Greetings from Sioux Falls! After a great week at my in laws house in the Black Hills of South Dakota, we are road tripping to Wisconsin to see some of my family. If you’ve ever driven across south Dakota (which I’m not recommending you do) you know that it is a long, desolate drive without much to see. However, nearly smack dab in the middle is Al’s Oasis, one of e most God awful tourist traps I’ve ever been to and a great place to grub up before you head back into the vast open prairie.
The first time my husband (at the time boyfriend) took me to Al’s, I was sure South Dakota was the oddest place I’d ever been. Right there on the banks of the Missouri is this giant restaurant with three enormous dining rooms, a gift shop the size of a Walgreens and a full service grocery store. Oh, and a hotel/motel next door. Just out there in the very heart of nowhere. Over the years, its become sort of our mecca, because we know if we’ve made it there, we’ve gotten almost halfway to where we are going, and we can stop, stretch and get something to eat.
The food at the restaurant is… well look, like the menu says, this is beef country. You’re not going to find organic lettuce and California rolls here. They might grill you some chicken, if you want to be a namby pamby. All joking aside, the food is good. It’s not fancy, but it’s hot, it’s filling, it tastes like your mom made it and it’s not going to blow your travel budget. Sure, the dining room is full of every stuffed pheasant, goose, buffalo and deer you can think of. But just ignore them and keep right on eating. Then get yourself a bag of souvenirs, snacks for the road and head across the street to have your picture taken with the giant buffalo statues. And then, force yourself back int the car to keep driving. I highly reccomend Al’s if for no other reason there is nowhere, NOWHERE, else to stop.