New Ownership Reinvigorating a Legacy Brand at Pioneer Saloon in Goodsprings

The legendary saloon is undertaking updates that will stay true to its history
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Not far from Las Vegas, in the (ghost) town of Goodsprings, lies the Pioneer Saloon, established in 1913. The saloon, like the town, has a storied past that began in those last days of the Wild West, and it remains the stuff of legend. The hit post-apocalyptic video game Fallout: New Vegas begins there, in Goodsprings, which is reflected in the saloon as a decorative cooler sporting the game’s fictional “Nuka-Cola” branding. The bar still carries cigarette burns said to have been left there by Clark Gable, who visited in 1942, awaiting news of his wife, who had died in a plane crash. Three bullet holes in one of the saloon’s walls tell the tale of a poker game gone fatally wrong.

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And the legend continues:

“As recent folklore would tell it,” co-owner Stephanie Richter told What Now Las Vegas in a Thursday-afternoon email, “Old Man Liver, who is the face of the Pioneer Saloon, won the saloon in a high-stakes poker game one crazy night.”

The Pioneer Saloon serves drinks and a few longtime classic dishes that will remain at the forefront of its brand as it transitions under new ownership: the famous Ghost Burger and Haunt Dog. The burgers have been updated with a new touch, a seasoning referred to as the Red Menace, and the menu also features the “Steak on a Stake” and chicken kabobs dubbed “What the Cluck.”

“In addition,” Richter said, “our Hot A F*** Sauce adorns every table just waiting to be tried by those who can handle the heat. Chili is another house specialty, made from a secret family recipe.”

Construction will be undertaken in the coming months, as the restaurant updates its restrooms and, most importantly, its kitchen.

“This will allow us to really deliver on great food. In the meantime, we are grilling some pretty amazing burgers.”

Unsurprisingly, however, a new ownership that has so fittingly come to be a part of the saloon’s story has no interest in altering its fundamental character. Updates to the saloon are intended to keep it true to its history.

“It is important for the Pioneer Saloon to emerge from new ownership with a clear identity – it isn’t a steakhouse or an all day egg café,” Richter said. “It is a saloon, loved by many, and will be loved by more as we introduce others to its history, charm, and really great food.”

Photo: Official
Photo: Official
Photo: Official
Neil Cooney

Neil Cooney

Neil Cooney is a freelance writer. He has received an MFA in Creative Writing from Syracuse University, and his work has been published in the Masters Review. He lives in Nashville, TN, where he spends his free time cooking Korean food and studying chess.
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10 days ago

Well, how do I begin without hurting anybody’s business? Up until this past weekend I
absolutely loved this place and boasted about it to my friends. I went out there with family on Nov 14th, 2021 and was shocked and embarrassed. I do understand that the new owners have the will and right to change whatever they want but it is in my opinion that anyone used to the old place will be quite disappointed, as I am. I am not complaining about the
employees, they were great. Rather, I’m disappointed about the drastic change of the menu and the portions. I waited 1 hour for 3 breakfast burritos, one of which never got delivered! They were tasty but not for $13.95 each. kind of pricey! The chili was pretty darned good but over $10.00 for a little cup?? No crackers etc and you have to pay $1.00 for cheese and $.75 for onions.Beer is $6.50 per bottle. I know ya all gotta make a living but my bill was $83.71 for 3 small breakfast burritos, 2 beers and 2 cups of chili. Oh, i did inquire about the 3rd
burrito (never got it) and it was deducted from the bill.Honest mistake?? ok. The menu items of popularity are no longer!! Kettle chips, no where to be found. Pulled pork ? Most of the breakfast items, Enough, I’ve said my piece. I think that the Pioneer Saloon should remain as
it was in the past. The past was the “draw”. Never heard complaints before. Owners of
businesses can have their vision and make changes…..but why fix it if it ain’t broke?
Hopefully, this is a learning curve and I hope it works for all. Good luck.

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