Sunday, June 1, 2014

Reuben, Funnel Cake and Haygoods in Branson, MO

Our next overnight stop on our Route 66 tour was Branson, MO.  Someone described Branson as a country and western version of Las Vegas without the casinos.  If by that they mean that there are lots of shows there, they got that right.

Branson is a fun town, with Dicks Old Time Five and Dime and some very cute gift and antique shops in the Old Town. While in town, we ate lunch at Main Street Alley Grill and Gift Shop.  As the name suggests, it is a cafĂ© attached to a gift shop. 

My pick was the Reuben sandwich (corned beef, Swiss cheese, mayo and sauerkraut on rye) (~$7).  It comes with home made chips and a gherkin, and is served in a basket lined with chequer board paper. It was delicious.

There was a sign out front advertising funnel cake.  I wanted to know what it was, so I ordered one:

It is basically a batter drizzled into a skillet and fried until crispy, then coated in powdered sugar.  It tastes something like a waffle or a donut but without any soft parts, and was pretty good.

The staff at Main Street Alley were really lovely - the lady who served us was delighted to tell me what a funnel cake was and checked on how we liked it.

While wandering through the Old Town in Branson, I picked up a big bag of my beloved salt water taffy from Dick's Old Time Five and Dime:

In the evening, it is show time in Branson.  We opted out of the group dinner and instead went for a low key dinner at Panera Bread.  I chose the half and half option, ordering the chicken noodle soup with the Thai chicken salad (and choosing the apple accompaniment rather than the chips, which is the other choice):

For an extra dollar, I got to choose a bakery item, so I chose the cherry Danish:

The Danish was the stand out - it was simply delightful.

After dinner, we saw a show, as is a must in Branson.  We managed to get two for one tickets to see The Haygoods, a family of five boys and one girl who perform energetic covers of well known songs with pyrotechnics, special effects and humour.  Despite not really knowing who we were going to see, it was  really good show, and we enjoyed it a lot.  It was slightly disconcerting that the venue had a sign saying "concealed weapon holders welcome" - I was really glad that I never found out if there were any such persons there.

We walked from our hotel to get to the theatre where the Haygoods were performing, and soon learned that no-one really walks in Branson, hence the footpaths were not the greatest.  On the way, we passed the Hollywood Wax Museum, which had a very cool "Mount Rushmore with Movie Stars": 

and a King Kong that dominated the skyline:

Here is the road out of Branson - it reminds me of the John Denver song, Country Roads:

Branson was fun - I'd go back.
Main Street Alley
113 W Main Street
Branson MO 65616
Ph: +1 417-337-5100
Panera Bread
2407 Green Mountain Drive
Branson, MO 65616
Ph: +1 417-336-4550


The Caked Crusader said...

I've never had a funnel cake - seeing that photo makes me reaaallllly want one!

Lisa said...

What an interesting post. That gerkin in your basket, would that be a dill pickle, I wonder? Also, had never heard of the salt water Taffy sweets. What are they like? What a great trip you're having!

Jill said...

I'm enjoying reading about your trip across the US! There are several Panera Bread restaurants where I live, and it's one of my favorite places to go for lunch.

Cakelaw said...

Hi Lisa, it probably was a dill pickle - gherkin is my description. You must try salt water taffy - it is delicious, and I can't buy it here.

Cakelaw said...

Hi Jill, glad you are enjoying these posts - they are bringing back things I'd forgotten until I go to write about them.

Cakelaw said...

Hi CC, definitely worth trying at least once in your life.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

I've had funnel cake once but I didn't really enjoy it as it tasted mostly of old oil. I think you got a much better one :)

Kari said...

Gosh, that King Kong is huge! I like the sound of funnel cake too, and have never had salt water taffy - it always sounds so mysterious to me!

Hotly Spiced said...

Branson does look like a great place to go and explore. How funny that no one walks and therefore the footpaths are not the best! I would have thought walking would be a great way to see the sites xx

Chaya said...

Your photo of the stack looks like a rose. We enjoyed it. Sorry, I am late getting here but was offline for the last two days.

Kayte said...

Looks like you enjoyed Branson very much. I would have ordered that Ruben sandwich (but had them leave off the mayo) as that looked wonderful, I'm a big fan of the Ruben. When I go to Panera I always order that salad and the French Onion Soup. You and your Salt Water Taffy!! Matt loves that as well. They have a place here where you just pick the flavors you want and they box them up and he always goes there to do that when he's in a taffy mood. You and he would do well together at that shop. :-)