Trapper's Bar & Grill, Simpson
Trapper's Bar & Grill. Photo courtesy Becky Prochaska
Meat on the grill.
Chicken-fried steak and mashed potatoes.
Limestone wall back room.
Room with the salad bar and bar.
[map this location]
We are sorry to report that Trapper's has closed. (posted July 2014)
Trapper's Bar and Grill was a finalist for the 8 Wonders of Kansas Cuisine because its charcoal grilled steaks, chicken fried steaks, and ribs bring more people to town than live there.
Tony Prochaska opened the cafe in 1994 with the desire to "stuff the customers like his Grandma's cooking stuffed him."
The name of the restaurant comes from Tony's pastime of trapping. The walls are decorated with old traps, hunting items, taxidermy displays, and old license plates.
In 1994, Tony started with a 25-seat cafe in a building that had formerly been the post office. He has now added four rustically appealing dining rooms that can serve 160 at a time. The most recently added dining room was hand built by Tony using limestone gathered from old homesteads in the surrounding area. The large limestone keystone in the back room, engraved with the year 1909, came from above the fruit cellar door of the Prochaska homestead. One of the other dining rooms is decorated with 180 unique automobile license plates.
But it's the food that people most notice -- charcoal grilled steaks, seafood, chicken, hamburgers, smoked pork chops, and much more.
Who eats at Trappers? Farmers to prom-goers and locals to those that travel many miles. People from many surrounding counties bring relatives and friends and it's developing a statewide reputation. Hunters come back every year. Word of mouth keeps the place packed.
Dollar hamburger night every Tuesday also keeps the place hopping. And on the second and fourth Friday of every month is an all-you-can-eat smoked prime rib buffet! Fresh meats are used for the smoked pork chop, the hamburgers, or the chicken-fried steaks. They've even won an award from the Kansas Explorers Club for their chicken fried steak (fresh meat, hand-breaded, grill fried). More smoked meats will be on the menu soon.
They make their own bread and serve honey butter.
Maybe Trapper's is so popular because Tony is always at the grill. His wife Becky greets people, helps in the kitchen, waits tables, and keeps everything moving smoothly.
To find a restaurant the quality of Trapper's in such a small town is like finding a hidden gem.
(Some information from Pat Lynch, who nominated Trapper's)
| A half rack of ribs. |
Tony asked his grandmother for her cinnamon roll recipe and taught
himself to make these melt in your mouth delicacies!
| Tony enjoys cooking over a hot flame!|