Critic’s Special: MOD Pizza

With 200 locations around the U.S. and a fast growing presence in the Midwest, MOD Pizza brings the build-your-own pizza concept some refreshing perspective. As another new location opened in Columbus Saturday, Another Food Critic was invited to take a look inside.

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Engineer’s Club of Dayton

A private club in the heart of downtown Dayton, the Engineer’s Club of Dayton is a members’ organization and gathering place in a historic downtown building. Founded for Dayton’s thinkers and intellectuals by big names including Charles Kettering and Orville Wright, this spot hosts private events and other kinds of functions. The environment rings of history and the walls are decorated of the many exploits of Engineer’s Club members over their lifetimes, but the breakfast and lunch service is worth a try if you can find someone to get you in.

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The Golden Lamb Inn

The famous Golden Lamb Inn of Lebanon, Ohio has been in business for over 200 years, and counts among its thousands of satisfied customers a dozen United States presidents. Once a stagecoach stop on the road to Cincinnati, this spot still operates as a hotel, restaurant and bar stop with some very classic and long-loved dishes. Step into the country kitchen and you’ll find an experience that is something like a museum, something like an old tavern lost in time, but still serving great food. Golden Lamb is a landmark well worth a stop in Lebanon, and the food delivers.

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Rapid Fired Pizza

Created from many of the founders of Hot Head Burritos, also out of Dayton, Rapid Fired Pizza takes the build-your-own-food concept and applies it to a new target: Craft pizza. You pick the toppings on your pie (or choose a pre-selected one) and in 180 seconds that pizza is cooked and ready to eat. The first location of this new concept opened in late 2015 and immediately rocketed to a number of locations around the Dayton area. The idea is ambitious, does the pizza match? I think it’s a cool idea.

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Critic’s Special: Bibibop

Bibibop has rocketed out of the central suburbs into an all-Ohio chain of eight restaurants, and now both Cincinnati and Columbus eaters can enjoy the fast casual Korean food concept. One spot opened yesterday off Sawmill Road in Northwest Columbus at virtually the same time as another opened in Liberty Center near Cincinnati. So what does this chain have to offer? Owner Joe Holbrook invited Another Food Critic out to give it a try. The result was fantastic.

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Glass Slipper Tea Cottage

Tea is a specialty of small-town America, and what better place to enjoy it than the South? While Ft. Walton Beach is a corridor many tourists take to get to Destin and sandy beaches, many of them pass by The Glass Slipper as they do and don’t even know it. Indeed, it would be easy not to notice the unassuming little house is even a business were it not for the pretty lawn and neat trinkets that adorn its sign. The product of a happily ‘retired’ family, this little spot is a nice experience of the comfort and charms of Southern hospitality.

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Dayton Racquet Club

Perched high atop Kettering Tower, Dayton’s tallest skyscraper, the elite Dayton Racquet Club is a members-only social establishment with a number of amenities, the most remarkable of which is a restaurant and lounge on the building’s 29th floor. It’s at this exclusive club that Dayton’s elite rub shoulders whether it’s for a gathering of business leaders over breakfast, a light lunch with a source, or cocktails after hours. The Racquet Club is good to its members, and the food here, matching the view, is top-notch.

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El Meson

You won’t be in Dayton for very long before you hear the name “El Meson.”

Indeed, the expansive West Carrollton restaurant south of the city along the Interstate 75 corridor is one that’s hard to forget even after one visit. Not just for its colorful and vibrant interior decoration, but for the equally large menu of tapas and other dishes that can’t be found on any other menu in the city. In short, El Meson has long been considered a unique option in the city — one of the few places you can really go for something different. Even with the influx of new restaurant concepts, this spot continues to deliver.

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Demo’s Steak & Spaghetti House

Demos has a few locations around Nashville, it’s been a popular purveyor of Italian cuisine for quite some time. With its wide variety of delicious steaks, pasta and seafood available at relatively reasonable prices, this is a nice semi-casual place where you’ll find plenty of families and large groups feasting on delicious dishes on a cheap dime. The real charm of Demo’s is it’s such a people-friendly place; it’s always warm here, the service is always exemplary, and all in all the founding family did its job well; there’s an unmistakably contagious good mood that pervades this place as I come back year after year.

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Lovely’s Farm Market & Country Cafe

Lovely’s is primarily a small farm market offering home-made goods. The store offers baked goods, candy, and fresh fruits and vegetables all made from scratch from the ingredients grown seasonally on the Lovely’s farm. At the same time, though, Lovely’s maintains a restaurant that almost everyone in Springboro loves to frequent. It is known best for “Steve’s Signature Fried Chicken” (It used to be called “Henny Penny Chicken.”) And with the chicken, they offer a plethora of sides, most of which are also produced with ingredients from the farm. It is very difficult to find one of these that isn’t excellent.

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