Popular Hays Restaurant Closed

Montana Mike’s in Hays has closed.  The restaurant, whose billboard still shows that it was voted the Number 1 Steakhouse in Hays, closed its doors Tuesday, November 12th.  Cassandra Beard, a supervisor at the restaurant, told Hays Post that the restaurant and the owner of the property weren’t able to come to an agreement on the lease.

Beard said that most of the 33 employees found out Monday evening that Sunday had been their last day at the restaurant (Montana Mike’s is closed on Mondays).  She said that there will be an auction Wednesday November 13th at 10:00 am to sell various pieces from within the restaurant including salad bars, the décor, tray jacks, chairs, booths, and tables.  Beard added that the restaurant’s stock of food has already been shipped to another Mike’s location.

She speculated that the manager was looking at the possibility of opening at another location, but at this time the employees are being let go.

Calls to the local restaurant manager as well as the Vice-President Director of Operations at Montana Mike’s Steakhouse Corporate Office were not returned.

  • I Like Food

    That place has been going down hill for the past couple of years.

    • employee

      Scott rice would buy sub par food and serve it to customers blaming it on the cooks, he didnt want it to affect his bonus, he cared more about bonuses then he cared for his employees and customers

      • ZMan

        I know nothing about Mr. Rice but I have never liked their steaks (mine were always chewy). I have nothing against MM and hate to see any business shut its doors (except for those *&#%@#^! landscapers and construction contractors in this town who never call you back or miss appointments).

  • Gassy

    That shows how stupid Hays Daily News best at whatever is worth. Boycott

    • gomer

      hays daily who?

      • ZMan


    • gskeers

      uh you mean HAYS POST not HAYS DAILY NEWS

      • gomer

        uh- no, we meant hays daily……they do a yearly “voted best” program that lets the readers vote their favorite places, then they sell “thank you ads” to the suckers that were voted the top 3. it was just a gimmick to sell ads

  • Sad, Sad day

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I love their chicken fried steaks. This is one of my favorite restaurants. I hope they reopen in Hays. Whoever let the lease go is missing out. You had a long term customer at that location. Look at how long some locations have set empty for literally years. I hope the Hays improvement groups who try to attract business to Hays will invest some effort in to helping this restaurant find another location in Hays. We’ve got fast food galore, but few places to go for receptions, family gatherings, or business meetings. Their prices were reasonable, large plates of food, and most items were really delicious.

    • A_citizen_patriot

      I am fairly sure that the mall owns that location.

      • gomer

        the mall is all but dead anyway, hibbets is building their own place and that will leave a huge void in traffic. they have been over-priced on rent for a long time and it shows in all the vacant store fronts. just a matter of time before pennys does the same….at least if they were smart….. the building is 40+ years old, the parking lot looks like it has been used for bombing practice….it’s just outlived it’s usefulness ….. now if the building owners would lower the rent and get the vacant stores filled, they might stand a chance of survival but all they are doing is sucking every dime possible out of it in a death spiral

        • A_citizen_patriot

          The mall seems to want everyone to leave. You ought to look at the rent they want for the old midwest drug spot.

          • Chief59

            You would think they would be smart enough to realize that renting all of the storefronts at a lower margin is better than renting half of them for more. Same problem at Centennial Mall. I have talked to a few store owners there, and I was very surprised how high rent was. Surprised any business in there could turn a profit.

        • BobOil

          “Bombing practice…” that’s a great (and unfortunately, accurate) description.

        • Rocket Science

          The mall knows nothing about filling empty spots. Look at the holes in the parking lot.

  • gag

    Gross food anyway.

    • Love great food

      Montana Mikes chicken fried steak was actually a real fresh cutlet, plate size, and hand breaded. Whisky Creek’s was more expensive and was obviously a frozen, prebreaded tasteless thin patty. I could buy a whole bag of those at Walmart for $5.99 if that’s what I really wanted. I hope Montana Mikes makes a comeback soon!

    • gskeers

      you don’t know what’s good for ya

  • Guests

    What else is new for Hays

  • exemployee

    scott rice ran it into the ground, hope you employees get your paycheck

    • Janel

      He always treated us very well when we ate there, and always had good food and very big portions, and always made sure his waiters and waitresses provided good service.

  • Hays

    Their hamburgers tasted like they were thrown on the grill frozen and not seasoned. Won’t miss that place.

    • Hays resident

      Ok, Ok….we get you don’t like Montana Mikes. Sounds like you had a personal issue with them by all your posts. Disgruntled past employee maybe? I personally liked the restaurant.

      • Hays resident

        oops..Sorry. I saw a lot of posts by ‘Gassy’ and thought it was someone posting negative comments over and over. After refreshing the screen, I see different names on the posts now.

  • that one white guy

    All in favor for olive garden click ^

  • observer

    well this sucks, one less choice for food outside all the pizza/mexican garbage that is so tiresome. we went to montana mikes quite often, can’t stand whiskey creek…..so much for getting a decent steak in hays

    • IamwhoIam

      Travel the 30 minutes to Russell and eat steak at Meridy’s. Very awesome!!

      • steakman

        Meridy’s ain’t that good either. yeah their steaks are better than montana mike’s but not knock down great. you make just a good a one on your traeger.

    • hmmmm

      I agree Whiskey Creek is a joke. It takes forever to get your food, and it is subpar at best. Montana Mikes had a few dishes that were “OK”, but often their food was subpar as well, but at least you got you food in a timely manner. I say lets put in a Chilli’s, or a well known place to get steaks.

      • Chief59

        I’ve eaten at Whiskey Creek twice. I’ve gotten sick the same evening as eating there twice. I highly doubt it was a coincidence. I wish the bigger chain restaurants would look at the pull from surrounding communities and I-70 before deciding we are too small for their restaurants. Hays could MOST LIKELY support a Buffalo Wild Wings, maybe Olive Garden, etc.

  • Sarah Moyer

    I’m not entirely surprised. The meals i had there were always subpar and after i tried getting a job there some of the employees took advantage of managers not paying attention to their customer service skills.

    • gskeers


      • Sarah Moyer

        It’s picky not to want good food and good customer service? Then no wonder a lot of places are leaving hays.

  • Less chains more family owned

    How many average burger/steak chains do we really need? I always hear about people wanting Olive Garden but we already have Napolis which is pretty good. Support you local ma and pa like JDs, Smoking Barrel, Gutchs, Gellas, Jaliscos on and on. Als Chickenette has made a huge comeback…best chicken fry in town.

    • gskeers

      Smoking Barrel? never heard of the place where’s it located

      • Info

        On Cody Ave …..east of Cedar Lodge Dental

        • gskeers

          OH OK THANKS

      • Food Critic

        Smoking Barrel is gross, it is the next local business to close. Mark my words.

        • gskeers

          picky picky picky

        • gskeers

          i’ll be the judge of that if the food is gross

    • Forssberg

      JD’s is a great place to eat.



      • Blechh!

        Olive Garden is the McDonald’s of Italian food. Would much rather eat at Napoli’s.

      • observer

        we have eaten at napoli’s many times, the food is always good, never any problems

      • Hays

        I heard Napoli’s is closing it’s doors as well.

        • gskeers

          not until i take the opportunity to eat there lol

  • Guest

    Too bad, hopefully they can come back somewhere else… With that said, I now vote we take the building down and curve that nasty intersection south so it is a four way instead of two back to back three way intersections…….

    • Reality

      Not a bad idea, really. The traffic flow and egress points on/off Vine between 33rd and I-70 are the most poorly conceived I’ve seen anywhere in the country.

      • other shoe

        The state will probably require upgrading to a round-about.

    • stonedigger

      Approximately 15 years ago, the City had a 1 million dollar grant to fix the 32nd, 33rd, and Vine intersection. There were a few people against the proposed plans to fix it because of how it affected their property. The City commission at that time caved in to the ones against it and gave the grant back to the State. So until the City grows some large ones, we will continue to have this intersection.

  • Don’t care

    The food was disgusting and the service horrible!, good choice closing it!

  • Darwin

    The thing that really gets me is the following quote “Beard said that most of the 33 employees found out Monday evening that Sunday had been their last day at the restaurant” Like they (The management) didn’t know it was happening. It really pisses me off when I see this because they screwed over everyone who was planning on working the next day. When they could have announced it and given the people ample time to get a new job elsewhere. Just gives me more of a reason to not eat at ANY of the MM locations.

  • just sayin’

    If you want a good steak, try The Rose Garden, the prime rib on Saturday nights is amazing. Service is good, and prices are reasonable.

  • gskeers

    maybe that’s where Qboda is gonna take over Montana Mikes

    • Chris

      Qdoba is going to be close to long john silvers.

  • not upset at all..

    I’m sorry…the last time I was in that place was to work on their computers…that was 4 years ago on a Tuesday morning. That kitchen was far worse than anything I had ever previously or since seen. I haven’t been back. I feel for the employees, but the food was nasty and the kitchen was grotesque.

  • More to the Story

    Something isn’t right here “Beard said that most of the 33 employees found out Monday evening that Sunday had been their last day”. But yet an auction is already set for today? Food is already sent to other sites, I think there might be more to the story than blaming it on the property owners (who ever they may be).

    • Doesnt make sense

      Yea, if there were “lease issues”, wouldn’t that be discussed up until the lease was up? I feel like there was another reason, cough, management cough, that was the issue, but the blame was put on “lease issues” to cover their own skin. Lease terms don’t just change over night, and they would be aware of them for a while before having to close doors. It was handled very poorly.

  • Downtown shopper

    Well we still have Couture for Men & Women & Terry’s BQ in the beautiful Chestnut St. area where taxpayers have invested hundreds of thousands of $’s to make you shop down there.

  • Mac_08-10

    As an ex employee when Scotty first came into the business I have to back him up. The previous management before Scotty had made false accusations of the cleanliness of the restaurant to get one another fired. Once Scotty came in, order as well as respect had been brought back to the steakhouse. The crew I was working with was the crew that brought in the most sales last recorded. Once we all split for careers is when I noticed things to go south. Scotty never treated us wrong and was the best when it came to flexibility on scheduling. It also helped that our crew was close and stepped up when needed. I had a blast there from hunting season with the big 22 and shrimp combo to Halloween where we got to dress up and have fun with the customers. Scotty was not the fall, the waiting crew makes all the different. Another point that needs to be made is people talking about “chewy” steaks….QUIT ORDERING A SIRLOIN!!! It’s the toughest of the meats!! The ribeye with its marbling fat was pull apart tender without a knife. The fillet was always handled with extra care because of how steep the price was and the t-bone gave you the best of both worlds. Also, no matter what the complaint, it is my happy opinion to note that in the back, Scotty was always addressed with the problem and if deemed bad, he’d get you a new steak no questions asked. As for the cooks, you couldn’t have asked for a more understanding line to work with at the time of my being a waiter there. It’s sad to see this go and after contacting the old crew we couldn’t help but miss the fun times we had there. Don’t be so hard to point the fingers at Scotty, he was given a broken restaraunt and with what little he did to bring it back, he made a very happy community and as we all know, was Hays’ best steakhouse countless years running.