For those relocating to the 417-land area, and for long time residents who want a new restaurant suggestions…We compiled this list, all in an effort to help YOU discover your new favorite restaurant.
We marked certain restaurants as DN (date night), and/or KF (kid friendly) – these are just suggestions based on typical’s but hey, you might not be typical! Your kid might LOVE a fancy meal by candlelight, or you and your sweetie might prefer date nights consist of chicken fingers and crayons at your table. Either way, you’re cool in our book.
Hope you enjoy! And if you find a new favorite restaurant that you think we should add to the list, please let us know!
- Gilardi’s – located on the property of a historic home on Walnut Street, Gilardi’s is a sustainable restaurant serving authentic Italian food made with ingredients that are locally sourced. A beautiful and intimate atmosphere! We highly recommend the Carni Con Osso – slow braised local shank, choice of polenta or mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables. Reservations suggested: 417.862.6400. DN
- Bambino’s – casual dining experience featuring Italian favorites such as bruschetta, baked ziti, fettuccine alfredo, and a Missouri favorite – toasted ravioli.
- Bruno’s – located in downtown Springfield, Bruno’s features heavily Sicilian inspired dishes. We recommend the arugula salad with shaved parmesan and pine nuts, and any of the pizzas but we’re especially fond of the Al Proscuitto Crudo. DN
Bruno’s Italian Restaurant
- Pizza House – located on historic Commercial Street, Pizza House has been serving hand-rolled pizza since 1958. This place has lots of vintage character, and serves delicious thin-crust pizzas with traditional toppings. KF
- PaPPo’s Pizzaria & Pub – located downtown Springfield, with a menu of inventive pizzas such as the Apple Bourbon Pulled Pork Pizza, the Sausage & Sauerkraut Pizza, and the Chicken Caesar Pizza. They also have traditional topping choices, and a fantastic beer list.
- Reed Springs Pizza Co. – not only does this place have amazing pizza’s but they often have live music, as well. Great combo, huh?? Choose traditional pizza toppings/sauces or one of their more unusual choices such as, cashews, sauerkraut, pecans, sriracha, or the rosemary lemon sauce.
- Pizza Night at Millsap Farms – every Thursday night Millsap Farms hosts a pizza night on the grounds of their farm featuring live music, and pizza made with farm fresh ingredients cooked in their wood-fired oven. Reservations required by visiting Millsap Farm website or by calling 417-773-1989. Adults: $12, kids 4-12 years: $5, 3 years and under: free. KF
Pizza Night at Millsap Farm
- Grad School – located in a tiny building off Springfield’s downtown area, Grad School is the epitome of a greasy spoon. The Full Ride is a double patty burger with bacon, lettuce, tomato, caramelized onions, and soft sharp cheddar. It’s a local favorite! The fries are amazing, and so is the Jerk Chicken, and Fish Tacos. For the non-meat-eaters, try the Falafel Burger….yum!
- Black Sheep Burgers & Shakes – salt & vinegar fires, habanero fried pickles, waffle mac & cheese – oh my! The Bleus Brothers burger is a 4 oz patty with bleu cheese, candied bacon, avocado, truffle mayo, butter lettuce, pickles, and onions. The shakes come alcoholic or non-alcoholic – we suggest The Boss – Oreo’s, chocolate syrup, Andy’s Frozen Custard, and vodka (or without).
Black Sheep Burgers & Shakes
- Torilleria Perches – authentic casual Mexican food (no Tex-Mex here!). They are known for their Taco Tuesday specials, and also have amazing tamales, and the menudo soup is unreal.
- Maria’s Mexican Restaurant – never tried a fried taco? Well, head over to Maria’s! Maria’s has been a staple in downtown Springfield for many years; locals love the Traditional Margarita, the fried tacos, and the carne asada burrito.
- Iguana Rojo Restaurante – contemporary Latin-American restaurant near the square in Ozark; dishes featuring table-side made guacamole, and traditional tacos and burritos. If you like it hot, try the award-winning Lizard King Chicken Wings made with strawberry heat, IgRo Buffalo sauce, and chipotle agave. Reservations suggested 417-485-8585. DN
Iguana Rojo Restaurante
- Springfield Brewing Company – brewing delicious beers and serving yummy food since 1997. Menu items include wings, pulled pork sliders, burgers, fish & chips, a hummus & veggie wrap, pizzas and salads. For brunch the breakfast burrito or the french toast is sure to please, or try the popular Breakfast Mac. Plus, they brew their own amazing beers. Open for lunch and dinner every day of the week, and brunch on weekends. Check their calendar for a list of live music.
- Big Whiskey’s – do you love sports and burgers and wings? Boy, have we got the place for you! With locations in Springfield, Branson, and Ozark you’re bound to run across a Big Whiskey’s. The extensive menu includes more than burgers and wings, too – salads, soups, steaks, baby back ribs, fish, pasta…the list goes on!
- Galloway Grill – you can walk, jog, or cycle to this restaurant since it’s located just off the Galloway Greenway Trail. They do have a parking lot, though, if you’d prefer to drive. We love the Trail Burger, chargrilled Hereford beef with sharp cheddar cheese and crispy Farmland bacon, BBQ sauce is served on the side. The Cobb Salad is also a winner, as is the Steakhouse Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing (you can get it with grilled Salmon instead).
Springfield Brewing Company
- The Sub Shop – local favorites include The Fighter Pilot, The Tuna, and The Veggie (cheese, cashews, bell peppers, tomato, mushrooms, black olives, lettuce, and their special sub sauce). Seminole is carry-out, McDaniel dine-in. Cash-only at both locations.
- Big Mamma’s Coffee & Sandwiches – delicious coffee, soups, salads, and sandwiches. Our favorites are The Juliet (granny smith apples, provolone, lettuce, sprouts, olive spread, cream cheese, apple cider vinaigrette), and The Firehouse, a gourmet grilled cheese with smoked sausage, jalapenos, pepper jack and cheddar cheese, and spicy chipotle pesto. Is your mouth watering yet?
- Sequiota Bike Shop – this adorable shop is located just off the Galloway Greenway Trail, and across the street from Sequiota Park. They have bike rentals available, a big patio, and a large green space behind the building where adults and kids can run around or play one of the yard games available. We love the Reuben, the Strawberry Kale Salad, and the Trek – crispy bacon, fresh apple slices, and gouda on sourdough bread. Craft beers, wines, and slushie’s served in Mason jars (the bourbon slushie gets a big thumbs-up). KF / DN
Sequiota Bike Shop
- Early Bird Breakfast Pub – You can create your own scramble or omelet or choose from one of their many breakfast options – waffles, french toast, breakfast burrito, chorizo & eggs, or oatmeal. One of our favorites is the Eggs Atlantis: 2 poached eggs, smoked salmon on an English Muffin (or bagel), and topped with hollandaise sauce. Try the sweet potato nuggs! The Bloody Mary is one of the best in town, or try the Morning Mover – coffee, Rum Chata, and topped with whipped cream.
- Aviary Cafe & Creperie – an adorable place to get breakfast, lunch or dinner, where they present your check in an old children’s book. For breakfast we suggest The Humblebrag – 2 fried eggs, cheddar jack cheese, bacon/sausage/or ham, on a croissant with aioli. Kids and adults agree…the Funky Monkey is delicious – a crepe filled with whipped cream & Nutella, served with either blueberries, strawberries, or bananas.
- If you’re craving a breakfast diner experience, try Gailey’s Breakfast Cafe (located in the historic old Seville Hotel; serving omelets, full English breakfasts, waffles and more), or Anton’s Coffee Shop (old school diner serving eggs, crispy bacon, omelets, huge pancakes and more. Anton himself will probably be there and if he is, the chances of him stopping by your table to chat for a few minutes is very high). KF
Aviary Cafe & Creperie
Springfield is the home of Cashew Chicken so yeah, we’ve got a couple Chinese restaurants; residents joke that you can find a Chinese restaurant every couple of blocks. And that’s almost true! Where should you start? Ask anyone and they’ll give you a different answer. But we suggest… 5- Spice, Peking House, Hong Kong Inn, Jade East, or Lucy’s.
- Rama Thai – Rama Thai took an old house on Walnut Street and converted it into an authentic Thai restaurant serving traditional cuisine. We suggest the pot stickers, Pineapple Fried Rice, and the Panang Curry (someone at The Core Group craves this on a weekly basis). Vegetarian options available.
- Thai Peppers – Thai Peppers is another great choice for authentic Thai cuisine. Try the Pad Thai, the Sweet & Sour Spareribs, Duck Chili, or the Panang or Avocado Curry. Vegetarian options available.
- Ocean Zen – plenty of delicious sushi roll options but if sushi isn’t your thing, try the Mongolian BBQ spareribs, Hibachi Grilled Salmon, or the Crispy Orange Glazed Chicken. We have a friend who promises the Mango Tango martini is the best she’s ever had. DN
- Haruno – big winners on this menu include the gyoza and the Mozzarella Tempura appetizer – mozzarella cheese and asparagus that is tempura battered and fried, served with a creamy avocado wasabi sauce (yep, it’s amazing). Check-out their specialty sushi rolls; so many fantastic options. DN
- Yoshi Jen – casual dining experience with excellent customer service. We highly recommend the Tofu Steak – lightly breaded tofu, in a light sauce and topped with shitake mushrooms. Other big winners include the Beef Bulgogi, and the Don Katsu – a pork loin that’s light breaded and served with katsu sauce. Side choices we love – sweet chili broccoli, potato salad, and the pickled cucumbers. KF
- If you want a little table-side fire, we’ve got a couple of great hibachi restaurants to try! Nakato, Hinode, or Fuji. DN / KF
- Soo’s – lots of pictures and helpful staff to assist you in ordering, but we recommend the Pork Bulgogi (pork in a sweet and spicy sauce) or the Hot Stone Beef Bibimbap. Soo’s serves your meal with the traditional kimchi (fermented cucumbers, radish, cabbages, potatoes, nuts, chestnuts and more!); they come in tiny portions to share with the table.
- Bambu Vietnamese Restaurant – need a Pho fix?? Bambu can hook you up! We recommend the Pho Deluxe, a beef noodle soup with thinly sliced beef, flank brisket, meatballs, tripe, and tendon. They, of course, also have amazing vermicelli options, and noddle soups.
Both Taj Mahal, and Gem of India are excellent options if you’re in the mood for Indian. They both have a full buffet or order off the menu. Recommended: Butter Chicken, Chicken Tikka Masala, or the Matar Paneer. Vegetarian and vegan options.
- Cafe Cusco – located on historical Commercial Street, Cafe Cusco is an adorable date night option. Start with the Tequenos (crispy Cotija cheese wrapped in empanada dough and served with avocado dip), or one of the Tamal options. If you’re feeling adventurous try the Rabbit or Mama’s Drunken Goat. But if you’re not, the BBQ Pork Panca, the Pesto Peruano, or the Sweet Potato Noodle Stir-fry will definitely please. The menu features gluten-free and vegan options. DN
- Big Easy Grill – traditional cuisine items are winners here – the Muffaletta, Jambalaya, and the Shrimp Po-boy. But try the Slaw Dog, too – a polish sausage on a french baguette, dressed with barbecue sauce and mustard, and topped with coleslaw.
- Farmers Gastropub – Fish & Chips, and a menu full of delicious beers…all in a cozy, cuddle-up-to-the-fire kind of atmosphere. Aside from the Fish & Chips, menu item mainstays you should try include: Sausage Rolls, Mushroom & Sage Soup, Grass-Fed Burger (or the Vegan Burger), Bangers & Mash, or the Shepard’s Pie. Open for lunch and dinner every day, and brunch on the weekends. DN
- That Lebanese Place – fill your belly with delicious hummus, falafel, stuffed grape leaves, baba ghanouj, shawarma, and baklava. Vegetarian and vegan options available. KF
- Vasken’s Deli – lots of options on this menu, including gyro’s (try the Firehouse Gyro – lamb and beef served in pita bread with Tahini sauce, tomatoes, pickles, green leaf lettuce, and spicy giardiniera), Curry Chicken Salad, pastrami, Reuben, or the Falafel with Tahini sauce. A location in Branson and Springfield. KF
- La Galette Berrichonne – this French restaurant located in Fordland is open Thurs – Sat for breakfast and lunch, and they serve a 7 course dinner on Friday nights (reservations required for dinner – 417-738-2112). Dinner changes but for breakfast and lunch you can expect crepes, pastries, croissants, Scallops au Gratin, Chicken Cordon Bleu, and a variety of quiche’s. DN (dinner)
La Galette Berrichonne
- Rerico Brazilian Grill – sit down and relax! Meats are carved at your table, and you can visit the salad bar (filled with all the salad toppings you can imagine, fresh veggies, and cheeses) as many times as you like.
- Cecil’s To Go – menu changes daily but it’s typically Mediterranean dominated. You’ll usually find falafel and hummus, roasted meats, and delicious soups.
- Wheelhouse Street Fare – where Thai & Mexico cuisine mix! Burritos, tacos, guacamole, fried rices, and noodle dishes. Yum!
- London Calling Pasty Co – sit in their double-decker bus and enjoy British fare: Bangers & Mash, Shepard’s Pie, Stilton Coleslaw, and more!
- Andy’s Frozen Custard – an extensive menu full of cold custard deliciousness. Good bets – Ozarks Turtle, James Brownie Funky Jackhammer (Andy’s vanilla or chocolate custard blended with creamy peanut butter and chunks of brownies, and filled hot fudge), or the Old Fashioned Root Beer Float. KF, DN
- Pineapple Whip – open seasonally but this 417-staple is a local favorite. They have 6 flavors (and yep, pineapple is one of them) and are served in either a cup or cone. KF
Andy’s Frozen Custard