WEST CARROLLTON — A big piece of Dominic’s restaurant is about to be reborn.
Christie Mantia, the granddaughter of Dominic’s founder Dominic Mantia, is partnering with Reece Powers, the nephew of the founder and owner of Duke’s Golden Ox, to open an as-yet-unnamed restaurant at 630 E. Dixie Drive in a building that housed Margarita Village Mexican restaurant.
The new restaurant’s menu will feature “the original recipes” from Dominic’s, Christie Mantia said. Harry Lee, the chef who cooked those dishes at Dominic’s for 25 years between 1980 and 2005, has been hired to help bring the recipes back to life.
Dominic’s, which was located at 1066 S. Main St. in Dayton, closed in July 2007 and was later demolished. The restaurant has been part of the Dayton dining scene for more than 50 years. It was founded by Dominic Mantia and his wife Sue in 1957, using homemade Italian recipes, including a signature garlic-laced house salad dressing. It became a pregame and postgame gathering spot for University of Dayton sports fans for decades.
Christie Mantia’s step-mother, Anne Mantia, who operated the restaurant after her husband’s death, last year brought back bottled Dominic’s house Italian salad dressing, and later launched Anna Mantia Marinara Sauce, both of which are available on several local grocer’s shelves.
Anne Mantia said today, March 18, that she has no connection to the new restaurant, but has not ruled out opening a successor to Dominic’s herself.
“I’d love to have a Dominic’s-style restaurant in Dayton,” Anne Mantia said. “I’ve been talking to people for a long time and waiting to see what happens with the economy. If the right opportunity comes along, I’d like to do it.”
Regarding the new restaurant venture, Anne Mantia said, “I’m happy that some Dominic’s-style recipes will be available to the public.”
Christie Mantia said she was taught the original recipes by her grandmother, Sue Mantia, and was searching for the right opportunity to open a restaurant when she was approached by Reece Powers, nephew of the founder and owner of Duke’s Golden Ox, a restaurant that operated near Dominic’s and which also has been closed and demolished.
“It’s the thing I know and love. It’s in my blood,” Christie Mantia said.
Mantia said she would serve as general manager, while Powers will be the owner. Powers, who owns a printing business, cooked at Duke’s Golden Ox briefly, she said. Duke’s Golden Ox, founded by Duke Morris, operated on South Main Street across from the Montgomery County Fairgrounds. It closed in 2004 after 34 years in business.
The new West Carrollton restaurant is accepting applications this week and will begin interviews next week, with an eye toward opening in about a month, Mantia said.Tweet