Farmhouse with shrubs in front
The Malabar Farm Restaurant is located at 4050 Bromfield Rd. near Lucas. Credit: Ohio Department of Natural Resources

LUCAS — The Ohio Department of Natural Resources will be seeking bids for an operator of the Malabar Farm restaurant.

The business is located in a structure on the property of Malabar Farm State Park in southern Richland County.

ODNR plans to publicly bid the Malabar Farm Restaurant operation in the coming months with the intent of securing a new operator to reopen the restaurant in the spring of 2024.

Located in Pleasant Valley of Richland County, the Malabar Farm park has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1973.

Today, visitors can see the farm, tour the Big House, hike nature trails, drive to the top of Mount Jeez, and participate in recreational activities just as they did when owner Louis Bromfield originally purchased the property.

Bromfield hoped to one day open the Malabar Inn as a restaurant. Beginning in 1960s, the Malabar Inn did operate as a restaurant. It was operated by Agnes Schwartz and Polly Kunkle Wertz.

The Malabar Inn was known for good local food.

While the restaurant has been owned by a number of different people over the years, it has always maintained that reputation.

The structure has intermittently functioned as a restaurant over the years and has recently been renovated.

The restaurant reopened in 2021 after the pandemic, and closed in July 2023.

For more information, contact Malabar Farm State Park at 419-892-2784.

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