Lily’s Bistro, located at 329 E. Fifth Street in Dayton’s Oregon District, has expanded hours to include Saturday lunch and Sunday brunch from 11am-3pm.
General Manager Emily Mendenhall says the restaurant decided to add these hours to offer more weekend choices in the Oregon District. “Our lunch menu is simple and elegant, offering healthier items, and our Sunday menu balances traditional brunch food with creative, higher end cuisine. I think folks who dine in the Oregon District are looking for these options.”
Executive Chef Mariah Gahagan says brunch is a chance for her Sous Chef, Eric Dunn, to be creative. “Eric completely understands that we’re all about seasonal food utilizing fresh ingredients in a manner that is serious while being accessible. We collaborated on brunch, but I gave him room to do his thing, and I’m very proud of what our brunch menu offers.” She adds that the District on Sunday is very different than that of Saturday night. “It has a different feel on Sunday morning. I think our menu encompasses that laid back, neighborhood vibe.”
Highlights include New Orleans style beignets; baked eggs and smoked trout over sautéd spinach with dill cream sauce; and croissant French toast stuffed with sweet cream cheese, topped with fresh fruit and local maple syrup. Prices range from $5-14.
And finally with brunch being taken care of by Sous Chef Eric, Chef Mariah Gahagan couldn’t come up with an excuse to put off an any longer our Chef’s 10 Question interview we’ve been after her for months to do!
What is your favorite ingredient to cook with?
It’s hard to pick one,because my approach to cooking is all about using seasonal ingredients when they’re at their peak. But coming into fall, I’m really into butternut squash, apples, pumpkins—all the things that typify fall.
What ingredient do you dread?
Green peppers! They impart their flavor onto everything, and to me, they taste like metal.
What’s your favorite dish to make?
Right now, it’s soups, braises, just slow-cooking everything.
What’s your favorite pig out food?
Mac and cheese—preferably enjoyed in bed with my French Bulldog Lulu.
What restaurant, other than your own do you like to dine at in the Miami Valley?
Meadowlark, because Wiley is amazing, all the staff is really friendly, and everything is so legit. They use great products when they’re at their best and they don’t make things too fussy—it’s what we strive to do at Lily’s too.
What’s your best advice for home chefs?
Don’t rush things. I know everyone is always in a hurry, but allow yourself the time to focus on making the meal right. And use real garlic! That stuff in the jar is abysmal.
If you could invite any 4 guests to a dinner party who would they be and why?
- Alice Waters because she’s an amazing chef whose style I admire.
- Lou Reed because he’d be really interesting.
- Tina Fey because I’d like somebody funny there.
- David Sedaris because he’s neurotic and I appreciate that in a person. And he’s also funny.
Who do you look up to in the industry and why?
Julia Child because so changed and expanded American cooking for the better. And Mary Kay Smith and Kim Korkan from the Winds and Wiley from Meadowlark (and now Wheat Penny!) because I’ve learned so much from working with them.
What do you do in the Miami Valley on a day off?
I just bought a great house in St. Anne’s, so I mostly just want to garden, work in my yard, and hang out with my husband and dog. And once in awhile I try to go out and eat.
Share a kitchen disaster, lucky break or other interesting story:
That’s hard. Every day there’s something, and it’s always interesting. I think that’s one reason I’m drawn to this profession.