The Lima Ave Rootbeer Stand: Sip Where Time Stands Still

. July 1, 2016.

The Lima Ave Rootbeer Stand

830 Lima Ave. | 419-422-4949
Hours: 11am-8pm Monday-Saturday
FB keywords “Lima Ave Rootbeer Stand”
Takeout available

My drink had arrived

I didn’t realize that it would be so powerful, but one sip from that heavy glass mug of root beer, and I could see myself in my own kids. I may as well have been sitting at that picnic table with my mom, dad and sister sporting 80s short shorts, a tank top and a bowl cut.

That’s the magic that happens when you don’t drink root beer for more than 20 years. I’m glad that, in my family’s recent visit to The Lima Ave Rootbeer Stand, I ordered one for novelty’s sake. 

A true Findlay tradition, the Rootbeer Stand has been serving up tasty treats across from Cooper Tire since 1949. Bud and Terri Ramm have owned it for about 15 years. 

“It’s a lot fun,” Terri said. “We have a lot of regulars. Some of the older couples have neat stories, they’ll tell us, ‘Oh, I met my wife here,’ or they like to tell us how much the place has changed.”

Vehicles can pull up on either side of the large awning with picnic tables. You can park and take a seat under the awning, or wait in your vehicle for a server. The server will take your order, then balance a tray of food right on your window to eat in your car. Terri said they especially love when classic cars roll up, she often snaps a photo for the business’ Facebook page (Lima Ave Rootbeer Stand). “We’d love to wire some music out here and have a car show one day,” she said.

Rootbeer Stand-ards

The Rootbeer Stand is known, of course for its root beer and root beer floats, but also the Spanish dog, a hot dog topped with a meat sauce, onions and cheese. They also offer burgers, pizzaburgers, and several sandwich options – shredded chicken, breaded veal, fish, veggie, and sloppy joe. Patrons can also enjoy spicy fried pickles, cheese sticks, cheese balls, onion rings, fries, a variety shakes and floats, and ice cream.

Simple and Beautiful

When our order arrived, all of our food was packed neatly on a tray that rests on the car window. Our four drinks were lined in a row with our little baskets of fries, white paper-wrapped sandwiches, napkins, straws and four nice-sized ketchup cups (we hadn’t asked for them but they were just right). Not your typical tray presentation – marvelous and tidy.

My husband cashed in on the favorites, ordering both the Spanish dog and a root beer float. Like me, he found himself immersed in Memory Lane, reminiscing about being a kid and playing little league baseball. I tasted the float, being sure to get some of that brown foam that forms on the ice cream when it hits the root beer. Shouldn’t I be lacing up my roller skates?

Oddly enough my 10-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter, who LOVE ice cream, were not fans of the root beer float. They don’t drink pop, and it mystified them to be offered this forbidden fruit. After extensive convincing, each agreed to try it, and when the carbonated bubbles hit their tongues— Twisted mouths. Recoil city. 

Guess root beer floats won’t be having the same affect on them 20 years from now.

Food and Fun to Satisfy us All

Though there is no kids menu at The Rootbeer Stand, ours had no trouble finding something to their liking, with water to drink. My adventurous son ordered a sloppy joe sandwich with fries and remarked, “Oh, this tastes like a taco! It’s so good.” (I love catching these little quotes.) He also delighted in the crinkle cut fries. My daughter went with a hot dog and fries and gobbled them up, offering that they were, “Good.”

I ordered a cheeseburger and fries and found the burger to be exceptional. The Stand’s burgers are made with quality meat from Miller’s Meats in Findlay, and you can tell. It was cooked beautifully – warm and juicy and seasoned nicely, with a fresh bun, crisp lettuce, and a thick slice of tomato. I happily dipped my burger in my cup of ketchup with each bite. I do try generally to limit my fry intake, but I agreed with the family consensus – they were good!

Eating at The Rootbeer Stand was remarkably fun and pleasant. Our little family sat at a picnic table in the shade on a sunny day, a nice breeze keeping us cool, parked vehicles at our backs. We watched the traffic pass by on Lima Avenue, enjoyed figuring out how this little eatery works, and crafted new memories in the wake of old ones. I loved just taking it all in – the trays balanced on cars, people sitting outside enjoying themselves, the company of my family. 

Cheers to capturing the simple things.

The Short Course

Kid-friendly: Very
To avoid wait: Busiest between 11:15am-1:15pm and 6-8pm. Come at an off-time, or order ahead.
Noise level: Quiet-Moderate
Bathroom amenities: No public restroom
High chairs? No, if needed people usually bring a stroller for baby
Got milk? No, but Fuze tea or water available.
Kids’ menu: No, but menu choices appealing to kids
Food allergy concerns? Canola oil used for cooking