After passing several billboard signs raving about South Dakota beef, we were intrigued when our hotel receptionist recommended a restaurant that offered exactly that. The Badlands Saloon & Grille is located in the center of Wall, eight miles away from Badlands National Park. The restaurant and surrounding shops immediately grabbed our attention with a blaring Wild West theme: old-style architecture, wildlife decor, and plenty of cowboy hats took us back in time. The spacious inside of the restaurant fits the theme with wooden walls and floors and family style booths. Waitresses are welcoming and helpful regarding any questions we had about the menu.
The Saloon has an accommodating menu offering rib-eye, filet, and the local favorite — “whiskey” steak tips. Bison burgers and chicken sandwiches are other meat alternatives; and grilled or fried shrimp are available for the seafood lover. The Saloon also offers a pizza menu along with several vegetarian options. Every entree comes with a variation of a potato side, salad, or bread. Needless to say, there is plenty to eat!
We ordered side salads to start, which came out quickly and had chilled lettuce, broccoli, cherry tomatoes and carrots. They’re nutritious and light enough that we had plenty of appetite for main courses. The shrimp were buttered, seared and lightly peppered, pairing well with an interesting BBQ-inspired cocktail sauce. We enjoyed the veggie sandwich, which was fresh local sautéed mushrooms, onions, peppers, and black olives with lettuce and tomato on a grinder roll. The whiskey tips were the highlight of our meal. These BBQ steak tips, recommended to us by our pleasant waitress and noted by a star on the menu, were so juicy and tender that we were thankful that we had taken her advice! Our meal came with fries that were salted perfectly, soft on the inside and crispy on the outside.
A tasty and hearty meal accompanied by friendly service, a relaxed atmosphere and a quirky Wild West setting make the Badlands Saloon & Grille worth a detour for families, friends, and solo travelers alike.