Pulaski County Bulgogi Trail

“Fire meat.” If those words make your mouth water head to Pulaski County Bulgogi Trail in the Missouri Ozarks for grilled Bulgogi dishes that will make your taste buds sing!

Korean Beef Bulgogi Rice Bowl. Image by HealthierMi

Bulgogi is thinly sliced ribeye, sirloin, or other prime cuts of beef. The meat is marinated in a mixture of black pepper, garlic, sugar, sesame oil, and soy sauce and then grilled or stir-fried. The marinade and the heat combine to create a mildly sweet, smoky, savory flavor bomb that makes each bite a treasure.

Bulgogi is usually served with a side of white (or fried) rice. It pairs well with egg drop soup and Kimchi. Traditionally made with beef, the dish can also be prepared using pork, chicken, or seafood.

Saint Robert, outside the main gate of Fort Leonard Wood, has been a haven for authentic Korean Bulgogi for decades.

Gather your fellow foodies and road trip to Central Missouri in the Ozark Mountains for authentic tastes of South Korea!

Spicy Pork Bulgogi. Image by Chloe Lim.

Bulgogi House

Bulgogi House (1018 Missouri Avenue, Suite 14, Saint Robert, 573-336-7550) is a mainstay for Bulgogi in Saint Robert. It has been described as “totally authentic cuisine and atmosphere.” Bulgogi House is a favorite for many people who miss Korean cuisine.

“Bulgogi house is my go-to Korean restaurant in town. I typically cook Korean dishes at home each day. Sometimes I get lazy or too busy to cook and call in for an order. I am a huge critic when it comes to Korean food and this place always delivers.”

Nahyun K. via Yelp

Café Korea

Café Korea (839 VFW Memorial Drive, Saint Robert, 573-336-3232) has been a hit with hungry patrons in Saint Robert for ten years. Bring cash or be prepared to pay with a check. An ATM is available on the premises.

“Friendly staff and amazing food. Our favorite is the beef bulgogi. We travel 45 minutes sometimes just to eat at Café Korea!”

Eric & Nikki F. via Google

Lucky House Chinese Restaurant

Lucky House Chinese Restaurant (119 St. Robert Boulevard, Sant Robert, 573-336-2313) is primarily known for their delicious Chinese food. In addition to traditional beef Bulgogi Lucky House offers chicken, pork, & shrimp Bulgogi.

“Nice food to eat for a lazy weekend! Prices are good for what you get, and the food comes steaming hot! Delicious too!”

Oasia R. via Google
Korean Spicy Bulgogi Beef. Image by Else Hui.

Mi Suks Oriental Restaurant

No other eatery has been serving Bulgogi in the Fort Leonard Wood area longer than Mi Suks Oriental Restaurant (1058 Missouri Avenue, Saint Robert, 573-336-4770). Mi Suks does not take cards, so bring cash.

“Best bulgogi ever! The owner says it’s a secret recipe she brought from home and you can’t go wrong with original homestyle cooking. These are humble people with authentic food.”

Tye E. via Google

Ocean Buffet

If you prefer your Bulgogi in an all-you-can-eat setting pay Ocean Buffet (225 St. Robert Boulevard, Saint Robert, 573-451-2178) a visit!

“This was probably the best Asian buffet I have ever been to in my life. They had such a diverse amount of selections available.”

Jacob S. via Google

Silk Road

For Bulgogi off the beaten path head north to the charming town of Richland. Richland locals get their Bulgogi fix at Silk Road (215 South Pine, Richland, 573-765-5900).

“Here on business and Silk Road was recommended for lunch. Wonderful lunch special. Went back for lunch on Day 2!”

Jacquelyn W. via Facebook

More Dining Inspiration!

Love tacos? Try all the stops on Saint Robert’s Taco Trail!

For more Pulaski County, Missouri dining ideas check out these Seven Yummy Mom & Pop Restaurants Near Fort Leonard Wood and Six Must-Try Mom & Pop Restaurants in the Missouri Ozarks!  

Some reviews have been edited for clarity and length.

Six Must-Try Mom & Pop Restaurants in the Missouri Ozarks

Legendary road trips and one-of-a-kind Mom & Pop restaurants go together like bacon & eggs! From A-to-Z, Pulaski County’s stretch of Route 66 in the Missouri Ozarks has a surprising variety of delicious, unique eateries that will fit any budget and tastes. For more dining inspiration check out these Seven Yummy Mom & Pop Restaurants Near Fort Leonard Wood or visit https://visitpulaskicounty.org/dining/.

A Taste of St. Louis

Image via Andy’s Pizza

Only one mile south of historic Route 66, Andy’s Pizza (690 Missouri Avenue, Suite 5, Saint Robert, 573-451-2288) brings St. Louis-style pizza to the Fort Leonard Wood area.  White Cheddar, Swiss, and Provolone cheeses combine to create gooey, buttery Provel cheese. Along with a cracker-thin crust, Provel is a mainstay of St. Louis-style pizzas. Other signatures of Saint Louis-style pizza are the tavern cut and a sweetness to the sauce. 

“So yummy!! They have a super thin crust, Saint Louis style. This allows the flavors to be center stage here. There was such a crunchy and yet flaky delicate crust. This pizza is absolutely perfect for when you want FLAVOR and not something heavy and bready.”

Savannah J. via Yelp

Authentic Mexican Flavors

Image via El Cabrito Mexican Restaurant

Tacos aren’t just for Tuesdays in Pulaski County, Missouri! El Cabrito Mexican Restaurant’s (560 Old Route 66, Saint Robert, 573-336-4373) enthusiastic fan base has taken off since they first opened their doors in 2016 in Saint Robert. El Cabrito serves a delicious take on the staples that you expect from your favorite Mexican restaurants- quesadillas, burritos, fajitas and more. Adventurous eaters should try Tacos de Lengua. These beef tongue tacos have been described as “perfect” and “heaven.”

“I have a new favorite Mexican restaurant!!! Everything was super good- food, margaritas, service & price! We will be back!”

Jinnie A. via Facebook

Neighborhood Global Pub

Image via Hoppers Pub

When your neighborhood pub is on Route 66 in downtown Waynesville it becomes a tavern with global appeal. Hoppers Pub (318 Historic 66 East, Waynesville, 573-774-0135) has the spirit of the Mother Road packed into every corner. Proprietress Ursula Lebioda and the Hoppers crew have been dishing up classic pub grub and serving 66 beers on tap since opening in 2014. The Hoppers Burger is topped with pepperjack cheese, jalapeno poppers, bacon, and a fried pickle. For a unique twist order the Frog Legs.

“The best place in town for a cold pint and great food. Their customer service is top-notch! You will feel right at home in this historic Route 66 pub- a must stop if driving through or staying in town!”

Enrique W. via Google

A Taste of the Ozarks

Image by Michael Buck via Google

Sweetwater Bar-B-Que’s (14076 Highway Z, Saint Robert, 573-336-8830) mouthwatering barbecue has been winning new fans since 1999. Order your ribs, pulled pork, chopped beef brisket, boneless chicken, ham, turkey, or sausage by the pound, as part of a dinner, or on a sandwich. Don’t skip the savory “fixin’s” and sweet desserts! The joint isn’t hard to find- just roll down your windows as you approach Interstate 44 Exit 163. The savory aroma will guide you into the parking lot.

“Oh My Gosh! You have to eat here. Best BBQ chicken ever. So delicious. Just go if you ever have the chance. It smells divine in there!”

Cindy S. via Google

A Taste of Bavaria

Image by David S. via Yelp

Ursula’s Schnitzelhaus & Paradise Delicatessen (311 North Street, Waynesville, 573-774-8422) brings an authentic taste of Bavaria, Germany to downtown Waynesville, Missouri. Ursula and her family dish up sausages and schnitzels that taste like Oktoberfest year-round! Save room for German Cheesecake or Apple Strudel!

“Tucked away one block north of historic Route 66 in downtown Waynesville. Authentic German food served up by a genuine family with a quirkiness that will endear them as characters on the Mother Road. Their schnitzel sandwich was exactly what I was expecting and hoping for.”

Laura H. via Facebook

Distinctive Contemporary Atmosphere

Image via Z Loft Hotel, Bar, & Grill

Just off Route 66, tucked into an Ozarks “holler”, Z Loft first opened its doors to the public in 2013. The Farris family envisioned an “eat, play, stay” concept between Saint Louis and Springfield, Missouri- and they succeeded. The family combined their culinary roots with their hotelier skills and Z Loft was born. Z Loft Bar & Grill promises “innovative twists on classic, flavorful cuisine” and “expertly crafted cocktails served in just the right glass.”

“Wonderful grill with beautiful outdoor dining patio, gracious service, and delicious hand-tossed wood-fired pizzas, calzones, and quesadillas.”

KingFarmer via Trip Advisor

Some reviews have been edited for clarity and length.

Gravel Grinding Pulaski County

Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race

Gravel grinding isn’t new to Pulaski County. The Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race has been held the first Saturday in October since 2018. More and more cyclists are discovering that Pulaski County’s gravel roads and rural routes are filled with stunning scenery and leg-quivering climbs. If you haven’t registered for Nasty Pulaski there is still time to so.

Image courtesy of Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race.

In the meantime, here are three great gravel grinding routes with stunning Ozark Mountain scenery and compelling historic sites in Pulaski County to pedal.

Holy Schlicht!

This 25-mile ride begins and ends on at Schlicht Springs Access on the Gasconade River near Crocker, Missouri. The area is named for John Schlicht, a German immigrant, who purchased the old Gasconade Mill in 1876. The ride loops through a residential area of Crocker and then heads west to the village of Swedeborg. The end of the ride will reward you with dramatic Gasconade River views.

Image courtesy of Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race.

10 Crossings

Another 25-mile ride, 10 Crossings begins and ends at Riddle Bridge Access on the Gasconade River near Saint Robert. This spin crosses Jones Creek five times, the Gasconade River twice. You will also cross Clemens Creek and the Maries River. A portion of the route near Dixon parallels what is now BNSF Railway tracks. The majestic Yellow Bluff signifies the end of your ride.

Image courtesy of Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race.

Turkey Tracks

Turkey Tracks, a 25-mile loop, begins and ends at Mitschele Access on the Gasconade River south of Richland. This ride winds through farmland dotted by silos and country churches. Some of the farms along this route have been held by the same family for more than 100 years. Pedal between the Gasconade River and the towering limestone bluff that is the site of the former Ozark Springs Resort.

Image courtesy of Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race.

The Stars Shine Brighter in Pulaski County!

Reach up and touch the stars!

MO Ozarks Photos photographer Mike Curtis captured the Milky Way near Richland in Pulaski County, Missouri.

“For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream.”

Vincent Van Gogh

Today inspiring night skies are disappearing. It is estimated that the Milky Way is no longer visible to 80 percent of Americans.

The Real Night Sky

Step out into your backyard on a clear night and you will see the moon and a peppering of stars. However, many of us have been robbed of the true triumph and majesty of the night sky.  

Our sky is home to 100 to 400 billion stars. The Northern Hemisphere has 30 visible constellations. Five of these can be seen all year, while the others appear seasonally.

“You can come to depend on the stars’ movement to mark the changing seasons just as the ancients did. The prominent constellation Orion riding high in the southern sky signals the coming of winter as much as the first snow. Leo the Lion heralds in spring right along with the first flowers on the forest floor. The Milky Way shimmering overhead speaks to the warm nights of summer as decidedly as the calls of the crickets and katydids. And the Great Square of Pegasus always presides over autumn’s changing colors.”

Dan Zarlenga, Missouri Department of Conservation

Seven planets can also be seen in the Northern Hemisphere skies at various times throughout the year.

Benefits of the Night Sky

The night sky is scientific, spiritual, and even romantic. The night sky has allowed us to navigate the globe and walk on the moon. Spiritually it connects us to our ancestors who told stories about the constellations to younger generations. The story of two constellations, Cassiopeia and Cepheus, is a love story.

Where Can I See A Sky Full of Stars?

MO Ozarks Photos photographer Mike Curtis captured the Milky Way near Richland in Pulaski County, Missouri.

The stars shine brighter in Pulaski County, Missouri! Our rural areas have several publicly accessible spots that will have you feeling like you can reach up and touch the stars. Conservation areas, campgrounds, and the Mark Twain National Forest are open to stargazing and night sky photography. The City of Waynesville has established a dark sky ordinance to reduce light pollution.

For tips on starscape photography visit www.visitmo.com.

7 Reasons Why You Should Add The Frog Hill Half To Your Half-Marathon Calendar

Whether you are a seasoned half-marathoner, or recently began training for your first event, the Frog Hill Half in Waynesville, Missouri is bucket list worthy. Missouri is home to over 50 annual half-marathons but the Frog Hill Half stands out in the crowd. In its seventh year, this challenging race is picking up steam and drawing more runners and their families.

Frog Hill Half Marathon & 10K Waynesville Missouri

Centrally Located

Waynesville, the seat of Pulaski County, lies just north of Interstate 44 (Exit 156) and is approximately half way between Saint Louis and Springfield, Missouri. This makes travel to and from the Frog Hill Half a breeze.

Route 66

This storied pavement has been revered by “roadies” since the cross country highway was decommissioned in 1985. Runners can truly connect with America’s past during this portion of the course. A small portion of Frog Hill Half retraces part of the route ran during the Trans-American Footrace in 1928.

W.H. Croaker

Our list wouldn’t be complete without a mention of the race’s namesake. W.H. Croaker is an internationally famous landmark. Carved from an extra large boulder, the brightly colored green and yellow frog rock will silently cheer you on as you pass beneath during your descent into charming downtown Waynesville.

Frog Rock attracts a lot of attention on Route 66
Take a selfie with Frog Rock when you visit Waynesville, Missouri!

Superior Hill

One portion of the course follows an antebellum road that is gravel and crushed rock. Don’t be lulled by the Ozark scenery as you pass by Roubidoux Spring and follow the river towards the historic Poor Farm. Superior Hill awaits you. This formidable challenge peaks just shy of a half mile and features a 9% grade. You will never forget completing this section of the course.

Amenities

Area amenities make the Frog Hill Half a destination. Arrive early and explore Pulaski County’s 33 miles of Route 66, shop the antique stores and gift boutiques, learn the tragic tale of the Cherokee, and feast at unique dining spots. Stay late and discover stunning scenery while kayaking the Big Piney or Gasconade River. Nearby Saint Robert has multiple lodging accommodations that will fit any budget.

Family-Friendly

The race is organized by Pulaski County Health Center with a focus on the family. In addition to the half-marathon they offer a 10K the same day. The Leapfrog 5K takes place the evening before the featured race. All three race events end in Waynesville City Park where there will be activities for runners and their families.

George Mallory

The famous mountaineer, after being asked why he wanted to climb Mt. Everest, famously retorted “Because it’s there”. You are a half-marathoner and Frog Hill Half is waiting to be conquered.

Photo courtesy of Team 413 Gracerunner Ministries

If you prefer pedaling to running check out Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race!

Nasty Pulaski Gravel Grind Bike Race Waynesville Missouri