Red’s Hamburger Shop in New Miami to reopen

Owner says it’s an answer to prayer to be able to provide quality food to the community.

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

ST. CLAIR TWP. — For the second time in two years, an iconic Butler County restaurant is reopening under new ownership.

The newest owner believes his lifetime passion for cooking, the restaurant’s faithful following and its location near a major sporting complex expected to draw hundreds of thousands of people to the area will help make Red’s Hamburger Shop successful again.

Walley Estes and his two silent business partners, Brady Doyle and Brandyon McMillian, who all work at Joe Morgan Honda in Monroe, recently purchased the longtime Butler County restaurant on U.S. 127 and plan to reopen next month.

Red’s Hamburger Shop traces its roots back to the early 1960s. It was briefly Mel’s Diner last decade before reopening in 2020 under its old moniker.

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Craig and Yolanda Beurelein closed the restaurant earlier this year and now it’s Estes’ turn to work the grill.

He’s quitting his salesman job at Joe Morgan this week to own and operate Red’s along with his wife, Heather. They live in Monroe and Heather has two sons, Nick, 24, a nurse at Atrium Medical Center, and Connor, 15, a sophomore at Monroe High School.

Estes has been looking for a Butler County location to open a restaurant for years, he said. Several months ago, he cooked his smash hamburgers for the staff at Joe Morgan and after the first bite, they told him: “You don’t belong here.”

Red’s will serve the traditional Red’s hamburgers, French fries, onion rings, but also a special smash burger called Walleyburger and possibly a burger of the week. Initially, the restaurant won’t offer breakfast as it did under the previous owners, Estes said.

The soft opening for family and friends is scheduled for Sept. 9 with a grand opening set for Sept. 12, he said.

Estes, 50, a 1991 Fairfield High School graduate, understands with the staffing shortage and rising prices, this isn’t the best time to open a restaurant.

“God will provide,” he said when asked about the challenges. “People still need to eat. I think some companies have declined when it comes to quality. I will never let that happen. I will never compromise.”

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Eventually, he said, he wants to expand with a possible location in Trenton. He’d like to own three locations, one called Red’s and two called Walley Burgers, and one food truck, he said.

“We all know about the American dream,” he said. “I always said, ‘That’s nice but that won’t happen to me.’ Now it’s about to happen. This is my dream and it’s time.”


WHAT: Red’s Hamburger Shop

WHERE: 103 S Riverside Drive, New Miami

HOURS AFTER SEPT. 12: Monday: 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Tuesday-Saturday: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday: closed.

PHONE: 513-863-9210

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