Fork in the Road: Brookville Hotel's recipes remain untouched for nearly 150 years

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ABILIENE, Kan. (WIBW) - Tried and true recipes have been the backbone at Brookville Hotel for well over a hundred years.

This week's Fork in the Road takes us to Abilene, Kansas where 13's Erika Hall showed us why the restaurant has stood the test of time.

So to start she met up with Mark Martin, the friendly owner of the historic Brookville Hotel, and learned how since 1870 his family has been serving family style chicken dinners at their restaurant, which really was in the town of Brookville until it closed in 2000.

"Economic development from about 13 cities contacted us, actually Topeka did, and encouraged us to move our restaurant to their town, and Abiliene had a pretty good program for us!” Martin said.

The location changed, but Brookville Hotel's tried and true home cooked recipes remain untouched, because they stick with what works.

"The menu is basically a pan fried chicken, baking powder biscuits, we make them here every night, the creamed corn is a fan of a lot of people, obviously the chicken gravy is made with the crumbles from the chicken as we fry our chicken, and the cole slaw is particularly memorable if you like whipped cream, sugar, cider vinegar, a dash of salt, and cabbage,” Martin said.

So 13 News got a look at what goes into making that famous fried chicken.

"We are pouring the milk on to the chicken, that’s what we use to get it wet with,” said Brookville Hotel Cook Nicole Avig, “We've got flour that’s mixed with salt and pepper, and that’s it. Grab it out of the milk, flour it up real good, and then put it in. Timers going off, lets flip it up, and flip it over, see how it’s nice and golden brown."

And of course we had to test out the taste…

"Okay so my general feeling from this meal is it's extremely good, home cooked, my grandma came back to life again and created this, because this was amazing, well done." Hall said.

Martin says their restaurant is different than most in that it’s not an everyday feeder, but more for special occasions.

“No, we don't serve the same people once a week, or once a month, my regular is every two to five years, sometimes it’s fifteen years that they become a regular,” Martin laughed.

A business model recipe that will keep the Brookville Hotel around for many years to come.

"Keeping our business as simple as possible with one menu so people can actually expect the same flavors each time they come here, we're talking generations now.” Martin said.

The Brookville Hotel is located at 105 e. Lafayette Street in Abilene.

They are open Wednesday through Friday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Reservations are highly encouraged at least two weeks in advance if you plan to go on Easter or Mothers day.

You can find more information on their prices and menu by clicking here here!