeney’s Seafood Bar & Grill in the heart of Centerville launched in 1994 and it was later sold in 2012 keeping the same name and a similar approach with a seafood focus.  

>>The two best seafood deals you’ll find at this throwback restaurant

Some notable menu items worth trying are the classic oysters Rockefellerseared ahi tuna and the crab-stuffed mushrooms

>>Lobster queso and 4 more dishes we can’t wait to try at this Centerville restaurant

Sweeney’s recently just unveiled its new fall menu with items including lobster quesojumbo wings, fall spinach salad and a seafood fettucine

Want to go? 

What: Sweeney’s Seafood Bar & Grill 

Where: 28 W. Franklin St., Dayton 

Hours: 4–9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 4–10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 4–8:30 p.m. Sundays. 

More info: 937-291-3474 or


Fish tacos from Sea Jax

The nautical-themed restaurant and “Margeritaville-ish” pub at 5900 Bigger Road in Kettering is not the sort of place you want to go to on a full stomach.

The laid back “neighborhood joint actually owned by the neighbors” belongs to Ron and Christy Sweeney, the founders and former owners of Sweeney’s Seafood Restaurant. That restaurant is now Sweeney’s Seafood Bar & Grill and owned by Larry and Holley Thompson of Springboro. 

>>MORE INFO: Cheap Eats at Sea Jax in Kettering

Sea Jax's doesn’t actually specialize in seafood. Their uncomplicated menu is packed with bar nibbles, burgers, sandwiches and house takes on New Orleans as well as seafood classics.

When you are craving that taste of the sea, some menu items that’ll do you right are the boom boom shrimpoysters, fish tacos and shrimp creole

Want to go?

What: Sea Jax Tavern, 

Where: 5900 Bigger Road, Kettering

Hours: 11:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday; 11:30a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday 

NOTE: The bar stays open 30 minutes longer than the restaurant.

More info: Website | 937-439-1664