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Eatbeat: Sandwich options seem never ending at Bonzer's

An egg salad sandwich.

That's what calls me back to Bonzer's downtown on DeMers. It's served on nine grain bread with lettuce. You can get a half sandwich — which is more than plenty — for $5.89. Or go full blast for $8.39.

For friends, the choice often is chili. It's spicy. And it's topped with shredded cheese and red onions. And it's $5.99 a bowl or $3.59 a cup.

As a pub and bar, Bonzer's is a pleasant stop downtown for UND students along with people from all walks of life. In winter, you see regular customers sitting by the stove near the entryway. Others choose the privacy of booths or the sociability at the bar. There's also a boardroom for people who want to do business over lunch.

There are games at the rear of the building and an entrance from Bonzer's parking lot.

My recent stop there was with my granddaughter, Anne Sandstrom, a UND med student. She and I chose comfortable seating at the friendly bar where we had a chance to visit with Jon and Cindy Bonzer.

The Bonzers met at UND. She was from Fargo. He came here from California because his grandfather once managed the State Mill. They have a son, Matt, who has been associated with them in business. And they have a daughter, Melissa.

The Bonzers started out in business with a pub they opened on Fourth Street in 1983. And they served soup and sandwiches then as now. Jon Bonzer remembers worrying about the future when Norby's department store across the street closed in 1986. Little did he know that his business would be washed out in the Flood of 1997.

The Bonzers were among the first to reopen downtown after the flood. They chose the DeMers Avenue location. While the flood washed away much of their historical décor, they continue to display items of local interest.

Soups are made daily in the kitchen at Bonzer's. Sandwiches and salads are prepared for each order. Choices for sandwiches seem never ending. They range from turkey, ham and Swiss, roast beef and a Bonzer Reuben.

The Pub Club at $9.99 and the New York Pastrami and Swiss at $11.49 are marked as signature items on the menu. So, too, is the egg salad sandwich.

The pub offers bread choices including light caraway rye, white, nine grain pumpernickel along with croissants.

Among snack items on the menu, there's a pickled egg basket and a basket of peanuts. A monster cookie for $2.69 is described as, "So big it's scary."

Bonzer's Sandwich Pub

420 DeMers Ave.

Owners: Jon and Cindy Bonzer

Telephone: (701) 775-0365

Hours: 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Saturday; closed Sunday

Report card: Choices are unlimited for foods prepared in the kitchen at Bonzer's. Wide array of good sandwiches along with salads, soup and chili made daily.