News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Business

February 6, 2014

Southern-style barbecue restaurant planned next to Interstate 70 exit

To open this summer in former Lone Star Steakhouse site

TERRE HAUTE — Bandana’s BAR-B-Q, a southern-style barbecue restaurant based in St. Louis, is set to open a new location in Terre Haute this summer.

You’ll be able to “Smell the smoke” – a Bandana’s catch phrase – at the former Lone Star Steakhouse site on the east side of U.S. 41 and just north of Interstate 70 on the city’s south side.

The business will be owned by the Bandana’s corporation, which is typical of the restaurant’s operations. Of about 30 Bandana’s restaurants, only five are operated by franchisees.

Bandana’s plans to hire four managers and about 50 hourly employees for the Terre Haute restaurant, said Shannon Helderle, corporate recruiter for Bandana’s.

“It’s a really friendly, clean work environment,” Helderle said. Even managers can wear jeans on the job, she added. “We’re really trying to get that southern hospitality feel.”

Bandana’s smokes all of its meat for 11 to 14 hours with a signature rub, Helderle noted. All side dishes are made from scratch, she added. “That’s something that stands out for anyone trying our food for the first time,” she said.

The company’s goal is to eventually operate 70 restaurants, Helderle said. Ideally, the company would like to open seven new locations each year until they reach that goal, she said.

Most of Bandana’s restaurants are now in the St. Louis area or elsewhere in Missouri. There is one Bandana’s in Indiana, in Evansville.

“That does very well,” Helderle said of the southern Indiana location.

Bandana’s serves smoked barbecue pork, beef, chicken, ribs, turkey and sausage. It does not offer hamburgers, fish or pasta. All meat is prepared with a rub, and customers can select from four or five different sauces at their table, Helderle said.

Bandana’s is opening its 26th corporate-owned location in the next week in Lebanon, Mo. The Terre Haute location will be the 27th corporate site.

The restaurant is advertising for hourly and management positions for the Terre Haute Bandana’s on several employment websites. Original plans were to be ready to open for business in March, but that has been pushed back to July or August, Helderle said.

Anyone interested in applying for a position at Bandana’s can contact Helderle by email at shan

nonh@bandanasbbq.com.

Reporter Arthur Foulkes can be reached at 812-231-4232 or arthur.foulkes

@tribstar.com

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