Those who have experienced The Knuckle Sandwich, a 1950s- and 1960s-themed restaurant, eagerly anticipate the eatery’s new Bargersville location opening in February.
Owned by Brent and Linda Plunkett, The Knuckle Sandwich used to be located off of State Road 144 for nearly 10 years, until the expansion project for Interstate 37 and Interstate 69 forced them to close.
After two and a half years of searching for the right location, the Plunketts are excited to reopen for customers who have patiently awaited the return of their favorite dining experience.
“When we bought the original building back in 2013, the previous owner told us it would be taken out eventually by the expansion,” Brent Plunkett says. “We didn’t know how long we’d have, but we were open until August 31, 2020.”
The new location on North State Road 135 is just six miles east of the former restaurant, and it’s ready to hop.
The Knuckle Sandwich will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, with fun, 1950s-themed titles.
The menu is pretty much the same,” Brent says. “Our signature items have returned.”
Try the Peggy Sue Western Omelet, Chuck Blueberry Pancakes or the Four Tops Biscuits and Gravy for breakfast, or enjoy one of the popular lunch and dinner options that have kept customers coming back for more.
The signature items include the Hub Cab Tenderloin, the Big Bopper BLT, Elvis’ Rockin’ Reuben, the Giant Hound Dog and more.
In addition, the ’57 Chevy Burger Challenge will return. Can you singlehandedly eat two fully dressed, one-pound burgers, plus two pounds of french fries, in just 45 minutes?
If you succeed, you’ll receive your meal for free, plus a fun T-shirt and a trophy. Your photo will be added to the Burger Challenge Hall of Fame wall inside the diner.
While Brent says the restaurant isn’t necessarily the place to go for those watching calories, they do have a chef salad and chicken-salad sandwich.
Linda will prepare a specialty lunch dish Mondays through Thursdays. Tuesdays are meatloaf, Wednesdays feature a variety of Manhattans, and Mondays and Thursdays are reserved for surprise specials. As a baker for the Center Grove school system for a decade, Linda has made calzones, chicken and noodles, or whatever seasonal dish she’s been in the mood to make throughout the week.
The Knuckle Sandwich has a three-way alcohol license and will offer strawberry daiquiris, bloody marys, margaritas and mimosas.
“We want people to be able to come in and have a wine cooler or a beer, but we don’t want to have a full bar,” says Brent. “We’ll offer those upon request. It’s important to us to be a family diner, but we can see it’s an option that people will appreciate.”
In the new building, the Plunketts have added themed decorations for a fun, 1950s and 1960s vibe – more so than what customers have seen in the past.
The previous location was 2,600 square feet and built in 1979. The new location is 3,500 square feet and built in 2022.
“There’s a lot more room in the dining room here and, of course, less maintenance to the building,” Brent says. “We’ll be seating about the same amount of people, but there’s space and a variety of seating arrangements like booths, round tables and square tables to suit whatever people are looking for. We really like the layout — it has good flow. We’re not stuffing people in.”
Brent says there are some changes that he will miss. For example, the old diner had a cooking station in front of the bar. He was able to cook and talk to people at the same time.
“I like talking to the customers, meeting them and hearing their stories,” says Brent. “I’m still doing some of the cooking but it’s all in the back now.”
The couple has also worked diligently to price meals for affordability and is endeavoring to keep prices the same for at least a year.
“The last time we raised prices was in 2018 and we want to keep them low, or at least hold them if we can help it,” Plunkett says. “We will have a surcharge on credit or debit purchases because it’ll help us hold our prices down for longer. We hope people understand and don’t take it out on the server because in these days and times, it’s rare to go somewhere for 12 months and find that the prices are the same.”
They’ve purchased four televisions that will play old movies or cartoons in line with the theme.
“We used to have two televisions but we also want to add in news and sports,” Plunkett says. “It’s fun to keep along with the theme, but if you want to watch the Super Bowl, we understand that too.”
Leading up to the grand opening, the Plunketts posted their plans on social media and received 35,000 comments.
The thousands of positive reviews and the inevitable lines out the door keep the Plunketts going.
“We’ve been in the restaurant business since 2010,” says Brent. “We’re excited to bring The Knuckle Sandwich back to our customers.”
The Knuckle Sandwich is located at 5116 North State Road 135, Suite A in Bargersville, and will open soon.
For more information, check out facebook.com/knucklesandwichbargersville.
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