Casual attire is the standard in Branson, Missouri. Casual eateries, family restaurants and diners dominate its extensive choices for eating out, but there are also excellent places for upscale and fine dining. Try one of these 5 restaurants for an elegant dining experience where, in most cases, your casual attire is still welcome.
Located in the north end of Branson Landing, the Black Oak Grill serves hearty Midwest fare with a modern twist. Wood beams create a relaxed rustic atmosphere. Large windows and a patio provide views of Lake Taneycomo. The restaurant is named for the black oak tree which can be found across the American landscape.
The menu offers a wide variety of choices that include sandwiches, steak, fish, burgers, salads, ribs, meatloaf, pot roast, chicken, and small plates. The bar features wine, beer, and cocktails. Try the signature Black Oak Punch, made with Pinnacle Sherbet Vodka, Voga Moscato, lemonade, ginger ale, and a splash of cream.
Level 2 Steakhouse, located in the Branson Hilton Convention Center Hotel in downtown Branson, features 28-day aged corn-fed Midwest beef and fresh produce. Steaks are seared in a 1600-degree infrared oven, which quickly sears the outside and produces a tender steak. Choose filet mignon, ribeye, Kansas City strip, or Wagyu beef direct from the farm in Highland, Missouri. The varied menu of sides includes roasted garlic whipped potatoes, Parmesan and truffle salt steakhouse fries, grilled asparagus, creamed spinach, and sauteed mushrooms.
Patrons are given a choice of one of five signature steak knives to dine with for the evening. After dining at the Level 2 Steakhouse five times, you become a member of the Kut Klub. Your name is engraved on one of the Signature Knives for your personal use on future visits.
For non-steak lovers, Level 2 Steakhouse also serves chicken, pork, and responsibly harvested fresh seafood. Deserts include cheesecake, chocolate cake, crème brulee, fresh berry tart and the signature Missouri Butter Cake, a moist buttery cake served with ice cream, berries, crème anglaise and whipped cream.
Choose the Level 2 Steakhouse for a romantic dinner or an elegant end to a day of shopping and sightseeing.
The student-run Dobyns Dining Room at the Keeter Center on the College of the Ozarks campus features farm-to-table American cuisine in a lodge setting. The College of the Ozarks is a Christian liberal arts college known as Hard Work U because it provides the opportunity for full-time students to work at campus jobs or industries in lieu of paying tuition fees. The hosts, servers, cooks, and bakers at Dobyns Dining Room are students at the college. Many are enrolled in Culinary Arts or Hotel and Restaurant Management.
The menu, which changes seasonally, features items from the college's farms, organic vegetable gardens, and mill. Agriculture students produce the dairy, beef, pork, fruit, and vegetables used in the kitchen. Prime rib, pork pomodoro, corn meal trout, rosemary peach glazed flat iron steak, pistachio, and bacon chicken chop, house-made pasta, and Southwestern quinoa are just a few of the items on the menu. Be sure to include a scoop of ice cream with your dessert choice. (The ice-cream is made fresh daily by students using cream from the college's dairy farm.)
Enjoy your dining experience at Dobyns Dining Room early, since the restaurant closes at 8 pm. It is also open for lunch. Its award-winning Sunday brunch is a local favorite. Note that the restaurant does not serve wine or other alcohol. Student entertainment is provided Thursday through Saturday evenings and at Sunday brunch.
The Top of the Rock Ozarks Heritage Preserve, located seven miles south of Branson, opened in 2014. Sitting at the highest elevation in the county, the resort overlooks the Ozarks Mountains and Table Rock Lake. It was designed by Johnny Morris, founder of Bass Pro Shops, using the natural landscape as a guide and with concern for sustainability.
The Osage Restaurant at Top of the Rock offers a spectacular dining experience with sweeping views of the Ozarks landscape and high-end American cuisine. Rotisserie Roasted All Natural Chicken is a signature dish. Other items on the menu include steak, buttermilk fried chicken breast, charred rack of lamb, and pan seared halibut. You might want to try Gooey Butter Cake or Ozarks Mud Pie for dessert. Note that appropriate resort attire, which means collared shirts for men, is required. The cozy Buffalo Bar, located on the lower level of the restaurant, offers many of the same menu items as well as wood-fired pizza.
A special treat at the resort is its signature Sunset Ceremony, where a traditional bagpiper plays in the background as the sun sets on Table Rock Lake.
Chateau Grille at Chateau Lake Resort Spa & Convention Center, located ten miles from downtown Branson, also offers stunning views of Table Rock Lake. Its award-winning cuisine features creatively prepared steak, pork, chicken, quail, and seafood using local, organic or sustainably grown products, all elegantly presented. Chateau also boasts an extensive wine list. Live piano music accompanies dinner on Friday and Saturday nights.
For a truly unique experience and an epicurean adventure, book the Chateau's exclusive Chef's Table. At the time of your reservation, the Executive Chef provides custom menu-planning for your dinner party of up to 18 people. Your five-course gourmet meal will be paired with fine wine servings.
We hope these higher-end food options in Branson will give you food for thought while you plan your next trip. Happy trails!