Local restaurants brought their A-game to the Miami Valley Restaurant Association's Summer Restaurant Week kick-off July 17.
The kick-off event at the Steam Plant in downtown Dayton featured dishes from more than a dozen restaurants. It was a great way to sample multiple dishes that will be served throughout Restaurant Week all at once — a task that would be expensive and nearly impossible in the span of the Summer Restaurant Week promotion, which runs July 21-28.
A large crowd of hungry guests showed up to sample tastes of what some local independent restaurants will be serving up this year for Summer Restaurant Week. There wasn't a bad dish there, but there were a few that rose to the top. Here are five dishes that we can't wait to try again.
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1400 Valley St., Dayton
937-228-2511 or www.theamberrose.com
This Old North Dayton gem specializes in homemade Eastern European Cuisine including German, Lithuanian, Polish, Hungarian, Russian and Italian cuisines. Add zippy, beefy, fall off the bone, finger-licking-good BBQ ribs to the list. It may have been the messiest dish there, but it was one of the tastiest and most satisfying. If only these were on the menu all the time. We asked how we could have more if we don't make it there for Restaurant Week, and the smart answer was, "we cater."
Carillon Brewing Co.
1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton
937-910-0722 or www.carillonbrewingco.org
Chef José Calzada is the Director of Food and Beverage for Dayton History. He is quite talented and executes his dishes with precision. His braised short ribs with homemade Spetzel smelled rich and savory from across the room, and it tasted every bit as much. The Spetzel had a nice crisp shell and was a nice compliment. It's a heavy dish for summer, but it is extraordinarily satisfying if you have a deep hunger. Just stay indoors and enjoy it with the AC.
1414 S. Patterson Blvd., Dayton
937-586-4150 or https://dewberry1850.com
The peppered steak lettuce wrap with fresh green bean kraut was without question the best dish at the Sneak Peek event. Executive Chef Tim Skiber drew inspiration from his German heritage for a dish that featured a generous helping of peppered steak topped with a tangy fresh green bean kraut that zinged with vinegar and ginger snap cookie crumbs on top like you would see in an authentic German Sauerbraten. The result was an impressive summer dish that offered an entertaining experience thanks to tender meat that satisfied, tangy green bean kraut that surprised and danced over your tastebuds with a nice lettuce crunch to finish.
Salar Restaurant and Lounge
400 E. Fifth St., Dayton
937-201-3999 or https://salarrestaurant.com
The shoyu and cilantro marinated grilled chicken skewers, green onion, and Aji Amarillo Salsa, corn and jasmine rice that Salar was serving up was absolutely delicious. Executive Chef and owner Margot Blondet has a way with harnessing flavor and making it sing on her world-fusion restaurant menu. This was a delicious dish that screams for a cocktail and a seat on the patio to savor the food while you savor the day.
After polishing off so many excellent dishes, it was time to find dessert. Coco's Bistro brought S'mores Tort Bites that were decadent and fabulous and Watermark brought cinnamon sugar bars with cream cheese filling that were inspired by crunchy, deep-fried churros.
250 Warren St., Dayton
937-228-2626 or https://228coco.com
20 S. First St., Miamisburg
937-949-0522 or https://eatdrinkwatermark.com
NEW TO THE PARTY
Sushi Hana was the newcomer to the Restaurant Week party, serving up authentic Korean cuisine in the form of Boolgoki beef or spicy chicken served over rice. Both were tasty, flavorful options. Looking forward to heading there for more Korean soon.
1501 Lyons Rd., Dayton
937-434-2070 or www.sushihanaohio.com