Owner of Missouri Hick Bar-B-Que dies of COVID-19 complications

Dennis Meiser, the longtime owner of the landmark Missouri Hick Bar-B-Que restaurant along Route 66 in Cuba, Missouri, died Friday after being hospitalized for several weeks due to coronavirus complications. He was 65.

Mizell Funeral Home in Cuba is handling the arrangements. The visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home. Interment will be at Kinder Cemetery in Cuba.

From the obituary:

Those who are left to treasure his memory and to continue his legacy are his son Ryan Meiser of Cuba; four sisters Janet Osborn of Cuba, Karen and husband Mike Greer of Bismarck, Diane and husband Dwayne Gress of Plainview, Illinois, Patricia and husband Stephan Wood of Cuba; one aunt Pearl Stites of Steelville; one faithful fur companion Goliath; cousins, nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, MO Hick Crew and many friends. […]
If desired, memorials would be appreciated to Partners for the Pound 224 Enterprise Dr. Cuba, Missouri 65453.

Tributes began coming in after Route 66 enthusiasts learned of Meiser’s death:

The restaurant also posted this message on its Facebook page. Apparently, the restaurant’s kitchen manager died last week, as well. More than 150 people expressed their condolences as of Saturday night:

Meiser was a pitmaster and a woodcarver. So the Missouri Hick restaurant combined those two with Ozark-style barbecue and sides, plus woodworking all over the place.

According to CubaMoMurals.com, Missouri Hick opened in February 2002. It quickly became a Route 66 favorite due to its cuisine and rustic decor.

It eventually was featured in Feast Magazine and Midwest Wanderer. And here’s a video that featured Meiser and his restaurant:

Rural Missouri Magazine also produced a short video about him and Missouri Hick:

Meiser, expressing a wish to retire, put the restaurant up for sale in 2019, but it continued operating.

A few weeks ago, Meiser was the subject of a bizarre story where the mayor of Lake Ozark, Missouri, vowed on a now-deleted Facebook post to bring ivermectin to him in the hospital. Ivermectin is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for COVID treatment. Hundreds of people across the U.S. have made themselves seriously ill or dead by taking a livestock version of the drug.

KOMU in Columbia, Missouri, covered the story at the time, and it caused a stir. It’s not known whether the mayor delivered the ivermectin to Meiser at the hospital.

Meiser was unvaccinated against COVID-19, according to his son, Ryan, on the same Facebook thread begun by the Lake Ozark mayor. Route 66 News screen-captured Ryan’s comment before the post was taken down.

(Image of the Missouri Hick Bar-B-Que in Cuba, Missouri, by Tony Hisgett via Flickr)

6 thoughts on “Owner of Missouri Hick Bar-B-Que dies of COVID-19 complications

  1. They have this thing. It’s called a vaccine.
    Now this IS an assumption, but considering breakthrough covid deaths are very rare, I would have to guess these gentlemen skipped that. And paid the ultimate price.
    Sad. Not only for them, but for the families that will miss them.

  2. Sorry to hear about Denis for we got to know him when he first started to build his place and at about same time My Wife and daughter started building their business called Weddings and More. We watched it being built and how he turned Missouri Hick to be internationally known.

  3. That’s too bad. I really like that place. I’ve eaten there about four times. I’m not sure it’s all that remarkable, but I nevertheless like their corn bread.

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