Another of the many new restaurants opening up downtown, Serendipity Bistro has the right mix of things that would make it right for all occasions. It's real, refined cuisine and absolutely nothing about it tastes canned or conventional.
Another of the many new restaurants opening up downtown, Serendipity Bistro at 23 South St. Clair Street, has the right mix of things that would make it right for all occasions. It's got the light sandwiches and fare that are perfect for a quick stopover for lunch, but the refined selection of wines and light desserts that make the place attractive as a nightspot.
Working in downtown Columbus, I really enjoyed that there were a hundred unique little restaurants to choose from on your lunch break. More than ever, downtown Cincinnati's multitude of nice places is making its nightlife a place to be. It's very exciting to see more places like this springing up in Dayton.
The food menu is compact but has a huge variety of flavors, including a list of pizzas and salads as well as a number of sandwiches and Panini options. The smoked turkey sandwich was excellent, it was served with chipotle mayo, green peppers and roasted red peppers. It had just a little bit of heat, it makes for a great light lunch or dinner, and definitely fresh. On the other hand, the Cuban Panini was also spectacular; it's got three kinds of meat with spicy mustard and some Cuban seasoning; it's a different sandwich. Cuban spices are slowly working their way into mainstream restaurants like this.
One of the awesome little details I wouldn't have known before my visit, there's a neat trick they have here that I have never tried before; the sandwiches are served alongside a light salad with balsamic vinegar and some cucumber slices that have been marinated in ginger and mint. It really just blows me away.
The wine selection is fascinating; Dayton's a wine town and the menu is highly thought-out, with a selection of reds and whites as well as a number if port wines, sparkling wines, and blush wines. You can sample wines from New Zealand, Germany, and all over the world. I sampled a very dry Pino Grigio and a mild bodied white German Reisling. They were very good.
Last but not least is dessert. I had the good fortune of sampling some of the cheesecakes. The dessert menu isn't solid, but what I sampled was excellent; with a very tart lemon curd cheesecake topped nicely with raspberry. The apple cinnamon cheesecake has a crispness to it, almost like apple pie. My favorite, though, was the chocolate cheesecake; it's made with a perfect blend of light and dark cocoa with the texture of a thick mousse. Delightful.
The atmosphere and people are great; the bistro is definitely the type of place to bring a small group of friends, be it a lunch group or an after-work crowd, to enjoy a glass and a pleasant conversation. I'm really excited about this place. It's real, refined cuisine and absolutely nothing about it tastes canned or conventional. It's yet another great instance of Dayton pride.
Tristan Navera is a freelance writer from Dayton, Ohio, and foodie behind Another Food Critic, a blog dedicated to providing comprehensive, insightful and honest restaurant reviews.