The Trademarked Side Dish: Watts’ Banana Salad

Up the road in Utica, Ohio is a restaurant, over 110 years old, with a storied past and a bright future. And, a side dish that appears on the menu with a registered trademark icon next to it:  Banana Salad®.

Current owner Doug Morgan told us the recipe for Watts’ Banana Salad® was purchased by prior owners Roger McCoy and Myron Coblentz from its chef creator, another restaurant owner who was retiring upon sale of her business where her Banana Salad was a fan favorite.

It’s a favorite of the Watts team and their regular guests. Our server said the secret is the banana sauce, drizzled over a sliced banana and large dollop of creamy peanut butter nestled on crispy iceberg lettuce. It’s definitely enough for a shareable dish and kids will probably think it’s fun and delicious.

Watts was purchased last year by Doug and his wife Beth Morgan – they’re only the third owners – the Watts family kept it in the family until selling to Roger and Myron in 2015. Doug is working on restoring the basement to house a gift shop and quilting supplies stop for quilters who come to the area for quilting events.

The Watts restaurant building was originally a family home and Doug found the home’s original kitchen in the basement where visitors will be able to see the original beehive oven! He expects to have the new lower-level gift shop open for business as early as this summer.

Watts is very famous for their cream pies made in-house and their double-crust pies, baked using their recipes on a neighboring Amish farm. You can purchase full pies to take home after enjoying their comforting, homestyle cooking. Daily specials happen every day of the week alongside savory beef and noodles, chicken and noodles, roast pork with dressing and gravy, burgers, salads and a solid kids menu.

Down home, delicious and very friendly – if you’re up for a road trip – take a drive up to Watts Restaurant77 S. Main Street, Utica, Ohio.

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Chris Shirer, Publisher of The Lancaster Herald

By Chris Shirer

Chris Shirer is the publisher of The Lancaster Herald. You’ll find her walking all over Lancaster sometimes accompanied by her investigative reporter dogs Rocket and Lily.