Rockin’ Ys’ Roadhouse on Route 66 in Tucumcari, NM – FOR SALE by Owner

 Daily, New Mexico  Comments Off on Rockin’ Ys’ Roadhouse on Route 66 in Tucumcari, NM – FOR SALE by Owner
Aug 102015


We are privileged to be one of the first to be asked to help get the word out to the Route 66 Community about this opportunity.

Unique opportunity to buy, own and operate turnkey, a successful restaurant business on Route 66!
Serious inquiries only, full financial disclosure available upon signed confidentiality agreement.
Send all inquires via email to ONLY!
Please do not call the restaurant directly and do not inquire within.
For sale is Rockin’ Ys’ Roadhouse in Tucumcari, New Mexico FOR SALE by Owner.

Rockin’ Ys’ Roadhouse is a successful business on Route 66 in Tucumcari, at a prime corner location on one of Tucumcari’s 2 busiest intersections, at the corner of Route 66 and Mountain Road, near Interstate 40 and Highway 54. Near Kmart, Tractor Supply, 2 commercial truck stops and several Route 66 motels. The restaurant itself is 3,800sq.ft. and seats up to 145, including kitchen, small gift shop business and a private dining area.
Rockin’ Ys’ Roadhouse serves traditional American cuisine, Mexican food and has a Beer & Wine license. The property included sits on 3 1/2 lots totaling 68,589sq.ft. plus 2 out buildings. There is additional frontage road land available separately if interested. Rockin’ Ys’ Roadhouse is a AAA Diamond rated restaurant, it’s owners were awarded New Mexico Restaurateurs of the Year in 2011 and it is consistently top ranked on TripAdvisor, Yelp, UrbanSpoon and more. The restaurant has many recent upgrades including: new website, signage and electronic reader board, kitchen equipment and seating. Owner will consider partial financing assistance. Great opportunity for retired couple with family, as well as room for financial growth.

The owners are looking towards retirement, but would obviously like to see a buyer from within the Route 66 community globally, that would have interest in retaining a family owned mom & pop business on the route…

Bono’s still accommodating Route 66 travelers

 California, Daily  Comments Off on Bono’s still accommodating Route 66 travelers
Jun 012013

I do hope they reopen the restaurant (and orange juice stand) one day in the near future as I know EVERYONE will want to stop and get a chance to experience this place….

On a day when Fontana was celebrating its 100th birthday, Joe Bono on Friday did just what his family has done for the last 77 years: He offered his hospitality to tourists traveling on Route 66.
Sitting along the parking lot of Bono’s Old Route 66 restaurant on Foothill Boulevard was something Glen Heitritter and Linda Swenson of Omaha, Neb., had not yet seen on their ride down the Mother Road.

They stopped to take a look at the Big Orange, a 7-foot-high stucco ball from which thirsty travelers could buy glasses of fresh orange juice before the age of the freeway.

After the couple posed for the requisite photo, Bono gave them a tour of his place.

An attorney and former deputy district attorney, Bono grew up at the rear of the property at the corner of Sultana Avenue. A neighbor suggested to his mother in 1936 that she ought to sell juice to travelers along Foothill, which at the time had plenty of vineyards but was short on any places to stop for refreshment.

“It was all you could drink for 10 cents,” he told me in an interview some time ago.

That evolved into an Italian market and ultimately a restaurant. Especially during the Great Depression, Mama Bono would hear lots of hard-luck stories from many weary, and penniless, travelers seeking a new life in California and often fed them for free.

For Heitritter and Swanson, the Big Orange proved the perfect Route 66 distraction.

In their striking red Pontiac GTO — naturally, a 1966 model — they have traveled what remains of Route 66 since picking it up first in Carthage, Mo.

Among the notable experiences they’ve had was spending a night in one of the storied Wigwam Motels — with rooms shaped like teepees — in Holbrook, Ariz. They had passed the Inland Empire’s Wigwam Motel on the western edge of San Bernardino a few moments before pulling into Bono’s parking lot.

Before leaving for the end of the road at Santa Monica Pier that afternoon, they viewed Bono’s restaurant and its array of photographs and mementoes.

On a wall is a picture of young Joe and his father working in the vineyards not far away.

“Everything you see out there was vineyards,” he told the visitors, pointing out the windows toward Foothill.

But now Bono has big plans for his landmark business.

Looking over architect’s drawings, Bono said the restaurant, whose front windows are just a few feet shy of the now-four-lane Foothill Boulevard, will be moved south back from the highway. This will accommodate widening of the street as well as the construction of a huge warehouse planned on the other side of Sultana.

He said he was confident that Bono’s restaurant would reopen in the near future, to accommodate Fontana’s next century and for future travelers seeking the romance and adventure of Route 66.

By Joe Blackstock – Inland Valley Daily Bulletin

Big Chief fills the plate, with a side of Route 66 history

 Daily, Missouri  Comments Off on Big Chief fills the plate, with a side of Route 66 history
Sep 042012

Anyone who traveled years ago along Route 66 near Pond, Mo., knew that Big Chief – which opened in 1929 as a hotel and restaurant – was the place to stop. Thanks to a recent renovation, Big Chief once again is the place to stop along the old roadway to revel in good food and nostalgia.

New owners are responsible for returning the historic Big Chief building to its former glory days, reopening back on June 11 as Big Chief Roadhouse.

“It’s like a dream come true,” said Stephanie Mulholland, who co-owns the restaurant with John Fox, admitting she had a tear in her eye when she first walked through the renovated building that preserves the authenticity and integrity of Big Chief. “You can’t find places like this anymore.”

It has been a 20-year vision that has come together for Mulholland, whose passions are cooking and history.

“I’m a huge history person,” Mulholland said. “I’ve read every history book on Wildwood, St. Albans and the area. I live just a couple of miles down the road and always loved the Big Chief and its history.”

Mulholland has used items such as vintage advertisements and western memorabilia illustrating Big Chief’s history to decorate the interior walls of the bar and dining room. An iconic buffalo head trophy seems to smile as it overlooks the dining room and new, open kitchen.

Also smiling are Big Chief’s customers when they view the menu, which is best described as a playful mix of classic retro and creative, new age cuisine. Signatures include fruitwood, house-smoked meats like the beef brisket, turkey and apricot jalapeno-glazed pork chops. Retro offerings include a tuna salad-stuffed tomato, and chicken-fried steak draped with white pepper gravy.

For something more modern, try the toasted lasagna. Resembling an egg roll, it is lightly breaded, flash-fried, baked and then finished with red and white sauces.

Mushroom fans will enjoy the Chief’s stuffed baby portabella. An order includes four baby ‘bellas stuffed with Monterey Jack, cheddar, gorgonzola and cream cheese, sauced with a decadent, rich, garlic-infused cream sauce.

Salads, soups and sandwiches are given equal attention. Soups are made from scratch daily with onion soup being the Big Chief specialty. Order up a bowl to complement an entrée salad, such as the Route 66. Reminiscent of a chef salad, Big Chief’s Route 66 salad features grilled chicken, shredded cheese, hard-cooked eggs, tomatoes and red onions with a bacon onion ranch dressing.

The house-smoked beef brisket is a sure winner for those with hearty appetites. Topping a pile of house-cut French fries is sliced brisket that is drizzled with barbecue sauce. Big Chief also offers a range of burgers and pizzas, plus a “Little Indians” menu with kids’ meals priced at $4.95.

Before checking out, ask for a slice of Ghia’s award-winning cheesecake.

“You gotta try the cheesecake,” Mulholland said. “It’s my mother’s recipe.”

Suzanne Corbett – Newsmagazine

Big Chief Restaurant on Route 66 is Back in Wildwood, MO

 Daily, Missouri  Comments Off on Big Chief Restaurant on Route 66 is Back in Wildwood, MO
Jun 162012

This week, the vintage Route 66 restaurant opened with new owners, revamped menu and a fresh approach.

The prized buffalo head still graces Big Chief Roadhouse restaurant’s main dining area in Wildwood, but customers will find many new touches and a remodeled ambiance at 17352 Manchester Road. Big Chief owner Stephanie Mulholland said even the buffalo head was retouched and fixed up.

Big Chief’s owners recently received their liquor license from Wildwood officials, and as planned, officially reopened the doors June 11. This week, the new staff has been working through the ordering and “soft-opening” operational process.

Located across from Wildwood Middle School, customers have been frequenting this historic Route 66 restaurant since 1929. The present owners took possession of the building March 4, and it has been closed since for remodeling.

Big Chief Roadhouse originally was built in what was at the time Pond, MO, as part of the Big Chief Highway hotel to serve transcontinental travelers on the now famed Route 66. Local historians and tourists guides from the period indicate Big Chief was one of the largest tourist cottage courts in Missouri. It differed from average spots of time in that it offered relatively elaborate and elegant dining. It is one of the last remaining full-service restaurants on the Route 66 today.

Big Chief’s kitchen hours are Monday through Sunday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. The tavern portion is open Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight, and on Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1:30 a.m.

Mulholland, a Wildwood resident, said she has two partners who both are chefs. One has 25 years of experience; the other 31 years. One interesting note is that Big Chief’s staff smoke their own meats. They expect to soon be able to move their smoker onto the restaurant’s property.

Indoor seating capacity at Big Chief is about 150, and outdoor is nearly 80. Starting in July, an upstairs room will be available for private parties of up to 40 people.

Mulholland knows the local area well because her children are or were part of Pond Elementary and Lafayette High School.

About two weeks ago, Floyd Gilmore and his family traveled from Show Low, AZ, to see Big Chief, where Floyd was born April 9, 1944. Mulholland said the Gilmore family showed up on the restaurant’s doorstep, before the restaurant was open.

“We were still moving things around and didn’t have the kitchen open or anything, but we welcomed the Gilmores in,” she said. “It was absolutely amazing to hear the stories he shared about the area. His aunts and uncles went to the Old Pond School and are buried at Bethel Cemetery one block away. They just stopped by in two full RVs and four cars!”

Mulholland said it was an incredible experience to meet the Gilmores. “Floyd was so proud to show his family, four generations, his birthplace after he had shared stories with them for years.”

Gilmore walked away with a new Big Chief T-shirt, photos and new memories of one of his favorite restaurants in the United States.

Route 66 leads straight to Weezy’s

 Daily, Illinois  Comments Off on Route 66 leads straight to Weezy’s
May 072011

Three men sat at a long table at Weezy’s Route 66 Bar & Grill in Hamel during a midafternoon lull.

Farmers Roger Wilkening and John Green and retiree Ken Hedger were eating mostaccioli and sharing local gossip.
“I come here for the intelligent conversation,” said Ken, 55, of Edwardsville, prompting his two friends to burst out laughing. “No, seriously, this is called the ‘liar’s table.’ If anybody’s got a problem, they get it solved right here.”

Not all Weezy’s customers are as colorful as the farmers, but the restaurant has plenty of regulars.
Mail carrier Jim Knecht, 62, of Rosewood Heights, stops by almost every day for lunch and sits at the horseshoe-shaped bar.
“The food is always good,” he said. “I don’t have any complaints.”
Jim orders the daily special, which ranges from fried chicken to smoked pork chops, prime rib to cod.

The restaurant also is known for charbroiled burgers, homemade pies and hearty breakfasts, particularly biscuits and gravy made with fresh sausage from locally produced hogs.
“Everything’s made from scratch,” said co-owner Karen Wiesemeyer, 49, of Glen Carbon.
She formerly worked at Randy’s Restaurant in Troy, Stonebridge Clubhouse in Maryville and Diamond Mineral Springs in Grantfork.

Karen bought the Hamel restaurant two years ago with her companion, Coleman Wiessman, 49. He’s a carpenter, so his main involvement with the food is eating it.
“It’s all good,” he said. “But I like the ribeye sandwich.” That’s also a favorite of Karen’s parents, Joe and Shirley Toenyes, of Alhambra.

Weezy’s is at the intersection of Illinois 140 and 157. The restaurant’s name is a derivative of their names. The brick structure was built as a home in the late ’30s, but it has housed a restaurant as long as most people remember.

It started as Tourist Haven, catering to motorists getting their kicks on Route 66. The old sign still hangs in the main dining room.

“I don’t own it,” Karen said. “I wish I did. The owner just lets me borrow it.”
The restaurant later was known as the Village Inn, Ernie’s and Scotty’s.

Karen and Coleman saw its value as a tourist attraction for modern travelers rediscovering Route 66.
“They come from all over, but Europe mainly,” Karen said. “(The Europeans) find freedom here. They don’t really have a Mother Road that will take them everywhere.”
The restaurant has a guest book for visitors to sign and a world map with push pins that mark hometowns.

The decor follows a diner theme with a black-and-white checkered floor and red vinyl seat cushions on chrome booths, tables and chairs.
“We got (the furniture) from Johnny Rockets,” Coleman said.
Walls are lined with vintage signs, photos of old vehicles and other Route 66 memorabilia. Coleman built an outdoor patio last summer.

At a glance
What: Weezy’s Route 66 Bar & Grill
Where: 108 S. Old Route 66, Hamel (intersection of Illinois 140 and 157)
Kitchen: 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sundays
Bar: Usually open until midnight or 1 a.m.
Seating: About 75 at tables and booths and another 10 at the bar
Handicap accessible: No
Information: Call 633-2228

On the menu
Traditional breakfast with two eggs, bacon or sausage, hash browns or American fries and toast, $4.95.
Belgian waffles, $3.50 or $5 with fresh strawberry topping and whipped cream.
Charbroiled burger, quarter-pound on a toasted bun, $3.95 with chips or $5.45 with sweet potato fries.
Daily specials, ranging from smoked pork chops to mostaccioli, fried chicken on Wednesdays and catfish or cod on Fridays, $4.95 to $5.95.

BY TERI MADDOX – News-Democrat

Updated information – Riviera Restaurant Fire in Gardner

 Illinois, Route 66 States  Comments Off on Updated information – Riviera Restaurant Fire in Gardner
Jun 092010

I received a call from Bob (new owner of Riviera) and he told me he is vacationing in the North Woods of WI/MI. He told me his cell didn’t work up there (which, ironically, he and I vacation some 20 miles apart from each other so I know that most cells do not work up there!!) and he called me on a payphone to tell me what happened.

He recieved SEVERAL VM’s regarding the fire and told me that there was a cleaning crew in the restaurant Monday cleaning up the place. He is looking into the possibility that someone left something either opened or something caught by one of the halogen lamps.

He told me that he will be cutting his vacation short to come back down and check out the remains. He did say “All I wanted to do was to open the damn restaurant – that was it….”.
He did mention the streetcar and said that the car is his property and will now have to fight for where its new home should be.

I will try to get out there sometime this week/weekend to get pics.