Chuck Haralson and Ken Smith were inducted into the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame during the 43rd annual Governor’s Conference on Tourism
Dipped cones seem to be the only thing I couldn’t find on the menu at the Salem Dairy Bar the other day… but they did have the same sort of great smashed-on-the-griddle burgers served on big flat buns, and a lot of ice cream treats to boot.
Salem Dairy Bar’s been around for a couple generations, I believe. At least, that’s what my mind’s saying far in the background. It’s a dine-out affair; window service only with just a picnic table if you want to stay and dine. And when they’re open (every day except for Monday, it turns out) they’re always serving up something to someone… as evidenced by the half dozen vehicles waiting when I arrived for my visit.
Ice cream was a temptation I couldn’t refuse, so I ordered up a Strawberry Sundae, regular size with whipped cream and nuts and twisted ice cream (vanilla and chocolate mixed). The $2.20 shake and the two 25 cent add-ons still only came to $2.70, a might shine better than most places I go these days. My jumbo cheeseburger was $3.95.
The burger came first — a wax paper wrapped smash with a toothpick holding it together. Everything about the burger was traditional — toasted seedless bun, American cheese gluing the patty to the top, mayo and pickle on the bottom with shredded iceberg lettuce and tomato. I’d asked for the onions to be held. Mayo is the default condiment, though you can request mustard or ketchup instead.
The patty was a perfect loose-packed smashburger,
half a pound of good quality beef seasoned with salt and
The Salem Dairy Bar is open every day from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., except Sunday when it opens at noon and Monday when it isn’t open at all. The grill is done at 7:45, so don’t show up and expect a burger right at closing time. That’s asking a bit much. But you can still get a banana split at 7:55. You’ll find Salem Dairy Bar at 6406 Congo Road — a skip north of I-30. (501) 794-3929.
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