Posted By Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle
4/1/2009 4:02:00 PM
Mel-O-Dee is a locally popular family-style restaurant near Dayton that is especially appreciated for breakfast and bakery items, and its Broasted chicken. We passed on the chicken, not being big fans of the pressure-frying technique, but just about every table in the restaurant on this busy Saturday evening had plates and platters of chicken, and it sure did look good. If we're in the area again, we may give it a try.
They bake loaves of white and rye bread, and when you enter you can see bags of the bread lined up near the cash register. These loaves are a popular take-home item. A basket of slices is brought to the table when you sit down. It's good, old-fashioned American bread, sliced thick, soft and fresh. There's a large menu of home-style favorites. We ordered a beef hot-shot, which held a special boxed place of honor on the menu, but were disappointed with the lukewarm cube steak and bogus-seeming potatoes, blanketed with a good dark gravy. It could have come straight from Sysco.
On the other hand, from the daily specials menu, the stuffed cabbage was a real winner. Tomato, cabbage, meat and juices, it tasted like soulful home-cooking. And a dessert special, orange cake, was terrific, the dense and sandy-textured pound cake layers separated by orange icing.
We're not yet sure how to approach this restaurant, but we suspect that the specials menu may provide the best food in the house, along with the bakery items. And perhaps that Broasted chicken is worth a try.