The restaurant opened in October 2006 and had been considered a prototype of sorts at the time. Max & Erma’s also operates restaurants in the Miller Lane development in Butler Twp. and near the Mall at Fairfield Commons in Beavercreek, and inside Dayton International Airport.
All Dayton-area locations underwent a significant makeover in 2013.
Those renovations were part of Max & Erma’s efforts to claw its way back from a 2009 bankruptcy in a highly competitive casual-dining segment of the restaurant industry that includes Applebee’s, TGI Friday’s, O’Charley’s, Ruby Tuesday, Bennigan’s, Buffalo Wild Wings and Chili’s. Denver-based American Blue Ribbon Holdings bought the company out of bankruptcy for $27.5 million in September 2010.
Once a publicly traded company before it was purchased in April 2008 by Pittsburgh entrepreneur Gary Reinert Sr., Max & Erma’s had more than 100 corporate-owned and franchised stores in 2006, but had dropped to about 80 by the time it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in late 2009.
It closed its first Dayton-area restaurant on Kingsridge Drive behind the Dayton Mall in Miami Twp. just a few weeks after the bankruptcy filing.