Monday, March 7, 2011

Name that Drive-in

Here's a small, sad building that has intrigued me for several years. It sits at 2309 W. 21st Street, on the south side of the street between Oberlin Avenue and Leavitt Road.

Through the years, I never really used that stretch of W. 21st Street very often (except to go to Chicken 'n Ribs Galore a few times), and thus missed seeing the evolution of the commercial strip on the south side of the road. So I have no memory of this place whatsoever.

It turns out that it spent most of its business life as Dick's Drive-in, run by Richard Rissman. The business first appeared in the City Directory in 1958. Amazingly, it lasted until the end of the 1970's.

In the early 1980's it was vacant a few years, until it became TJ Groceries & Carry Out around 1982. When that business didn't last, the building enjoyed a renaissance – as a rib joint.

In 1983, it was the home of the International Barbeque King. In 1984 it was G-Que Ribs. It was vacant again around 1986, before becoming the Rib House in 1987. After another vacancy, it continued on in 1991 as David Lee's Bar-B-Que.

Unfortunately, by 1993 it was vacant again, and I was unable to find any more listings for that address in the available directories at the library. In fact, the address wasn't even listed anymore after 1999.

Hopefully someone will read this and post some good memories of this place.


-Alan D Hopewell said...

In the 60's, we ate at Dick's sometimes when we'd be shopping at Westgate; their milkshakes were huge, and the burgers were good.

Anonymous said...

the "big munch" platter would be a food channel diner drive-in and dive classic !!!!

Anthony Dandrea said...

I lived in the Leavitt Homes housing project across the street as a young boy from 1971 until 1979 or so. Mom regularly sent me to Chicken Galore to pick up dinner, and sometimes to Dick's Drive-In or Casey's to the west (Anyone else remember their giant neon sign of a batter winding up? Fried, battered mushrooms...Mmmm.) Anyway, the only thing I remember about Dick's is their jukebox; its mechanical arm picked a record and, with a twist of the mechanical wrist, set it down on the turntable visible through the selection window.

Also nearby: the Sohio gas station on the corner with separate automatic car wash, and a Lawson's a few blocks to the east.