ST. PETERS, Mo. – Brian Ward, owner of Hobos at the Legion in St. Peters, is thankful to call St. Charles County home. Through the pandemic and now the rising costs of food, he said it’s the commitment from the community and Hobo’s commitment to them that makes it special.
“You have to have an incredible product, which we have. You have to have reasonable prices, which we do. And you have to surround yourself with the greatest people in this industry. Fortunately, Hobos has been able to do that throughout the years,” Ward said.
Ward said, instead of hurting his guests with absurd price increases on the menu, he kept prices below average in the market.
“We have a tremendous volume [of people] that come through here. On any given day we’ll serve somewhere between 600-850 guests,” he said.
As rain poured Saturday morning into the afternoon, regulars like Hunter Buckman and his family trickled into Hobos.
“I got the fried fish with some green beans, and I got a bowl of the spicy chili. We had to get here before 11, had to beat the lunch crowd, so we’re here,” Buckman said.
With a big Game 3 ahead for the Blues on Saturday night, Buckman’s dad Craig said there will be good crowd, rain or shine.
“They’ll still show up, and they’ll be here,” he said.
Along with the fish and made-from-scratch sides, Hobos is also known for its fried chicken, along with house-smoked meats and pizza.
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“I read a report, from April 1 of 2021 to April 1 of 2022, we sold about 2,600 cases of 8-piece chicken at 40 pounds a case. That’s 49.5 tons of chicken,” said Ward.
“It’s a tremendous product and over the years it’s just continued to grow with us here. Rob [Knolle] came to work with us in 2013, and that’s kind of when I got into the pizza business,” Ward said.
“I definitely love what I do,” Rob Knolle, who helped master the pizza’s recipe, said. “I’m real proud to be a little part of it. Watched the man navigate his business through some tough times.”
From food quality to managing rising costs, Knoll said it’s Ward’s dedication to the community and staff.
“It’s commitment to quality. It’s Brian’s commitment to quality and consistency, it’s recognized,” Knolle said.