Hey all. Happy New Year and thanks for a wonderful 2015. We are so excited for all that 2016 has in store for us. Come downtown and visit us soon.
Thanks to FlipKey by Tripadvisor for feeaturing the Peacock Alley in their 2015 blog post: 50 States Series: Best Restaurants Worth Traveling For.
From the article:
In early 2014 we launched our 50 States Series on the FlipKey blog. Throughout the months we’ve touched on a number of subjects – awarding businesses, museums, activities and more with a spot on our lists. We spent time highlighting their attributes, accomplishments, and why they deserve to be a stop on your next vacation.
We’re starting back at our roots with this post – as we name another 50 restaurants from around the USA to this prestigious list. ‘A restaurant worth traveling for’ is an eatery with either impeccable service, adventurous menus, a prime location, a distinct atmosphere or some combination of all of those items. From a beachside food truck to a dining room draped in white linen and crystal, all types of restaurants were eligible to be on our list. We highly encourage you to find time on your next vacation (or even in your local area) to plan a pilgrimage to any of these award-winners. Without further ado, here are the 50 restaurants we’ve chosen for this year’s list:
Twenty-six ounces of tender, juicy, fall-off-the-bone, melt-in-your-mouth Cowboy Steak generously crusted with a 14-spice blend and served with an ice cold beer fresh from the tap. Enough said. Until next time folks! HA! Just kidding.
This hunk of mouthwatering meat is a Peacock Alley American Grill & Bar specialty. It’s the most popular dish in the 80-year-old Bismarck restaurant, and it’s not even listed on the menu. The novelty steak is one of many beef dishes crafted by Head Chef Dustin Swenningson, otherwise known as Chef Dusty, who adds a North Dakota twist to the traditional steak dinner. Sure, he and restaurant owner Dale Zimmerman offer all the customary steakhouse items, but with an added flavor only found at Peacock Alley….
North Dakota and South Dakota have a lot of great steak places, but the next time I’m in Bismarck I’m going to try Peacock Alley.
How could I have not eaten at Peacock Alley yet?
Peacock Alley American Grill and Bar, Bismarck, N.D., was named the Beef Innovator of the Year at the 2013 Cattle Industry Convention. This is a big deal. It’s a national award given to only one restaurant in the nation each year. The award recognizes a restaurant that does the best job innovating its menu and growing its business with beef.
“Having a North Dakota restaurant win the Beef Innovator of the Year award is a very big deal, particularly when you consider that Peacock Alley competed against restaurants in major metropolitan areas from Los Angeles to Chicago to New York,” says Clark Hensler, North Dakota Beef Commission chairman.
Peacock Alley unveils at least five new beef dishes every month and it offers several unique beef dishes such hanger or butcher’s steak, a very tender cut of beef; Teres Major, a medallion-sized section of the sirloin that only specialized butchers can extract; and the baseball and cowboy cut steaks, which are 26-ounce, bone-in ribeyes.
In the two years since creating a new beef-focused menu, Peacock Alley’s sales ahve increased by 102%..
Check out a neat video of Peacock Alley receiving the award at the National Beef Industry Convention. On the video, owner Dale Zimmerman, talks about how some customers have described eating a Peacock Alley’s beef dish as an “orgasmic experience.”
The Peacock Alley Restaurant in Bismarck, North Dakota has a few tricks up their sleeve. And those tricks are named bacon.
My friend and I went there before a concert, and because of its location in downtown Bismarck (same as the concert), we figured it was a sign. And also, darn convenient. You get the ambiance of a kind of classic old bar and restaurant wrapped up in the history of the hotel (which my father often reminds me that he stayed in on a senior trip). There is a creepy old man mannequin holding a tray of mints which, I’m fairly certain, is going to be the first thing to come to life during a zombie apocalypse, but we’re here to talk about other things.
Such as the menu.
The Peacock is known for its martinis and its Angus burgers. I’m not a big drinker, but I do like a burger, so I figured I had at least a 50 percent chance of hitting the highlights.
They seem to change their menu fairly frequently; I was intent on getting a particular flatbread dish that was no longer on the menu. So, we each ordered a house salad, and decided to share one burger due to their size, which is roughly one cow per burger. We also ordered the Caramel Bacon Fritters, because what they heck was that? The appetizer menu described them as stuffed bacon fritters drizzled with Ghirardelli caramel sauce.
Our salads came out first, and it was quite a bit more than I expected from a simple house salad. It came with a sweet bun and whipped butter, which was delicious and frankly, I could have stopped eating then. But, you know, when you’re out on the town you might as well put on ten pounds.
The caramel bacon fritters were next and yes. You should order these the next time you go to the Peacock Alley.
The fritter dough is sweet, and it’s filled with finely chopped bacon, drizzled with caramel and sprinkles of salt. What you have is a lovely combination of sweet and salty, soft and crunchy. Do share this with others at your table; it’s pretty sweet and I can’t imagine you won’t spend some time in the bathroom if you eat the whole thing yourself. It’s very rich.
Next up was the burger and we pretty much inhaled it, so I have a photo of the plate it was on for about five seconds. I don’t know what it is they do with their burgers, but they are edged in something that tastes spectacular. Pepper and salt, sure, but something else. People always say things about “best burger ever”, but unless you have questionable meat with bone bits and gristle, it’s hard to ruin a burger. The burger here is quite possibly laced with narcotics*, for all I know, because it was so delicious I kept eating far beyond my capacity to hold food.
I’ve always been a fan of the french fries at Peacock Alley; I don’t know if they have some sort of sorcery in the kitchen, or if they’re positively medieval on changing the fat in the fryer, but I remember my short order cook days and getting fries this light and crispy isn’t always a given.
So all in all, the Peacock Alley turned us into absolute gluttons. The staff was friendly. We ate in the bar (I’m a big fan of the high top table).
Would we recommend it to our friends? Heck yes. Wear elastic-waisted pants.
*There are no narcotics in the food, people. It’s a metaphor.
Peacock Alley still a hub for legislators, lobbyists
by Andrea Winkler Collin, Editor
If this is an odd-numbered year, it means the North Dakota Legislature is in session. For the past 80 years – and 40 legislative sessions – a downtown Bismarck restaurant and bar has been the unofficial headquarters for after-hours gatherings of legislators and lobbyists. The past few months have been no exception for the Peacock Alley American Grill and Bar.
“This building was the temporary North Dakota State Capitol,” says restaurant owner Dale Zimmerman of the Patterson Hotel building, which houses the Peacock Alley and has been standing on the corner of Fifth Street and Main since 1911. “When the state capitol building burned down in December 1930, many state offices were relocated here, including Governor William Langer’s.”
The current Capitol building was occupied in January 1935, and while state officials worked out of the Patterson, the legislature convened for two sessions at the World War Memorial Building, one block to the east.