Caveman Bar-BQ & Steak House

Useful Information

Location: Above Gasconade River, near Richland. I-44 exit 150, Hwy 7 north, right on Rochester Road, right on CR-W-735.
Open: APR to OCT.
Fee: Free, dishes see menu. No cheques or credit cards accepted, only cash!
Classification: SubterraneaCave House
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours:
Address: Caveman Bar-BQ & Steak House, 26880 Rochester Road, Richland, MO 65556, Tel: +1-573-765-4554.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1920s uased as a dance hall during the Prohibition.
1984 purchased by David Hughes.
1990 developed as a restaurant.



Caveman Bar-BQ & Steak House is located at Gasconade River near Richland, Missouri. It is located about 10 m above the river and has a nice view across the river. And it is built inside a natural cave called Dance Hall Cave. This cave had been used as a dance hall during prohibition, but is was developed as a restaurant, with level floor, desks, viewing platform and elevator from the road below, by David Hughes and his wife Connie. David is a retired policeman, who bought this property at the river to spend his time fishing, but when he first saw the cave he was convinced to open it as a restaurant. He removed 160 tons of rock, which tripled the size of the cave, which now seats about 200 guests.

The restaurant serves American dishes like barbecued meats, steak, chicken, seafood, and sandwiches. The rib joints are much recommended, but some other reviews are not very promising. The owner already had already been retired when he developed the cave, and we read that he tried to sell it back in 2005. We guess it is now in new hands, so be carefull when you plan to go there, call ahead to ask if our info is still valid.

The cave is located in a sort of resort, with a campground, cabins and river sports, which is closed at the moment. The parking is outside the resort, restaurant visitors are shuttled with an old van on a dirt road. Then they enter an elevator the get up to the cave. There is also an old iron spiral staircase, but this is used only by the staff. It originates from the 1920s, and was the only way to enter the dance hall at that time.