DAYTON EATS: Major change coming to these restaurants

Christopher's Restaurant will close on June 15. The owners are looking for a new location. CONTRIBUTED

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Christopher's Restaurant will close on June 15. The owners are looking for a new location. CONTRIBUTED

Visit now and enjoy some of your favorite dishes.

As with all things, nothing is promised and nothing lasts forever and that couldn’t be more true when it comes to restaurants.

In the decades I’ve spent helping cover food and dining locally I’ve reported on many closures that surprised and stung with the news.

So it comes as a surprise and no surprise at all to hear that one of my favorite spots to eat in town is closing while other beloved locations that I have long enjoyed are looking to sell. I am bereft at the thought of changes to these Dayton classics, but remind myself that change is inevitable.

If you haven’t heard yet, this weekend is the last time to get brunch, lunch or dinner at Christopher’s Restaurant at 2318 E. Dorothy Lane. The Kettering staple will close its doors on June 15 after serving the community plate after plate after plate for the past 31 years. It recently changed hands and is now closing due to not being able to reach an agreement on the lease at Woodlane Plaza. Owners Dave and Erika Krites say they will focus on growing their catering business while they search for a new location.

Christopher’s has always been one of the best places in town to grab soup with multiple offerings made from scratch and homemade cornbread, original or jalapeno, served on the side. They offered great wraps, salads, burgers and sandwiches for lunch and some great home cooked comfort meals for dinner.

The menu is expansive and there has always been something to satisfy every craving, allergy and picky eater requirement at any of the tables I’ve been seated at with friends and family over the years.

As Christopher’s sets out to find a new location, three other prominent restaurants have announced they are looking to sell their locations and businesses.

Ha Ha Pizza, which has been serving hungry diners in Yellow Springs for 50 years, has announced that it is for sale. Owner B.J. Walters says it’s time and he hopes to be able to sell to someone who will keep the business as is and continue the legacy.

The next location announcing a change is Angie’s Firehouse Tavern. The Belmont classic began in 1938 when it opened as a Hungarian restaurant. It closed for about two decades until owner Pat Reed brought it back to life in 2009. Now he says it’s time for someone else to take it on.

And then there’s the one that makes me absolutely verklempt at the thought of it not continuing on -- Thai 9.

Owners Rob and Nongyaw Strong are putting the business up for sale after opening and operating it for the last 19 years.

The thought of these locations going away or significantly changing, let alone one of them, is too much to bear. For those of us who haven’t been to these in a while, now is the time while they are still executing on the food that they do so well. With that in mind, here are some items from each worth ordering while you still can.

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Angie's Firehouse Tavern at 703 Watervliet Ave. is for sale. FILE

Angie's Firehouse Tavern at 703 Watervliet Ave. is for sale. FILE

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Angie's Firehouse Tavern at 703 Watervliet Ave. is for sale. FILE

Angie’s Firehouse Tavern

703 Watervliet Ave, Dayton

937-252-5125

Order up!: They are well known for their cabbage rolls and for good reason — they are delicious. If cabbage leaves stuffed with a delicious mixture of seasoned beef and rice doused in a tangy tomato sauce isn’t your thing they have a classic turkey hot shot smothered in homemade gravy, a massive pork tenderloin, a stuffed burger or a chicken Philly or classic Philly cheese steak. All of the sandwiches are priced at an affordable $8-9 and the portions are generous. This is not a fancy place. It is old and unassuming, but clearly loved over the years by staff and patrons. It’s a good spot to grab a cool drink and something to eat in the heat of summer with a check that won’t give you sticker shock.

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Cup of Vegetarian Chili at Christopher’s Restaurant & Catering. FILE

Cup of Vegetarian Chili at Christopher’s Restaurant & Catering. FILE

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Cup of Vegetarian Chili at Christopher’s Restaurant & Catering. FILE

Christopher’s Restaurant

2318 E. Dorothy Lane, Kettering

937-299-0089

www.christophers.biz

Order up!: This is the rare restaurant in town that has large menus that change up for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast is served until 1 p.m. I personally love the salmon eggs benedict ($15.95) served on an English muffin topped with capers and cream cheese, tomato, spinich, salmon and two poached eggs with hollandaise sauce and a sprinkle of fresh dill. They also have a great tofu scramble ($10.95), breakfast burritos ($12.50) great omelets and pancakes. For lunch they have those great soups that you can pair with a classic smash burger ($13.95) or a walleye sandwich ($16.95) with lemon basil tartar sauce, bacon, lettuce, tomato and onion served with seasoned fries and coleslaw. For dinner consider the pot roast stew ($15.50) or chicken and noodles ($15.50). This is definitely a restaurant that will be missed by me personally and an army of loyal customers. I wish owners Dave and Erika Krites the best of luck in finding a new location to call home.

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Ha Ha Pizza in Yellow Springs has been for sale for several years, but the right owner has not come along. It's current owner B.J. Walters is ready to retire. NATALIE JONES/STAFF

Credit: Natalie Jones

Ha Ha Pizza in Yellow Springs has been for sale for several years, but the right owner has not come along. It's current owner B.J. Walters is ready to retire. NATALIE JONES/STAFF

Credit: Natalie Jones

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Ha Ha Pizza in Yellow Springs has been for sale for several years, but the right owner has not come along. It's current owner B.J. Walters is ready to retire. NATALIE JONES/STAFF

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

Ha Ha Pizza

108 Xenia Ave., Yellow Springs

937-767-2131

www.facebook.com/Haha-Pizza-118745784827137/

Order up!: A pizza or calzone. Call ahead for pick-up as I’ve found over the years the wait time can be exceptionally long. Take it to a nearby park and enjoy some time outside with nature. Go with the wheat crust and feel free to adventure by combining the toppings you know and love with something you have never had, like falafel. It’s the perfect outdoor food to pair with a stop at O&E’s Corner Cone nearby that has 24 flavors of soft serve and all of the toppings you could ever want.

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Singapore Noodles from Thai 9. CONTRIBUTED/ALEXIS LARSEN

Singapore Noodles from Thai 9. CONTRIBUTED/ALEXIS LARSEN

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Singapore Noodles from Thai 9. CONTRIBUTED/ALEXIS LARSEN

Thai 9

11 Brown St., Dayton

937-222-3227

www.thai9restaurant.com/Main.html

Order up!: A boat load of sushi at the sushi bar. Or a cold mango ($6.95) or papaya salad ($8.50) out on the patio paired with a sashimi appetizers ($14.95). The curry menu is fantastic with the choice of green, mango, massaman, panaeng, red and yellow curry. The braised mussels in yellow curry ($17.95) are a light, spicy seafood treat, but any of the curry options can be paired with beef, shrimp, chicken, pork, tofu or vegetables. I am particularly partial to the Singapore noodles stir fried with vegetables and yellow curry powder and the seafood hot pot soup ($19.95) as well as the duck ($24.95) done in red curry in coconut milk with pineapples, tomatoes, kaffir lime leaves and red and green peppers. And if you have never had the Tom Kha chicken or tofu coconut milk soup ($5.50) you are missing out on something that tastes heavenly. I love this restaurant and its entire menu and will be making frequent visits in the short term to be sure I have quality time with some of my favorite dishes.

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 alexis.e.larsen@hotmail.com with the information and we will work to include it in future coverage.

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