Where: Deadwood, South Dakota
What: local inspired Italian steakhouse cuisine
Karma Points: blends modern foodie sensibilities in a fabulously historic venue
Everything is historic in Deadwood and Saloon #10 on Main Street is no exception. Saloon #10 touts itself as the only museum in the world with a full bar. This is where Wild Bill Hickok took his last breath when he was shot while during a game of poker in 1876. You can come here with the family and enjoy the museum’s historical artifacts on mining while having a sarsaparilla.
A fire in 1879 burned this place down and it was rebuilt in 1880 when it was a stationary and liquor store. You can soak in that time-warp feeling sitting at this authentic bar from another era, imagining all the people who’ve sat here before, while you dine on dishes with a modern flair that a foodie would appreciate.
You can also grab a bite to eat upstairs at the bar’s Deadwood Social club, which bills itself as an Italian steakhouse, where the food is served in 19th century dining rooms.
At the Deadwood Social Club, the smoked Tuaca pheasant is the signature dish, where lightly smoked South Dakota pheasant is topped with a Tuaca cream sauce, served over fettucini. The pheasant dish, which is flamed off, is an homage to the history and locale here. It’s such a popular dish, says manager Jeffery Christians, that if you order that dish, they give patrons a recipe card to take home with them.
“It’s that popular,” he says of their most famous dish. “We’ve heard from multiple people who say it’s the best dish they’ve ever had in their life. It’s not easy to create and you have to get smoked pheasant which isn’t easy to get. It’s the South Dakota bird, so it’s to get a gamey dish that’s local and to keep to the historicness of the place.”
All the their soups are homemade, including their popular fire roasted tomato soup which is a cream-based tomato soup, or the chicken and wild rice soup, another top soup here. The restaurant also serves a five pepper pork and rice soup and they also make homemade bread daily.
“Everything we make is from scratch and all our steaks are hand cut,” Christians says.
Another popular dish here is the Seafood Nest, where capellini is flash fried in the shape of a nest and sautéed shrimp in a basil cream sauce is placed on top. The mouth-watering menu is extensive, from Wild Boar Ragu to the Lamb and Panzanella, to the Pork Osso Bucco. The desserts are homemade as well.
Now, if a nice libation is more your thing, the social club is also the only martini bar in town. “We’re one of the only restaurants in South Dakota that was in Wine Spectator magazine for our extensive wine list,” Christians said, adding, “We have over 200 bottles of wine.”