Mudlick Tap House hosting holiday events and the food looks fabulous

Brunch planned for Christmas Eve, and there’s a brunch and dinner on New Year’s Eve

If you’ve been reading this column for a while, you know I’m a huge fan of creativity when it comes to menus, food and execution.

I love the magic when a chef is excited to do a passion project and have some fun outside the normal menu.

ExploreLocal BBQ restaurant launches new ‘fly-through’ service to adapt to pandemic

Lily’s Eats, Rhymes and Life 90′s hip hop-inspired four-course dinner four years ago remains a favorite of mine to this day.

Last year I attended the Griswold Christmas Eve Brunch at Mudlick Tap House and had a blast. The food was delicious, Cousin Eddie was there spreading cheer and a special Griswold-themed brunch menu was featured.

Credit: Alexis Larsen

Credit: Alexis Larsen

Most restaurants right now are not doing events and are sticking to the basics, but I was happy to see Mudlick is keeping its Christmas Eve brunch and New Year’s Eve brunch and dinner with special menus and specialty cocktails.

And the good news is if you don’t want to dine in they will bring it out to your car — heck, Cousin Eddie might even come out for a quick photo op.

ExploreThe story behind Dayton’s unicorn house

“(Last year) was fantastic. I loved seeing all the folks that donned their Griswold attire. Some families even came dressed as their favorite Griswold character. We have a local personality that plays the part of Cousin Eddie. He will be mixing and mingling with guests — with a mask of course — and offering photo opportunities and entertainment for the day,” said Mudlick Tap House owner Jennifer Dean. “The Christmas Eve Brunch response is big. We are nearing capacity for reservations. New Year’s Eve reservations are coming in, but we have typically seen the rush of reservations after Christmas Day. We typically also have a lot of walk-ins for both brunch and dinner.”

Here’s a look at the events and some of the menu items I’m most excited about.

Credit: Contributed

Credit: Contributed

Griswold Christmas Eve Brunch

Dec. 24, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Come dressed as your favorite character and enjoy a specially crafted menu as you eat, drink and be merry Griswold-style, including a themed brunch menu. A kids menu will also be available.

ExploreSWEET NEWS: Chocolate-filled beignets now available at Dayton-area Popeyes chicken restaurants

What’s on the menu: Uncle Lewis’s Old Fashioned ($10), Eddie’s Egg Nog ($10), a Sugar Cookie Martini ($9) as well as the full Mudlick bar and draft beer selection will be available to get you started. For brunch they are offering a salmon avo toast ($15) with sliced avocado, pickled onion, fresh dill crema, fried capers, yellow tomato with a choice of side (yes, please!), a lump crab potato hash ($15), a Clark W. Griswich ($13) which features a buttery croissant stuffed with pepper bacon, fried egg, American cheese and a tomato and jalapeno jam served with yukon hash, Cousin Eddie’s Benedict ($16) made with toasted chorizo biscuits topped with Neuske’s Canadian bacon, American cheese, poached egg, and hollandaise sauce. Other dishes include Santa’s steak n eggs ($20), Bad Neighbors Flapjacks ($13) an ode to Todd and Margot from the movie, biscuits and gravy ($14), a Great Lake walleye ($26) and Frank Shirley’s filet ($29) wrapped in bacon. For dessert there is a s’mores cheesecake ($10) and Aunt Bethany’s Parfait ($6) featuring Green Jell-O and pistachio pudding topped with whipped cream and crushed pistachios. Mudlick is currently offering a holiday gift pack for the beer lover in your life that comes with a T-shirt, two pint glasses and a $25 Mudlick Tap House gift card.

Credit: Contributed

Credit: Contributed

New Year’s Eve Boozy Brunch

Dec. 31, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

They say the way you spend New Year’s Eve is the way you’ll spend the rest of the year. Fuel up for a wild New Year’s Eve with Mudlick’s Boozy Brunch.

What’s on the menu: All the drinks and some of Mudlick’s best brunch items to soak them up. Make sure to schedule in a nap so you can see the ball drop. As Dean says, “we will be rocking the Bloodys and the Mimosas will be flowing. Think of this as an all-day pre-game.”

ExploreWINNER: This cookie recipe beat out nearly 400 others in the first Dayton Daily News holiday baking contest

New Year’s Eve Dinner

Dec. 31, 5 p.m.-10 p.m.

Most of us are more than ready to send 2020 off into the sunset.

What’s on the menu: A rich, creamy lobster bisque ($7 for a cup, $9 for a bowl) that I enjoyed last year, delighted by the notes of sherry and garlic. It made for a nice start to the meal. There’s also a fried brie board appetizer ($15). Entrees include a Great Lake Walleye filet ($26) “floating on a vessel made of corn and wild rice down a river of white wine and citrus-butter reduction.” A slow roasted prime rib of beef ($28) with horseradish cream, a loaded baked potato (cheddar, scallions, lardons) and baby tri-colored carrots. An “Under the Sea” entree ($26) features a sautéed house crabcake, three bacon-wrapped shrimp basted in a sweet and spicy glaze served with lemon roasted asparagus and fingerling potatoes, A boozy beef brisket ($27) is served on a bed of Yukon hash with greens, peppers, and onions served with tri colored carrots in a bourbon glaze and sauteed whiskey mushrooms. A chicken piccata ($22) is pan-fried and served over a bed of cavatappi pasta tossed in a white wine lemon butter reduction with capers. Featured cocktails include a midnight Manhattan ($12), a Bourbon cherry fizz ($10) and a sugar cookie martini ($9).

More Mudlick happenings

In October, Mudlick added heated igloos to their patio for socially distanced outdoor dining. Reservation must be made for those in advance and require a $200 food and beverage spending minimum prior to tax and an automatic 20% gratuity added to the two-hour dining window. All reservations can be made at

“They have been really popular and receive great feedback,” said Dean. “We have had people celebrating the holidays and other special occasions. Grab those in your bubble and enjoy dinner under the stars in one of our igloos.”

ExploreIgloos in Downtown Dayton? They could be a restaurant lifeline during pandemic

Currently Mudlick is running a New Holland Brewery Challenge with a chance to win one of two prize packs: a New Holland branded bike and a Dragon’s Milk lighted brewery sign. or a New Holland tailgate pop up tent and a Dragon’s Milk Fire Pit. When you go to Mudlick get your punch card, drink all three featured New Holland beers from now until Dec. 31 to be entered to win.

Dean says they have other brewery challenges coming up including a Brew Dog Brewery Challenge with a chance to win an overnight at the Brew Dog Hotel and a $100 gift card to their brewery that runs Jan. 1 through Feb. 14, a FatHeads Brewery Challenge that will take place Feb. 15 through March 31 and a Sweetwater Brewery Challenge that will run April 1 through May 16.

When asked what the future holds, Dean says they are waiting to see what happens with the pandemic. Still, it’s nice to see them having fun and continuing their fun traditions while, like all of us, they wait and see.

Dayton Eats looks at the regional food stories and restaurant news that make mouths water. Share info about your menu updates, special dinners and events, new chefs, interesting new dishes and culinary adventures. Do you know of exciting outdoor spaces, new exciting format changes, specials, happy hours, restaurant updates or any other tasty news you think is worth a closer look at? E-mail Alexis Larsen at with the information and we will work to include it in future coverage.

About the Author