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Jun 17, 2009 11:17 AM

I-70 Between KC and Denver?

Mid-July I'll be driving between Kansas City and Denver on a leg of my upcoming book tour. Anywhere in particular that's good to stop for a meal along the way? I'll be needing to make fairly fast time, although I will spend the night somewhere about half or a little more than half way.

I have spent the night in Salina before, but haven't found anywhere all that good to eat. I'm looking for somewhere for lunch between KC and, say, Salina (including Salina) and I'll probably spend the night in Hays or points west of Hays.

I'm already pretty set for KC and Denver. It's that drive in between where I'd like to find something of interest. Thanks for any help you can be.

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  1. Lots of good places. Off the top of my head:

    If it is a Thursday, Friday or Saturday, the Bunker Hill Cafe is great.
    Junction City has several good Korean restaurants.
    Abeline has Kirby House Restaurant, Mr. K's Farmhouse, and Brookville Hotel (only serves family style fired chicken dinners).
    Cozy Inn in Salina cooks tiny hamburgers (no cheeseburgers!) on an 85 year old grill There are also good restaurants in old schoolhouses in two small towns just south of Salina: Assaria and Smolan.
    Lawrence has lots of good places.

    My hobby website talks about all of these:

    1. If you're stopping in Hays, Al"s Chickenette is worth a try.

      1. About 10 minutes North of of I-70 is Manhattan, KS, a lovely little burg full of charm (ahhh, I miss Manhappiness). I recommend Little Apple Brewery for a great steak and beer. Rock-a-belly Deli is a funky, fun place to snag a sandwich (might as well have a beer). And finally, Coco Bolo's is yummy. If you're there on a Thursday have some Cox Brother's BBQ (and a beer).
        Have a safe trip.

        4 Replies
        1. re: amy_rc

          Hey Amy!
          I'm an old graduate from K-State. Are Kites and/or The Dugout still in business in Aggieville?
          Bob (1964)

          1. re: SonyBob

            I graduated eight years ago but occasionally go back. I don't remember there being a spot called The Dugout but Kites is there in its latest incarnation.

            In 1994 Kites was shut down for allowing too many MIP's (minors in possession), or that was the rumor. For my entire college career that location was called something else, I believe 12th Street Pub. The new Kites opened in it's original location sometime since I left Manhattan, probably four or five years ago.

            You should go check out Manhattan, it's changed so much that it's a completely different town even since I lived there.
            EMAW (Every Man A Wildcat)!!!

            1. re: amy_rc

              gee this thread is old, but the Dugout in Manhattan KS was way south of campus on Yuma or FT. Riley blvd or something

          2. re: amy_rc

            Only open for dinner, but if your travels take you anywhere near Manhattan, it will SHOCK and AMAZE you that such cooking is happening in the Little Apple. No, this is not a great greasy spoon or small town cafe. It's fabulous big city dining w/o the 'tude. Check it out.

            Four Olives Wine Bar
            3033 Anderson Ave., Manhattan, KS 66503

          3. I'm sitting in the lobby of the Q hotel in Kansas City after just spending the last week along I-70 from Denver. Here's what I know:

            Hays, KS:
            -Tea Rose Inn: A quaint B&B in the heart of downtown run by a nice hostess for the past 10 years who served up a great breakfast.
            -The Liquid Bread Brewery and it's attached restaurant, Gella's Diner fed me two night in a row. The beer is outstanding and award winning (try the oatmeal stout), the staff very friendly and the food is good but choose wisely. Their guacamole hit the spot.
            -Gutch's: "Famous wood fired pizza". I should have gone to Jalisco's. Basic pizza, friendly staff. Kid friendly.
            -Brass Rail: No food, but great bar!

            Wilson, KS
            -Made From Scratch: Czech capital of KS, the smoked turkey sandwich was one of the best I've had in the mid-west.

            Enjoy your ride.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Globalksp


              Doing similar drive from Denver to Salina on Monday with my SO, and we are looking for a lunch spot with a diner-esque atmosphere. We should be getting to the Hays area around lunchtime. The above posts are informative, but a few years old. Can anybody provide a more recent review of any of the these places?

              Al's Chickenette
              Liquid Bread Brewery/Gella's Diner
              Any other suggestions?

              Thanks in advance for your help.

              Al's Chickenette
              700 Vine St, Hays, KS 67601

              1. re: Mike CP

                Al's Chickenette closed last year.

                Al's Chickenette
                700 Vine St, Hays, KS 67601

            2. We were in Salina a month ago for a graduation and we were told to eat at a few different places. Some we tried, others we did not but were told they were very good.

              For dinner one night we ate at Tucson's. This place was pretty good price and portion wise. We enjoyed it because the portions were the CORRECT size. We got an appitizer that was perfect for two without being overfilling, followed by our dinners were a great size and very tastey. We finished with dessert, I believe it was the brownie which now having been there, I probalby would skip dessert and go to my next recommendation.

              Bogey's is a great place if you are going through and want something a little more fun. I have read they have three locations, we only visited one. But they have the THICKEST milkshakes I have every seen with TONs of flavors. Just google Bogey's Salina and click on the first link, it will help you so much. They have burgers and stuff as well. We took my father who is SUPER picky about milkshakes being really thick. He wants them to stand up on their own I think. He LOVED it. He said his chili cheese nacho's were okay, HUGE portion but he would probalby skip next time. I had a burger and fries that were pretty good, not the best but good.

              Someone else mentioned Brookville in Abeline, My aunt says the food is wonderful, we did not go through as it was her son graduatin and he wanted to have Chili's for dinner (crazy kid). LOL

              They also told us Cozy Inn is good, but much like White Castle and I can NOT stand WC. My husband on the other hand LOVES WC. So that might help you decide. ANd I hear WC is like Crystal Burger also.

              If you google Bogey's though, that first website has a TON of places in Salina listed to help you out. Happy travels

              4 Replies
              1. re: vmarker

                I also dislike White Castle. Cozy Inn is not the same. The burgers taste good at Cozy Inn.

                1. re: KansasTravel

                  I am glad you were able to let us know. I think my big thing with White Castle is I can not stand a soggy bun and when I asked my aunt about it she said that it was like that at Cozy Inn, so I said NO way. I love Chowhound though because what I heard is not what you experienced there. It is awsome that we can all help each other find great food whereever we go.

                  1. re: vmarker

                    When she said, " like that at Cozy Inn," I think she meant the small size of the burgers.

                    Not that they are the best burgers, but they are good and you get so much history and atmosphere.

                    1. re: KansasTravel

                      That is cool. i was talking to my husband last night and I told him next time we are out that way I am totally open to trying them now that I hear from someone else who does not care for White Castle but liked Cozy.