Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Great Lakes >
Nov 12, 2009 11:43 AM

Dayton, Ohio ideas

Hi, Everyone. I am driving with my son (10 years old) to spend the weekend in Dayton for the US Air Force Museum. I searched the Chowhound posts for Dayton and wanted to see if there are currently further ideas, or comments on the ideas I have. (Let me add: my son is a very cosmopolitan eater, so don't worry about him being averse to new things.)

I like to try places that are special in their areas, not from fanciness, but just flavor, uniqueness, and atmosphere.

We'll be headed into and out of Dayton from the north, and I have read that a place called K-Village Inn is well worth a stop (the turtle soup place?). We might be able to do that either for Saturday lunch on the way in or Sunday dinner on the way out.

We need some place for Saturday dinner after the museum closes, and we normally like: Asian of all sorts (Thai, Indian, Vietnamese, Chinese, etc.); barbecue joints; pizza; really a lot more.

I also see that lots of people mention Cincinnatti chili from the Skyline chain as something to try, but they also don't seem super-enthusiastic about it. That's curious.

A final query: I can't quite figure out what the scene is at a place called Jungle Jim's--some kind of grocery megamart, apparently? Do they have stuff worth hauling back to our home in South Bend, IN?



  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Hey BB, I'm at Jungle Jim's every Friday. It's about a 30 minute drive from Dayton. There's a section that has foods from a multitude of different countries, a huge wine and beer selection, hundreds of different sodas (definitely grab an original Dr. Pepper with cane sugar), a massive produce department and loads of cheese from around the globe. You'll definitely want to save a couple cubic feet in the car to take stuff back. Oh, and the monorail is working, though I don't know if it's open to the public.

    Photo from the entrance.

    3 Replies
    1. re: JohnE O

      Thanks, I'll bring a cooler for the drive. Plus it sounds as if they might have decent packs of dried porcini, which I'm finding hard to find here at home, in South Bend, IN.

      1. re: Bada Bing

        Yup! Plenty of varieties of dried mushrooms, in several different sections (asian section, health foods section, etc). The selection in the japanese hectare (you think I'm kidding, but I'm not) is the best. Lots of interesting ethnic produce as well as all of the goodies JohnE_O mentioned above. When I drive down from Dayton, I usually spend a good couple of hours in the place!

        I think ppl mention Skyline because it's absolutely everywhere (the Mickey-Dee's of chili, as it were), but you definitely know you're eating chain food when you have it. If you want to get the impression of what Cincy chili is, it's a place to start.

        The Dayton area is also home to a rather large Mennonite farming community (not unique to you, being from Northeast Indiana) and there is a great restaurant serving family-style Mennonite/Amish food about 20 minutes South of Xenia. It's called Der Dutchman.

        I'd stay away from Asian food in Dayton. You'd just be setting yourself up for disappointment. Thai 9 (downtown Dayton) is acceptable if you're dying for some Thai.

        Ohio is also home to a chain of ice cream shops, Graeter's, which is worth a stop if you're eager for a sugar rush. Very good ice cream: get a flavor that has chocolate chips in it - the chips are more like chunks of delicious dark chocolate. The waffle cones are also sleeper hits. They're fresh and a teeny bit salty which complements every flavor I've had it with. The black raspberry with chips is my fave and is also the most popular.

        Enjoy your trip!

        Der Dutchman
        230 N State Route 42, Waynesville, OH 45068

        Thai 9
        11 Brown St, Dayton, OH 45402

        1. re: ohm86

          Graeter's is awesome. And Thai 9 is terrific too. Last time I was in Dayton my sister took me to The Meadowlark. I HIGHLY recommend it!! It is easily my favorite restaurant in Dayton. DO NOT be turned off because it is in a strip mall. It is a wonderful place to eat.

    2. I have a suggestion: try Dayton style pizza when you're here. Ideally, it is a thin crusted pizza, cooked at very high temperature, cut into little squares. It's not NY style - the crust is stiffer and thinner. The local Cassano's chain is usually associated with this style. Marion's (another local chain) is most people's favorite. However, I would recommend Ron's Tavern in Miamisburg (at the junction of Rt. 725 and Dixie Highway) as the best current example of Dayton style pizza, better than Marion's or Cassano's.

      Another idea (a short 20 mile road trip out of Dayton, actually in the NE direction of Fairborn but farther out in Yellow Springs) is Young's Jersey Dairy. It's a huge ice cream seller but they have a full selection of diner food. Very good stuff.

      Ron's Pizza
      1 S Main St, Miamisburg, OH 45342

      3 Replies
      1. re: donw9876

        We ended up trying Marion's Pizza on North Fairfield and thought it was very good--the crust in particular. We also made a special stop on the way to Dayton at the K-Village Inn in Kettlersville. It was a treat--the turtle soup was very good, although not as hot as I would like. We had onion strings (perfectly cooked) and a ruben sandwich, too. Unfortunately, we did not go to Jungle Jim's because it was well out of our way and would have taken too much time. Sounds great, though!

        Jungle Jim's Cafe
        1923 N Peoria Rd, Springfield, IL 62702

        Marion's Pizza
        4979 W Smith Valley Rd, Greenwood, IN 46142

        1. re: Bada Bing

          dayton style pizza is a treat -- you did good -- thx for reporting back!

          1. re: Bada Bing

            I stopped at the K-Village Inn the day before Thanksgiving on my way up to Miochigan from Dayton. I have to concur with your assessment on the turtle soup. Very good, but not as spicy as I've had it elsewhere. Good food and very good service.