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P is for Pinot

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When I started writing about wine, one cultural touchstone was a 2004 indie-film-that-blew-up called Sideways. The events of the film surround a wine tasting bachelor trip through Santa Barbara County’s Pinot Noir country. As a film, Sideways may not have held up terribly well, but the movie’s effect on wine consumption continues.

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Making the mark in Miamisburg

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Watermark’s larger space and expanded menu shine The thick-sliced brisket is hickory smoked for 6-8 hours. Time well spent. By Paula Johnson Watermark, located in Miamisburg’s historic Erie Canal Building, is named for the building’s high water line from Dayton’s 1913 Great Flood. It’s the newest incarnation of Maria and Eric Walusis’s former restaurant, Nibbles. […]

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No better season for a cold one

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While it may not be summer quite yet, summer beer is already hitting the shelves. You are undoubtedly still working your way through all those remaining winter and spring beers crowding your fridge, but there’s no time like the present to just ignore those leftover fridge turds and start sampling all that new, sexy summer […]

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Catfé society in St. Anne’s Hill

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Last spring I wrote a piece introducing readers to a Dayton first: The Gem City Catfé, which officially opened its doors on January 2nd. This is a place where the 3 Cs intersect: cats, community, and coffee. A year later, I checked in with Karin Gudal, director of the operation, to find out how things […]

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Bistro done right

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Lily’s Bistro came on the scene a few years ago and right away became an Oregon District fixture. Owner Emily Mendenhall is from restaurant people—her family owns Blind Bob’s, another Oregon standard. Mendenhall’s vision for what Lily’s would be, according to the website, seems well realized: “We feature seasonal, eclectic American comfort food + drinks […]

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Italian Double Barrel

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As many of you know, I have a real passion for autochthonal wines. (“Psst…Mike…what the hell’s an autochthonal wine?”) OK, fine. I don’t get to break that term out in everyday conversation. “Autochthonal wine” is just a fancy way to say “wine made from grapes indigenous to the region.” In a place like Italy, where […]

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It’s a Lock

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More than just beer: Downtown’s Lock 27 Lock 27’s Bacon Bites (left) with honey mustard and Pierogies with sour cream. By Paula Johnson It’s been more than three years since I reviewed Lock 27 Brewing’s original location on Main Street in Centerville. When I discovered that owner Steve Barnhart had plans to develop a location […]

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Good for wheat ales you

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There’s more to Germany than just lagers The Berliner Weisse at Carillon Brewing can be complemented with traditional raspberry syrup. By David Nilsen Germany loves its lagers, and the beer culture there is characterized by clean, crisp lager styles like Pilsner, Munich Helles, Märzen (Oktoberfest), and many others. These beers showcase classic malt and hop […]

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Raising the steaks

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The Pine Club maintains great steak house standard While you can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, I highly recommend The Pine Club’s bone-in rib eye (above) and Nantucket Cape scallops. by Paula Johnson It Certainly Ain’t Broke—If You Understand It My first visit to The Pine Club was an absolute disaster. Steak house […]

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Grape expectations

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“Old Vine” Zinfandels aren’t for the faint of heart Think Zinfandels come from white grapes? Au contraire, mon frère. By Dr. Mike Rosenberg A friend recently asked me, “So, is Old Vine Zinfandel better than regular Zinfandel?” A good question. After all, if there’s “old vine” wine, why isn’t there “young vine” wine? Let’s explore. […]

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The 411 on Diner 416

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A welcome addition to the Oregon District’s food chain The Hunter Hoagie features chicken, steak, two cheeses, and more. Be sure to add the potato twists! By Paula Johnson Diner Divergence I’ve written recently about what makes a good diner, and the value that places like diners have in modern American society, as a “third […]

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Never fear, spring beer is here

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Light, bright tastes make spring an exciting time for beer drinking Spring training for beer season begins now with a wide variety of seasonal brews. By Tom Morgan Spring is here! At least in theory. To me, spring beers are dry and refreshing. While they can and do highlight the influence of yeast, the beers […]

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Mulling the merits of Merit Grill

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Wide variety compromised by some puzzling choices The Merit Grill’s Carne Asada substituted sirloin for skirt steak, but the salsa, rice, and succotash were terrific. By Paula Johnson Factory Man PIP (Palate In Progress) and I arrived on a Tuesday evening to assess the merits of Merit Grill. We had been there before with friends, […]

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Bread Baking Demystified

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The secrets to a delicious loaf of bread are in the details The process of properly kneading bread dough includes proofing, dimpling (above), shaping, and slashing. By Paula Johnson “Good bread is the most fundamentally satisfying of all foods; and good bread with fresh butter, the greatest of feasts.” —James Beard “If thou tastest a […]

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A homestyle home run

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The Bullpen Diner in Dot’s Market The Bullpen’s country fried steak, silver dollar potato pancakes, and eggs over easy. By Paula Johnson The Silence of The Mans This one’s for the men out there. Well kind of, anyway. Forgive generalizations according to sex, but women are more highly socialized generally—they hang out with friends more, […]

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Don’t drink the green Kool-aid

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Forget the hype—true Irish beers are pure gold Skip the green beer, and go for the gold … or the dark brown … or the amber … or the red … By Tom Morgan St. Patrick’s Day is upon us. Again. It’s that not-so-glorious time of year when people around these parts celebrate being Irish […]

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Plugged In

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The next sound you hear will be…well, I don’t know what it will be but I know what it won’t […]

Debate 6/12: A tweet too far

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Was anyone really surprised? Roseanne Barr has stepped in it again. Always a loose cannon, she managed to offend just […]

If you’ve seen one ‘Ocean’, you’ve seen ‘Ocean’s 8’

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Near the start of “Ocean’s 8,” we’re led to believe that Danny Ocean (George Clooney) is dead and his sister […]

Gin and Tonic on the Horizon

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On June 13, The Rose Music Center is the place to be to get your 90s nostalgia fix as Gin […]

Goodnight Goodnight’s new morning

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“We’ve known Larry for years,” says Gary Thornton of Goodnight Goodnight. He’s talking about the newest addition to their lineup, […]