The baristas at Dancing Goats Cafe whip up eye-opening espresso drinks using organic beans culled from local roasters. As patrons steep in the café’s artsy ambiance, staffers fuse together coffee and steamed milk to create cups of café au lait ($2–$3.35), easily customizable with more than 20 all-natural flavor options. A house-made chai ($3–$4) embellished by soy milk ($0.50) spurns espresso tampers, along with a mélange of other black and herbal teas ($1.50), including the Ancient Roots tea line, fresh from Athens, Ohio. To wake up from a nap about napping, customers can stick a straw into the café’s Steel Your Face drink, loaded with eight full shots of espresso and temporary confidence in one's ability to lift a sedan. They can then offset excessive caffeine with a vegan muffin in a flavor such as pineapple zucchini or pumpkin praline ($2.75).
The founders of Eclipse Coffee and Tea sought to create a more personal and welcoming space than what they found in franchised coffee shops. So they invite their patrons to curl up on one of their couches with a coffee drink made with beans from Cincinnati roaster Seven Hills Coffee. The baristas craft hot and cold beverages, including signature lattes flavored with milk chocolate, caramel, almond, coconut, and even peanut butter, making for a drink that's sweeter and more convenient than stirring a cappucino with a candy bar. At lunch, patrons enjoy specialty paninis or the create-your-own sandwich option, directing staff to build custom sandwiches with Boar's Head cold cuts. Baked goods from Ashley's Pastry Shop, which has served the area for about 30 years, are made fresh daily for breakfast or dessert.
Centerville Car Wash & Café's team of wash doctors turns muddy autos into sparkling chariots of cleanliness as customers lounge in comfort. The Works car wash cleanses auto exteriors and paints them with a clear-coat sealant to prevent damage to the paint job. To help to repel the water droplets from melting clouds, Rain-X is applied to glass surfaces, and Wheel Brite treats tires to a relaxing facial while the car's underbody receives a rust-inhibitor bath. The technicians also tend to interiors with similarly meticulous care, vacuuming, washing windows, dusting, and placing an air-freshener cherry on the auto sundae. While the scrubbing and buffing take place, car owners can wait in the café area, which features a flat-screen TV and couches.
Saxbys Coffee delights taste buds with coffees brewed from small-batch roasted beans. Green coffee beans journey from their country of origin to Saxbys' roasting facility, where the master roaster employs traditional European techniques to carefully roast each small batch of beans, giving them a light, medium, or dark flavor profile.
In-store baristas spice up cups of java with more than 200 flavorings, such as coconut and toasted marshmallow, that imbue brews with an extra kick. Saxbys Coffee is just as meticulous with the environment as it is with its beverages—all of the shop's lids, java jackets, napkins, and cups are 100% recyclable and 100% welcomed by billy goats attempting to curb their tin-can addictions.
This locally owned, Hollywood-themed eatery boasts an all-star cast of belly fillers named after classic films such as The Godfather, Rocky, and Steven Spielberg's early all-kitten rendition of Un Chien Andalou. Star City is known for its steamed hoagies, ranging from the Little Miss Sunshine's heartwarming pairing of ham and swiss ($5.50 for a whole) to the deluxe Top Gun's action-packed layers of ham, turkey, bacon, provolone, and power balladry ($6.50 for a whole). If your stomach grumbles with Fellini-esque machismo, play the director and hand-pick the bread, meat, cheese, and veggie players in your epicurean ensemble ($5.50–$6.50 for a whole customized hoagie). Round out your repast by adding a homemade side of potato salad, coleslaw, or soup ($1.95 each) to your personal craft-services platter.
Located within the Pendleton Art Center, Mockingbirds serves up classic American food and locally roasted, fair-trade, organic beans brewed into what Think Middletown called "some of the best coffee in the city." In the kitchen, cooks simmer mushroom-brie or Wisconsin-cheese soups, layer sandwiches with cranberry and grape-laced chicken salad, and roast authentic pork carnitas for Taco Tuesdays. Diners can also stop by on weekends for a buffet of comfort food, including pot roast and mashed potatoes. A spacious interior and free WiFi make Mockingbirds an inviting spot to hang out, though a bicyclist can deliver the eatery's fare on two wheels during the warmer months.
The Winans family has been making lives a little sweeter for more than a century. During the Great Depression, townspeople would flock to the family’s bakery in Piqua with their sugar rations. Owner Wayne Winans would take that sugar and turn it into freshly baked cookies—a small pick-me-up at a time when even small pick-me-ups were a luxury. Years later, Wayne’s sons, Max and Dick, carried the family torch into the 1960s, when the first Winans Fine Chocolates & Coffees was born.
Today, the Winans family continues to do what it does best at three Ohio locations. All of the business’s chocolates are handmade, with no preservatives or fillers, and never cryogenically frozen. The family’s emphasis on freshness carries over to their coffee, too, which has frequently been named the area's best by the readers of the Dayton Business Journal and the Dayton Daily News. The secret is in their roasting process—their small, 15-pound roaster requires them to roast the beans in small batches, which leads to a more consistent product. Once the beans are ready, coffee artisans carefully combine them with other roasts to create a vast assortment of flavors, which includes 11 house coffee blends, 12 flavored coffees, and even more seasonal selections.