Homestyle cooking with an elevated twist

You can always find something intriguing on the menu at the Arrow hotel restaurant and the Bonfire Grill.

Robert Knobbe is the head chef at the Arrow Hotel restaurant, and at the Bonfire Grill. Both are located inside the historic downtown hotel. "We try to focus on the homestyle, the country homestyle menu," Knobbe said. "But, we also try to throw in some elevated features. All of our steaks are prime grade, which is the top two or three percent of beef."

Robert is from the east side of the state, but now calls Broken Bow home. "I grew up in West Point. I spent some time up in South Dakota, I spent some time down in Phoenix, and then it all came full circle, and I came back to my home state," Knobbe said. "I had an opportunity out here, and moved out to Central Nebraska. I'm really enjoying it." Knobbe says he enjoys the Sandhills. "I'd never really been off of the interstate going west, and when I came out here to check out Broken Bow, I just thought the Sandhills were beautiful. Me and my wife are outdoor people so we kind of fell in love with it," Knobbe said.

Knobbe is bringing his love of food, and his appreciation for Nebraska to the menu. You could say it's a twist on traditional comfort food. "For example, our steak stroganoff is an actual steak with some spaetzle and homemade sauce, with sauteed onions and mushrooms," Knobbe said. The menu also features fresh seafood options, such as white sea bass, salmon or tuna. You can also get a taste of the pork tenderloin, the steak benedict, or a big burger. These are just some of the options that have been featured. Knobbe says his overall favorite is the rib eye steak. "Again, the top two percent of beef and we have a full 16 ounce rib eye, so if you want to fill up, I would say that would be the one to go with," Knobbe said.

Abby Mattox is the manager of the Bonfire Grill, and she loves serving customers. Those customers have come from all over the world. "I've had Brazilians, I've had Russians, people from Australia, just from all over coming through, and they are usually doing a big trip or something," Mattox said. "But they always seem to stop here through Broken Bow, and then once they come to Broken Bow, they are like, oh, this is amazing. This is a hidden gem!"

The Bonfire Grill is open 7 says a week. "We are open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and then 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and then on Sundays we are from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. We close down on Sunday nights, but other than that we are open 7 days a week," Mattox said.

Whether you choose the Bonfire Grill or the traditional Arrow Hotel restaurant where the booths are made from original hotel doors, you will get a feel for history here, and a full stomach. "It kind of gives you a sense of purpose when you are here this many generations in," Knobbe said. "There were numerous chefs before (me), all the way back to the 1920's, and it just gives you a sense of purpose. I just enjoy coming to work here. It's a beautiful building."