Looking for a new place for lunch or dinner this weekend? Butler County has plenty of them.
Here are a few new restaurants that have opened in recent months — and one longtime eatery with a revamped menu:
1. FIRESIDE CAFE (Liberty Twp.)
All the items on the menu at Fireside Cafe are prepared from scratch by owner/chef Bruno Bas and his crew and focus on a mix of American and Italian cuisine. Located at 6752 Cincinnati-Dayton Road about half a mile north of Ohio 129, the restaurant serves daily specials for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Breakfast menu items include egg and griddle specialties, loaded skillets, six kinds of Eggs Benedict, nine omelettes and five breakfast sandwiches. The lunch and dinner menu features more than 80 different dishes, including starters, salads, sandwiches, burgers, pizza, pasta, steak, seafood, chicken, pork chops, stromboli and Italian dishes.
The recipe for the pizza at Fireside Cafe has been in the family for more than 60 years.
2. TEXAS ROADHOUSE (West Chester Twp.)
Texas Roadhouse moseyed into its newly constructed digs at 7309 Kingsgate Way in West Chester Twp. July 31 with a menu that features American fare with a Southwestern spin, including ribs, hand-cut steaks, made-from-scratch sides and ice-cold beer.
While there are chicken, fish and vegetarian options, beef takes up 48 percent of the menu and steaks are put on display so guests may choose which one they want prepared for them. Selections include a Ft. Worth Ribeye, Dallas Filet, New York Strip, Bone-In Ribeye, Porterhouse T-Bone, Steak Kabob, Filet Medallions and Prime Rib.
3. GRACIE’S (Middletown)
The modest, focused menu at Gracie’s, 1131 Central Ave., Middletown, features Pork Belly Shrimp & Grits, Deviled Eggs and The (Charcuterie) Board among its starters, as well as Half Roasted Chicken, The Burger, a Berkshire Pork Chop, Seared Salmon, Crispy Skin Branzino (a sea bass) and Braised Short Rib Mac among its main dishes.
A massive blackboard highlights daily specials: meatloaf (Monday), pork shank (Tuesday), fried chicken (Wednesday), pasta night (Thursday), fresh catch (Friday) and steak night (Saturday).
There’s also a selection of wine, beer, top-shelf liquor and craft cocktails.
4. COACH HOUSE TAVERN & GRILLE (Hamilton)
While Coach House Tavern & Grille isn’t new, the revamped menu is. Those changes are the work of executive chef Jared Whalen, who started his career at The Maisonette in Cincinnati. Whalen’s changes aim to offer a dining experience similar to a modern downtown Cincinnati eatery.
Small plates and appetizers grace the dining menu at this longtime Hamilton restaurant, which is located at 120 Berkley Drive. There’s also a tempting variety of hand-crafted, seasonal fare that incorporate classic traditions with today’s trends. A bar menu offers infused bourbons and wine selections.
Classic favorites that the Coach House has long been known for, like French Onion Soup and freshly made meatloaf, are still served daily, but now diners with more adventurous palates cam enjoy more modern dishes like the Asian Inspired Pork Tenderloin.
5. RIVERTOWN BREWERY & BARREL HOUSE (Monroe)
Yes, we know this is a brewery, not a traditional restaurant, but few other local draft-driven establishments have a menu that features a mix of classic barbecue recipes and styles with some modern twists, including items like Brisket Skillet Hash and Burnt End Deviled Eggs.
Located at 607 Shepherd Dr. in Monroe, the new brew crew also whips up Yaca Street Tacos, which are made with with a slow-smoked Jackfruit that owner Jason Roeper says “tastes exactly like pulled pork.”
Owned by Jason and Lindsey Roeper, the establishment injects its brisket with its Death brew, pork with its Solace brew and its cole slaw with a cider-based Tequilana. The turkey there is brined with Rivertown lager and the chili is cooked with the brewery’s IPA.
6. BAR DEL MAR (Liberty Twp.)
Standalone bar and restaurant Bar Del Mar breezed into Liberty Center at 7600 Gibson St. in Liberty Twp. in the spring. Come for the laid-back, seaside getaway ambiance and stay for dishes like Margherita Pizza, Balsamic Glazed Chicken Wings and Buffalo Cauliflower.
A drinks menu includes house-made infusions, including Pineapple Vodka, Spicy Mango Tequila and Honey Vanilla Bourbon, plus specialty cocktails, wine and local craft beer.
7. BUTT SHACK BBQ & GRILL (Fairfield)
Looking for “low and slow” wood-smoked barbecue? Venture out to Butt Shack BBQ & Grill, 500 Wessel Drive, in Fairfield.
Owner Andy Castle’s menu boasts more than a dozen “shareables,” plus salads, burgers, sandwiches, jumbo wings, pizza, wraps and Shack’s Way, a wood-smoked sausage topped with pulled pork, coleslaw and a choice of barbecue sauce in a hoagie.
Carnivorous favorites are served by the quarter-slab, half slab or full slab, including baby back ribs, pulled pork, pulled chicken or beef brisket. Chicken is available in varying cuts and rib tips are sold by the pound.
8. KINZ KABOB (West Chester Twp.)
Located at 7312 Kingsgate Way in West Chester Twp. right across the street from Texas Roadhouse is Kinz Kabob, a Mediterranean grill eatery offering six different sandwiches ranging from falafel sandwich, grilled chicken and beef burger to chicken shawarma, beef shawarma and mixed shawarma. All are priced at $3.99 each.
9. CHUY’S (West Chester Twp.)
Situated within The Streets of West Chester shopping center at 9538 Civic Center Blvd, Chuy’s features family recipes from South Texas, New Mexico and Mexican border towns, with all dishes made from scratch every day. Tortillas start as a bag of flour or masa each morning and are hand-rolled by tortilla experts on an authentic comal that you can watch from the dining room.
Ten homemade signature sauces range from mild Tomatillo to the spicy Hatch Green Chile and are made in small batches throughout the day.
10. THE SLICE (Middletown)
In the heart of downtown Middletown at 1300 Central Ave., The Slice is a full restaurant and bar that co-owners (and brothers) Shane Scott and Brandon Scott opened back in March. On the menu are pizza, chicken wings, Italian sausage hoagies, steak hoagies, chicken hoagies and salads, as well as appetizers like garlic knots, french bread pizza and cheese sticks.
Cooked in stone ovens, the pizza is available by the slice, not just by the pie. Specialty pizzas abound, including Pickle Pie, Chicken-Bacon-Ranch Pizza, Veggie Pizza, Buffalo Chicken Pizza and Barbecue Pizza.
11. TRES AMIGOS (Monroe)
Tres Amigos Mexican Grill at 1012 Lebanon St. in Monroe offers everything from quesadillas, burritos, enchiladas and Jalisco Street tacos to steak, chicken, seafood and desserts.
Especially popular is the El Molcajete, which features a seasoned grilled steak, with shrimp, chorizo sausage, onions, mushrooms, poblano peppers and a homemade sauce, all topped with cheese and avocado. The dish is served in a hot stone bowl with tortillas, rice and beans.
Beverage options include beer, wine, sangria, daiquiris and frozen margaritas. The restaurant’s all-alcohol margaritas are made with top-shelf tequilas and all-natural gourmet flavoring of lavender, pomegranate and prickly pear.
12. WOODEN BARREL (West Chester Twp.)
This homestyle cooking eatery opened its doors back in February at 9303 Cincinnati-Columbus Road in West Chester Twp. offering comfort food and breakfast all day.
Overseen by general manager Robert Combs, of Trenton, who also manages Dad’s Restaurant in Middletown, the new place features everything from country fried steak, cheeseburgers, chicken tenders and meatloaf to fried chicken, haddock, pork chops and liver and onions.