Me, I’m kind of hit and miss. Some I do, some I don’t.
The Eppes Essen, 327 N. Superior St. Eppes Essen, which means “something to eat,” opened in 1939 by Harry Levinson and closed in 1984 by his sons, Manny and Sidney, who took over the business. The Blade’s Seymour Rothman can tell that story better than I can, however.
Dyer’s Chop House, a real shining light downtown for the longest time. Dyers could trace its beginnings to 1905, and spent 76 years at its 216 N. Superior location until it closed in 1993 after a slow and steady decline. The Blade’s food critic loved it in 1991, but was panning Dyer’s a year later as inconsistent and “like watching the descent into old age of a dear old aunt or uncle.” Dyer’s was always a good birthday dinner request for a kid in 1960s-70s Toledo.
Did you know that until 1972, Dyer’s was strictly men only at lunch? It took a U.S. District Court ruling to overturn that little tradition.
White Hut and Suzy-Q Donuts, Secor and Sylvania. I ate there. That’s about it. I can only guess it was a hopping place in the ’50s but by the late 1970s it was kind of a ghost town, a relic to an earlier era.
McDonald’s, Secor Road, circa 1965. While the block card collection says this is the McDonald’s at 3128 W. Central, I think it’s the one at 3138 Secor Road, though obviously, this one in the picture was demolished ages ago.
“Ted’s” Hamburger Shop, Monroe and Erie. Google Maps tells me the building was still standing as of July, 2014.
A little research revealed the building dates from the late 1930s and was run by John V. Voudouris (whose uncle, Ted, originally opened the restaurant) and his son, Ted, according to John’s 2015 obituary. It closed in 2000 after a vehicle struck the building.
Kewpee Hamburgers. There are still three in Lima, but Toledo had a few of these. This one was at 2248 Monroe Street. It is now a vacant lot.
Places I wish I could find a picture of:
Frank Unkle’s. Apparently the Toledo Zoo recently bought the former site of that restaurant.
The Willows, 4844 Monroe St., just east of the Franklin Park Mall. Can’t tell you when it closed but I can definitely tell you when it opened, according to this ad they ran the day before: Thursday, May 6, 1948.
Farrell’s at the Franklin Park Mall. They still exist but are in California.
Dominic’s Italian Restaurant, 2121 South Reynolds Rd., undoubtedly dragged down by the sinking of Southwyck.
Brauer’s (the Colony, right at Central and Monroe) or Siegel’s delicatessens (somewhere in the Kenwood area, if I recall correctly).
And finally, the quaint Green Derby at Monroe and Sylvania, which closed in 2000. It was owned by the Kostopulos brothers, according to this obit from 2012. They turned up in The Blade’s coverage of the 1965 Palm Sunday tornadoes:
Want to reminisce more about restaurants in Toledo? Click here to be whisked away to 1980!