Corner Kitchen restaurant space and name sold to new owners

Liddy Vella vacuums the dining area of the Corner Kitchen at the corner of E. Fifth St. and Wayne Avenue.  TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Caption
Liddy Vella vacuums the dining area of the Corner Kitchen at the corner of E. Fifth St. and Wayne Avenue. TY GREENLEES / STAFF

A former Oregon District restaurant location that closed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic in the summer of 2020 could soon see new life.

One Esca Group, a Dallas restaurant management company, has purchased the lease of the former Corner Kitchen space from its former owners and husband-and-wife team, Jack and Natalie Skilliter. The company intends on owning and operating Corner Kitchen under the same name, according to Chuck Vella, Natalie’s father.

The management company has received a building permit to do renovations inside the space located at 613 E. Fifth St. A liquor control permit application has also been filed to transfer the license from the previous owners.

The restaurant, situated on the corner of Fifth and Wayne avenues, opened in July 2015 under the direction of the Skilliters.

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“They will retain some of Jack’s and Natalie’s offerings, however, they will also add new items to the menu, to the bar and we will also make some changes to the floor plan,” Vella said. “They will be changing the dining experience to create their own vision.”

Over the course of an unspecified “transition period,” Jack and Natalie will serve as consultants to the company ahead of any kind of opening.

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One Esca Group owns and manages over $18 million in annual sales with assets located in Texas and Ohio, according to a statement from Vella. The company owns and operates Spaghetti Warehouse at 36 W. Fifth St. in downtown Dayton.

“They are also keenly aware of the great things that are happening in downtown Dayton and the region,” Vella said. “For downtown, a renaissance, if you will, that will make Dayton an even more attractive entertainment and dining center. They see this move as a great opportunity and it is their intention to add to the vibrancy of the region.”