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Myra's Dionysus closing after 37 years

CINCINNATI (Joe Webb) -- In less than two weeks a staple near the UC campus will close.
Myra's Dionysus restaurant will shut down after 37 years at the corner of Calhoun and Dennis.  It was business as usual Wednesday, August 20th, 2014, at Myra's Dionysus.  They were cutting fresh coconut flan in the kitchen and hand picking parsley for taboulleh in the deli.

"Used to make our own yogurt.  Board of health decided we couldn't do that for some reason just last year.  After 36 years!" said Myra.
Myra is a central Kansas girl who grew up to set foot on every continent but Antarctica.  She collected recipes at every stop.  On January 28, 1977 Myra Griffin stopped traveling and started cooking at 121 Calhoun Street.

"They don't eat a lot of meat in those countries, you know.  A lot of interesting food that's not meat.  I don't like dealing with meat that much so that's kind of how I went," she told Local 12.
For more than 37 years, Myra's has been a mecca for Cincinnati vegetarians and vegans.  Even though she does have some meat on the menu, it all stops at the end of August.  As word has spread, longtime customers came in to order one last meal.  Jennifer Ruschulte worked at Myra's in the 90's and brought her family in for lunch.  She served Jane Goodall dinner there.

There are a lot of food options on Calhoun these days.  But when Myra's is gone there won't be any place to go to with eight homemade soups on the menu every day.  Homemade desserts and menu items like gado gado, spanicopida and baba ganouj.
Ellen Faeth has been a regular customer for 30 years, "This menu, you can't find a vegetarian menu anywhere else in the city like this one."

Myra will be 83 in January.  The building and restaurant are for sale.

"It's kind of like theater. You get everything ready and you open the doors and then you entertain people.  That's what the fun is," she told Local 12.  "I can't cook and do the things that I think are fun.  I guess that's the real reason.  The things I really enjoy most I can't do any more."
The curtain comes down on the long run August 31.  Things like West African Ground Nut Stew will become part of a city's colorful past.  

Myra said she doesn't plan on retiring completely.  At one point in her career, she taught English as a second language and she may do that again.

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