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WELCOME TO OUR NEIGHBORHOOD. Experience inventive restaurants, brew pubs, cafes and bistros that put a new spin on your favorites. From burgers to tacos, sushi, classic cocktails and more, we’ve got something for all appetites. Marquee Pizzeria • 30Hop • WineStyles Tasting Station Louie’s Wine Dive • Backpocket Brewing • Edgewater Grille Scratch Cupcakery • High Ground Cafe Fuzzy’s Taco Shop • Konomi Grill • Vesta La Vecina Restaurante (Coming Summer 2019)





Welcome! Iowa City offers big-city amenities with small-town hospitality, and is a focal point for arts and culture, education and fun. Our community enjoys an extensive parks and recreation system that includes miles of trails, nearly 1,000 acres of prairie, wetlands and forested areas, with almost every resident living within half-a-mile of public open space. Iowa City features a vibrant, walkable downtown, and in 2008, was designated the first UNESCO City of Literature in the United States. Numerous professional publications consistently rank Iowa City as a highly favorable place to do business, receive an education, enjoy arts and culture, and is a perfect place to retire. Our City is also committed to being a leader in sustainability to ensure that we have a livable community now and in the future. In 2018, the City adopted a Climate Action and Adaption Plan, a 35-step guide for the city as a whole to act upon to become a globally responsible and locally adaptable community. Steps include embracing electric vehicles and alternative fuels, expanding community gardens, and moving towards more energy efficient buildings. To learn more about our plan and how you can help, visit

Giant leaps in sustainability... The City of Iowa City and the 74,000 residents who live here have already made giant leaps in being a more climate conscious and resilient community. The statistics show major strides in decreasing the amount of emissions from the city, and have even loftier goals for the future.

23% The decrease of emissions in metric tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent the city has seen from 2005 to 2015.

30% The goal for decreased emissions in Iowa City come 2025, compared to 2005.

80% The goal for decreased emissions in Iowa City come 2050, compared to 2005.



Matthew Steele



Frankie Schneckloth



Jordan Sellergren



Drew Bulman



Zak Neumann, Frankie Schneckloth

Little Village


623 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, IA 52240

Emma McClatchey, Claire McGranahan,


Matthew Steele, Genevieve Trainor



Natalia Araujo, Ari Ariel, Paul Brennan, Jessica Carney, Thomas Dean, Jav Ducker, Charlotte

Special thanks to distribution partners the Iowa

Elsasser, Jay Goodvin, Avery Gregurich, Matt

City/Coralville Area Convention and Visitors

Houck, Colleen Kennedy, Emma McClatchey,

Bureau. For information on membership, visit

Claire McGranahan, Frankie Schneckloth,

Jordan Sellergren, Jason Smith, Matt Steele, Helaina Thompson

Additional thanks go to to our advisory


team of Melody Dworak, Candice Smith

Jav Ducker, Zak Neumann, Frankie

and Adam Witte.

Schneckloth, Jordan Sellergren ILLUSTRATIONS Blair Gauntt, Glen Lowry ZAK NEUMANN

BEST BREAKFAST IN AREA FEATURED IN MIDWEST LIVING ONE OF THRILLIST’S BEST DINERS IN AMERICA NOW SERVING BREAKFAST ALL DAY! Bluebird Diner: 330 E Market St, Iowa City 52245 • (319) 351-1470 Bluebird Cafe: 650 W Cherry St, North Liberty 52317 • (319) 626-2603 6




Waste Not, Want Not


Girls Cook!


Oat Lore


Dining in Peace


Natural and Feelin’ Fine


A Chef’s Life

Protecting our precious edible resources

Cafe 361 teaches young women valuable skills

Drama, betrayal and the 20th-century mill industry

Where to eat, distraction-free

Ride the latest trend

David Zaghloul keeps things simple by doing it all

100 Grow Your Own Way

Shanti Sellz connects with the land

Not a typo!

“Kim helped us find the right home while my family and I were still living in California. She knows the market and is a phenomenal negotiator...If Wonder Woman was a REALTOR®, she’d be Kim Schillig!”

- Guillermo Morales II, #LKRHappyHomeowner

Kim will help you find your way HOME! BREAD & BUTTER 2019





Take Note


Farro Salad


Off the Sauce


Slow-Cooker Beef


Bowled Over


Entertain with Ease


Tried and True


Get Outta Dodge!


Follow their Lead


Save Room


Tough Cookies


Grocery Hunt


Regional Raves

These newbies deserve a visit Booze-free alternatives

Good eating by the bowlful Standbys and staples


Make like a regular and order the special

Sweets worth the calories

Devour these treats

Where to find elusive ingredients Local favorites expand across Iowa


Sugar Shack


Endurance Eating


Keep on Truckin’


Slurp it Up!


CSA Guide


Table for One


Buy Right



Out-of-town spots worth the drive

Yeah, Toast!

Carbohydrates to keep you going

Noodles for everyone

Places to dine all on your own

Book Your Spot

Rent these spaces for your next event



with gochujang and hoisin

Caterers that make it a breeze


Twice-baked bread for the win

with feta and pistachios


Maple syrup made in Iowa

A guide to the area’s food trucks

Where to go for housewares and gifts

The Stars Align

Your foodie astrology forecast


On the cover: Deluxes Cakes and Pastries’ Baguette Sandwiches PHOTO BY FRANKIE SCHNECKLOTH

MEDICINE THAT CHANGES LIVES You are at the center of everything we do. Every medical advancement, every groundbreaking research finding, every specialized team is geared to make your health our top priority. From clinical trials for cancer, to specialized care for sports injuries, this is how University of Iowa Health Care is changing medicine. And your life. BREAD & BUTTER 2019



Notable Newbies New restaurants pop up every week, but only a special few stand out. Pho Lucky 1755 Boyrum St, Iowa City Opened in late November 2018 and occupying the former Frontier Family Restaurant location on Boyrum Street, Pho Lucky quietly crept onto the radar serving quality, authentic Vietnamese cuisine. The curated and straightforward menu promises expertly crafted pho with a flavorful and nuanced broth, fresh spring rolls with delectably addictive peanut sauce as well as noodle dishes and entrees. The owners and waitstaff are friendly and attentive. They promptly and efficiently bring your


piping hot bowl of broth and noodles with a full plate of crisp accoutrements to doctor your soupy noodles to perfection. In

Goosetown’s fried potatoes may conjure

that is modern and eclectic with the

addition to Pho Lucky’s culinary prowess,

memories of drive-through breakfasts, but

classic comforts of home.

the restaurant’s window seating is worth

the preparation here is decidedly more

mentioning. Nestled into one of these


Dodge Street Coffeehouse 2790 N Dodge St, Iowa City

spots on a brisk day with sunlight beaming in and a full bowl in front of you, you’ll feel


like you’ve truly struck it rich.

1507 C Street SW, Cedar Rapids

Goosetown Café

Opened in January 2019 by Phoebe and

breathed fresh life into the former Subway

203 N Linn St, Iowa City

Samuel Charles, this cozy and welcom-

location which now houses their new cof-

ing restaurant manages to be perfectly

feehouse. Gone are the green and yellow

This design darling anchoring Iowa City’s

on-trend without ever trying too hard.

remnants of the ubiquitous sandwich

Northside Marketplace underwent a

Offering a cuisine inspired by German,

transformative process last year, but came

Czech and Midwestern comfort foods

out the other side looking lighter and

that you can expect to change seasonally,

oh-so-Instagrammable. Varied forms of

Rodina encourages dining family-style—

seating, unique tiles and textures and ex-

ordering multiple plates to share and

pansive windows flooded with natural light

enjoy across the table—a connec-

come together to make this neighborhood

tion often lost in today’s dining

joint a cozy and comfortable spot you can

experiences. A beautiful,

visit any time of the day. Serving brunch,

thoughtfully designed interi-

dinner and drinks, this cafe focuses on

or is woven together with

familiar dishes with updated and unique

well-executed cocktails

twists. You’ll find grain bowls and banh mi

by knowledgeable

alongside pot pie and Dutch babies, and

barkeeps and artfully

it’s all tied together with a well-crafted list

prepared plates by

of cocktails, wine and beer. When you go,

talented chefs, result-

try the hashbrowns. The hand-held size of

ing in an experience

Opening just before the end of 2018, partners Jamie Skinner and Kelly Elliott




Rodina in Cedar Rapids

brand, replaced with leafy green plants, string lights and interesting pendant fixtures and a dedicated children’s play area. And that’s without even mentioning the coffee and food. Featuring all Iowa roasters, the shop offers traditional coffee, espresso and tea drinks for both in-house enjoyment and drive-through convenience. Alongside the coffee menu, the food offerings at the coffeehouse highlight healthy local options from Iowa City’s most popular restaurants: breakfast from The Dandy Lion and Local Burrito; lunch options from Oasis, Nodo and Trumpet Blossom; and sweet treats from Molly’s Cupcakes. Cruise by on your way to work and make use of the drive-through or visit on the weekend when you can luxuriate in this cozy spot. The Dandy Lion 111 S Dubuque St, Iowa City Opened in the summer of 2018, this downtown breakfast nook and wine bar serves up on-point dishes while aiming to please. Try the turmeric latte or the avocado toast if you’re of the millennial set—but trust that it’s a truly satisfying order no matter BREAD & BUTTER 2019


GUIDE your age. If you’re a downtown IC regular,

and cake by the slice. If you are looking for

this brick-and-mortar location has allowed

there’s no doubt you’ve walked past the

a custom cake, they do that too. Melting

Wild Culture owners Rachelle Schmidt and

cafe’s windows and been tempted by

Bite is only open Saturdays and Sundays,

Tim Roed to get back to their experimen-

the impressive baked goods on display.

but hopes to expand hours to Thursdays

tal roots, regularly releasing one-time

No matter how quickly you travel by, the

and Fridays in the future.

batches of rotating flavors exclusively at the taproom.

treats somehow always catch your eye and thankfully, they’re as delicious as they

Gianna’s Italian Beef


375 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids While not a total newbie—owner Adam Hadjis grew up in the restaurant industry—Gianna’s Italian Beef marks his first foray into full-fledged restaurateur-hood. Located in a historic building in downtown Cedar Rapids, Hadjis spent the last two FRANKIE SCHNECKLOTH

years laboring over the renovation, completing much of it himself. As a memorial to his young daughter, Gianna, who passed away in 2012, the restaurant’s menu celebrates some of her favorite foods


with classic Chicago dogs and Italian beef sandwiches making the cut alongside traditional pasta salad, shoestring fries and

Melk Diner and Cereal Bar

seasonal offerings like Italian ice. Swing by

116 E Washington St, Iowa City

for lunch or dinner, or a late-night nosh on the weekend.

Melting Bite 1100 3rd St SE #34, Cedar Rapids

This sleek new downtown Iowa City diner serves up childhood nostalgia by

Wild Culture Kombucha

the bowlful. The well-stocked bar at

210 N Linn St, Iowa City

Melk replaces traditional liquor, beer and wine with a rotating selection of nearly

After trying out a pop-up stand inside NewBo City Market, owner Sneh

Iowa City got a little more hip this past fall

50 beloved breakfast cereals. Order up

Chopra officially opened Melting Bite in

when Wild Culture Kombucha settled in

a bowl from the colorful bar display; $3

a dedicated space inside the market in

a vacant space in the Northside Market-

will set you up with a nice serving of your

September of 2018. Melting Bite delights

place. What was once a dark neighbor-

favorite. When you’re down to the last

patrons with freshly made dishes that will

hood bar is now a warm and inviting spot

bites of cereal but left with an abundance

transport them to the streets of India and

for all types of patrons whether seeking

of milk sloshing around in the bottom

will fill their palate with a melody of sweet,

alcoholic libations or something on the

of the bowl, get a refill for just $1.50. If

savory, spicy and tangy flavors. If you’re

lighter end. A welcome alternative to a

you’re not into cereal, you can still find

not exactly sure what to order from their

traditional bar, this taproom pours both

plenty on the menu here. Diners can opt

small but diverse menu, just ask Sneh and

their namesake kombucha as well as wine,

for something more filling and less sugary

she’ll be happy to recommend a delicious

locally brewed beer and kombucha shan-

from a well-rounded selection of breakfast

option you’ll be sure to love. Besides au-

dies. Previously only available on tap at

standards, sandwiches and sides or mix

thentic Indian offerings, you can also find

bars, restaurants and grocery stores in the

their cereal with ice cream for a decadent

exquisite sweets like mousse, cupcakes

area or at the Iowa City Farmers Market,

cereal shake.




Use this index as a guide to find your next favorite meal. Keep it in the car for a dose of new inspiration for your Friday night out on the town. Refer to it when your friends visit from out of town and want to know what’s new. This exhaustive list of restaurants, bars, cafés and bistros covers a range of budgets and a multitude of palates—there truly is something for everyone here. Read on to discover your next meal. Price range is indicated on a scale of $ to $$$$ and accounts for each establishment’s average price for a meal from the dinner menu (where applicable), and a drink. $=$10/under


$$$=$20-30 $$$$=$30/over

2 Dogs Pub

A&A Pagliai’s Pizza

1705 S 1st Ave, Iowa City, 319-337-9047,

302 E Bloomington St, Iowa City, 319-351-5073,, $$, $$

2 Dogs knows how to have fun—their creative

An Iowa City pizza institution, the Pagliai

culinary creations, Trivia Tuesdays and burger-

family has been in the business in Iowa

of-the-month competition are just a few

since 1957. Offering just the basics, they put

examples of this. Try their PB&J Burger along

out fresh, hot pizzas best eaten right away.

with any one of their well-selected craft beers.

Winner: Best Pizza in the Best of the

Be sure to brainstorm burger ideas, too, while


you play trivia at 2 Dogs next Tuesday night! The Airliner 30hop

22 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-351-9259,

900 E 2nd Ave, Coralville, 319-351-3800,, $$, $$

The Airliner has been an Iowa City staple

951 Blairs Ferry Rd NE, Cedar Rapids,, $$

since 1944. They are a go-to spot for enjoying

When you stop by 30 Hop, you can expect

the game with friends and fresh pizza. They

to enjoy American classics such as burgers

have several specials throughout the week,

or short ribs, with almost any beer you could

including half-price pizza on Tuesdays!

want from their legendary beer list featuring over 50 options. Not to mention, you can

Almost Famous Popcorn Company

enjoy it all atop their epic rooftop patio. A

1121 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-366-3554,

Cedar Rapids location opened late summer, $

2018 with a similar vibe, menu and rooftop

This NewBo shop has great popcorn and the


aroma of the shop upon entering is heavenly. Aside from the variety of flavored popcorn,

350 First

the shop also sells ice cream, shakes, old-

350 1st Ave NE, Floor 16, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401,

fashioned soda and candy. Their pistachio ice

319-731-4483, $$$$

cream is a real winner.

Enjoy not only the diverse, high-end selection of American cuisine, but also a spectacular

American Legion #17

view of Cedar Rapids from the 16th floor

3016 Muscatine Ave, Iowa City, 319-351-1902,

of the Hilton Double Tree. Within walking, $

distance of the U.S. Cellular Center, Theatre

If you love home-style bar food and cheap

Cedar Rapids, The Paramount Theatre and

beer, but hate going to crowded downtown

more, 350 First is a great choice for a nice

bars, check out the American Legion #17. Pop

dinner or a specialty cocktail before a show.

by to relax over a burger and an IPA with the locals.

5 Dollar Pizza 521 Highway 1 W, Iowa City, 319-351-5555,

Andale Andale, $

1451 Coral Ridge Ave, Ste 606, Coralville,

5 Dollar Pizza is just that: pizza for five bucks.

319-625-2027, $

If you’re looking for an affordable option for

Skip the Panda Express next time hunger

the big game or you’ve got the late night

strikes during a shopping spree. This authentic

munchies, 5 Dollar Pizza is the spot for you.

Mexican joint inside the Coral Ridge Mall food

Order a ’za on Tuesdays and add cinnamon

court serves up street tacos and tortas that

sticks for just $1.

are tasty and fresh.






t almost seems miraculous—honey, nature’s sweetest treat, never spoils. Archeologists have found honey that dates back more than 5,000 years, and hasn’t gone bad. Of course, if honey’s longevity is a miracle, it’s probably the only one that involves bee vomit. Honey is a sugar that’s both low moisture and acidic. That’s enough to kill off most bacteria and other microorganisms that spoil food. But molasses is also a low moisture, acidic sugar (not quite as acidic as honey), and even a sealed jar of molasses will go bad after 10 years on the shelf. What makes honey different is, as mentioned above, bees. People like to say bees “collect” the nectar that makes honey, because they don’t like to think about eating something an insect has regurgitated. But that’s what happens, and it’s the most important thing in honey’s immortality. There’s a naturally occurring enzyme in a bee’s stomach called glucose oxidase, and when it mixes with the nectar the bee has ingested, it produces two by-products: gluconic acid and hydrogen peroxide. The hydrogen peroxide is another chemical defense against microbes looking to spoil honey. The bees also help ensure that honey becomes low moisture while it’s still in the hive, by fanning it with their wings to dry it out. Humans looking to keep honey long term should follow their example, and keep honey in a sealed container to prevent it from becoming moist, because honey will draw moisture from the air. ––Paul Brennan



Antojitos Carmen

treats are, so be sure to ask for their

207 Main St, Columbus Junction, 319-728-9055, $

assistance if you can’t decide between a

The trek to Columbus Junction is worth it

famous caramel apple or a bowl of froyo.

when you’re rewarded with to-die-for tacos, tortas and more. This family owned and

Backpocket Brewing

operated restaurant serves up delicious

903 Quarry Rd, Coralville, 319-449-3700

and authentic food in a casual, unfussy

333 E 10th St, Dubuque, 563-582-1611,

atmosphere. Be sure to order a side of, $$

Carmen’s Dry Salsa. It’s dynamite!

Everyone likes pizza and beer, but we don’t all like it made the same way. Not only does

Apres Wine Bar and Bistro

Backpocket offer several specialty brick oven

1010 Martin St, Iowa City, 319-499-1198,

pizzas, but you can build your own from their, $$$

list of fresh ingredients as well. As for beer,

In the heart of the Peninsula neighborhood,

they’re all about it—you are sure to find the

Apres Winebar and Bistro offers a rotating

brew for you.

menu of sharable plates. It’s the perfect place to get away from a crowd while you enjoy

The Bakery

their eclectic offerings.

4719 J St SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-366-1909,, $

The Arbor Bar

Hidden in Cedar Rapids’ industrial zone,

60 W Burlington Ave, Fairfield, 641-209-1821,

The Bakery looks like any other warehouse., $

Don’t be fooled, though. Inside is a delicious

Somehow both pensive and manic, the

assortment of cakes and cookies, as well as

irresistible energy of Fairfield’s indie-art and

fresh rolls, loaves of bread and tortillas. If

music scene collides with alcohol and your

you’re looking for a place to stop and have

taste buds every night at the Arbor Bar. Check

lunch, they also boast a variety of Mexican

the website or give them a call to find out

entrees that you can eat in the dining area.

what’s going to command your attention this weekend. It might be a DJ night, a burlesque

Bao Chow

show, a film screening, a visual arts opening or

201 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-499-1143, $

one of the town’s working musicians stopping

Bao—steamed, leavened dough filled with

by unannounced to try out some new

ingredients—is a classic Chinese meal with a

material. Whatever it is adding to the eclectic

rich cultural history. The three owners seek

atmosphere that night, the excellent bar staff

to be a unique option for Iowa Citians who

will surely have a new potion to recommend

want to try Chinese food made traditionally

you take along for the ride. (Take the ride.) No

with fresh ingredients. Since opening in 2017,

food here, but there are plenty of other spots

they have delighted customers with their bao

along the square for that.

options like the Umami Beef, and the beef curry tastes like home. They are conveniently

Aspen Leaf Frozen Yogurt featuring Rocky

located in the Old Capitol Mall, so it’s a

Mountain Chocolate Factory

perfect place to stop for lunch!

125 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-351-9720,, $

Welcome to a sweet tooth’s heaven. The owner and staff are just as sweet as their



pizza might be what draws you in, but you’ll

back to basics at Billy’s with affordable

347 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-333-1515,

soon realize there are countless reasons that

entrees made from fresh, local ingredients., $

warrant repeat visits. Have you tried their

Some menu items will be familiar to those

Bardot is all about quality—whether it’s their

Chocolate Budino? What about the creamy

who’ve enjoyed brunch at El Banditos, such as

service, drinks, food or atmosphere. The bar

housemade burrata? Have you snuggled into

the chilaquiles, as well as classics like shrimp

and restaurant is inspired by Brigitte Bardot’s

the bar booths for a late weekend lunch? Have

and grits, waffles and pork sandwiches—not

coining of the term “crème de la crème,” in

you basked in the sunshine on their sidewalk

to mention vegetarian options. You can find it

that they strive to be the best of the best

cafe? If you answered no to these questions,

at the corner of Iowa Ave and Dodge Street,

when it comes to nightlife in Iowa City. Try a

I’ve got to ask, “What have you been doing?”

where Augusta was formerly located.

made piña colada the next time your squad is

Baxa’s Sutliff Store & Tavern

Big Boy Meats

out for a night on the town.

5546 130th St NE, Lisbon, 319-624-2204, $

1100 3rd St SE #22, Cedar Rapids, 319-343-6603,

Opened in 1899, the original building, $$

Baroncini Ristorante Italiano

was a general store until 1984 with the

From beef and pork to duck and rabbit, Big

104 S Linn St, Iowa City, 319-337-2048,

tavern and food service beginning in 1973.

Boy Meats has been offering an impressive, $$$

Sample something from their menu of fried

variety of top-quality, locally produced meats

Authentic cuisine by owner-chef Gianluca

delights, burgers, wings, gizzards and other

since 2012. True to their mission, their meats

Baroncini, originally from Verona, Italy. The

sandwiches, and order an ice cold bottle of

are responsibly farmed, free range, grass fed

cozy, contemporary setting was designed

something to wash it down with. The historic

and antibiotic free. But despite the name,

from floor to ceiling by the chef, and is

bridge out front of the tavern is the best place

meat is not the only thing you’ll find here.

suitable for business or romance. The $10,

to eat or drink when the weather permits.

Barbecue catering, sheep skins and longwool

South-American inspired dish or an expertly

are also part of their offerings.

two-course lunch on weekdays is one of downtown Iowa City’s best kept foodie


secrets. They are famous for the pasta—of

575 Cameron Way, North Liberty, 844-763-2822

Bigg Daddy’s Dogs

course, made in-house, and available at area

180 E Burlington St, Iowa City,, $$

629 12th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-573-8955​,

grocers—but don’t be afraid to wander into

With their signature smash burgers,, $$

other sections of the menu; everything is

BeerBurger provides a large array of options

It might have started out with a food cart

well-crafted, and portioned to satisfy while

for the carnivore in you. Enjoy their wide

in 2009, but Bigg Daddy’s Dogs now offers

allowing for multiple courses.

selection of beer, or grab a milkshake to pair

burgers, wings, brisket, gyros and more at

with your burger. Order one of their classic

its 12th Avenue SE location, giving patrons


bar appetizers, sandwiches and salads. A new

plenty of options to choose from. Plus, if you

121 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-337-7370, $$

location recently opened in downtown Iowa

are not feeling like leaving the comfort of your

Bashu is the place to go for real, authentic


home, they deliver anywhere in Cedar Rapids, Hiawatha and Marion.

Sichuan Chinese food—if you must have sesame chicken, you’ll have to look under

Best China

the “Special for Americans” menu listing,

1800 Boyrum St, Iowa City, 319-358-0001, $$

Big Grove Brewery

but you’ll be giving up an exciting and wild

Take out Chinese food just how you like it:

101 W Main St, Solon, 319-624-2337,

experience worth trying. Take a walk on the

reasonably priced, flavorful food and quick, $$

wild side and check out their crispy spicy chili

delivery. Check out their lunch special from 11

Big Grove Brewery & Taproom

shrimp for an explosion of flavor and heat.

a.m. to 3 p.m. for an entree, side of rice, drink

1225 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-354-2687

or crab rangoons for under $10!, $$


As one of the area’s larger local breweries,

121 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, 319-337-2010,

Billy’s High Hat Diner

Big Grove Brewery offers a large beer, $$$

630 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, 319-519-2522, $$

selection with a fantastic food menu to match.

The amazing daily happy hour and wood-fired

Derek Perez is bringing breakfast and lunch

Stop into the Iowa City location for more

Iowa City

319-354-7074 215 E. Washington St.

Iowa City Coralville 319-354-7074

215 E.319-625-2221 Washington St. 2500 Corridor Way Ste 5

Cedar Rapids 319-200-4192 450 1st St SW #101

Coralville Des Moines 319-625-2221

319-625-2221 2500 Corridor Way Ste 5 506 E. Grand Ave

Cedar Rapids 319-200-4192 450 1st St SW #101

Des Moines 319-625-2221 506 E. Grand Ave




Tasty Teetotaling


dults love their adult beverages, but not always the buzz that comes with it. With sales of alcohol dropping around 1 percent in the U.S. in 2018, an increase from 2017, Americans seem to be joining a growing European movement: eschewing boozy cocktails, beers and wines for low- or no-alcohol beverages. The “moderation trend” is apparent beyond beverage sales data. In 2019, “Dry January” caught on among millennials who committed to a full month of sobriety. Heineken 0.0, an alcohol-free version of the classic brew, was introduced in the American market in late 2018, hyped with ads showing people drinking the beer in a work meeting and behind the wheel of a car. And mocktails, once considered the consolation drink of teenagers and pregnant women, are now on the menu of high-end bars from London to L.A., thanks in part to the innovation of alcohol-free spirits (most famously, Seedlip). “One thing I do every year as a New Year’s tradition is I look at what the internet says was a trend last year and what’s coming up. Mocktails were on both of those,” said Josh O’Connell, an award-winning mixologist who recently developed the cocktail menu for Rodina in Cedar Rapids. “There’s a fair amount of people who ask for mocktails, whether they’re pregnant or, just the other night, we had a guy who’d had a few at the last place and wanted to take it easy, but still wanted to have the social aspect of sharing a drink with friends.” Are eastern Iowa alcoholic institutions, from Cedar Ridge whiskey to Big Grove beer, facing an existential threat? Hardly, but growing demand for lowABV options has created more diversity in the brewing market and led local bartenders like O’Connell to get creative with non-boozy recipes. Before you settle for an O’Doul’s or seltzer, try one of these tasty and temperate options.


100% boozefree cocktails

FIZZY PEACH Rodina, 1507 C St SW, Cedar Rapids Creating a more fruit-centered mocktail recipe, Josh O’Connell said he looked for refined ingredients that take the drink “past a lemonade, and have some interest in there for your palate beyond just acidity and sweetness.” The Fizzy Peach is heavy on peach bitters with grapefruit juice, simple syrup, lemon juice, soda and a lemon peel garnish. CARDAMOM DAYDREAM Rodina When brainstorming booze-free recipes for Rodina’s menu, O’Connell said he’s looking to demonstrate to customers that mocktails are not only an option, but can pack “the same caliber as a craft cocktail, just without the alcohol.” The star of the Cardamom Daydream is, unsurprisingly, cardamom—beloved by O’Connell for its unique flavor—complemented with grapefruit juice, honey syrup, club soda and an orange peel and star anise garnish.










Take it Easy

LOW PROOF An alternative to the full-booze cocktail




Wild Culture Kombucha

Lion Bridge Brewing Company

Goosetown Café

210 N Linn St, Iowa City

59 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids

203 N Linn St, Iowa City

Using locally sourced ingredients and

Made with house-made, non-alcoholic

One of Goosetown’s signature drinks, the

housemade juices, Wild Culture brewer Tim

blood orange soda and Bridge Beer—a

Cappelletti Spritz includes sparkling wine

Roed experiments with a range of flavor

light golden brew clocking it at just 3.6

along with lemon and an orange slice. Like

combinations. For a slightly boozier option,

percent ABV, about the lowest alcohol

a mimosa, but lower on acidity, the Spritz

Roed pairs his kombuchas with Iowa craft

content you’ll find in a craft beer—this sum-

is a citrusy and low-alcohol counterpart

brews. His rotating menu of kombucha

mertime radler from staple Cedar Rapids

to your eggs and bacon. For a more ener-

shandies include the Beet Generation

brewpub Lion Bridge is the perfect session

gizing alternative, bartender Krista Burich

(above), combining ginger orange lime

drink for those with a taste for tang.

recommends substituting the citrus for

kombucha with Exile Brewing Company’s

Cobra Verde, a natural green coffee energy

Beatnik Sour; Jurassic Juice, with pineapple

drink made in Iowa City and available on

kiwi coconut kombucha and Toppling Go-

tap at Goosetown.

liath’s Pseudo Sue IPA; and Soaring Eagle, grapefruit carrot ginger with Iowa Brewing Company’s Iowa Eagle lager. 18



international street food style offerings,

Bo James

or head to the flagship Solon location for

118 E Washington St, Iowa City, 319-337-4703, $$

their original American menu in a sit-down

If you like huge burgers, ice-cold beer and


country music, check out this family-owned pub for your next bite to eat! If the weather


is nice, be sure to take a seat at their quaint

503 Westbury Dr, Iowa City, 319-338-1770,

outdoor patio., $$$

This American-style restaurant offers a

Bo Mac’s

variety of cuisine with global influences

219 16th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-826-3154, $$

including Italian, Mexican and Thai. With

Newly opened in CR’s NewBo district, this

a good cocktail selection, Blackstone is

historic building was refurbished by the

the perfect place to take your time with

owner himself over the last few years. The

friends. Start with their Satay Sampler

menu features a variety of comfort food

appetizer—you won’t regret it.

focused appetizers, sandwiches, entrees and drink options. Look for live music on

Black Sheep Social Club

the weekends.

600 1st St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-7070,, $$$

Boston Fish

Black Sheep Social Club puts its own spin

804 5th St SE, Cedar Rapids , 319-363-9627, $

on Midwest favorites, sometimes even

A favorite of seafood lovers in the area for

injecting a bit of international flair. The

over 70 years, and newly remodeled, this

plates, paired with the rusticness of a

nautical-themed restaurant offers some of

restored warehouse, make for the perfect

the best, freshest seafood in town. Stop by

atmosphere for a night out.

for the Boston Fish sandwich, a clam dinner or to get your fish by the pound.

Black Squirrel Tap 72 2nd St SE, Swisher, 319-857-4447, $

Bourbon Creek Smokehouse

Black Squirrel Tap, a small-town

411 1st St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-775-3174,

watering hole in Swisher, is the place to, $$

go for televised sporting events, card

The name should provide ample clues

tournaments and live music. Black Squirrel

about the type of food this downtown

serves wings, appetizers and other pub

Cedar Rapids establishment is serving, but

food alongside beer and whisky flights,

just in case you can’t read between the

wine and cocktails.

lines: This restaurant appreciates smoked meats whether it’s turkey, burgers, ribs or

Blaze Pizza


201 S Clinton St Unit 167, Iowa City,


319-519-0075,, $

Bread Garden Market & Bakery

Hip to the fast-fired personal pizza

225 S Linn St, Iowa City, 319-354-4246,

concept, Blaze Pizza arrived on the Iowa, $$

City dining scene just as University of Iowa

Bread Garden’s transformation from

students returned for school in the fall of

restaurant to convenient downtown grocer

2017, dishing up crispy, thin-crust pies in a

is proof that they are here to fulfill your and

matter of minutes.

the greater Iowa City area’s needs. They

Goosetown Café

feature everything from traditional items

This classic cocktail is naturally on the

Bluebird Diner

and delicacies to organics and homemade

lighter side. Burich (winner of the Best

330 E Market St, Iowa City, 319-351-1470, $$

classics. Whether you want to grab lunch

Bartender in the CRANDIC award in 2018)

Bluebird Café

from their impressive salad bar or sit on the

serves her Americano on ice, made with

650 W Cherry St #9, North Liberty, 319-626-

patio with friends, Bread Garden has got

Campari—a reddish liqueur and bitters—

2603,, $$

your back.

sweet vermouth, club soda and an orange

Bluebird’s reputation for delicious, fresh

peel garnish. The result is a smooth and

Midwestern soul food served in a relaxed,

Breakfast House Cafe

dignified beverage that won’t leave you

retro environment is well known among

820 6th St SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-261-2233,

sluggish as you continue your day.

Iowa City and North Liberty folk. If, $

you love comfort food, then you’ll love

A multigenerational family business,

everything from their biscuits and gravy to

this classic breakfast joint treats you to

their baby back ribs. They are a go-to spot

traditional American comfort food in all its

for breakfast, so be sure to get there early

glory. Stop by for their all-day breakfast,

on the weekends!

and don’t forget about their daily dessert special!







lot of common British food terms—bacon sarni, bubble and squeak—haven’t had much success crossing the Atlantic, but most Americans know “bangers” is British for sausage. Where that name came from, however, is much less well known. Given how the word is sometimes used in America, the shape of sausages, and the fact that everyone knows a little Freud, a certain obvious etymology suggests itself. But that’s wrong. The British started calling sausages, because 100 years ago, British sausages were slightly explosive when cooked. They literally went “bang.” During the First World War (19141918), Britain experienced food shortages. Meat, in particular, became hard to find. But since the meat in a sausage is concealed by its casing, sausage-makers made up for the lack of affordable meat by increasing the amount of additional material stuffed into the casing, such as cereal and water. Because of the high water content, when the sausages were cooked, they burst open, popping and sizzling. When and where the name was first used isn’t clear, but by 1919, the term started appearing in print. Bangers might not be the most mouthwatering nickname for a food, but it is an improvement over an earlier British nickname for sausages. During the Victorian period, sausages were commonly known as “little bags of mystery.” ––Paul Brennan




meats, fresh or frozen, coarse-ground ground

1202 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-364-0802,

beef and elk, rabbit and turtle when available., $$

Housed in a historic building in NewBo district


of Cedar Rapids, this cafe-by-day, bar-by-

2020 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-4488,

night serves traditional and innovative brews,

3980 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar Rapids,

breakfast, lunch and an extensive variety of

319-200-4499,, $$

local beers, wines and spirits. The simplicity

With a simple yet versatile build-your-own

of the space and its industrial feel make for

menu, choose from a variety of spreads,

the perfect gathering place either for a nice

toppings and add-ons to get your burger

chat over coffee or an intimate acoustic set

exactly how you like it. Complement your

at night.

order with their delicious, freshly cut fries or an indulgent shake.

Brix Cheese Shop and Wine Bar 209 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-359-1999,

Cactus 1 & 2 & 3, $$

245 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-338-5647

This wine bar and specialty shop is the

114 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-338-5647

perfect place to meet up with a group of

314 E Burlington St, Iowa City, 319-337-2464, $$

friends and partake in their delicious cheese

Cactus offers an extensive menu—and now

boards with a glass of wine or a craft beer.

three locations in the downtown area—

They offer half glasses of wine for those who

featuring classic Mexican food in heaping

want to try it all.

combo plates, as well as vegetarian entrees, salads, fajitas and more. If you are looking

Broadbent Distillery

for a place to gather with friends and enjoy

6175 50th Ave, Norwalk, 515-981-0011,

affordable, filling Mexican cuisine and, $

overflowing margaritas, Cactus is for you!

This family-owned vineyard took a new path as a distillery in 2009, and now they

Cafe Dodici

produce small-batch whiskies and spirits like

122 S Iowa Ave, Washington, 319-653-4012,

the cinnamon-cherry Hot Lil’ Hooch, Bella, $$$$

Limoncello and Two Jay’s Iowa Corn Whiskey.

Cafe Dodici is a worthy destination restaurant on the charming downtown

Bubble Pop

square in Washington, about 30 miles

201 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-400-4324, $

south of Iowa City. The cafe is a family-run

Bubble Pop is all about good vibes and good

Italian restaurant, with co-owner and chef

tea. Stop by the next time you’re in the Old

Alessandro Scipioni preparing natural, fresh

Capital Town Center for a mango tea and a

foods in the style of his original home of

cozy place to rest your feet.

Pesaro, Italy. The owners’ eclectic collection of art draws from India, China and of course

Bud’s Custom Meats

Italy and Iowa, making for a unique ambience

3027 IA-22, Riverside, 319-648-3999,

you won’t find anywhere else., $$

Famous for jerky, Bud’s in Riverside makes this revered snack food in house in a variety of flavors. They also stock traditional hand-cut


Cafe Muse 565 Cameron Way, North Liberty, 319-626-6873,, $

Cafe Muse’s stylish modern interior makes for a lovely place to enjoy a pot of tea or a cup of joe. In addition to straightforward classic coffee and espresso offerings, Cafe Muse also brews up limited-edition and rare roasts for the coffee nerds among us. Make sure not to miss the high tea service, either. Cafe Paradiso 101 N Main St, Fairfield, 641-472-0856,, $

Cafe Paradiso is a casual cafe celebrating local artists and musicians with beautiful artwork and frequent live music. Pouring fresh-ground, shade-grown organic coffee and espresso and delicious baked goods, Cafe Paradiso is the go-to spot in Fairfield. Caffe Crema 411 2nd St, Coralville, 319-338-0700

Caffe Crema has everything a good coffee shop ought to have. The coffee is consistently delicious, the environment is cozy and warm, and the staff is helpful and friendly. Check out this coffee shop the next time you need a different place to study, want to read your new book with a perfect chai latte, or catch up with friends! Canteen Lunch in the Alley 112 E 2nd St, Ottumwa, 641-682-5320,, $

In the business for 91 years, 82 of them spent at the current location, this long-running grill has become famous for their loose-meat sandwiches and old-school digs. Capanna Coffee and Gelato 710 Pacha Pkwy Suite 6, North Liberty, 319-626-2515,, $

Visit Capanna for a gourmet cup of coffee or a tasty scoop of gelato!




Pack a Bowl

7037 C Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-826-2625,, $$

This warm and cozy pizza parlor with a vintage feel serves Chicago deep-dish, New York hand-tossed pizzas and calzones prepared with fresh dough and homemade sauces. They also have a selection of bottled beer that rotates weekly, so you can always try something new! Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop 4640 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-393-2900,

These hot and toasty subs are a success in a sandwich. Try their signatures like the Capastrami or Bobbie, or custom build your own! Casa Azul 708 1st Ave, Coralville, 319-338-2641, 335 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-569-1917,, $

Casa Azul features traditional Mexican dishes paired with a great margarita selection and friendly staff. Casa Azul is a must for your “Taco Tuesday." Both hardand soft-shelled tacos are only $1 and will leave you and your wallet feeling full. Caucho 1203 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-360-8558, $$

Sister restaurant to Cobble Hill, Caucho takes Mexican cuisine and prepares it with a creative, modern touch. Sample one of their inventive cocktails and take in the well-curated and energetic interior. WINNER: Best Chef in the Best of the CRANDIC 2018 Cedar Ridge Winery and Distillery

Trumpet Blossom’s

1441 Marak Rd, Swisher, 319-857-4300,

Rainbow Bowl, $$

Just a short ride from Cedar Rapids and Iowa City, this award-winning winery ZAK NEUMANN



Research says the closer food rests against the rim of a dish, the more likely eaters will perceive their meal to be sufficient. Consider a large plate, with plenty of its outer surface area untouched by food. Now, consider a bowl, filled to the brim. The bowl evokes a sense of security, of enoughness. Furthermore, holding a warm bowl in one’s palms may promote feelings of “interpersonal warmth” towards others nearby, suggests one study from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Bowls are the new plates, folks. Get your hands on these healthy, wholesome bowls in Eastern Iowa.


Farro Salad with Feta and Pistachios By Ari Ariel. Serves 4


arro is my favorite grain. It has a nutty flavor, a great al dente texture and is healthy

to boot. Although farro looks like brown rice, it’s best to cook it like pasta. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add the farro and cook until done. Cooking time will vary

depending on the exact kind of farro you buy. Start checking after about 20 minutes. This recipe makes a refreshing, herby farro salad with Middle Eastern flavors. If you don’t have

The Full Bowl, 1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids Located in Cedar Rapids’ NewBo City Market, The Full Bowl offers a rotating menu of globally

zaatar in your spice rack, just leave it out, or add your favorite spice mixture.

inspired rice and bean bowls. The popular chana masala bowl layers chickpeas simmered in an • 1 cup farro

oniony tomato sauce over a helping of brown rice, garnished with fresh cilantro. Sweet mango

• Salt

chutney balances the kick of the bowl’s North Indian-style spice.

• 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved Seoul Grill, 201 S Clinton St, Iowa City

• ½ crumbled feta cheese

A stone bowl of Korean bibimbap provides a serving of beef (or tofu) alongside a colorful array

• ½ cup shelled pistachios

of cooked vegetables—shiitakes, zucchini and carrots, to name a few—neatly arranged over rice and topped with a fried egg. To eat bibimbap, pierce the egg yolk and mix everything up.

• ½ cup chopped fresh mint • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley • 3 tablespoons zaatar

Trumpet Blossom, 310 E Prentiss St, Iowa City There may be no better hands in which to trust vegetables than in those of Trumpet Blossom,

• 6 tablespoons olive oil • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Iowa City’s vegan mecca. The Rainbow Bowl is the epitome of this restaurant’s plant-based prowess. It features a bounty of local, seasonal vegetables in raw, pickled and roasted forms drizzled with peanut sauce and a citrus vinaigrette, reinforced with a heap of black beans and

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil as if you are making pasta.

rice, and sprinkled with seeds. When boiling, add the farro and cook until Caucho, 1202 3rd St SE #102, Cedar Rapids

al dente, probably about 20-30 minutes.

Pozole is a brothy Mexican stew made with pork, hominy, vegetables, a generous squirt of lime and a plop of crema. While pozole is traditionally a celebratory dish, marking occasions such as

Drain the farro and place in a large bowl.

weddings and quinceañeras, Caucho’s take is worth celebrating alone. Add all of the remaining ingredients, toss Deluxe Bakery, 812 S Summit St, Iowa City

and add salt as needed.

Last year, Deluxe Bakery expanded its menu, adding a number of brunch items, including a tangy-sweet yogurt bowl. The house-made plain yogurt is sweetened with a house-made lemon curd and covered with Deluxe’s crunchy and, yes, house-made granola. Fresh strawberries, raspberries and blueberries contribute a serving of fruit on top.









xactly when the name Baked Alaska got attached to the dessert featuring ice cream sitting on cake inside a broiled shell of meringue is uncertain, but the reason seems fairly clear. “Alaska, Florida” is a terrible name for a dessert, and that’s what Chef Charles Ranhofer called it when he introduced the dessert after the United States bought Alaska from Russia in 1867. Ranhofer, the pastry chef at Delmonico’s in New York City, routinely “created” new desserts in honor of famous people or momentous public events. Most of the time, the French-born Ranholfer was just renaming something he’d learned as an apprentice in Paris. That was the case with Alaska, Florida. A version of the cake/ice cream/broiled meringue treat had been common among French pastry artists since the 1830s. It was called “Omelette Norwegge,” using the name of a famously cold country (Norway) to hint at the frozen filling of the eggy shell. Thirty years earlier an English scientist, Sir Benjamin Thompson, had discovered the air bubbles in meringue made it an excellent insulator for a food. That’s what stops the ice cream from melting. Thompson reportedly made his own “omelette surprise” in 1804, with “an ice” inside a meringue shell. Ranhofer chose his awkward name because he thought combining the names of a hot weather state and the frozen territory was a fun way to describe the dish. People liked the dessert, but not the name, and eventually Baked Alaska started appearing on menus. ––Paul Brennan



and distillery located in the beautiful Swisher

Cibo Fusion

countryside offers so much more than just

685 Marion Blvd, Marion, 319-447-1414,

wines and spirits. Try their unique take on

wood-fired pizza or their exquisite Sunday

This contemporary Italian and American

brunch, and of course you can’t leave without

restaurant offers a very popular brunch menu.

trying one of their specialty cocktails.

Be sure to snag a seat on their patio on warmer days.

Cedar River Landing 301 F Ave NW, Cedar Rapids, 319-364-1854,

Cider House

102 N 2nd St, Fairfield, 641-980-0423,

This sports-bar-with-live-music joint is the, $$

choice for a casual neighborhood hangout

This award-winning burger restaurant and

with an eclectic American menu. Located in

cider pub is nestled in downtown Fairfield,

an old warehouse near the Cedar River, the

featuring house boutique cider, Fishback &

stage features an assortment of local bands.

Stephenson and local Adrian Family Farms beef.

Ced-Rel Supper Club 11909 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-446-7300,

The Class Act Restaurant, $$$

7725 Kirkwood Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids,

This old-school supper club and steakhouse


maintains many of the trappings of bygone

Class Act is an upscale Kirkwood culinary-

dining. Each entree is delivered with a

student-run restaurant featuring outstanding

complimentary relish tray and selections

local cuisine for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

range from classic steaks to broasted chicken and broiled fish.

Cliché Patisserie 341 S Linn St, Iowa City, 319-512-2972, $

Chameleon’s Pub & Grub

Don’t let the name fool you—this Asian pastry

119 1st St NW, Mount Vernon, 319-895-8654,

store is anything but cliché. Their creations, $

are unique and flavorful and the staff is

Expect high-quality, delicious bar fare at this

excited to share their favorites with you. They

family-owned bar and grill. This cozy pub

have everything to satisfy your cravings,

in historic downtown Mount Vernon offers

whether you want a quick, sweet snack or a

a wide selection of craft beer and plenty of

filling, savory dinner.

friendly regulars. Clinton Street Social Club Chez Grace

18 1/2 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-351-1690,

89 2nd St, Coralville, 319-338-1738,, $$$, $$$$

Stop in and sit at the bar for some of the

Owner David runs this one-man show, acting

best craft cocktails in Iowa City while you

as host, waiter and chef. You wouldn’t expect

talk to their experienced bartenders. They

this small spot in a strip mall to be an intimate

offer a variety of small plates, or you can

setting for creative and frequently changing

make a night of it and explore and truly enjoy

modern French dishes, but a dinner here feels

their excellent fine dining menu. WINNER:

like you’ve walked into someone’s home for

Best Cocktail Menu in the Best of the

an exquisite homemade meal.



Clock House Brewing 600 1st St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-4099,, $

Opened in the resurrected 102-year-old Clock House Building, this new brewery offers a wide selection of house-made brews for your sampling pleasure at their taproom located inside of the Black Sheep Social Club. Visit with your beer-loving buds for a pint of their inventive beer and order a delicious appetizer from next door to share with the group. Club 76 Cafe 2349 Mehaffey Bridge Rd NE, North Liberty, 319-626-6046, $

Club 76 is in an unassuming building; inside, however, there is a large bar and a lodge-meets-dive-bar vibe. The staff is friendly, the regulars interesting and the entertainment options unique. Grab a basket of free popcorn, and head to the wall of lottery machines. In warmer months, they have a volleyball net and outdoor seating on the adjacent lawn. Their annual Oyster Fest is something to put on the calendar—a celebration of all things oysters and sour beer that happens in early March. The Club Car 122 Wright St, Iowa City, 319-351-9416,, $

Looking for a bar downtown that doesn’t feel like a bar downtown? Located just south of the Ped Mall, the Club Car is a neighborhood bar catering largely to a crowd of people looking for a cold bottle of beer after a hard day at work. The beer selection is similarly no-frills, with plenty of domestic choices and a smattering of imports. Enjoy a game of pool while you snack on your favorite fried appetizer.

Book Your Truck-Side Taco Bar Today!

TM • (563) 241-2857

Taking Risk Off the Table 123 E. Main Street, Solon, IA 52333 (319) 624-3458 • BREAD & BUTTER 2019


WASTE NOT From food sharing to organic composting, systems are being put in place to tackle issues of food waste, and they’re working. BY COLLEEN KENNEDY


tocking up on bulk goods at a wholesale warehouse club on a good sale. Over-catering for a party or event. Avoiding the slightly wrinkled pepper, bruised banana or aboutto-expire dairy item at the grocery store. Heading off for a vacation and tossing out any food that may spoil. These are all common factors that lead to food waste. Local innovators and organizations, however, are combating the problem throughout Eastern Iowa. Food waste includes not just domestic waste, but crops that are not processed and food rejected or discarded at the retail level. There are adverse environmental, economic and social effects to all unconsumed and disposed foods. Iowans threw away an estimated 556,000 tons of food in 2017—20 percent of the garbage in landfills, according to the Iowa Department of Natural Resource’s 2017 Iowa Statewide Waste Characterization Study. More disturbing is that this is actually a 50 percent increase since the 2011 study. Nicki Ross, the executive director of Table to Table, a food rescue organization in Iowa City, said that food waste in Johnson County hovers at 25 percent, slightly higher than the national average. On the other side of the coin is food insecurity, or the lack of access to a reliable food source. In Iowa, one of out of eight people is food insecure, and one out of six children in Iowa faces hunger issues, according to the Feeding America website. The nonprofit Table to Table, located in downtown Iowa City, tackles both the issues of food waste and food insecurity in Johnson County. Founded in 1996, the organization works with an estimated $320,000 annual 26




budget that is equally funded by grants and donor contributions, and an annual volunteer base of about 240 people. With these limited resources, Table to Table rescued 2.2 million pounds of wholesome food in Johnson County last year through carefully cultivated partnerships between donors and agencies working with the food insecure, homeless and other vulnerable populations. Donors include area grocery stores, such as Hy-Vee and New Pioneer

Food Co-op, the Iowa City Farmers Market and some local restaurants. Recipients include 50 area organizations from daycares to food pantries, feeding over 19,000 people a year or 13 percent of the overall Johnson County population. “People in Johnson County work well together,” said Ross during a tour of their facilities, pointing to a whiteboard with the web of driver routes mapped out. Approximately 66 percent of their food goes to the Food Bank

Left: The City of Iowas City’s compost system at the landfill Bottom left: Table to Table coordinates food donations to alleviate food insecurity in the area. Below: Native Iowan Saasha Celestial-One co-founded OLIO, a food sharing app designed to reduce food waste and benefit people in need.


of the Crisis Center of Johnson County, which may identify other patrons not covered in their official recipient list. Emily Meister, food rescue programming manager who joined the Table to Table team in June 2017, explained the organization does not repurpose expired or unsafe foodstuffs; rather, it takes the products retailers proactively discard due to “consumer-based psychology.” Most grocery store shoppers will not, for instance, buy a gallon a milk if it

is nearing its expiration date, produce that is not aesthetically appealing, cereal boxes with bent corners or vegetables in dented cans. These products are considered unsellable but are still fresh, tasty and safe for consumption, and this is what Table to Table rescues from entering landfills, reducing Johnson County’s food waste expenditure by 3 percent. Meister and Ross cited the “Yogurt Boom of 2017” as an example of how Table to Table works quickly and effectively to save perishable food items. In this case, almost 9,000 pounds of overstocked and underselling yogurt whose expiration date was over a month away were relocated from a warehouse and redistributed to Table to Table’s recipient partners in one day. They explained this was a choreographed effort of rerouting volunteer drivers, finding cold storage and moving quickly. Table to Table checks in frequently with the recipient organizations to further reduce food waste, to see which items are being consumed and which are not and to adjust accordingly. The organization meets the dietary needs of a diverse group of recipients, and focuses on fresh produce, dairy products, baked goods and frozen meats rather than processed food, whenever possible. Due to strategic planning, Table to Table was able to give away 50 turkeys before the 2018 Thanksgiving holiday. “We couldn’t exist without our volunteer base,” Meister said. At least 20 volunteers are needed per week to drive the routes for gathering and distributing food. Other volunteers work on databases, client relationships, fundraising and other administrative needs. There is currently a waitlist for both recipient and donor organizations, and Ross hopes to expand the program with additional vehicles and even more volunteers. Table to Table plans to broaden their gleaning project as well, investigating new crops and the feasibility of harvesting food that would otherwise wither in the fields. During the last two years, the organization has saved 1,500 pounds of fresh produce resulting from overplanting. For those wanting to help out, Ross said volunteers are needed for all tasks at Table to Table, and those who cannot make year-long commitments are welcome for substitute shifts. They are always accepting monetary donations to help feed Johnson County residents, too. At the household level, there are ways to diminish food waste using smartphones. Saasha Celestial-One is co-founder of OLIO, the world’s only neighbor-to-neighbor food sharing app. Currently a dual U.S.-British citizen residing in London, Celestial-One


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1/10/19 5:49 PM

returns to Iowa several times a year to visit family. She said American households lose more than $2,000 a year in unwanted and unconsumed foods. Like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace, OLIO users post a food item and someone else claims it. It’s the modern equivalent of asking a neighbor for a cup of sugar. As smartphones are ubiquitous and our cities become more congested, OLIO allows people to share their food without stigma. “It doesn’t feel like a handout,” CelestialOne said. “This benefits the hidden hungry.” Those posting the food items may be sharing because they ordered too much, need to empty the fridge before traveling or bought the wrong items for picky eaters. OLIO’s research on the app found 84 percent of users state they are happy to pick up food from or share food with their neighbors. Launched in 2015, the app, which won the 2018 United Nations Momentum for Change Award, is used in 49 countries, with 80 percent of its users living in the U.K., and a strong presence in California. Celestial-One said they plan to integrate OLIO further into the U.S. market by 2020. “Now is the time to use the app in Iowa,” she said. “You can post, share and connect neighbors now.” Celestial-One’s parents founded Frontier Co-op Herbs in Norway, Iowa. She said she combined her parents’ “hippie mentality” of recycling and reusing and their love of food with her own investment banker background in London to raise over $8 million for her vision. She hopes to get more than 1 billion users and 25,000 volunteers during this expansion phase. “OLIO is not only distributing to those in need,” Celestial-One said. “The scale of food waste dwarfs food poverty. If food waste were a country, it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases (after China and the U.S.).” In addition to food sharing, there are

simple but effective ways to combat this unnecessary and costly pollution by converting methane or avoiding methane production during the decomposition process. The Solid Waste Agency of Cedar Rapids and Linn County took in 30,298 tons of organics at its composting location during the 2018 fiscal year: 1,124 tons were food waste, or 3.71 percent of the compost tonnage, which does not include table scraps placed with yard waste. The waste comes from commercial generators, such as Hy-Vee, colleges and other larger corporations and institutions. Joe Horaney, communications director of the Solid Waste Agency, explained that the composting process, which produces tested, nitrogen-rich soil for sale to landscapers and free to Linn County residents, also produces methane gases which are captured and converted to electricity through a power substation. This converted methane powers 1,100 homes in Cedar Rapids daily. What is usually considered detrimental is transformed into cleaner energy. “Residents can make a difference, too,” Horaney explained. “Home composting is easy and affordable.” He suggests interested residents buy a yard composting kit at any home improvement store. In addition to home composting, Iowa City has expanded its curbside food waste and yard waste removal program, supported by a minor $2-per-month fee added to utility bills on a rolling basis to residents. Residents may request either a 25- or 95-gallon food and yard waste cart. Jane Wilch, Iowa City’s recycling coordinator, said the city has received “a really wonderful and unanticipated response” to the new carts so far. As Iowa City reallocates funding for more curbside containers, Wilch notes that residents can still use any plastic container that meets the aforementioned size limit. Unlike home composting, which is more restrictive in what materials are biodegradable, Wilch

said recyclers may add wine corks, paper napkins and plates (without plastic coating), pizza boxes and any solid foods to their yard and food waste bins. “What we are offering is compost diversion,” Wilch said. “Twenty-five percent, or 34,000 tons of landfill space in Iowa City is food waste.” Through a year-long anaerobic composting process in which rows of compostable materials are activated by microbes and bugs, turned monthly and generate heat, the food waste breaks down into tested compost for sale to local landscapers, including backyard farmers. The very best ways to reduce food waste, however, are through education and changing consumer habits. Emily Meister emphasized the importance of Table to Table’s junior high outreach programming. “We may tell students how one carton of milk takes 110 gallons of water to produce. That’s over one and a half bathtubs!” she said. “Upstream energy” goes into every meal we consume, Wilch explained, including electricity, water, human power, transportation, processing and more. If consumers are more aware of the environmental and energy expenditures in food production, it is easier to take the simple steps to avoid food waste in the first place. “Buying food and not eating it is a waste of money,” Wilch said. “We must eat the food we buy.” She suggests party planners become strategic with their meals. Guests should only put on their plates what they will eat, as they can always return for seconds. She reminds guests and hosts to eat those leftovers, and then compost the food as well as paper waste. And while buying in bulk may seem practical, purchasing only what you need for the next few days will ensure you’re not tossing out super-sized containers of perishables. These easy adjustments of our shopping and eating habits may save some space in Iowa’s landfills.

Tell the truth. Change the world. INDEPENDENT NEWS, CULTURE & EVENTS





36 Jan. 3–16, 2018 LITTLEVILLAGEMAG.COM/LV234



Cobble Hill Restaurant


Crêpes de Luxe Café

219 2nd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-366-3177,

26 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-519-2340, $

309 E College St, Iowa City, 319-887-2233,, $$$

Since they opened a year ago, Cortado, $

For your swanky date night or your special

has impressed Iowa City with its urban

This miniature cozy cafe is a portal to unique

occasion, Cobble Hill is Cedar Rapids’ leading

atmosphere and great coffee. Over the past

French cuisine. The friendly husband-and-

destination for a chef-driven dinner that

year, their menu has expanded to include New

wife owners and their employees create both

will awaken your senses. Walking distance

York Bagels—shipped from a Brooklyn bagel

sweet and savory paper-thin crêpes right

from Theatre Cedar Rapids, the Paramount

shop— fresh salads and delicious sandwiches.

before diners' eyes and aim to use all local

Theatre and the U.S. Cellular Center, if you

Be sure to try their pistachio muffins when

ingredients from the buckwheat flour down to

are doing dinner and a show downtown and

you swing by for your morning coffee!

the butter.

servers. Stay for a few courses. Maybe forget

Cottage Bakery & Cafe

Crisp Cedar Rapids

about the show. WInner: Food Scene Game

230 E Benton St, Iowa City, 319-351-0052,

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-669-8880,

Changer, Best Restaurant and Best Chef, $$, $

in Best of the CRANDIC 2018

The Cottage Bakery & Cafe has been serving

This locally owned salad, sandwich and soup

Iowa City for over 20 years. Whether you’re

spot in Cedar Rapids’ NewBo City Market

Coffee Emporium & Cafe

craving a sandwich or dreaming of dessert,

serves classic salads and sandwiches. Feel

220 3rd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-362-3384,

the Cottage Bakery & Cafe is a wise choice.

free to get creative and build your own, $

Healthy and hearty, the items are reasonably

selecting from a wide variety of toppings.

As the name might suggest, the Emporium

priced and made fresh. With a variety of

has an extensive list of caffeinated creations.

sandwich options in the area, The Cottage is

The Dandy Lion

Whether you just need a cup of joe before

easy to miss, but you shouldn’t; affordable

111 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-358-6400,

work or you’re looking for espresso shots to

options like a selection of $6 sandwiches are, $$

keep you going through an all-nighter, they

in a class of their own when it comes to a

Breakfast and brunch spot by day, wine bar

have the perfect drink for every occasion.

fair price and ingredient quality. Don’t get us

and lounge by night. Open and inviting,

started on their molasses cookies—yum. The

there’s something for everyone on the menu,

Cottage also offers catering services featuring

including an interesting wine selection and

additional entrees, side dishes and dessert

innovative drinks both coffee and otherwise.

looking to impress, this is your spot. Trust the





Daisy’s Garage and Filling Station

Dan and Debbie’s Creamery

Daylight Donuts

1117 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-362-2223,

1600 Main St, Ely, 319-848-6455, $

3560 E Court St, Iowa City,, $$

You might have bought Dan and Debbie’s

319-339-0055,, $

Named for Daisy Duke, this garage-themed

milk from your local grocery stores or ordered

Since its opening in 2011, Daylight Donuts

restaurant brings an abundance of seafood

their cheese curds at the Black Squirrel Tap,

has enjoyed a great deal of word-of-mouth

options to the Cedar Rapids scene, so look for

but this family-owned dairy is well worth a

popularity and established itself as a mainstay

shrimp prepared five ways, clams and mussels

visit in person. Sample their sumptuous ice

in Iowa City for a sweet breakfast treat and

before settling for a sandwich or burger.

cream, and pick up the staples you’re already

a good, cheap cup of coffee. It takes pride

used to.

in its customer service, hometown feel and

Dairy Queen

homemade doughnuts. If you’re feeling

501 16th St NE, Cedar Rapids,

Dane’s Dairy

adventurous, try their maple bacon longjohns

319-365-0680,, $

1430 Willow Creek Dr, Iowa City,

or a sausage roll—a cheddarwurst wrapped in

The faces behind the sliding order window at

319-354-7400,, $

sweet dough and fried.

this Cedar Rapids walk-up are always friendly

A seasonal favorite, Dane’s Dairy is a time

and the cool treats always executed with

capsule of Iowa City history and frozen treats.

Deadwood Tavern

attention to detail.

The strawberry soft serve and signature ice

6 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-351-9417, $

cream bars are not to be missed.

Downtown Iowa City’s ultimate come-as-you-

McWane Dairy Queen

are bar—or, “Institute of Higher Learning,”

526 S Riverside Dr, Iowa City,

Dave’s Foxhead Tavern

as the signage reads—offers a spacious

319- 338-9328,, $

402 E Market St, Iowa City, 319-351-9824, $

atmosphere with plenty of booths and big

Owned by the McWane family since the

Iowa City’s oldest bar, the Foxhead makes

screen TVs to watch the Hawkeyes, Cubs or

1960s, the DQ on Riverside Drive feels like

for a great neighborhood watering hole. The

The Simpson’s during their famous “Angry

family when you pull into their lot. Stop by for

bar does not boast fancy cocktails; drink

Hour.” They're famous for Bloody Marys

a classic vanilla cone or hot fudge sundae, or

selections are minimal, but thankfully, they

and surly service, but it’s just for fun; the

mix it up by trying one of their always-yummy

are cheap and cover the necessities. Be sure

Deadwood loves you and you will love the


to bring money for the eclectic jukebox or a

Deadwood. Cash only, no food.

game of pool.

reinventyourspace 319-248-0561

R ep ai r s R e m o de ls A ddi ti o n s


Call today for a free quote! BREAD & BUTTER 2019



Della Viti Wine Lounge

in Iowa City and provides a

it down with one of their craft

Dumpling Darling

203 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-

neighborhood feel that is as rich


1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids,

409-7421,, $$

as the items on the menu. Deluxe

Sample hand-selected wines

is newly renovated and open for

Dublin Underground

213 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, 319-338-

by the splash, glass or bottle

Sunday brunch with expanded

5 S Dubuque St, Iowa City,

2404,, $

from self-serve wine stations in

savory menu items.

319-337-7660, $

Mix up your usual late-night

No night on the town is complete

cuisine by stopping by Dumpling

this downtown Cedar Rapids


lounge. If you need guidance

Dodge Street Coffeehouse

without stopping at this classic

Darling any time before 10 p.m.

as you make your way through

2790 N Dodge St, Iowa City,

Iowa City basement bar. Order

during the week or until bar

the numerous choices, look for

319-569-1722, $

a round of cocktails, play some

close Thursday through Saturday.

a knowledgeable staff member

This child-friendly coffee shop

darts or squeeze yourself into

They offer dumplings (fried

who can guide you to something

pushes Iowa City’s northern

one of their small but charming

or steamed), bao buns, and a

you’ll like. Locally brewed craft

boundary and serves coffee,

booths for some conversation.

variety of vegetarian, gluten-free

beer and a selection of fine

espresso and tea drinks as well

If you aren’t careful you might

and vegan options!

spirits are available for those

as your favorite foods from local

end up staying till close. Time

who don’t identify as winos,

eateries for a balanced, healthy

has a way of flying at the Dublin

Dunn Brothers Coffee

and a small plate menu provides

breakfast or lunch. Bonus: drive-

Underground, but it’s always time

3284 Crosspark Rd Ste A, Coralville,



well spent. Cash only, no food.

319-665-2020,, $

Deluxe Cakes & Pastries

Donnelly’s Pub

Duck City Bistro

suite is a coffee roastery with

812 S Summit St, Iowa City,

110 E College St, Iowa City,

115 E 3rd St, Davenport, 563-322-3825,

a bevy of breakfast, lunch and


319-338-7355,, $$, $$$

beverage options. Enjoy a casual, $$

Check out the next Hawkeye

The friendly chef who greets

lunch or a quick coffee from the

Buttery croissants baked to

game at Donnelly’s Pub and take

patrons at the door will sell you

drive-through. Warm up by the

perfection, delicate French

advantage of their daily lunch

on the creative, well-prepared

fire or take in some fresh air on

macarons and a welcoming staff

and drink specials. Try their

specials, and rightly so, but also

the patio.

are just a few reasons to visit

classic Irish-American entrees

be sure to save room for some

Deluxe Cakes & Pastries. Deluxe

like the mouthwatering reuben or

duck-fat fries.

is located on Summit Street

patty melt, and be sure to wash

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The Early Bird

to the cocktail bar next door,

something for both the shy and

those residing in Coralville or

333 1st St SE, Cedar Rapids,

currently only open for private

the adventurous.

farther up 965. No relation to

319-261-4901,, $$


Cactus Cantina or Cactus 1, 2 or El Banditos

This homey cafe spot makes the

3 in downtown Iowa City.

Edith Lucielle’s Bait Shack &

327 E Market St, Iowa City,

riser vaguely achievable. Because

Wing Depot

319-358-2836, elbanditosiowacity.

El Dorado

weekend mornings are meant for

6913 Mount Vernon Rd SE,

com, $$

102 2nd Ave, Coralville,

sleeping in, The Early Bird is only

Cedar Rapids, 319-320-6064,

Located in the Northside

319-688-5237, $$

open Monday through Friday,, $

neighborhood, El Banditos

El Dorado is a must if you love

pouring freshly brewed tea and

Located in southeast Cedar

offers a wide variety of delicious

a good Tex-Mex platter and

coffee, breakfast and lunch to

Rapids, along the banks of

Mexican dishes made from family

fresh salsa. You are sure to enjoy

the sleepy and hungry masses in

Squaw Creek, Edith Lucielle’s

recipes and local ingredients. El

eating in the restaurant as well,

downtown Cedar Rapids.

serves up classic down-home

Banditos embodies traditional

because their décor is bright and

food, offering breakfast, lunch

Mexican flavors with an emphasis

festive and lends to a relaxed,

Eastbank Venue & Lounge

and dinner, daily specials and live

on fresh and local. Stop in over

happy environment.

97 3rd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids,


the weekend for one of the best

thought of becoming an early

brunches in town.

319-365-0759,, $$

El Paso Taqueria and Latin

Located in the old Smulekoff’s

El Bajio

building (a furniture store that

555 Gateway Place SW, Cedar Rapids,

El Cactus

Market 609 Hollywood Blvd, Iowa City,

operated for more than 120 years

319-366-1715,, $

104 1st Ave, Coralville, 319-354-0444,

319-338-3703, $

in downtown Cedar Rapids),

If you are on the quest for,

El Paso is home to some of Iowa

Eastbank Venue is a 14,000

authentic, homestyle Mexican

1534 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-354-

City’s best burritos and authentic

square foot event space that

cuisine, look no further! Bringing


tacos. Place your order and while

can be customized to the unique

to Cedar Rapids the flavors

1295 Jordan St, North Liberty, 319-

you’re waiting, wander through

flavor of your event. Exposed

of the west-central region of


the aisles of the small adjoined

brick with centuries-old paint

Mexico, El Bajio is a treat for the

El Cactus is famous for their

bodega. Tallboys of Tecate or

combine with purple lights and

palate. From simple taco options

margaritas. There's nothing

Michelada make the perfect

dangling crystals bringing an

to elaborate meat medleys

prickly about the service; it's a

beverage to enjoy alongside a

1890s meets 1990s lounge vibe

like the Molcajetes, there is

friendly neighborhood joint for

plate of tacos.




Baxa’s Sutliff Store & Tavern was originally a general store built in 1899. FRANKIE SCHNECKLOTH

Old Faithfuls

Little Bohemia

The more things change, the more these gems stay the same.

without a gener-

1317 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids Do not leave this place ous plate of their famous Goulash and Dumplings! Located between NewBo City Market and the Czech Village in one of CR’s

Baxa’s Stutliff Store & Tavern

most historic buildings,

5546 130th St NE, Lisbon

Little Bohemia has the touch of the Central

One of the most unique settings in Johnson

European old country

County is on the banks of the Cedar River in

this town cherishes.

the tiny community of Sutliff. Overlooking

Serving food and drink

the muddy waterway is Baxa’s, and they

since 1934, New Bohemia was one of Grant

CR meal on your way out. Either way, you’re

have been grilling up and dropping baskets

Wood’s old haunts, so make it yours, too.

patronizing a restaurant that will leave you

of fried favorites for decades. There’s never a

They’re proud of their breaded pork sand-

full of a classic supper club-style meal and

bad time to go here, but the summer months

wiches and you gotta love a place that has

decades of nostalgia. Ced-Rel’s ambiance has

during a road trip, bike ride or tubing adven-

plenty of warm sides of sauerkraut coming at

kept true to the time period that made these

ture can provide a well-deserved pit stop for

you from every direction.

concepts a Midwest staple, with a social


atmosphere and courses to share with your

one of their infamous burgers, fried bologna sandwiches, breaded chicken gizzards and

Ced-Rel Supper Club

group before you get your main courses. The

livers, cold beverages and a roadhouse

11909 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids

traditional and refreshing complimentary relish tray will get your meal started. Follow

atmosphere just minutes from Iowa City and Cedar Rapids. Don’t be shy when it comes to

This Highway 30 neon oasis is either the

it up with appetizers like chicken livers and

placing a dollar bill on the ceiling—thousands

first restaurant you stop at before you get

crunchy onion rings. Finish with a beautifully

have before you.

to Cedar Rapids or the last chance to get a

cooked steak or breaded shrimp the size of



your palms. There’s plenty to choose from— the seafood dinners are known as some of the best you’re going to get in Cedar Rapids. Wig & Pen Pizza 1220 US-6, Iowa City 363 N 1st Ave, Iowa City 201 Hwy 965 NE, North Liberty Is the original location in Iowa City or Corlalville? Let’s say it’s too close to call. Right where the strip begins, or ends, is the pizza pub that has proven its worth in pepperoni many times over. Are you craving authentic Chicago-style deep dish pizza? You need not travel anywhere near the Windy City, because the Wig & Pen has one of the best deep dishes on Earth. The locals have also made their Flying Tomato style of pie one of the most popular of its kind in the Corridor.


Heyn’s Ice Cream 811 S 1st Ave, Iowa City 25 E Cherry St, North Liberty The east side of Iowa City has been working out the scoops for many years at Heyn’s, and now North Liberty is getting in on the locally made ice cream action. The longtime employee-turned-general-manager-turned-owner, Peggy Cullivan-Park, can speak to the hard work that goes into the ice cream business. Heyn’s has all the classic ice cream flavors along with new favorites like Blueberry Cheesecake, Black Raspberry Truffle, Pumpkin Pie, Peppermint Candy, Oatmeal Cream Pie and many, many more ways to keep that sweet tooth satisfied and begging for more.




Veg-Centric Sides These restaurants make vegetables shine.

Green beans, sesame kale, sweet potatoes and more from Bread Garden Market’s buffet. FRANKIE SCHNECKLOTH

Bread Garden Market 225 S Linn St, Iowa City

breakfast hash are superb, go for the Miso

Are you as obsessed with the made-to-

Bonito Cauliflower. The seared cauliflow-

order kiosks as we are? The generously

er is topped with bonito flakes and the

portioned and totally heavenly $5 pizzas,

resulting presentation is a piece of subtle

burgers and tacos make our dreams come

performance art (just order it and discover

true, but to round things out, navigate

for yourself) packed with flavor. Don’t miss

their expansive salad and hot bar. Sure, it’s

the Black Garlic Brussels Sprouts, either.

cool you can make your own salad with just about any ingredient you choose, but


sometimes a cold salad just doesn’t pass

900 E 2nd Ave, Coralville

muster. Try the sautéed Sesame Kale or

951 Blairs Ferry Rd NE, Cedar Rapids

the green beans with caramelized onions.

A restaurant famed for its extensive

Or some variation on sweet potatoes. Or

selection of tap beer is not one you’d also

slaw. Options change daily, but there is

expect to do veg well, but the brussels

always plenty to choose from. Check their

sprouts and the Kale Caesar salads are

website for the day’s selection.

worthy of repeat orders. There’s even a grain bowl on the menu to keep this beer

Lightworks Cafe

lover’s paradise perfectly on-trend.

501 7th Ave SE Ste B, Cedar Rapids This Cedar Rapids gem is not to be

Joseph’s Steakhouse

missed. The modern design of the space

212 S Clinton St, Iowa City

is bathed in natural light from the rolling

Joseph’s Steakhouse is the place to go for

glass garage door, giving the main dining

a quality, well-prepared steak, but don’t

room a cool California cafe vibe. Their

sleep on the menu of sides, small plates

coffee service is spectacular—choose

and salads; plentiful options exist for those

Chemex-brewed or pour-over selec-

needing to pack in that last serving of veg-

tions and be sure to try their saffron or

etables. Their crisp, flavorful salads, classic

lavender lattes. But it’s the food at this

sautéed vegetable dishes and five different

little cafe that’s really worth talking about.

preparations of potatoes are certainly

While the vegetarian-focused tacos and

worth your time and attention.





El Patron

and quesadillas are made fresh right in front


219 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, 319-338-5967, $$

of you. Great spot for breakfast on your way

118 E College St, Iowa City, 319-358-2555,

Relocated to the former Takanami location

to class or a quick lunch or dinner., $$

and purchased by an employee, this Mexican

With two cozy screening rooms featuring

kitchen and tequila bar serves up standard

Exotic India

more than 300 films a year, this downtown

tacos with a selection of tequila. Keep an eye

102 B 2nd Ave, Coralville, 319-354-4710,

movie theater emphasizes independent

out for daily specials., $$

and outsider genres with such curatorial

Exotic India is everything you hope for in an

expertise that the L.A. Times once cried, “It’s

El Sol Mexican Cuisine

Indian place, done well, at a great price: Hot

long been known that the art house scene in

240 W Main St, Solon, 319-624-2020,

chai; Kingfisher, Taj Mahal and Flying Horse

Los Angeles lags behind that of New York,

beers; warm fluffy naan baked in a clay oven;

but must we be outdone by Iowa City as

In a cozy brick building on the main drag of

a lunch buffet that never disappoints. If you

well?” They've got local beers on tap, a nice

Solon, El Sol offers delicious food, ranging

live in Iowa City/Coralville, their curries and

selection of wine, and the locally roasted

from steak fajitas to a vegetarian burrito.

tandoori fare should probably be part of your

coffee (and of course popcorn) heighten the

Their full bar makes for a great night out with

regular routine if it isn’t already.


Fair Grounds Coffeehouse

The Flying Wienie

345 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-338-2024,

103 8th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-861-3036,

El Super Burrito & Lupita’s, $, $

3300 Johnson Ave, Cedar Rapids, 319-366-1181

Come to Fair Grounds if you are looking for

This charming joint is full of personality and

This tiny gray house on the northwest side of

classic breakfast, lunch and dinner dishes with

flavor, bringing a little piece of the Windy City

Cedar Rapids is home to delicious traditional

plentiful vegan and vegetarian options, as well

to Cedar Rapids since 1999. The Chicago-style

and street Mexican cuisine. Their extensive

as gluten-free choices. All of their coffee is fair

dogs are naturally a menu staple, but you’d be

menu ensures just about any craving is

trade and organic, but the Guatemalan pour-

missing out if you don’t try the baby back ribs

satisfied, and indulge your sweet tooth with

over is an Iowa City favorite.

or the hand-cut fries.

friends and sometimes you can catch live music.

something from the in-house bakery, Lupita’s. Falbo Bros. Pizzeria

Fong’s Pizza

Encounter Cafe

457 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-337-9090

1006 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-320-9992,

376 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-519-2044,

2100 Norcor Ave, Coralville, 319-248-9090,, $$, $

3286 Crosspark Rd, Coralville, 319-626-2788,

The NewBo location marks the second

Feel good about where you spend your, $

installment of Fong’s in Iowa—the flagship

money: Just south of downtown Iowa City

Late night pizza and subs are offered at

restaurant is in Des Moines. Expect thin crust

proper, Encounter Cafe, a community-minded

Falbo’s and commonly enjoyed among

pizza with an Asian twist (their most well-

restaurant, serves panini, smoothies, wraps

undergrads. If you’re feelin’ a little cheesy,

known pie boasts crab rangoon toppings) as

and omelets to hungry patrons and all

try their stuffed pizza which is loaded with

well as standard straightforward ’zas. It's a

profits from the cafe are funnelled back to

cheese and toppings. A new location opened

great place to get a tiki drink, and you’ll be

the community through local charities and

in the Coralville/North Liberty gray area.

surrounded by eclectic and kitschy décor.

organizations doing good. The Famous Mockingbird


Estela’s Fresh Mex

1064 7th Ave, Marion,, $

221 E College St, Iowa City, 319-338-8880,

184 E Burlington St, Iowa City, 319-354-6264,

The Famous Mockingbird is a live music and, $$, $

special event location in the former Campbell-

Formosa is known for their fast service and

Mami’s Authentic reincarnated = Estela’s

Steele Gallery space in Marion. Music in the

phenomenal sushi. You can find them on

Fresh Mex. Giant breakfast burritos stuffed full

MUD (started by Campbell-Steele) continues to

Hotel Vetro’s first level, and expect a fresh,

of your favorite toppings are an obvious draw,

operate there, and the Backstage Lounge offers

sleek atmosphere when you walk in the door.

but everything from tacos to burrito bowls

craft beer and wine during special events.

Be sure to make a reservation if you want to



361 DEGREES A Wellington Heights nonprofit cafe serves up valuable skills for the girls and women behind it. BY JAY GOODVIN


n the long list of great places to catch a meal in the Cedar Rapids area, Café 361 stands out with its themed menus, community mindedness and inspirational premise. And if you want a seat at the table, you’d better get your name in quick— they’re only dishing up meals once a month during the school year. Café 361 is a church-sponsored nonprofit founded in 2013, and located in the First Congressional United Church of Christ in the Wellington Heights area of Cedar Rapids. The café focuses on instilling both life and leadership skills in underprivileged young


Once a month, a group of young girls and women between the ages of 14 and 24 researches, cooks and serves between 50 to 100 community members.

women. Once a month, a group of young girls and women between the ages of 14 and 24 researches, cooks and serves between 50 to 100 community members. The monthly meals come with a suggested donation of $5 or $10, and diners must RSVP in advance. “Our program teaches them things like 38


exposure to life skills, team building and communication,” said director Cindy Nicholson. Altruism isn’t the only plus for Café 361 patrons. The future leaders behind the scenes are serving up dishes that transcend their amateur status.

“We have people that come to every meal because they love the program and the food. The guests are very dedicated, and we get new ones all the time, too. They love the program and group dedication. The girls pick the meal themes and we give them the recipes and guidance to make them happen.” To brainstorm meal ideas, the girls divide up into teams, and many of them end up cooking and trying things they’ve never had before. For example, a full dinner with authentic African dishes was inspired by some of the cooks from Tanzania, and will be an upcoming feature at the cafe. A Greek evening inspired by Mamma Mia! is also planned. Café 361 has hosted a Hamiltonthemed dinner, and a Breakfast at Tiffany’s meal delighted diners with courses of cheesy sausage and egg bake, baked hash brown




cups, parfaits, fruit compote and more while guests listened to a live piano player. The cost of preparing these unique meals is covered by diners’ donations, but the money does more than just cover the financial food costs, as Nicholson explained. “Our girls do much more than cook for Café 361. We do service projects at the Saint Luke’s Ronald McDonald House here in Cedar Rapids. We have also helped with meals for the homeless in Omaha and Dubuque along with cooking for the ministry here at First Congressional Church, including the homebound and ill.” In addition to the service projects and themed dinners, the Café 361 cooks also participate in the Girls With Ideas program, a curriculum that focuses on building confidence, leadership skills and life goals in girls aged 9-13. Café 361 does more than promote personal growth in their young workers, Nicholson said; they help the women translate their experiences into continuing education and future career opportunities. “We work on resume building from the skills they build here,” she said. “We visit culinary schools at Kirkwood and DMACC [Des Moines Area Community College] but we also do other college visits with the girls as well. And we’ve even had a state champion cook at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines!” The classic recipes, hearty meals, fun themes and quality service found at Café 361 are the savory products of the more important work behind the scenes: nurturing talent, mastering skills and building confidence in its hardworking cooks. The young women in the kitchen have the potential to make a true and lasting impact on the community. For more information on how to get involved with Café 361, visit their website at 40



enjoy dinner here, and check out their sushi

1970s. Frozen and batch cocktails, as well

and drink specials during the week!

as 40-ounce wines mingle with more classic food options (think wings, burgers, salads) in

Frida Kahlo Mexican Restaurant

this time capsule of a restaurant.

and Lucy’s Bakery 101 Windflower Ln #500, Solon, 319-624-2107, $$

George’s Buffet

On the south edge of Solon, Frida Kahlo

312 E Market St, Iowa City, 319-351-9614, $

offers wonderful Mexican food, but it is the

A favorite with the locals, this small, Northside

traditional Tres Leches Cakes and Pastries

neighborhood watering hole has some of the

from Lucy’s Bakery combined with the

best cheeseburgers around. Order from the

community spirit of this large event space

bar’s selection of whiskey served with a beer,

that make Frida Kahlo stand out in a crowded

get a pitcher for the table, or knock back a

field of great Mexican restaurants. There is

bottle or two of brew. WInner: Best Late

often live music including regular salsa and

Night Food and Best Home Away From

tango nights. Visit once and you’ll become a

Home in Best of the CRANDIC 2018

regular. Get Fresh Fuel Nest

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-383-5449, $

103 1st St NE, Mount Vernon, 319-895-8429, $

109 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, $

If Mount Vernon had a living room, it would be

You can’t beat freshness, and this place

Fuel Nest. Stop by for delicious baked goods

delivers just that! Get Fresh offers an

and fresh-brewed coffee and if you have a few

impressive and healthy selection of beverages

spare minutes, wander around. The shop is

like daily squeezed juices, juice blends and

filled with an eclectic mix of local art, antiques

cleanses, smoothies and more.

and curios, all for sale. Ghurtie’s Gourmet Frozen Yoghurt Cafe Gabby’s Mexican Restaurant

2180 Norcor Ave, Coralville, 319-338-1999,

1100 N Columbus, West Liberty, 319-627-7178, $$

This teeny Mexican restaurant has a plain,

Ghurtie’s is the real deal. Locally owned and

bare-bones interior, but what it lacks in

operated, this self-serve froyo spot features a

ambience, it makes up for in flavor and

rotating selection of 12 types of yoghurt and

authenticity. The menu features Mexican-

over 30 toppings, which should keep you from

style “street tacos”—corn tortillas, meat,

ever getting bored.

onion, cilantro and lime—and other traditional Mexican dishes, like tortas and menudo. For

Gianna’s Italian Beef

the less-adventurous among us, there are also

375 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-2994,

more Americanized dishes and combination, $

plates, and everything is ridiculously

Classic Italian beef sandwiches, Chicago-


style hot dogs, shoestring fries—even Italian ice, available seasonally—are reminiscent of

Gabe’s Oasis

Chicago stalwarts. Expect a minimal menu,

330 E Washington St, Iowa City, 319-351-9175,

but trust that everything is satisfying., $

The dive bar and music venue features a

Golden Delight Bakery

history of Iowa City music all over their walls

2289 Johnson Washington Rd, Kalona,

and in its roots. Gabe’s has been a tour stop

319-646-3030, $

for famous bands before they found fame,

So much more than just a bakery, this gaslit

and features all types of music from techno,

bakery-in-a-house is run by an Amish family

indy, metal and hip hop. Aside from their

in Kalona. The glazed donuts are something

music credentials, their beer garden is a go-to

straight out of your dreams, but the cinnamon

for Iowa City folk to catch up with old friends

bread and cheesy garlic loaf are equally

and meet new ones. Gabe’s is exactly what

good. You can also find locally made quilts,

you want from a local bar and music venue—

preserves, handmade rocking chairs and

legendary music cred, a wide selection of

grandfather clocks.

beer and a casual, cool vibe. No food. Good Vibes




121 W Main St, Solon, 319-624-8423,

210 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-337-4058,, $, $$

Sisters Kari Haugse and Krystal Nielsen

Graduate Hotel’s retro-styled restaurant

opened Solon’s only coffee shop in October

and bar pays homage to Iowa alum Gene

2018 serving coffee drinks and sandwiches in

Wilder and his most prolific decade—the

a comfortable, homey setting.


Goosetown Cafe 203 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-351-1924,, $$

This newly established Northside Iowa City eatery has an eclectic all-day breakfast menu, grain bowls you actually want to eat, kickass French fries and well-crafted cocktails. WInner: Best Business Lunch and Best Bartender in Best of the CRANDIC 2018 Great River Brewery 332 E 2nd St, Davenport, 563-323-5210,, $

Stop in for a free brewery tour on a Saturday, complete with plentiful samples, or enjoy one of their small-batch pints on the patio—and don’t forget to take home a growler or two! Greyhound Deli
450 5th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-261-7323, $$

Focusing on locally sourced, made-fromscratch food, this little eatery located inside the Cedar Rapids Public Library prepares sandwiches, soups and salads made with the finest ingredients, and vegan and vegetarian options are part of their regular menu. Greyhound also offers an exciting catering menu featuring boxed lunches, hors d’ouevres, sliders and more. Guild Wurst Tavern and Boot ‘n’ Flute Brewery 53 2nd St, Coralville, 319-333-1740,, $$

From the folks who brought us the now defunct Bar’ber Shop comes Guild Wurst, Iowa City’s first sausage-centric restaurant and brewery. Sample one of six unique wursts or the meaty brisket burger and wash it down with a house-brewed beer. Gumby’s Pizza 702 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-354-8629,, $

Gumby’s is here for you and your late-night cravings. They’ve got everything from wings to subs to pizza. If you haven’t tried their cheesy garlic bread sticks, a.k.a. Pokey Stix, you are missing out. They deliver their affordable food until 2 a.m. or later. Grin N Goose 227 2nd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids,, $$

Recipe for Noguchi Table 1 part sculpture 1 part design Mix together for perfect functionality. Top with your favorite beverage and enjoy! Keeps forever.

This CR spot boasts a casual atmosphere, good sandwiches and onion rings, as well as an express lunch option for downtown office workers on a time schedule.

FURNITURE | LIGHTING | HOUSEWARES | ACCESSORIES from the world’s greatest classic and contemporary designers On the corner of Dodge & Davenport | Iowa City | 319. 354. 2623 | BREAD & BUTTER 2019



Artisanal Toast The toast trend has arrived in the CRANDIC. Some local eateries have dedicated an entire section of their menu to the basic sideturned-entree. It could be said that toast’s popularity derives from the basic human need to come together and “break bread,” sharing a nourishing meal with one another. And, at a median singledigit price point, it is a straightforward dish accessible to almost everyone. Here are just a few of our favorite toasts in the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City areas.



Dunn Brothers Coffee

Rapid Creek Cidery

121 Iowa Ave,

3284 Crosspark Rd, Ste A,

4823 Dingleberry Rd NE,

Iowa City


Iowa City

Nestled comfortably in the

This local franchise may have

Offering the simplest variation of the now ubiquitous toast

“build your own” category is

coffee in its name, but it also

Basta’s staple appetizer, Burra-

offers a full breakfast and lunch

trend, Bread for the Table

ta. The creamy fresh mozzarella

menu, including celiac-friendly,

with Butter of the Day, Rapid

is served with tomato jam and

gluten-free options. Go sweet

Creek Cidery’s toast menu is as

arugula to build atop a toasted

or savory with Dunn Broth-

cozy as the centuries-old barn

house focaccia. This twist on

er’s wide-ranging menu that

you’ll dine in. The restaurant’s

the classic caprese crostini is

includes Apple Honey Toast,

dedication to simplicity and

served in a generous portion,

Triple Berry Toast, Avocado

quality ingredients elevates the

with more than enough to

Toast and Bacon, Tomato &

ever-evolving toast selection,

share with friends.

Egg Toast.

so stop by often to catch their variations—currently featuring the foodie favorite, Chicken Liver with Pickled Red Onion.



Basta’s Burrata is a really good way to use toast.

The Map Room

The Dandy Lion

416 3rd St SE,

111 S Dubuque St,

Cedar Rapids

Iowa City

The local burger and brews bar

Rather than bagels and lox,

in Cedar Rapids takes toast

the Ped Mall’s newest “dandy

one step further by using naan

little luncheonette” serves up

for its base. The fluffy flatbread

Salmon Toast with poached

has five international itera-

eggs and chevre on sour-

tions on the menu, including

dough, white bread, wheat or

the Agra, topped with garam

rye. Enjoy this or Dandy’s Av-

masala, paneer cheese, mango

ocado Toast until 2 p.m., when

chutney and spiced dried peas.

the kitchen closes its doors to become a coffee and cocktails lounge for the remainder of the day.




Hacienda las Glorias

comforting on a cold wintry day. One of the

Hurts Donut Company

4317 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar Rapids,

highlights of this family-owned and operated

1301 5th St #105, Coralville, 319-499-1647,

319-294-0082,, $$

restaurant is the endless pitchers filled with, $$

715 1st Ave SW Cedar Rapids, 319-363-7344,

cucumber water. It’s like a trip to the spa!

Hurts Donut Company is a chain of gourmet donut shops open “25 hours a day and 8 days, $$

A stalwart in the Cedar Rapids food scene,

Heyn’s Ice Cream

a week.” Lines may be long but the flavors are

Hacienda offers Tex-Mex and authentic

25 Cherry St, North Liberty, 319-665-2249,

worth the wait. Hurts is known for offering

Mexican dishes and an extensive margarita, $

jaw-dropping selection of donuts. Hurts Donut

menu with a rotating seasonal feature. Bonus

811 S 1st Ave, Iowa City, 319-354-1981,

offers between 60-70 gourmet donut options

fun fact: the building Hacienda inhabits is, $

throughout the week. Pick up a S’mores

rumored to be haunted!

Take a detour and visit Heyn’s for homemade

donut, an Apple Pie donut or the Cereal Killer,

ice cream in classic and surprising flavors.

which is a donut topped with cereal ranging

Halal Foods

They offer premium ice cream in gluten-free,

from Cap’n Crunch to Fruit Loops. Grab the

1806 Boyrum St, Iowa City, 319-499-1920, $

vegan, and dairy-free flavors. Best Cold Treat

Hurts Dozen which includes 12 staff-picked

This certified halal grocery store stocks

in the Best of the CRANDIC 2018.

donuts for $12, giving you a chance to eat 12 wacky donuts all by yourself for $1 each! OK,

canned foods and groceries as well as halal meats on Iowa City's south side.

High Ground Cafe

you should probably share a Cookie Monster

301 E Market St, Iowa City, 319-338-5382,

and that peanut butter and jelly donut.

Hale Tap & Supper Club, $

5522 County Rd E45, Hale, 563-488-2596, $

925 E 2nd Ave, Coralville, 319-339-4390,

I Love Pho

This classic roadside supper club serves, $

201 S Clinton St, Iowa City

tenderloins the size of your face, prime rib

1150 5th St #130, Coralville, 319-519-6213,

2020 8th St, Coralville, 319-383-3953, $

and all-you-can-eat walleye., $

Clear and elegantly spiced broth contributes

Enjoy pour-over coffee, an espresso drink or

to the fantastic pho and noodle soups at

Hamburg Inn No. 2

a hot cup of tea at this popular downtown

both locations, but visit the Coralville location

214 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-337-5512

study space or visit one of two Coralville

for flavorful grilled pork, beef and banh mi

2221 Rochester Ave, Iowa City,, $$

locations. All shops offer similar coffee,


Hamburg Inn has been an Iowa City staple

espresso and tea menus as well as salads,

since 1948. They specialize in breakfast, but

panini, wine and beer.

you haven’t really eaten there until you’ve

India Cafe 227 E Washington St, Iowa City, 319-354-2775,

Hilltop Tavern, $$

1100 N Dodge St, Iowa City, 319-338-3063,

50 W Burlington Ave, Fairfield , 641-472-1792,

Happy Joe’s Pizza, $$, $$

102 2nd Ave, Coralville, 319-351-6900

A Northside Iowa City neighborhood classic

A popular lunch buffet with a good variety,

5070 Lindale Dr, Cedar Rapids, 319-393-0017

since 1933, the Hilltop is a great place to

India Cafe also opens up for dinner in the

3315 Williams Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids,

watch the Hawks, eat something fried, or

evenings after closing in the mid-afternoon.

319-396-0626,, $$

saunter in any day of the week that you

Order off the menu to be able to choose your

Serving the area since 1974, Happy Joe's is

don’t feel like cooking. You’ll find all your

spice level—if you love the heat, go as spicy as

known for being kid friendly and inventing the

midwestern comfort food like reubens, corn

possible for full flavor.

taco pizza. Consider this pizzeria for your next

dogs, patty melts and breaded tenderloins.

event: a party room is available at the Lindale

Check for the

Iowa Brewing Company

Drive location in Cedar Rapids. Delivery is

monthly lunch specials, which usually sell out.

708 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-366-2337,

tried one of their famous pie shakes.

available at all Happy Joe’s locations., $

Hudson’s Southside Tap

This small Cedar Rapids brewery boasts a

Haveli Indian

482 HWY 1 W, Iowa City, 319-499-1058,

staggering 18 house-brewed beers on tap. In

943 25th Ave, Coralville, 319-359-1744,, $$

addition to creations made themselves, they, $$

A favorite on Iowa City’s south side, boasts

offer many guest taps for those in the mood

Authentic Indian cuisine is in abundance at

40 beers on tap and a whiskey list to match,

for something a little less localized. Check

Haveli, which offers a staggering 100-plus

Hudson’s is the perfect place for a quick drink

out their events calendar for a nice roundup

menu choices. Anything is good here, but

or a bite to eat after work.

of trivia nights, specials, live music and pingpong tournaments.

the traditional thali meal provides a sample of classic dishes. Enjoy the Bollywood music

Hungry Cats

videos playing on loop as you consume far

221 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-351-1751, $$

Iowa Distilling Company

too many pakora.

Hungry Cats features several kinds of

4349 Cumming Ave, Cumming, 515-981-4216,

reasonably priced dim sums, Chinese entrees, $

Her Soup Kitchen

and some breakfast items. They specialize

Owners of Iowa Distilling Company come

625 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-354-1602,

in delivery and takeout, so look forward to

from a long line of farmers and the distillery, $$

enjoying authentic dim sum in the comfort of

itself sources many of its ingredients locally,

The sandwiches are outstanding, the salads

your own home.

and many of the by-products created through

are littered with delicious nuggets and treats

the distilling process are donated back to

that make consuming your leafy greens

local farmers as feed. Try their Prairie Fire—a

a joy and the housemade soup is entirely

twice-distilled whiskey with cinnamon leaf oil.




Iowa Chop House 223 E Washington St, Iowa City, 319-359-1078,, $$

This restaurant proudly emphasizes steaks and chops, which can be spiced up with bold flavors such as blue cheese crust, béarnaise sauce or bacon butter. What really sets this place apart is their vast, interesting and thoughtful line-up of local and regional craft beers that you can learn about at their interactive, self-serve beer barn. Iowa City Yacht Club 13 S Linn St, Iowa City, 319-337-6464,, $

This club features two of Iowa City’s favorite things: live music and grilled cheese. The basement venue features touring and local shows, and the front of the building is now a full-service sandwich stop from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Iowa River Power Company Restaurant 501 1st Ave, Coralville, 319-351-1904,, $$$

This Iowa City favorite has been around for over 35 years, offering exquisite American cuisine and exceptional service with a fantastic view of the Iowa River. They combine the comfort of a welcoming, relaxed environment with the excellence of a fine dining experience. Their brunch is to die for, and while their menus is pricy, the on-thehouse mimosas more than make up for it. This is a popular destination for visitors and locals alike, so be sure to make a reservation for your weekend dinner at IRPCR! J&A Tap 440 N Dubuque St, North Liberty, 319-626-3033,, $

If you’re up for a challenge, try the Big John—a $25 two-pound burger served with a pound and a half of tater tots. If you can eat it under 30 minutes, it’s free! And if you're not in the mood to rise to the challenge, J&A Tap has sand volleyball, live music and is a downto-earth place to hang out and drink. Java House 211 1/2 E Washington St, Iowa City, 319-341-0012 713 Mormon Trek Blvd, Iowa City, 319-887-1215 1575 1st Ave S, Iowa City, 319-248-2074,, $

Java House has everything a good coffee shop should have: a cozy, warm ambience, fresh-brewed coffee and a commitment to promoting community. Stop by their Washington Street location on Fridays at 2 p.m. to watch a live Iowa Public Radio show, or any other day of the week to work on papers, catch up with friends or relax with a BREAD & BUTTER 2019










Vino Vérité presented by Bread Garden Market and Little Village enters its fourth season featuring talented new voices and established masters of non fiction filmmaking in person to present their thought-provoking, chance-taking, and visually-arresting films. Each event features a wine tasting with hand-selected pairings chosen B by the sommeliers of Bread Garden Market.





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good book. If the downtown location is too packed for your taste, check out their other spots for a less crowded but equally charming Java House experience. WInner: Best Coffeehouse in the Best of the CRANDIC 2018 Jefferson County Cider 1839 200th St, Fairfield, 641-451-4323, jeffersoncountycider, $

This Fairfield-based cidery is a seasonal operation, but their inventive and refreshingly dry cider is on tap at many local establishments year-round. Plan a visit for the warmer months when the food truck camps out on the cidery lawn and live music is scheduled. If you're not in for the drive, pick up the brand's canned cider at your local grocer. Jim’s Rib Haven 531 24th St, Rock Island, IL, 319-736-8084, $$

Come for the ribs—duh! Stay for the mac ‘n’ cheese. This hole in the wall Quad Cities institution has been in business since 1967. Don’t miss it! Jimmy Jack’s Rib Shack 1940 Lower Muscatine Rd, Iowa City, 319-354-7427 745 Community Dr, North Liberty, 319 665 2486, $$

Jimmy Jack’s offers a selection of classic, and delicious barbecue offerings. With tender smoked meats, addictive honey butter cornbread and house-made barbecue sauces, this casual, family-style restaurant offers the perfect place to sit and enjoy a taste of the South with a bottle of beer or one of their craft sodas. Joe’s Place 115 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, 319-351-5897,, $

Never a cover and 21+ only, Joe’s Place is a grown-up playground in the heart of downtown Iowa City. It’s chock full of pool tables, dart boards, foosball and more than 20 TVs on which to watch all the games. In 2017 it became the first downtown Iowa City bar to offer a rooftop patio. (Don’t worry, there are TVs up there, too.) There's also a window by the bar where hungry patrons can order a pizza. John’s Grocery 401 E Market St, Iowa City, 319-337-2183,, $

This Iowa City staple since 1948 continues to have a large variety of beer, wine and spirits from all over the world. John's is committed to providing local options by offering things like: Bluebird coffee, sushi from Formosa, 52






Modern Performance in a Historic Venue Washington Street, Downtown Iowa City @englert

Iowa City’s Nonprofit Cinema on The Ped Mall, Downtown Iowa City @icfilmscene BREAD & BUTTER 2019 53


THE BEST! THANK YOU to everyone who came and kicked it at 2018’s inaugural

Breakfast of Champions! DECEMBER 6, 2018 AT THE GRADUATE HOTEL As we raised a glass to everything awesome in the CRANDIC, we raised $800 for the Iowa Harm Reduction Coalition and danced the night away with the CRANDIC's top Drag Troupe —I.C. Kings— DJ Barry Phipps and YOU. Run CRANDIC’s Joshua Schamberger with Iowa Harm Reduction Coalition Executive Director Sarah Ziegenhorn 2018 SPONSOR 54 TITLE BREAD & BUTTER 2019

You're the best. See you at the 2019 event on DECEMBER 5.


















Owner & Chef at Cobble Hill Eatery & Dispensary, Caucho BEST FOOD SCENE GAME CHANGER BEST CHEF










Aug. 1 - Sept. 30






Oasis hummus, Dumpling Darling and more. John’s deli produces fresh bread, breakfast sandwiches and pastries every morning and offers daily lunch specials and fresh soups, all alongside their famous fried chicken. John’s Grocery is a must-visit for those on the Northside looking for daily essentials or a quick bite to eat. WInner: Best Place to Buy Wine in Best of the CRANDIC 2018 Joseph’s Steakhouse 212 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-358-0776,, $$$$

A place equally appropriate for special celebrations or a Tuesday night dinner at the comfort of the dark bar, Joseph’s offers a classic steakhouse menu filled with seafood, steak and abundant side dishes. Those looking for something a bit lighter can rest easy knowing the menu also boasts small plates, sandwiches and burgers.


Kalona Brewing Company 405 B Ave, Kalona, 319-656-3335,

Kalona Brewing Company is a brewpub and scratch kitchen located in the idyllic downtown Kalona, proudly cooking with natural, local ingredients. The restaurant offers upscale dining in a casual environment and “Heavenly beers, brewed by mere mortals.” Find KBC craft beers at neighborhood shops and taps across Eastern and Central Iowa.

Kalona Creamery 2206 540th St SW, Kalona, 319-656-4220,, $

A visit to Kalona Creamery (located in the former Kalona Cheese Factory) involves numerous local treats from cheese curds to specialty meats to pastries. Dine in at the deli for a high-quality sandwich, soup or salad.





country’s first oatmeal mill in 1856. Schumacher improved methods for milling oats, creating something more like the oatmeal served today, instead the depressing, paste-like gruel Samuel Johnson knew.


Quaker Oats Factory in Cedar Rapids


Oatmeal was a tough business in the 19th century, and in 1888, Robert Stuart joined with six other mill owners, who had survived price wars, economic collapses, mill fires and widespread public indifference to oatmeal, to create the American Cereal Company. By that time, the elder Stuart had retired and Douglas had sold his ownership stake. The president of the new comJAV DUCKER pany was a less-regal Schumacher (his largest mill burned down in 1886, almost destroying his business). Stuart, whose Cedar Rapids mill was the company’s second largest production facility, was made secretary-treasurer. But the most powerful person at American Cereal was the general manager, Henry Parsons Crowell.

Cedar Rapids’ Quaker Oats made breakfast cereal marketing a thing.



he most remarkable thing about oatmeal being a popular breakfast item in America is nobody thinks it’s remarkable that oatmeal is popular. It’s a sign of how successful Quaker Oats’ marketing has been. Because even though oats are one of the oldest cultivated grains, before Quaker Oats, most Americans had little interest in eating oat porridge for breakfast. Benjamin Franklin briefly tried to promote oatmeal as a healthy breakfast option, but that went about as well as his efforts to make the turkey America’s national symbol, instead of the bald eagle. To understand how unlikely Quaker Oats’ success was, it’s best to start with a famous literary insult from the 18th century.


“A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the 58


people,” is how Samuel Johnson defined oats in his A Dictionary of the English Language, published in 1755. Johnson was rude, but he wasn’t wrong. Scotland was one of the few places on either side of the Atlantic where oats were a popular food, instead of fodder for livestock. Not much had changed when James Stuart and his son Robert arrived in Cedar Rapids from Canada in 1873, looking for the perfect site for to build a mill. Together with local businessman George Douglas, the Stuarts founded the North Star Oatmeal Mill. John Stuart was born in Scotland. So was Douglas. Most of North Star’s earliest output was exported to Scotland. But the early oatmeal business wasn’t exclusively Scottish. The biggest player was Ferdinand Schumacher, the self-proclaimed “Oatmeal King of Akron, Ohio.” Schumacher, a German immigrant who believed Americans would embrace oatmeal as an inexpensive health food, opened the


Seven years before American Cereal was founded, Crowell purchased the bankrupt Quaker Mill in Ravenna, Ohio, largely because it had trademarked the name “Quaker Oats.” Crowell wasn’t a Quaker, and neither were the two men he bought the mill from. But all three understood the power of reputation. Quakers had a reputation dating back to colonial days for honesty and decency. Food manufacturers didn’t. Much of the food available for purchase in the 19th century was tainted, moldy and occasionally toxic, and the federal government didn’t even try to regulate food safety until 1906. Crowell had ideas about how to use the Quaker reputation to sell oatmeal. Oats were then sold in bulk by grocers, who kept them in barrels. In 1882, Crowell began selling Quaker Oats in boxes, with the reassuring image of a Quaker printed on the front. It was a success, partly because of the imagery, and partly because people wanted an alternative to the oat barrels, which attracted rats and mice. Crowell also launched the first national advertising campaign for a breakfast cereal, buying ads in magazines with nationwide circulation.

The North Star Mill, pictured in 1886, was among the country’s largest oatmeal mills at the time. Courtesy of The History Center, Linn County Historical Society

Henry Parson Crowell wasn’t a Quaker, but he used the good reputation of Quakers, and a lot of innovative marketing stunts, to build an oatmeal empire.

Quaker Oats introduced its now familiar cylindrical shape so it’s boxes would be immediately recognizable.

We wouldn’t have our beloved Condescending Wonka meme if it weren’t for a couple of Scots who opened a mill in Cedar Rapids long ago, would we?

American Cereal adopted Crowell’s strategies, and boxed and sold its oat using the name Quaker Oats. As general manager, Crowell continued to introduce new ideas, such as printing recipes on boxes, trial size packages and advertising blitzes focused on individual cities. The ideas worked, and oatmeal became more popular. As American Cereal grew, so did Crowell’s ambition.


Following years of brutal corporate in-fighting with Schumacher and Stuart, Crowell took complete control of American Cereal by 1901. He created a new parent company for the business, Quaker Oats. He continued to push for innovative marketing schemes. In 1908, the company introduced oatmeal cookies to the general public, by printing a recipe on its boxes. In 1915, the boxes changed shape to its now familiar cylinder, to make them visually distinct on a shelf. Quaker Oats offered its customers premiums ranging from the practical (a double boiler for anyone who mailed in $1 and a box label) to the entertaining (toys in the box) to the odd but eye-catching (a coupon for a 10-ft. by 10-ft. plot of land in Darrien, Connecticut). As the company grew, it also diversified. In 1926, it made its first non-oatmeal acquisition, buying the Aunt Jemima pancake flour company. Over the decades it’s bought and sold many other companies, mostly food and beverage businesses, and diversified its own lines of breakfast cereals, as anyone who’s ever been in Cedar Rapids on “Crunch Berry day” knows. The company’s last act of truly innovate marketing came almost 30 years after Crowell died. Concerned about declining sales in the late 1960s, Quaker Oats decided to launch a new line of candy. It made a deal to obtain licensing rights for candy inspired by Roald Dahl’s book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, in return for providing financing to make a movie version of the story. The results were Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, starring University of Iowa alum Gene Wilder, and instant demand for Wonka bars and Everlasting Gobstoppers. Both the studio and the company kept quiet about Quaker Oats’ involvement, and the film’s role as a marketing tool for candy. Crowell would have been pleased. After a century in business, Quaker Oats was purchased by PepsiCo in 2001. The sale price for the company that convinced Americans oats were more than livestock fodder was $13.8 billion. BREAD & BUTTER 2019



Kathy’s Pies

Kool Moo

La Rana Bistro

Le Gourmet

616 5th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids,

1020 Old Marion Rd NE, Cedar Rapids,

120 Washington St, Decorah,

201 S Clinton St, Iowa City,


319-393-5576, $

563-382-3067, $$$

319-471-0959, $

This long-standing bakery in

This sweet blast from the past

The new American

Soboro bread, green tea sticks,

Cedar Rapids is regularly stocked

is only open during the summer,

cuisine at this family-

red bean buns and cream buns

with an extensive selection of

serving ice cream and frozen

owned bistro is not to miss. The

are just a few of the delicious

treats to satisfy any sweet tooth.

yogurt at a reasonable price.

intimate and cozy atmosphere

Asian pastries offered at Le

is welcoming and the variety

Gourmet. They are the only

Kettle House Bakery and Cafe

Korean BBQ

of unique dishes are to die for.

Korean restaurant in Iowa City

945 6th Ave, Marion, 319-310-5509,

624 S Gilbert St, Iowa City,

Great cocktails and an extensive

to offer Asian pastries, and with, $

319-351-7000, $$$

wine and beer selection make it a

their convenient Old Capitol

What started as a 4-H project

A strange bridge over a koi pond

prime choice for a dinner out.

Town Center location, it is no

developed into a farmers market

welcomes you when you walk

stand and finally a legitimate

in, but the tastes of Korea come

La Regia Taqueria

students to grab one on their

bakery just shy of the square in

alive here. Sit at one of their

436 Hwy 1, Iowa City,

way to or from work or class.

downtown Marion. This quaint,

barbecue tables and get the

319-341-8226,, $$

family-run place is the spot to go

bulgogi, marinated beef that you

La Regia is Iowa City’s choice

Leaf Kitchen

for espresso, baked goods and

grill at your table.

for traditional Mexican cuisine.

301 1/2 Kirkwood Ave, Iowa City,

The staff is efficient and friendly

319-338-1909,, $$

La Quercia

while delivering authentic

Leaf Kitchen serves breakfast,

Konomi Restaurant

400 Hakes Dr, Norwalk, 515-981-1625,

Mexican dishes that stand out

lunch, brunch and gourmet tea.

843 Quarry Rd, Coralville,, $

from the competition. From

With an unforgettable décor and

319-351-2880,, $$

Served and revered throughout

tacos to tortas and a variety of

an array of delicious options,

As one of the area’s best sushi

the country, La Quercia makes

vegetarian options, La Regia

Leaf Kitchen is the choice for an

restaurants, Konomi will not

delectable artisan cured meats

is a great decision for anyone

unforgettable meal. The Granola

disappoint when you stop by

that would surely make an

craving Mexican. For five straight

Pancakes are basically three

their Coralville Iowa River Landing

Italian weep with joy.

years, La Regia has been named

stacks of perfection on a plate.

homemade lunch.

hassle for Iowa City locals and

location and try their stellar sushi

the best Mexican restaurant in

and Teppanyaki style cuisine.

Johnson County.





Lighthouse Inn Supper Club

Linn Street Dive

The Local Crumb

2228 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids,

6905 Mount Vernon Rd SE, Cedar

117 N Linn St, Iowa City,

221 1st St NE, Mount Vernon,

319-364-5537, leonardospizzacr.

Rapids, 319-362-3467,

319-354-1001, $$-$$$

319-535-0623,, $

com, $$, $$

Housed in the former Devotay

Located in the First Street

Step into the time machine

The third oldest restaurant in

location, this cozy, eclectic

Community Center, Local Crumb

and go back to the ’60s at this

Iowa, this supper club serves

restaurant features familiar

is a great place to buy artisan

retro restaurant with red and

traditional American entrees in

Midwest comfort foods, craft

loaves of bread from a baker who

black leather walls and antique

an old-fashioned environment.

cocktails and throwback beers.

is passionate in the pursuit of his

jukeboxes decorating every

Built in 1912, the Lighthouse has

booth—a classic destination in

had a storied past. Rumored to

Lion Bridge Brewing Company

The sourdough! Everything is

Cedar Rapids for over 60 years.

be a place for Chicago mobsters

59 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids,

well worth the carbs.

Pizza is the star in their extensive

to “beat the heat” during


menu but other offerings like

prohibition as well as a favorite, $$

Los Compadres

burgers and sandwiches never

spot of infamous guests such as

Their award-winning creative

2825 6th St SW, Cedar Rapids,

disappoint. Open until midnight

Al Capone and John Dillinger,

brews and inspired food (please,


during the weekends and 11

Lighthouse Inn is a go-to for a

don’t skip the dessert!) in a, $$

p.m any other day of the week,

dose of history with your meal.

modern industrial space are

Los Compadres promises

perfect for groups large or small.

unique flavors from authentic

Leonardo’s is the perfect stop for a late night bite.

craft. The brioche! The bagels!

Lincoln Winebar

recipes. Don’t skip the tableside

125 1st St W, Mount Vernon,

Little Bohemia Tavern

The Lift


1317 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-366-

180 Main St, Dubuque, 563-584-9712, $, $$$

6262, $

The Lost Cuban

Hidden away on Lower Main, this

A Mount Vernon favorite,

Better known to locals as Little

209 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids,

well-curated live music venue

Lincoln Winebar is a long-

Bo, this charming historic saloon

319-362-2627, $$

and basement bar has a great

running wood-fired pizza

is one of the oldest bars in Cedar

Whether you’re looking for a new

selection of craft and domestic

joint that delivers some of the

Rapids. The rustic décor and

lunch spot or in search of a late-

beer in a TV-free environment.

areas best wood-fired pies, a

genuine Bohemian dishes like the

night drink-and-snack spot, The

selection of tinned fish and, of

goulash transport you to an old

Lost Cuban is what you’re after.

course, wine and beer.

Czech town.

This cozy, compact restaurant






Napoli’s Fettucini Bravissimo






Dumpling Darling

Phong Lan

500 Marion Blvd, Marion

213 Iowa Ave, Iowa City

216 8th St SE, Cedar Rapids

This locally owned restaurant is right

A fiery debate might erupt if one tried to

“This food touches the soul of my appetite,”

down the street from the always busy

claim that dumplings are noodles... even

says one of the many online reviews of Phong

Olive Garden in Cedar Rapids. Good news

though they are, in a way. Controversy

Lan. Soul is definitely in abundance at this

for those that go to Olive Garden for the

aside, this tiny restaurant serves up

Cedar Rapids restaurant, whereas frills and

breadsticks—Napoli’s also gives you fresh

japchae, a dish made with delightful sweet

showmanship are not. Although this family-run

bread, and it tastes way better and less

potato noodles. They are similar in texture

Vietnamese restaurant has been open for over

artificial. They advertise that their food is 99

and appearance to rice noodles, but they

a decade, it doesn’t seem to be commonly

percent from scratch, including their creamy

have just a little bit more of an earthy

talked about except by a group of passionate

tomato soup that serves as the perfect dip

and starchy taste. The dish comes with

regulars and reviewers. The pho is delicious, and

for the bread. It’s one of those restaurants

spinach, mushrooms and carrots and a

non-meat-eaters might be entertained by the

where you fit right in whether you are in a

spicy paste, gochujang. The gochujang sits

vegetarian version that comes with bok choy,

fancy dress or in a T-shirt and jeans. The

on top, making it easy to parcel into small

onions and lightly fried tofu. It’s pretty light fare,

delicious Fettuccine Bravissimo comes with

quantities (or large quantities, if you’re

but the first class crab rangoons help round out

artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes and capers.

brave) with each bite. For dessert, be sure

the meal. Pros can be seen making perfect little

Eating at a cheesy chain restaurant is fine

to try the Carrot Cake Dumplings.

rice noodle bites each time, while newbies slurp

every now and again, but next time you’re in

and messily enjoy. If you’re inclined to try to whip

Marion drive just a little bit further to check

up your own pho, the restaurant is located right

out this underrated gem.

next to Saigon Market, but it’s probably smarter to let Phong Lan make it for you.

Jiang Hu Asian Street Food 110 E Court St, Iowa City This Chinese restaurant features a buildyour-own noodle bowl bar with nearly 30 ingredients—a rotating assortment of noodles, seafood, meat, tofu and vegetables. Called malatang, the street food-inspired bowls are charged by weight, then covered in hot broth (mild or spicy). The Youpo noodles are a favorite among many, though a brief skim of the menu might take you right past this dish. A simplistic and straightforward entree, hand-pulled noodles are expertly dressed in a spicy garlic chile oil and presented for your enjoyment and indulgence. Don’t sleep on this nest of tangy, peppery noodles. It’s a true comfort that will keep

JiangHu Asian

you coming back for more.

Street Food’s Youpo Noodles



Your Own Best Friend It can be a blessing to dine alone. Sure, there’s no one at your immediate disposal to talk to and ease moments of potential discomfort, but you could rouse up a bit of casual conversation with your server if you’re desperate. Pay attention to the people around you. Daydream. Read a book. Don’t be afraid to request a table for one; it can be a luxury. But if dining alone is new territory for you, here are some places to try that might help you ease into that solo dining life.

Grab a solo seat at Saint Burch Tavern’s

Saint Burch Tavern, 127 Iowa Ave, Iowa City Claim a spot at Saint Burch’s raw bar and you’ll


be so entertained you won’t even notice you’re alone. The refrigerated cases are lined with the day’s selection of fresh oysters, and the chefs behind the raw bar are busy shucking orders

perch on which to enjoy your $5 gourmet piz-

you’re dining solo, snag a spot at the coveted

and preparing seafood towers. There are not a

za—you’ve tried those automated kiosks, yeah?

sushi bar and watch as owner Vincent and his team tackle the orders rolling in and the spec-

lot of opportunities to watch someone shuck oysters here in the Midwest, so I find it intrigu-

Basta Ristorante, 121 Iowa Ave, Iowa City

tacular show that unfolds. The flurry of activity

ing. If you lose interest in the seafood, just a few

The cozy bar area is one of my favorite dining

and delicate knife work will retain your atten-

seats down the counter is the actual bar where

spaces in town. The long banquette is nestled

tion; you won’t need to scroll on your phone or

bartenders are vigorously shaking cocktails and

with a handful of small marble tables that are

pack reading material. The fish is fresh, the pre-

pouring glasses of wine. Over the dinner hour

great for two people but really pretty perfect

sentation artful and the atmosphere welcoming

things get busy, and watching the bartenders

for a solo feast—you can spread out and sample

and cozy.

and servers navigate the space and orders is

a few different dishes with a nice glass of wine.

like watching dancers perform a graceful ballet,

From this vantage point, you've got eyes on

RG Books Lounge and Vino’s Ristorante,

something I never tire of.

the pizza oven, bar activity and if you must, the

3611 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids

TV. There are plenty of smaller plate options on

This cozy and romantic restaurant is nestled in a

Bread Garden Market, 225 S Linn St, Iowa City

the menu (salads and appetizers) but your best

strip mall in Cedar Rapids. As perfect as it is for

The cafeteria-style seating on the expansive

option is to order a wood-fired pizza. It might

a date night for two, it’s worthy of a treat-your-

indoor/outdoor patio is the ideal option for a

be too much for you to finish in one sitting—no

self solo moment as well. The intimate lounge

solo diner, but my favorite spot here are the

judgment whatsoever if it’s not—but it’s pretty

area is a great spot when you’re in the mood

stand-up counters (with stools available if you

generous in size and cut into six slices, so

for a drink—lounge-style seating, bar seats and

like) that run the length of the wine department.

depending on what else you order, you’ve taken

booths are available depending on your mood.

You’re flanked by literal walls of wine which is

care of dinner tonight and lunch tomorrow. If

If sitting alone with your thoughts and a martini

an obvious plus if you need a little eye candy to

that doesn’t sway you, the handmade pasta

is a terrifying thought, the walls of the lounge

keep you occupied. Yes, you might get a little

here is superb and will surely satisfy.

are lined with old books from the Cedar Rapids Public Library and ripe for perusal. When you’re

cozy with your neighbors, but it’s somehow a bit quieter over here and feels like a nice escape

Sushiya, 745 Community Dr, Ste A North Liberty

ready for dinner, the Italian fare on Vino’s menu

from the hustle and bustle of the rest of this

Again, this is a great spot to observe skilled

is bound to be captivating enough that you

high-volume lunch and dinner spot. It’s a great

chefs and restaurant staff work their magic. If

won’t even miss having a dining companion.




prepares traditional Cuban fare

gelato afterwards. Sacrilegious

amd cocktails for both lunch and

Monday dinners serve up Jerry’s


renditions of Chicken Barbeque, Korean Bulgogi, Taco, Brisket,

LP - Street Food

Corned Beef and Hawaiian pizza.

302 3rd Ave SW, Cedar Rapids,

fresh cut, beautifully arranged, locally-sourced flowers


Mai Pho, $$

2315 Edgewood Rd SW, Cedar Rapids,

The menu here features street

319-396-4337,, $$

food favorites like ramen,

The menu at Mai Pho (also

lettuce wraps, skewers and

known as Pho Mai) is loaded with

more. A balanced wine and

traditional Vietnamese dishes,

beer menu pairs nicely with the

each more intriguing than the

internationally-inspired food.

last. In a casual, colorful dining room, sample familiar dishes,

Lu’s Deli

like their signature pho, or try a

1010 3rd St, Cedar Rapids,

Vietnamese savory crepe.

319-200-2221,, $

Named in honor of owner Laurie

Mama’s Deli and Catering

Konecny’s grandmother, this

125 E Washington St, Iowa City,

NewBo deli takes a simple and


unfussy approach to the humble, $

sandwich. Using family recipes,

The next time you’re looking around

Lu’s provides customers with

downtown Iowa City for a place

homemade sandwiches, soups,

to grab lunch, check out Mama’s

salads and desserts.

satisfying, homemade specials.

Lucky Penny

The Map Room

1705 Boyson Rd, Hiawatha,

416 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids,

319-200-4312,, $$


Lucky Penny uses high-

This miniature restaurant is your

quality ingredients throughout

ticket to international flavors.

their classic menu of pizzas,

Using the burger as the vehicle,

sandwiches and burgers

Map Room’s menu evokes the

creating a casual, comfortable

flavors of major international

atmosphere that’s right whatever

cities, transforming the

the occasion.

ubiquitous into truly unique and inspired preparations.

Maestro Empanadas 423 10th Ave, Coralville, 319-621-7481,

Masala Indian Cuisine, $

9 S Dubuque St, Iowa City,

This counter service restaurant

319-338-6199,, $$

offers a delicious selection of

Masala has started including

made-from-scratch empanadas,

meat options on its menu to

soups and desserts.

appeal to a broader audience, but their vegetarian dishes truly

Weddings & Events • Local Delivery Workshops • Flower Subscriptions Wrapped Bouquets • Custom Arrangements


Maggie’s Farm Pizza

shine. When the lunch buffet

1308 Melrose Ave,

features malai kofta, make sure

University Heights, 319-351-4588,

you have plenty of time for a, $$

nap after lunch: It’s impossible to

Napoli-style pizza is the focus

not eat way too much of these

here, but let this only be the

delicious, vegetable-and-cheese

beginning of your family-style

balls and their accompanying

feast. The best way to do

tomato cream sauce.

Maggie’s is to bring a crew and order a full spread of salads and

Melting Bite

antipasti—including meatballs,

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids,

burrata, roasted brussels sprouts

319-224-0425, $$

and creamy polenta. Get enough

What started as as a home-based

pizzas for everyone to try a

bakery expanded to NewBo City

couple of varieties and be sure

Market and added savory Indian

stick around for house-made

food to the menu, focusing on BREAD & BUTTER 2019



Event Central

Throwing an event can be stressful. Here are a few event spaces and caterers who work hard to relieve the burden.


WOOD-FIRED ON WHEELS As wood-fired pizza has made its way into mainstream consciousness, local restaurateurs have found a way to make it even more accessible to the masses: developing mobile ovens to bring that tasty, crispy pizza you love to your own turf, on your own terms!

8526, 3867 James Ave SW, Iowa City, VIA WEBSITE

Self-described as “a boundless venue for agricultural and culinary celebration,” this sprawling farmstead on the southwest side of Iowa City is available to rent in addition to the events/

and herb garden seating area, as well as an opportunity to visit with the goats, chickens, turkeys and rabbits. Provender, a mobile catering operation run by chef Chris Grebner, provides all the catering services, from wood-fired pizzas to multi-course menus. CARTER PHOTOGRAPHY

Eastbank Venue


classes hosted by the venue. Rental includes tables, chairs, linens, flatware, glassware and all place settings. It also includes access to the walking path

97 3rd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, Located in the iconic Smulekoff’s building in downtown Cedar Rapids, Eastbank provides everything you need to host a social reception. Uniquely integrating a modern, urban sophistication while celebrating original design elements found in this historical preservation property, the venue boasts both a large scale event space (room for up to 475 dinner guests) and a more intimate lounge area. Both spaces are fully customizable and have access to dining tables and chairs, floor-length linens, clas-

Lincoln Wine Bar 125 First St W, Mount Vernon Expect a beautifully tiled Marraforni brick oven emblazoned with the phrase “Stay Gold” and a crew of passionate foodies and pizzaiolos to feed your hungry crowd. Ask about additional food and beverage service.

sic china, stemware and flatware. Maggie’s Farm Pizza The University of Iowa CAROLINE BRYAN

Old Capitol Museum and Museum of Natural History

1308 Melrose Ave, Iowa City

21 N Clinton St, Iowa City,

This mobile brick oven will show up to your wedding


or next special event and steal the show, cranking out

How about a bit of historical flair to spice up your next event? Have your wedding ceremony on the grand staircase

classic Napoli pies all night long. Gluten-free crust is available by request.

of the Old Capitol. Throw your kid’s next birthday party among the beautiful winged specimens of Bird Hall at the Museum of Natural History. Catering services can be coordinated through University of Iowa’s Iowa Memorial Union Catering Department, or arrangements can be made with outside vendors. Because the sites are both a mu-

Provender A wood-fired oven on wheels and it’s very own crew will

seum and historic site, guests must adhere to specific rules about food, drinks, flowers

bring a unique experience to any party or celebration

and decorations that may be different from other event venues, but that are necessary

you’ve got on the books. Expect pizzas and other treats

to protect the building and their collections.



pulled from the wood-fired hearth.


One Twenty Six’s vegetable samosas

Oasis Falafel

Leaf Kitchen

One Twenty Six

Bread Garden Market

206 N Linn St, Iowa City

301 1/2 Kirkwood Ave, Iowa City

126 E Washington St, Iowa City

225 S Linn St, Iowa City

Voted Best Wedding Catering

Hidden gem, Leaf Kitchen, makes

Whether you’re hosting a chill

Bread Garden Market has a very

in the 2018 Best of the CRAN-

amazing food—if you’ve not been

backyard picnic or a social event

straightforward catering menu

DIC competition, Oasis is a

yet, order their Moroccan Eggs

for your colleagues, One Twenty

with dishes time-tested and

crowd-pleaser for all eaters.

or their special Bahn Mi sandwich

Six will literally deliver you the

guaranteed to be great, making

Vegetarian and vegan requests

when it’s available. Leaf Kitchen

perfect bites for whatever your

coordinating an event a breeze.

are easily accommodated and

also offers catering services and

vibe. The platters are a true hit

The chef and catering managers at

the food is always on-point; your

will design a menu specifically for

with incredible flavors and artful

this bustling downtown lunch spot

guests will be in heaven and might

your event or private party. Give

presentation. Housemade Vegeta-

entertain custom requests to make

remember the food they ate better

them a list of your favorite Leaf

ble Samosas! Wood-Fired Tandoori

your wedding or special event

than the vows you recited. Besides

dishes or a theme to work from

Chicken Wings! Street Tacos! All

something unique and remarkable.

catering your nuptials, the team at

and Chef Masae will work her

are great and worthy of your next

Rumor has it their delicious burg-

Oasis also delivers boxed lunches

magic. Part of the draw of Leaf’s

cocktail party. Entrees are well ex-

ers are something your wedding

to the office, which is truly great

food is the undisputed charm

ecuted, too, with flavor, spice and

guests will continue to mention

because you can easily avoid those

of their cozy little cafe, but their

an attention to detail that is hard

long after the sun goes down on

curious sniffs and inquisitive glanc-

off-site work delivers delectable,

to come by for plated affairs.

your big day.

es towards your aromatic lunch by

mouth-watering food no matter

ordering one for everyone.


One Twenty Six’s Wood-fired Tandoori Chicken Wings





the fare typical of a street food

Mikhael’s Restaurant

Millstream Brewing Co.

Mississippi River Distillery


1426 6th St SW, Cedar Rapids,

835 48th Ave, Amana, 319-622-3672,

303 N Cody Rd, Le Claire,

319-366-3644, $, $

563-484-4342,, $

Mesa Pizza

Considered the best breakfast in

Venture out to the Amana

Opened in 2010 by two brothers,

114 E Washington St, Iowa City,

town by many locals, this family

Colonies for a visit to one of

what started as a unique idea

319-351-6372,, $

style restaurant serves lunch and

Iowa’s oldest craft breweries. This

grew into an opportunity to

Mesa does pizza like no one

dinner using only the freshest

European-style microbrewery

create truly home-grown,

else in the Iowa City downtown

ingredients. Their Shipwrecks

got its start with just two beers.

handmade spirits with a focus

area. Their innovative creations

are a menu favorite, or if you

These days, it boasts more than

on a “grain to glass” process,

prove that they know how to mix

prefer sweet to savory, try the

15 different beers and a couple

purchasing farm fresh grain from

flavors, from their Pulled Pork

cinnamon french toast. You will

of killer sodas as well as the

within 25 miles of the distillery.

& Onion Rings pizza to their

not regret it.

Brau Haus, an authentic German

Chili Cheese Fries slice. The line

Bierhalle with delicious German-

Molly’s Cupcakes

style pub food

14 S Clinton St, Iowa City,

stretches out the door until after

The Mill Restaurant

bar close on weekend nights,

120 E Burlington St, Iowa City,

so if you want to avoid a crowd,

319-351-9529,, $$

Mirabito’s Italian

Check out Molly’s for a specialty

check out their lunch specials!

Specialty pizzas, saucy wings and

40 Sugar Creek Ln, North Liberty,

cupcake from their menu or, if

deep-fried pickles are a good

319-459-1342, $$

those don’t suit your fancy, build

Micky’s Irish Pub

reason to visit any restaurant.

A strip mall setting may not

your own! Molly’s contributes

11 S Dubuque St, Iowa City,

The Mill has all this and more.

be the first place you look for

part of their profits to local

319-338-6860, $$

Opening in 1962 as a coffee

well-executed Italian cuisine, but

schools, so satisfy your inner

The atmosphere is friendly, the pub

house/restaurant/folk music

in North Liberty, that is exactly

child’s sweet tooth and treat

grub hits the spot, and the beer is

venue, The Mill has been an outlet

where you’ll find it. This small,

yourself at this local business

ice-cold. Micky’s is a great place to

for Iowa City talent for over 50

locally owned family business

that supports the children in our

relax on the patio in the summer

years, and a premiere location for

offers exceptional Italian-


or warm up in their cozy booths

those searching for dinner and

American staples in a casually

during the winter. Their kitchen is

entertainment. Feel like staying

sophisticated environment.

now open til 1 a.m. Thursday, Friday

in? No worries, The Mill also offers

and Saturday nights.

free delivery to those in Iowa City.



319-333-1297,, $



Mt Hamill Tap

from noodles, entrees and

knowledgeable and the glass

303 2nd St, Coralville, 319-338-7400,

1467 155th Ave, Donnellson,

desserts. Gluten-free options are

cases boast a variety of unique, $$

319-469-2221, $$$


cuts and preparations, fresh and

Monica’s offers an extensive

If the dozens of cars lined up

selection of delicious gluten-

at this roadside bar don’t make

NaRa Thai Cuisine

free menu items making it truly

it abundantly clear, this place

1725 Blairs Ferry Rd, Marion,

a restaurant for all. The upscale

is both legendary and a local

319-200-4004,, $$

New Pioneer Co-op Café

Italian-American comfort food

favorite. Let’s be clear: everyone

NaRa offers an authentic but

1401 5th St, Coralville, $

is served up by friendly and

comes for the broasted chicken.

approachable menu of Thai

Affordable breakfast, lunch and

appetizers, noodle and rice

snacks on-the-go with local and

Mystic Chocolate

dishes, as well as street food and

organic ingredients are now,

special dishes.

available in the Coralville Public

accomodating servers in a sleek, modern take on a diner.

frozen meat and seafood as well as a deli.

Mosley’s Barbecue and

319-362-3054, $


Born out of her raw, vegan

Need Pizza

healthy to indulgent, with gluten-

525 S Gilbert St, Iowa City,

dessert company, Sweet Raw

207 2nd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids,

free, vegan and paleo-friendly


Joy, owner Laurie Moritz


choices just like in Co-op stores.

125 E Zeller St, North Liberty,

produces “plant medicine” in the

Office-dwellers come for a slice

319-626-4227,, $$

form of artisan, stone-ground

at lunch, bar-hoppers visit for

New Pioneer Food Co-op

Delicious wafts of smoked meat

raw chocolate infused with

their wide selection of Iowa beer

22 S Van Buren St, Iowa City,

will lure you in from the street,

Medicine Flower extracts and

and late-night eaters stop by for


and the sunny patio, simple

essences, quartz crystals and,

their delectable New Haven-style

1101 2nd St, Coralville, 319-358-5513

but comfortable interior and

most recently, CBD oil.


3338 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar

keep you in your seat for the


Nelson’s Meat Market

With locations in Iowa City,

better part of an afternoon, if

500 Marion Blvd, Marion,

1140 Old Marion Rd NE, Cedar Rapids,

Coralville and Cedar Rapids, the

you’re not careful. A second

319-377-2100,, $$

319-393-8161,, $$

New Pioneer Co-op provides a

location opened in North Liberty

Make time for a visit to Napoli’s

Looking for an old-school,

selection of both prepared foods

and serves the same delicious

where you’ll find made from

high-quality butcher? The team

and groceries, in addition to

barbeque and drinks.

scratch Italian standards ranging

at Nelson’s Meat Market is

beer and wine. Focusing on local

Library. Options range from

rotating selection of beers will

Rapids, 319-365-2632,, $$



Take A Drive




Sure, there are plenty of exciting local dining options in the CRANDIC, but if you need a change of scenery, here’s a selection of not-to-miss spots.


A Schera’s Algerian American Restaurant 107 S Main St, Elkader This northeastern Iowa town is named after



an Algerian leader who resisted the French conquest of Algeria, and is rumored to be home to both the largest stone arch bridge and the oldest continuously operated grocery store west of the Mississippi. It’s also home to a great Algerian-American restaurant with a well-curated craft beer and wine list. Their tap, bottle and can menu is littered with everything from sours and goses to smoked beers and wild ales, and the wine menu features unique selections as well. Sink your teeth into a camel burger—yes, you read that correctly—a seafood or chicken tagine or their signature Couscous Royale. Be sure to finish your meal with halva: sesame seed fudge.


B Hale Tap & Supper Club 5522 County Rd E-45, Wyoming A few houses, a road sign, a couple sheds and a destination restaurant that brings in its biggest fans and newbies with great success—this is the little village know as Hale. Friday night is primetime here with surf and turf specials, legendary prime rib and a lively bar with a crew that keeps you entertained and fed all night long. They are also open for lunch and known for some of the best burgers you’re going to get in Jones County. Make the trip and you can tell everyone that you’ve "been to Hale and back" and you’d "go through Hale" again for the juicy steaks and crispy breaded fish specials flying out of the "hotter than Hale" fryers!




Ottumwa’s famous Canteen Lunch can be found nestled beneath the second story of a very lucky parking garage JORDAN SELLERGREN

C Cornell College Café Bon Appetit

E Thirsty Camel Supper Club

600 1st St, Mount Vernon

18747 IA-70, Conesville

Scoot over, Kirkwood, because you’re not the

The Louisa-Muscatine County line has a tasty

only school in the area that’s serving delicious

and very lively rendezvous point—the Thirsty

food! The executive chef and cooks at Cornell

Camel. Classic supper clubs may be few and far

have carved out a name for themselves in this

between, but the ones we still have are some of

town. Are you a vegan or vegetarian? Perfect;

the best destination restaurants around. Visit on

they have a fresh salad bar, pasta selection

Fridays for prime rib specials or all-you-can-eat

(whole wheat and gluten free) with sauces

fried catfish. Try the frog legs, thick-cut ham

like pesto, tomato basil and a little kale on the

steaks, or hit the salad bar, freshly stocked with

side to get those greens we all need. Café Bon

all your mayo-based favorites and the infamous

Appetit satisfies the meat-eaters as well with

Camel Turds—cubed sirloin lightly breaded

a sandwich station, all-day breakfast, burgers,

and fried. Use your GPS if you must, or just tell

pizza and more. The selections in this cafeteria

people you're heading to the joint where the

rotate daily so pay attention to their seasonal,

watermelon farms meet the corn fields next to

international and local flavors on their website

the marshes. That’s Conesville, my friends, and

and add Mount Vernon to your list of foodie

the gateway to Southeast Iowa.

destinations. F Canteen Lunch in the Alley D Jim’s Rib Haven

(and an Army of Taquerias)

531 24th St, Rock Island

112 2nd St E, Ottumwa

The smoke from Jim’s Rib Haven can lure you in

Ottumwa is home to one of the most iconic

from blocks away; next thing you know you’re

restaurants and sandwiches in the Midwest. You

saluting the pit masters. Beyond platters full

may call it a tavern, Maid-Rite or loose meat

of the best ribs in this solar system, they have

sandwich, but in Ottumwa they call these Can-

other classic barbecue selections like pulled

teens. This restaurant is tucked away in an alley

pork, chicken, ham, beef and amazing sides like

and surrounded by a parking garage, but you

chili fries, slaw, potato salad and baked beans.

won’t have any trouble finding it. The crumbled

Don’t you dare leave this historic smokehouse

beef is piled high at Canteen’s and there is very

without getting the ribs, though. This place is

little chance anyone could ever get tired of one

so damn great you’ll be eyeballing the napkins

of the best things that’s hit a hamburger bun.

you’re about to discard. Before that happens,

Ottumwa also has one of highest concentra-

I recommend just ordering another slab and

tions of authentic taquerias in Iowa in just a

thanking the inventors of elastic pants. Oh, and

three-mile radius. There’s nothing better than

get a Kool-Aid with your meal.

having to wipe mustard off your cheek from a Canteen and work some cilantro out of your teeth within just minutes of each other.




Order the Special Just take their word for it. Bud’s Custom Meats 3027 IA-22, Riverside Bud’s has some of the best quality meats in the Iowa City area, but they are also famous for their house-smoked ribs, available every Saturday. Here’s the catch though: Bud’s is only open until noon on Saturdays, and they are known to sell out of the beautiful slabs of this carnivorous treasure. No one will judge you if you choose to eat them with your bare hands in your car in the parking lot; they’re that good. Pick up some of their award-winning jerky or fresh-cut steaks, and shop their frozen section for specialized meats, cuts and house-made sausages. Located right off Highway 218, you’ll notice Bud’s is powered by solar panels as you turn into this meat-lovers’ home away from home. Hilltop Tavern 1100 N Dodge St, Iowa City One of Iowa City’s oldest bars has one of Iowa City’s greatest specials every Friday.

Hilltop Tavern’s hot

The Hilltop Tavern alternates each week

pork sandwich,

between hot roast beef or hot roast pork

served with mashed

sandwiches on fresh bread with homemade

potatoes and gravy

mashed potatoes and smothered with rich gravy and warm veggies. We had you at homemade mashed potatoes, didn’t we? The


Hilltop also has some amazing homemade chocolate chip cookies waiting for you when you pay your tab, and one of the area’s best

County’s best breaded pork tenderloins to go

Vivian’s Soul Food

Bloody Mary’s that comes with a dose of

with those tacos. Bet you haven’t considered

4342 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids

Sriracha for a spicy kick.

that combo before, but a Tuesday evening at

The undisputed winner in the comfort cate-

Shake’s will make you a believer.

gory is and will probably always be soul food,

Shakespeare’s Pub & Grill

and Cedar Rapids is home to a soul food su-

819 S 1st Ave, Iowa City

Old 218 Tap

perstar. Order any of the specials at Vivian’s

You now have plans for the upcoming

108 Main St, Hills

Soul Food and let the staff pile on the sides.

Tuesday and every one after that, Iowa

Every Wednesday in Hills you can sink your

Fried chicken and catfish are an easy choice,

City. This southeast-side pub runs a taco

teeth into a tender and juicy French dip steak

and while you can’t go wrong with either,

special for just $1 each from 5-9 p.m. every

sandwich. Just a short drive from Iowa City,

don’t forget to see what else they have fea-

Tuesday. Chicken, beef, salsa, sour cream,

this beefy special is served with a rich au jus

tured. Beef lovers, rejoice! Vivian’s delivers on

lettuce, black olives, jalapeños, tomatoes

that soaks right into the fresh roll, keeping ev-

short ribs, meatloaf and tender slow-cooked

and cheese are loaded on the all-important

ery bite moist but intact while you enjoy this

oxtails. Entrees are always the headliner, but

tortillas, while the bartenders keep the cold

classic sandwich. Old 218 Tap is a local oasis

don’t feel bad if you just get sides with sides

beverages coming the whole time. Authentic

and well worth driving the extra couple miles.

and a side of sides; your options are corn

street tacos these are not, but Shakespeare’s

They’re also known for some of the best and

bread, baked mac ‘n’ cheese, red beans and

does provide a healthy dose of comfort and

most creative burgers in the area, including

rice, collard greens, spaghetti and a lot more.

nostalgia, taking you back to your school caf-

a selection of other great sandwiches, wings

Just try to leave this place without a helping

eteria days. They also have the fryer geared

and ribeye specials sizzling off the charbroiler.

of banana pudding!

up and ready to prepare one of Johnson 72



and organic, New Pi supports over 125 local producers who are committed to respecting and protecting our environment. New Pioneer does the label reading so you don’t have to and promises to follow high quality standards in the products it offers; genetically modified foods, artificial colors, sweeteners, flavors or preservatives are not allowed in any products on the shelves. Winner: of Best Produce and Best Grocery Store in Best of the CRANDIC 2018 NewBo City Market 1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-4050,, $$

A variety of artisan vendors serve up unique food in the dynamic NewBo City Market—part business incubator, part gathering place, part food court. Nile Ethiopian 89 2nd St #2, Coralville, 319-519-2490, $$

At long last—an Ethiopian restaurant has opened in the Coralville and Iowa City area. Nile Ethiopian features vegetarian and meat dishes that are expertly made with fresh ingredients. If it’s your first time trying out these flavors, they have step-by-step “How to Eat Ethiopian Food” instructions on every table. No. 18 Karaoke and Bubble Tea 223 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-333-1265, $

Rent a room with your friends and enjoy a Boba tea or a smoothie while jamming out to the karaoke machine! Nodo & Nodo Downtown 600 N Dodge St, Iowa City, 319-512-5028, $$ 5 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-359-1181,, $$

Whether it’s a sandwich, soup or salad you won’t be disappointed by the filling options at Nodo. Items are made fresh by a friendly staff who serve up a quality meal at a reasonable price. Huge salads filled with fresh ingredients make deciding between a salad or sandwich quite the dilemma. The Egg Sandwich is a deliciously affordable way to start any day and the mango relish on the Ham & Mango

Jewelry + Botanicals



is not to be missed. Pair these options with Brew City Fries for just $2.50 and you’ll have any meal covered.





PLACES TO EAT THAT WON’T HAVE A LIVE BAND What to do when you don’t feel like pandering to a live musical act.BY JESSICA CARNEY


on’t worry; they don’t have a band tonight. I called ahead to make sure,” my husband said about the restaurant where we were thinking of eating that evening. Though we’d technically passed the threshold already, I think that was the moment we officially entered our 30s. I had to tease him about being old and ornery, but I was glad that he checked. It’s not that I dislike music, it’s that the acoustics in most bars and restaurants are wonky, and sometimes I like to hear my friends talk. Dining establishments seem to overestimate people’s desire to hear live music while eating. If you’ve already ordered and a band starts playing, you basically become a hostage as you wait for your food. Perhaps some people are better at multitasking their attention, but all I want to do at a bar is talk, drink and sometimes play board games—a much more enjoyable activity than shouting over a guy with a guitar. I’m not sure if I should be proud of this, but I can share with you an expertly curated list of restaurants that are almost always guaranteed to be band-free. The location of Emil’s Hideaway, 222 Glenbrook Dr SE, in Cedar Rapids seems to keep it protected from curious bands. It’s right off 1st Ave, but you can’t see it from the road. It’s behind Taco John’s. I don’t say that lightly—you basically have to drive through the Taco John’s drive-through to get to it. The showstopper here is the meatloaf sandwich, which I had to be talked into trying. This sandwich lets you enjoy all the flavor of meatloaf without ever having to carve up a log 74


of meat. Plus, all of their fried appetizers are fantastic, especially the fried pickles. Need Pizza is way too busy for a live band. Located downtown at 207 2nd Ave SE in Cedar Rapids, this is the place to be on Friday and Saturday nights. One possible reason: the fact that you can add mashed potatoes to any pizza. I highly recommend ordering a pizza with mashed potatoes, chicken and garlic. If you like pizza but you’re bored by tomato sauce, you can choose barbecue sauce or no sauce instead. Don’t expect Zeppelin’s, 5300 Edgewood Rd NE, Cedar Rapids, to be quiet. It’s bustling during their two-for-one happy hours, but they won’t trap you into listening to a band. Their menu changes throughout the year, but the delicious reuben is available year-round. When I ask my husband if he is craving any particular food, he often sheepishly whispers, “A salmon gyro,” slightly embarrassed by the number of times he has suggested eating at Zeppelin’s since they added this item to their menu. The salmon on this sandwich is always perfectly cooked, and it’s served on warm naan with cherry tomatoes and tzatziki sauce. The food, as opposed to live entertainment, is what keeps customers coming through the doors at Stella, 1006 Melrose Ave, Iowa City. Occupying a corner lot on a busy stretch in University Heights, this neighborhood restaurant serves burgers, sandwiches, pizza and Cajun dishes with the promise you can enjoy your meal in peace. Stella hosts a regular Cajun night every Tuesday where featured menu items are half-price, and Mondays present another opportunity for a half-priced meal, this time highlighting their Iowa beef burgers.






Alan Swanson and Tim Conroy are the A-Team, the premier real-estate duo in the greater Iowa City area. They consider real estate an ART to be mastered—thus the “A” in their team’s name. Alan and Tim take listening, advising, marketing, and negotiating to the next level, offering experience and a highly articulate approach to sophisticated clientele who wish to purchase homes of substance and personality or to sell their property with confidence in a positive end result. The A-Team understands what matters to discerning home buyers or sellers in Iowa City, Coralville, North Liberty and surrounding areas.

Alan Swanson: 319.321.3129 Tim Conroy: 319.321.3679 Tim Conroy

Alan Swanson

Blank and McCune, The Real Estate Company. 506 E. College St. Iowa City, IA 52240 Licenced to sell real estate in Iowa


Oasis Falafel

Oryza Asian Cuisine & Bar

bustling tavern is a great spot to catch a live

206 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-358-7342,

5 Sturgis Corner Dr, Iowa City,

show of both local and nationally touring acts., $

319-800-0088,, $$

Living up to its name, Oasis Falafel offers a

Family-owned Oryza is a delight of Asian

Paul’s Tavern

food oasis in Iowa City for those craving its

cuisine, offering customers a large selection

176 Locust St, Dubuque, 563-556-9944, $$

Middle East offerings. Stop in for their famous

of high-quality, flavorful Chinese, Vietnamese,

Touted by locals as “one of the original blue

falafel and hummus, and if you see they

Thai and Korean dishes. Monday through

collar bars” in Dubuque, don’t expect too

have matzo ball soup, get it. Winner: Best

Friday, lunch diners can take advantage

many frills. Paul’s serves a limited menu

Wedding Catering and French Fries in

of their amazing lunch special: an entree,

of sandwiches and burgers prepared on a

Best of the CRANDIC 2018

appetizer and soup for under $8! Visit for

vintage broiler and pours a good cold beer or

well-executed dishes at fair prices in a casual

a strong drink. Taxidermied animals keep tabs


on the lively atmosphere of this local watering

Old 218 Tap


108 E Main St, Hills, 319-679-2277, $

This typical small town bar and grill serves a

Osaka Japanese Restaurant

cold beer in a friendly atmosphere.

122 E Washington St, Iowa City,

Peking Buffet

319-338-9988,, $$

93 2nd St, Coralville, 319-333-1369, $

Old Capitol Tofu

This lively spot serves Japanese fare, including

This place has a varied selection—American-

3569 Dolphin Dr, Ste D, Iowa City,

hibachi, teriyaki and bento dishes and creative

Chinese favorites, self-serve ice cream, sushi

specials. The specialty hand rolls, crafted to

and more. The buffet setting ensures an

What started as a goal of making the best

order, are presented beautifully.

opportunity to try it all.

resulted in some of the creation of some of

Oyama Sushi

Phong Lan Vietnamese Restaurant

the finest tofu around. Available for purchase

1853 Lower Muscatine Rd, Iowa City,

216 8th St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-365-5784, $

at local grocery stores and on restaurant

319-337-8801,, $$

Family owned and operated, this Vietnamese

menus across Eastern Iowa.

5350 Council St NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-832-1800,

restaurant offers fresh and authentic cuisine,, $$

specializing in pho. The digs here are very

One More Bite

Oyama is located in Cedar Rapids and Iowa

humble, and reminiscent of a mom and pop

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids,

City. You can expect the same quality cuisine

type place in small-town Iowa aside from the, $

at both locations, from their rolls to their

Asian artwork and statues on the walls, but

This husband and wife collaboration began

cooked dishes.

the food is what you’re here for, and it’s some

food, using the best local ingredients has

of the best Vietnamese in the area.

as a food truck but graduated into a stall in the NewBo City Market offering an eclectic

Palisades Cafe

variety of hot sandwiches, wraps and fries.

117 1st St W, Mount Vernon,

Pho Lucky

319-895-4041,, $$$

1755 Boyrum St, Iowa City, 319-569-1631, $$

One Twenty Six, One Twenty Six Lounge

There isn’t a more charming main street in all

The menu at Pho Lucky isn’t large or crisis-

and Flight

of Iowa than the one in Mount Vernon. This

inducing, but it is a treat. This new restaurant

126 E Washington St, Iowa City,

little town of 4,000 is a bucolic Midwestern

is a convenient lunch spot with a tidy

319-887-1909,, $$

college town living done right, and Palisades

atmosphere, friendly staff, reasonable prices

Located on Washington Street, One Twenty

Cafe is just the kind of everyday luxury that,

and a simple, pleasant broth.

Six has been a staple in the downtown dining

like the town itself, you might try once and

scene for years. The menu features French-

then wonder what you’ve been doing with

Pig & Porter

American cuisine made with local and organic

your whole life. The menu changes every

1028 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-4414,

ingredients when possible and is open for

month. The sun-drenched atmosphere and, $$

dinner or lunch. If you’re looking for a lighter

food are fresh, locally inspired and satisfying

A fast favorite in the NewBo neighborhood,

dinner, head upstairs to One Twenty Six

with an approachable modesty that welcomes

Pig & Porter provides locally sourced food

Lounge for burgers, wood-fired oven pizzas

all comers. The cafe is open Tuesday-Saturday

served in an unexpected and interesting

and a selection from the 126 menu, or hop

for lunch and dinner, and for brunch on

way—a house bologna sandwich with cheese

over to Flight for a selection of affordable


sauce, slow peppers and a sunny egg? Tofu

small plates, pizzas and entrees.

mousse with citrus, sesame and jasmine? Paradise Bar & Grill

Don’t worry, they also have toothsome

Orchard Green Restaurant and Bar

5200 Fountains Dr NE, Ste 100, Cedar Rapids,

burgers for those who are timid.

521 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-354-1642,

319-318-2070,, $$, $$$

This Indian restaurant and bar offers

Pinoy Cafe

Orchard Green’s menu features a variety of

traditional and Indo-American fusion recipes

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-343-8081, $

American-Mediterranean dishes as well as

and drinks.

Pinoy Cafe offers a taste of classic Filipino

the classics. They use fresh ingredients and

food with entrees, desserts and beverages.

routinely change up their menu with the

Parlor City Pub and Eatery

Rotating “Dish of the Week” specials bring

seasons. They invite you to fine dine in their

1125 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-247-0000,

new items to the menu.

premier dining room or enjoy a more casual, $$

meal in their intimate first-level lounge.

The extensive menu at Parlor City ranges from burgers to sandwiches to pizza. Order a Juicy Lucy and a pint of something on tap. This






Gimme Sweets! It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to test out the area’s best desserts. Cobble Hill Eatery and Dispensary 219 2nd St SE, Cedar Rapids Cobble Hill is a favorite restaurant of the area for a few fundamental reasons: exceptional food, service and atmosphere. Just like the main courses, the desserts are constantly redefining Iowa cuisine. With a seasonal menu that is regularly changing, you never have the same meal or dessert twice. For example, a winter squash dessert highlights the taste of the season and shatters your preconceived notion that vegetables cannot be in a dessert. Another dessert course that is highly recommended is the chocolate tart with luscious banana, butterscotch mousse and coffee gelato. The textures, balanced flavor profiles and stunning plating will wow your eyes and palate. The butterscotch mousse is so mouthwatering that it could be served as a dessert on its own. As always, this food destination is the closest thing to a Michelin-starred experience you’ll find in the central Iowa area. You will never have desserts quite like the ones you have at Cobble Hill.

El Super Burrito and Lupita’s Bakery 3300 Johnson Ave NW, Cedar Rapids Nestled away in the hustle and bustle of western Cedar Rapids is a staple Mexican food establishment well-known for its fantastic tacos, soups and tamales.

Cobble Hill’s Blood Orange & Olive Oil dessert

From those new to Mexican cuisine to the veterans of taco Tuesdays, there is always something to


satisfy a craving when it strikes. While the selection and quality of the main dishes are renowned in the local community, the variety of baked pastries and

Crêpes de Luxe Café

desserts should not be overlooked. El Super Burrito

309 E College St, Iowa City

and Lupita’s Bakery often have a rotating selection of goods in their eclectic cases, but the classics like

Who doesn’t love a delicious crêpe? Luckily, here in Iowa City we are in presence of one

warm churros, flaky turnovers, colorful bandera cook-

of the great crêpe masters of the world. With a strong French influence, chef and creator

ies and cake-like conchas are always scrumptious

Hicham Chehouhani artfully prepares crêpes as authentic as those you would eat at a

and recommended by the handful. The friendly staff

Parisian cafe. The sweet crêpes titled Le Reve and Crêpe du Chef are not to be missed as

will be more than happy to explain any of the items

delectable desserts, but make sure to ask the incredibly friendly staff what is trending at

to those new to Mexican baked goods and desserts.

the time; inspiration and seasonal ingredients change the selections at this quaint restau-

If you’ve never had the opportunity to try authentic

rant, and the new ones can be the best surprises. Gluten-free and buckwheat batters are

Mexican desserts, don’t forget to include some in

available for those with sensitivities, and there is no sacrifice in flavor or delicacy. Trust me,

your next order at this wonderful restaurant.

you will not have a better crêpe anywhere in Iowa than at Crêpes de Luxe Café!



THE BEST COOKIES IN THE CRANDIC Decadent desserts certainly have their place, but sometimes you just need a cookie—the kind of straightforward, homemade cookie you never quite managed to pull off in your own kitchen—as a sugary afternoon pick-me-up.




Her Soup Kitchen 625 S Dubuque St, Iowa City The Little Village offices are sometimes too close for comfort to this hidden lunch gem. Whenever the craving strikes, we need only walk a literal 20 feet to fresh-baked cookies. GINGER LIME COOKIE

Tip Top Cakes



708 5th St #7, Coralville All the treats at this bakery are great, but the cookies are what seal the deal. The Ginger Lime cookie is exceptional. It’s the size of your head, and if you don’t like ginger cookies, well, maybe we can’t be friends. DAIRY-FREE SUPER NUTTY OATMEAL COOKIE


$ 99

New Pioneer Food Co-op 22 S Van Buren St, Iowa City 1101 2nd St, Coralville 3338 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar Rapids This is one of those allergen-free cookies that doesn’t make you feel like you’re missing out. Not on a dairy-free diet? You might just find yourself regularly trotting past the nearest co-op to pick one up anyways. WHITE CHOCOLATE MACADAMIA NUT COOKIE



Lightworks Café 501 7th Ave SE Ste B, Cedar Rapids This is a cookie with both excellent crumb and balanced flavor. White chocolate can sometimes feel too sweet, but even with the addition of dried cranberries, this one keeps the sugar in check. CORNMEAL LIME COOKIE

Greyhound Deli



450 5th St SE, Cedar Rapids Generously sized, the unique texture of this cookie is really what sells it. Get your fill of these crumbly treats after browsing the books at the Cedar Rapids Public Library. No one wants the cookie crumbs you left between pages 42 and 43.





Pita Pit

brings a modern vibe to small-

Pullman Bar & Diner

Ramsey’s Wine Bistro

517 2nd St Unit 1, Coralville,

town Iowa. Creative, inspired

17 S Dubuque St, Iowa City,

1120 7th Ave, Marion, 319-447-1700,

319-351-7484,, $

dishes for both lunch and

319-388-1808,, $$$, $$

Pita Pit offers the efficiency

dinner paired with unique craft

This train-car inspired diner

Uptown Marion’s unofficial living

and affordability of a fast food

cocktails, wine and beer make

opened a few years ago and

room, you can go to Ramsey’s

stop with the freshness of a

this restaurant well worth the

since has quickly become an

almost any night of the week

homemade wrap. Choose from

drive to Grinnell.

Iowa City favorite for foodies and

and find live music and a casual,

casual diners alike. The menu

friendly atmosphere. Tell the staff

a variety of meat and veggie options to make your next meal

Prairie Lights Cafe

is worth exploring; everything

what you like and let them pick

exactly how you want it.

15 S Dubuque St, Iowa City,

from cocktails to appetizers,

a glass of wine for you while you

319-337-2681,, $

breakfast to burgers is executed

relax with your friends over a

Poindexter Coffee

Things to love about Prairie

well. The best part? The open

cheese plate, salad or sandwich.

210 S Dubuque St, Iowa City,

Lights Cafe: 1. Perfectly

kitchen offers a front row seat


executed cafe drinks. 2. Unique

to watch the master chefs work

Rapid Creek Cidery

and innovative drinks like the

their magic.

4823 Dingleberry Rd NE, Iowa City,

restaurant/poindexter-coffee, $

Espresso Tonic. Try one and

Downtown Iowa City’s hip new

thank us later. 3. The view from

QDogs BBQ, $$

Graduate Hotel boasts an on-site

the cafe windows where you

895 Blairs Ferry Rd, Marion,

This farm-to-table restaurant

coffee shop, Poindexter Coffee.

can sip your coffee and watch


serves rustic food for both dinner

A wall covered in more than

the traffic on Dubuque Street. 4., $$

and Sunday brunch in a century-

170,000 No. 2 pencils references

The Matcha Man Latte, a ginger

This lively, rustic setting houses

old gable-roofed barn with views

Iowa City’s rich literary history

infused matcha drink. 5. Perfectly

some of the best classic

of the adjoining orchard. The

and the cafe offerings are the

small cookies from Deluxe Cakes

barbecue in the area. Sometimes

housemade cider from Wilson’s

perfect option to linger over

& Pastries for when you need

the wait for a seat can be long,

Orchard flows freely from the

whether you’re a student on the

just a tiny nibble of sweet. 6.

but it’s worth it for some of

taps along with craft cocktails,

run or a an out-of-town guest.

Proximity to loads of magazines,

QDogs’ tasty fare. The menu

wine and beer. Rapid Creek

cookbooks and fiction. WINNER:

features tender brisket, savory

Cidery also caters and hosts

Popoli Ristorante

Best Place to Read a Book in

ribs and cornbread so good you’ll

special events and weddings

& Sullivan’s Bar

the Best of the CRANDIC 2018

dream about it. It’s also a great



spot for live blues music.

101 3rd Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-363-1248,, $$$

Prairie Soup Company

The People’s Savings Bank,

425 2nd St SE, Cedar Rapids,

Quarter Barrel

2419 2nd St, Coralville, 319-354-1071,

designed by Louis Henry

319-362-0972,, $

616 2nd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids,, $$

Sullivan in 1912 and now named

Is Prairie Soup Company

319-200-4140, $

1301 S Gilbert St, Ste #6, Iowa City,

to the Preservation Iowa’s

downtown Cedar Rapids’ best

This spacious industrial brewpub, $$

Most Endangered Properties

kept lunch secret? This fresh

serves up a nice selection of craft

A sleek, contemporary interior

list, houses Popoli Ristorante

and popular weekday daytime

beer and creative pizzas. But the

hides behind this strip-mall

and Sullivan’s Bar—an upscale

location serves homemade soup

draw here is the arcade games

storefront in Coralville. Once

steakhouse with an Italian twist.

as well as panini, salad and deli

lining the brick-walled interior

inside, have a seat at one of the

The original architecture of the

sandwiches. The staff is friendly,

offering gamers and nostalgia-

handful of sunken booths, the

bank is remarkable and the food

the service is quick, and they’re

seekers an opportunity to nerd

expansive bar or a table in the

is of note as well. Be sure to

accessible via the skywalk for


open dining room. Order a bowl

make it to their all-you-can-eat

convenience during inclement

prime rib nights on Thursdays.


Red Ginger

of authentic ramen or a selection Quinton’s Bar & Deli

of fresh, quality sushi. A new

215 E Washington St., Iowa City,

location opened in Iowa City late

Pop’s BBQ

Press Coffee Company


2018 offering a similar menu and

130 N Dubuque St, Iowa City,

2201 E Grantview Dr, Coralville,

2500 Corridor Way, Coralville,


319-354-7677,, $



Since 2015, Pop’s has been

This neighborhood spot was

450 1st St SW #101, Cedar Rapids,

Red Vespa

a known for their affordable,

named for their coffee—they


208 E Main St, Solon, 319-624-2080, $$

quality barbecue by campus and

specialize in French-pressed, $$

As the first pizzeria in Iowa to

Northside residents alike. They’ve

coffee from local roasters. Press

Stop by Quinton’s after enjoying

be certified by the Associazione

got the “old” classic dishes on

also sells Daylight Donuts to

a show downtown for their house

Pizzaiuoli Napoletani and the

hand, but be sure to try their

accompany your well-brewed

specialties—like their Notorious

Verace Pizza Napoletana, Red

“new” barbecue cuisine like the

cup of joe. They have a nice

P.I.G. or Drunken Mac N’ Cheese.

Vespa proudly features authentic

Pops Dawgs or the BBQ Cuban

fireplace, with overstuffed chairs

They have food and drink

Italian cuisine. Their cheese is


and couches for lounging in the

specials every day of the week,

housemade and makes their

colder months, and a tucked-

and be sure to try their spuds

unique brick-oven pizzas even

Prairie Canary

away patio with hillside views to

before you leave!

more delicious. Don’t miss out on

924 Main St, Grinnell, 641-236-0205,

enjoy during summer.

their Italian-American specials,, $$$

though—the meatball sub is to

This airy open concept cafe

die for.




Named Iowa’s Most Beautifully Designed Bar by Architectural Digest Located on the Ped Mall in the Graduate Iowa City hotel.



210 South Dubuque Street Iowa City, IA 52240

Tel: 319 337 4058


Where Can I Find it?

Local hiding spots for your favorite kitchen oddities.



Kala Namak

Korean Bossam is a great party trick—the

If you’re on the hunt for the classic German

Raw pink Himalayan salt mixed with

multiple sauces and sides and interactive

digestive Underberg—cute little bottles

charcoal, barks and herbs is sealed in a

serving format are sure to impress your

wrapped in brown paper, filled with herby,

jar and fired in a furnace for a day, cooled

guests—and it’s a meal that’s pretty easy

anise-y liquour and fitted with collectable,

and aged in order to transform it into Kala

to execute, all things considered. To really

rewards-earning tops, look no further than

Namak, or Black Salt. The resulting salt has a pungent taste and smell, sort of sulfurous

make the meal sing, don’t skip the ssam

Brix Cheese Shop and Wine Bar 209 N Linn

sauce. As the name might suggest, it’s a

St, Iowa City. In production since 1846, this

in quality. It’s a great secret ingredient for

key component of traditional Bossam. You’ll

strong tasting bitters is intended to be taken

vegans looking for that eggy taste in their

need fermented bean-and-chili paste, which

all at once, like a shot, as a digestive. More

tofu scrambles or chickpea omelets, but is

you can find easily at the Asian Market,

and more it’s becoming an ingredient in

traditionally used in Indian recipes for the

624 S Gilbert St, Iowa City. Visit often

well-crafted and balanced cocktails. Use it as

preparation of chaats, chutneys and raitas.

enough and the shop owner will make her

a hangover cure, after a too-big meal or just

A small package will set you back just $1.99

own suggestions for different ingredients

because you like the hyper-bitter, medicinal

at Everest Foods Nepali Store, 5429 Center

and recipes to try, plus there are plenty of

taste. Stock your home bar with a collection

Point Rd NE, Cedar Rapids and will provide

interesting things on the shelf to catch your

of wrapped bottles and impress all your

countless opportunities to spice up your

eye that are a worth a try.

friends; just be sure to ask for everyone’s

standard-issue dinners.

bottle caps before they leave. The green plastic tops can be redeemed for delightful prizes ranging from key fobs to engraved glasses and herbal motif china, which you’ll totally want.


Golden Syrup

The odor of this tropical fruit has been

A fan of the Great British Baking Show, are

likened to raw sewage, dirty gym socks, pig

we? If you’ve been whipping up flapjacks,

poop and more, and in southeast Asia it’s

biscuits and steamed puddings galore, you

been banned from public places. Thankfully,

may have encountered numerous requests

the flavor is unlike any of these untoward

for golden syrup. Of course you could always

comparisons. The pulp inside the spiny rind

Blood Sausage

substitute with something similar—honey,

has been compared to that of a rich almond

Looking for some blood sausage? Head to

corn syrup, maple syrup, molasses—but the varying flavor and consistency will affect

custard or creamy blancmange, though

Ruzicka’s Meat Processing, 301 N Dubuque

many are unable to overcome the smell to

St, Solon where their team of butchers

your results. If you swing by the Bread

enjoy the taste. The Malaysian variety of this

regularly prepares jelito. This non-smoked

Garden Market, 225 S Linn St, Iowa City,

divisive fruit is available regularly at World

sausage of Moravian/Czech heritage is made

you’ll find Lyle’s Golden Syrup regularly

Fresh Market, 2301 2nd St, Coralville. Take

of a mix of blood, spices and pork liver and

stocked next to the maple syrup, and you’ll

one home and try for yourself—perhaps

is dark black-brown in color. Made fresh, but

be almost guaranteed your dish will earn a

you’ll find the aroma pleasant, as many do.

sold frozen in packs of two, these sausages

Paul Hollywood handshake. Savory recipes

Does this fickle fruit present an opportunity

can be baked in the oven and served whole

using golden syrup abound, so worry not

for debate? Maybe so.

or removed from their casings and cooked.

about sugary tooth rot.




Slow-Cooker Beef with Gochujang and Hoisin By Ari Ariel. Serves 6-8


hen it’s cold, I want stew. That means slow cooking. To make

that happen on a weekday, I turn to my crockpot. Gochujang, because of its complex fermented flavor, is ideal in recipes with few ingredients, giving you lots of bang for your buck. To temper down

No-Cook Gochujang Sauce


his sauce is made by mixing together

a few pantry items. It

its spiciness a bit I’ve added hoisin,

is simple, delicious and

another, much sweeter, fermented sauce.

quite versatile. I put it

I like to use chuck in my stews, and I pre-

on grilled or sautéed

fer to buy large pieces and cut it myself.

salmon, chicken or

Because of the long cooking time of

pork chops, and it

this recipe, you want big chunks of beef,

makes a great addition

between two and three inches; usually

to stir fries. If you

pre-cut stew meat is much smaller than

grate your garlic on a

that. You might also note that I am not

microplane, you don’t

asking you to sear the meat before you

even have to get a

put it in the crockpot. Browning is great

knife dirty.

but comes at a cost: it toughens your meat. With the deep flavors of gochu-

• 1/4 cup gochujang

jang, hoisin and beer, I don’t think it is

• 2 tablespoons rice


wine vinegar

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Downtown Iowa City, 221 E. College St. Suite 212 319.338.5190 |

• 1 tablespoon toasted • 1 piece of boneless chuck roast, 2 to 3

sesame oil


• 1 tablespoon honey

• 1 head of garlic, cut in half lengthwise

• 1 tablespoon finely

• 1 inch piece of ginger, cut in half

minced or grated

• 1 cup gochujang


• 1 cup hoisin sauce • 12 ounces stout or other beer

Place all the

• 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

ingredients in a bowl

• 1 teaspoon salt

and whisk them together until smooth.

Cut the beef into large chunks, between two and three inches each.

Taste and add vinegar or honey as necessary

Place the beef in your slow cooker and

to get the balance of

add the garlic and ginger.

spicy, tangy and sweet that you prefer.

Mix all the other ingredients together and pour them over the beef.

If the sauce is too thick, add just enough

Cook on low for 8 hours.

water to bring it to a smooth consistency.

Taste and add salt if necessary.

Blai r G a un tt




If you’re keyed into the food and beverage world, (likely, if you’re reading this) chances are you’ve caught whiff of one of the buzziest new terms: natural wine. It’s certainly a movement that’s grown in popularity over the past few years. But ask a wine professional, merchant or server at your favorite restaurant about natural wine and you’re likely to get an earful of varied responses, the most common among them that it’s hard to define.


Nebulously defined, natural wine is wine made the old-fashioned way with nothing added and nothing removed; this covers commercially produced yeasts, added sulfur and filtration processes. It is generally agreed that grapes must be grown organically and the wine is made with minimal human intervention A natural wine is organic and and without the help of fancy machines and technology. There sometimes biodynamic, though are no real standards, regulations or organic and biodynamic wines certifications that exist for natural wine, so this loose description–– are not always natural. which changes depending on who you’re talking to––leaves a lot of gray area. Natural wines tend to embody a more interesting and unique flavor profile and are much less uniform than conventionally produced wines, with variations from bottle to bottle, vintage to vintage. Additionally, because of the low-intervention approach to winemaking, any natural flaws in the crops are apparent in the resulting bottle, which is both good and bad, depending on your personal preferences.





Not necessarily; again, it’s just a different option. A lot of people––sellers and drinkers alike––see natural wine as the trend du jour, favored mostly by tradition-bucking millennials. But as we grow more and more concerned with the foods we put into our bodies and how they are produced, it’s only a matter of time before we offer the same attention to what we are drinking when we pop the cork. You might prefer a natural wine if you’re wanting to explore wines with bolder flavor profiles that more easily express the fruit and the conditions in which they’re grown. Natural wines present an opportunity to celebrate small producers––many come from small-production vineyards and boast an idyllic story about a profound connection to the land. Natural wines can also be easier to drink thanks to lower alcohol content.

FIND IT LOCALLY Sample natural, organic and biodynamic wines at these restaurants and retail locations Benz Beverage Depot

The Dandy Lion

501 7th Ave SE,

111 S Dubuque St,

Cedar Rapids

Iowa City

Bread Garden Market

Goosetown Cafe

225 S Linn St,

203 N Linn St,

Iowa City

Iowa City

Brix Cheese Shop

Lincoln Winebar

& Wine Bar

125 1st St W,

209 N Linn St,

Mount Vernon

Iowa City

Many claim the lower amount of sulfites in natural wine is the key to hangover-free imbibement. While sulfites might be the culprit for some drinkers, most of us typically experience the dreaded wine headache due to higher alcohol or sugar content. Most natural wines are lower in both alcohol and sugar as well as excess additives and sulfites, allowing you to escape an overserved evening without the same pains as if you had drank conventional wine.

Marquee Pizza John’s Grocery

920 E 2nd Ave #123,

401 E Market St,


Iowa City Saint Burch Tavern Cobble Hill Restaurant

127 Iowa Ave,

219 2nd St SE,

Iowa City

Cedar Rapids



Hometown Made These regionally recognizable products were lovingly crafted by your very own neighbors. Jefferson County Ciderworks, Premium craft cider producers, Jefferson County Ciderworks recently launched canned versions of their signature ciders. Previously only available on tap around Eastern Iowa, you can now find three varieties of of the brand’s cider available for retail purchase across Iowa. Look for four-packs of Original Apple (semi-sweet, bright), Oaked Sour Cherry (semi-dry,

Jefferson County

crisp, tart) and Hibiscus Rose (semi-dry,

Ciderworks’ Hibiscus

floral, earthy) at select local Hy-Vees,

Rose Cider

New Pioneer Co-op, John’s Grocery and Benz Beverage depot. $16 for four-pack.


Java House Coffee,

Oasis Hummus,

Old Capitol Tofu,

After years spent brewing the perfect

Everyone’s favorite hummus has been

The original aim of Old Capitol Tofu was

cup of coffee, The Java House decided

available at grocery stores throughout

to make delicious flavor-infused tofu, but

it was time to take their love of coffee

the CRANDIC (and surrounding area) for

to be successful at that, co-founders Mat-

one step further. Partnering with coffee

a while now, but the brand is expanding

thew Mesaros and Jake Gratzon realized

growers and importers, the Iowa City

regionally this year making their tasty

they first needed to nail the production of

cafe chain began roasting their own

chickpea spread available across the

traditional tofu. After outfitting a produc-

beans at their 12,000 sq. ft. North Liber-

state of Iowa and even into neighboring

tion facility and kitchen with necessary

ty facility last year. The roasting facility

states. Currently producing roughly a

equipment right here in Iowa City, the

sees beans from all over the world and

ton of hummus a week, Oasis hopes to

pair got to work learning and perfect-


the skilled team profiles each variety,

double production over the next year.

ing the ancient art of tofu. Their tireless

approves it and packages bags of both

While it won’t change much locally, stay

research and experimentation resulted in

single origin and house blend coffees.

tuned to their website for new locations

some of the best damn tofu around. Find

$11-15 for 12 oz. Find your preferred

as they are added and introduce your

it packaged for sale at retail locations and

beans (Giant of the Earth, right?) for

far-flung friends to their signature hum-

on menus at restaurants across eastern

sale at cafe locations or online.

mus. $4 for 8 oz.

Iowa. $3-4 for 8 oz.



Reds Alehouse 405 N Dubuque St, North Liberty, 319-626-2100,, $$

Reds Alehouse perhaps began as neighborhood restaurant for the North Liberty crowd, but has morphed into a destination for patrons from all around the area. The vast selection of microbrews on tap makes this a great choice for beer-lovers and the large patio is an ideal spot to spend a lazy weekend afternoon. Drink responsibly: happy hour at Red’s allows you to enjoy two-for-one drinks! Relish 834 Park St, Grinnell, 641-236-3657,, $$

Fully embodying their slogan, “Local Foods Global Flavors,” Chef Kamal Hammouda mixes local ingredients and recipes from the Middle East to create Relish’s diverse menu. Always looking to bolster the Grinnell community, Relish frequently hosts local musicians, adding to the already comfortable and charming atmosphere of the historic Victorian home in which Relish is situated. ReUnion Brewery 516 2nd St, Coralville, 319-337-3000,, $$

ReUnion’s hyperactive brewing program starts with the lightest German lagers and ends with giant IPAs and boozy barrel-aged monsters, stopping at Belgians, sours and lots of other experimental destinations along the way. The menu here follows suit, offering everything from street tacos to pizzas and calzones, sandwiches, burgers, hefty pasta dishes, plenty of kid-friendly stuff and, of course, brunch on Sundays. ReUnion Brewery beers are now available in cans. Riley’s Cafe 836 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-364-4779,, $$ 2010 Sylvia Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-247-5636,, $$ 2727 6th St SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-826-3923,, $$ 568 Boyson Rd NE #150, Cedar Rapids, 319-826-3667,, $$

Any of the Riley’s Cafe locations make for a great start to the day, featuring countless breakfast, brunch, or lunch options on the daily. In dining rooms decorated with tchotkes, flair and memorabilia, you can enjoy a classic shipwreck or opt for the steak and eggs.





Tapped In

Great River Maple 217 Clay Brick Ln, Garnavillo, 319, 830-5882,

Syrup sourced from a maple tree near you.

Maple syrup, Bourbon-aged maple syrup, maple cream and cinnamon-infused maple syrup. Available at Bread Garden Mar-


owa is not generally thought of as a hot-bed of maple syrup production, but it does have a few commercial producers across the state. The sap-collection season is relatively short, starting around late February or early March and lasting for roughly three weeks. At the beginning of the season, sap flowing from taps is lighter and milder and as the weather warms and the season progresses, becomes darker and takes on a more caramel-y, rich maple flavor. Pure maple syrup is produced from the sap of maple trees––either sugar maple, black maple, silver maple or boxelder trees that are at least ten inches in diameter. On average, sap from maple trees is around 2 percent sugar while maple syrup is approximately 66 percent sugar. Sugar content of sap can varie widely from tree to tree and season to season, but maple sap at 2 percent sugar content requires 43 gallons of sap to produce just one gallon of syrup. This explains the higher price tag of pure maple syrup when compared to pancake syrup. Pure maple syrup is made by boiling down sap which evaporates much of the water content and concentrates the flavor and sweetness. Pancake syrup is usually made from corn syrup and flavorings to make it taste more like maple syrup. 88


ket, New Pioneer Coop, Hy-Vee or through website. Golding’s Sweet Maple Farms 7000 Tower Terrace Rd, Cedar Rapids, 319-393-4050, Maple marinade, maple butter, Grade A syrup in light, medium, dark and extra dark Good Eetens 1655 280th St, Everly, 712-348-1877, Grade A syrup from light to dark depending on season. Available direct from the farm or at local farmers markets (Sheldon Farmers Market, Everly Farmers Market and Spencer Riverfront Farmers Market). Green’s Sugarbush 1126 Maple Valley Rd, Castalia, 563-567-8472 or 563-380-5132, Maple syrup is sold from the sugarbush in season (mid-March to early April) and at the farm year round.


Grade A Very Dark

Grade A Golden

Grade A Amber

Grade A Dark

Pale, golden color

Amber tone

Dark color

Very dark color

and delicate flavor

and rich flavor

and rich flavor

and strong flavor




Roasters Coffee House

outdoor patio handles bar overflow and

Sam’s Pizza

1059 N Center Point Rd, Hiawatha,

entertains with life-sized Jenga, cornhole and

441 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-337-8200,, 319-393-6001, $

sand volleyball., $$

Get Sam’s pizza and calzones delivered to

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids,, $

Saigon’s Corner

your doorstep, or stop in and enjoy a beer

The friendly staff will set you up with freshly

2301 2nd St, Coralville, 319-383-3953

at their full-service bar with your meal! They

roasted beans for your morning cup at home

201 S Clinton St, Iowa City,

offer a wide variety of specialties, toppings

or prepare you a perfectly brewed drink., $$

and crusts to make your food exactly how you

The plush seating and cozy interior of the

Their extensive menu of fresh Vietnamese

like it.

Hiawatha location encourages a moment’s

food is sure to please; there's something on

pause to savor the balanced jolt of caffeine.

the menu everyone will love from traditional

Sanctuary Pub

favorites to unique creations. Saigon's Corner

405 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-351-5692,

makes the best broth!, $$


Founded in 1972, this casual pub offers 27

1507 C Street SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-2515,, $$$

Saigon Market

different imported and craft beers and happy

A blend of German, Czech and Midwestern

803 2nd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-363-2900,

hour specials Monday through Saturday.

comfort foods, Rodina delivers on the comfort

Saigon Market is a small store, but what

Their food menu features interesting and

without the typical heavy hand—everything

they lack in square footage, they make up

delicious dishes like the Lamb and Gruyere

feels light and fresh, yet simultaneously

for in selection. Stocked with a plethora

Sliders and the Baked Brie. They even have

sumptuous and luxurious. Their well-curated

of southeast Asian grocery staples, you’ll

vegan and gluten-free options for those with

food and beverage menus make ordering a

find a great selection of instant noodles,

specific diets! Check their events calendar for

breeze and the interior is inviting and warm

kitchen supplies, sauces and unique well-

regularly scheduled live music.

while retaining a modern, airy feel.

priced produce. The staff here is helpful and accomodating.

Ruby’s Pizzeria

Saucy Focaccia 1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-4019,

223 2nd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-4800,

Saint Burch Tavern and The Den Lounge, $, $$

127 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, 319-341-7700,

5100 Fountains Dr. NE Ste 100, Cedar Rapids,

Accessible via the skywalk, Ruby’s is a quick-, $$

319-294-6772,, $

casual spot in downtown Cedar Rapids for a

Thoughtfully reimagined and renovated, the

The menu cornerstone—classic burgers on

lunchtime slice or for a whole pie dining in for

former Atlas Restaurant and Bar turned Saint

focaccia buns—are delightfully messy and


Burch Tavern offers diners a taste of days

equally delicious. Their house-made burger

gone by, with supper club and tavern vibes.

sauces let you dress up your basic burger

Rustic Hearth Bakery

Come in for inspired modern Midwestern far

however you like or go crazy with one of their

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-4008, $

and old supper club favorites like Burch’s raw

inventive specials.

The crew at Rustic Hearth takes the extra

oyster bar with a daily oyster happy hour.

step to set their product apart from the

Downstairs, The Den offers a relaxing space to

The Sausage Foundry

competition by milling their own flour for their

unwind serving cocktails, beer and select food

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids,

fresh handmade goods. Options rotate but

in an enticing lounge setting.

319-202-1631,, $$

include baguette, sandwich and sourdough

With a mission focused on local products and Saloon Tequila Bar

sustainable production, this NewBo Market

112 E College St, Iowa City, 319-354-3837,

retailer prepares handmade artisanal sausage

Ruzicka’s, $$

and meat products many made from heritage

301 N Dubuque St, Solon, 319-624-2870,

Located on the Iowa City Ped Mall, Saloon

pork breeds., $

offers a Southwestern menu to be enjoyed

Visit Ruzicka’s for an array of homemade

at any time. For the best experience, sit on

Schera’s Algerian American Restaurant

sausages, steaks and roasts—a meat locker

their patio while enjoying one of their many

107 S Main St, Elkader, 563-245-1992,

full of top-quality cuts of meat direct from

margarita offerings while you watch the Ped, $$

local farmers, right here in Iowa. Their famous

Mall action.

This gem in sleepy, small town Elkader is

loaves, cinnamon rolls and doughnuts.

Jalapeño Salami has been made using the

worth the short drive to experience first hand.

same recipe since the ’70s. If you’re planning

Salt Fork Kitchen

They have a great beer and wine list for those

a large event and don’t feel like cooking for a

112 E Main St, Solon, 319-624-2081,

into that sort of thing—small-batch artisanal

crowd, Ruzicka’s does a bang-up job catering, $$

brewers and a few low-intervention wines—

graduation parties, family reunions and

Open 8 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-9 p.m. Wednesday-

and an assortment of Algerian specialties

weddings as well.

Saturday; 8 a.m-2 p.m. Sunday; closed on

peppered with approachable American plates.

Monday and Tuesday. Got it? Good. Now Sag Wagon Deli & Brew

head to Solon and eat the food at Salt Fork

Scott’s Family Restaurant

827 Shaver Rd NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-366-3265

Kitchen, among the area’s first true farm-to-

1906 Blairs Ferry Rd NE, Cedar Rapids,

This small cycling-themed watering hole is a

table concept restaurants. You’ll find plenty

319-550-4517,, $$

popular spot for bikers at the end of a trail

of traditional items (but the specials are really

From all-day breakfast to patty melts and

ride around Cedar Lake. In warmer months,

where it’s at), and if you want to buy a dozen

meatloaf, there’s something on the menu for

send a location scout or come early as the

eggs or join the Salt Fork Farms CSA, you can

everyone in the family. Hit the breakfast buffet

small capacity bar fills up quick. A spacious

do it right there at the bar.

on the weekend, or treat yourself to all-you-






ity C a w et, Io


St n n i L . N 6 0 2



GOOD GRACES At Chez Grace, Chef David Zaghloul performs an a capella chef-d’oeuvre. BY AVERY GREGURICH


t’s approaching dinner time, and Chef David Zaghloul is sitting at one of his tables, waiting for customers to arrive—a common scene in every restaurant, but here at Chez Grace, even the waiting is a job that Zaghloul does alone. “I do the front and the cooking and everything else,” he explains. This means that Zaghloul took all of the night’s reservations, and will seat everyone else who walks in. He ordered all the food to arrive here on time, which he then washed and prepped. He cleaned all the table linens and dining ware, too. He set the tables and rolled the silverware. Later, after he’s poured the wine and cooked five courses of French cuisine for each of his patrons, he will be the one who cleans up and locks the door behind him. He says he’s “too old,” but “I’m not too old to do this,” gesturing to the quiet restaurant behind him. Chez Grace sits behind the





and now mobile af 125 1st Street, Mount Vernon, IA 895-9463

pizza_lwb BREAD & BUTTER 2019


parking lot of a Peking Buffet, in a strip mall which also holds a payday loan establishment, a Papa John’s Pizza and a recently-closed popcorn store. “Everybody comes in and tells me ‘I can’t believe this place exists in here,’” Zaghloul says. It’s cozy: there are just six tables a short walk away from the fully exposed kitchen from which the chef treads back and forth each night. If you ask him for a tour, he will simply walk you back and say, “This is the kitchen. That’s it. It’s open: everybody sit down and watch.” Chez Grace, French for “House of Grace,” first opened its doors on Oct. 6, 2009. “A year after the flood,” its owner is quick to add. Zaghloul, who is originally from Amman, Jordan, came to Iowa City in 1979 as an engineering student at the University of Iowa. He’s worked in restaurants all across the city in the decades since, but when he first arrived here, he says he knew “absolutely nothing” about cooking. “When I came to the United States, I had no idea how to make two eggs. I would go to the cafeteria and I had no idea what I was eating. That was how I learned about food,” he says. “I worked in restaurants when I was in college, but I didn’t know how to do anything. I started as a pizza delivery guy a long time ago, and I’ve wound up with this now.” He describes himself as being a self-taught chef, a designation with many variations, but in his case looks like this: For years, David watched Iron Chef, (“the original one, the Japanese one”) and dove into cooking to try to recreate what he’d seen. “I’ve never written a recipe in my life, I’ve never followed a recipe in my life. I have no measuring spoons, no measuring cups, no measuring nothing in the restaurant. God blessed me with a good memory,” he says. “I know my ingredients. I know what I want to do, and I’m willing to be adventurous and try everything that I want to try.” 94



“Simplicity is the best thing you can do for food. Once you put too much stuff on a plate because you want to make it look pretty, that’s it, the plate is gone.” “I always wanted to be my own boss. I got recruited to work for a lot of people in this town when they opened their own restaurants,” he adds. “I told them if I’m going to open a restaurant, I’m going to be working for myself. That’s what I’ve always wanted.” He was even recruited by the landlord who owned the strip in which Chez Grace is located. He encouraged Zaghloul to open something up in the building after the restaurant that Zaghloul was running before Chez Grace closed. He had lost nearly everything in that venture, and Zaghloul didn’t know if this would be the right move.

“To be honest with you, my customers in my old place put up all the money for me to come and move down here,” he says. “I had people who came in and painted in here. My customers, they did a lot of things for me.” Over the last nine years, Zaghloul has learned to be incredibly nimble when planning out his ever-changing menu. It’s necessary when operating a restaurant of this type and size in the middle of the country, where nearly all of his ingredients take days to arrive—foie gras and duck breasts from upstate New York, halibut from the Pacific Northwest, etc. For example, last week the menu changed four

times. At Chez Grace, you can always expect classics of French cuisine like foie gras and crème brûlée to begin and end the meal. What is in between, depending on the night, may feature steak au poivre with a peppercorn cream sauce and butter gold potatoes, or magrets de canard a l’orange (duck breasts simmered with fresh orange juice) or even wild Alaskan halibut served with truffle-scented polenta. “Everything I make in here has five ingredients or less. Every single dish. There’s nothing in here outrageously complicated,” Zaghloul says. “Simplicity is the best thing you can do for food. Once you put too much stuff on a plate because you want to make it look pretty, that’s it, the plate is gone.” He enjoys his unique experience as a professional chef who both prepares and serves the people who come to dine with him. He gets to know his customers intimately, and they get to know him through both his food and his stories. “I had an 8-year-old one time. She sat down on that chair over there, and she had foie gras,” he said. “She started screaming in here in the middle of the restaurant. I thought I had made a mistake. She was screaming because it was so good. She was 8!” When he isn’t single-handedly running a restaurant, the chef says he cooks at home, sleeps a lot and watches soccer on Sunday mornings. “I watch the Premier League,” he says. “Chelsea. Nobody else.” He also plays chess, a game requiring intense focus and strategy. As evidenced by his one-man show at Chez Grace, though, he’s not a man who can stand idleness for long. “I play speed chess. Online, one-minute games,” he says. “I have no patience to be sitting around, waiting.” For now, Chef David Zaghloul is sitting at Chez Grace, waiting for his first table to arrive. For him, that will always be a thing worth waiting for.





Wig & Pen’s original pizzeria offering an upbeat, pub-like atmosphere, 3 different crust styles, bar food and beer. Locally owned since 1993. 1220 US-6, IOWA CITY (319) 354-2767

Take-out and delivery on Iowa City’s east side. Locally owned since 2003. 363 N 1ST AVE, IOWA CITY Across from Regina High School (319) 351-2327



Convenient new location in North Liberty offering pizza and appetizers. 201 HWY 965 NE NORTH LIBERTY Just South of Bluebird Diner (319) 665-2255

Pub grub & pints, thin-crust and deep-dish pizzas in a casual, homey atmosphere. Locally owned since 2008. 2005 S ANKENY BLVD, ANKENY Across from DMACC (515) 963-9777 BREAD & BUTTER 2019



can-eat cod and shrimp on Fridays or Sirloin

reasonably priced drinks make Shakespeare’s

Sing Along Bar and Grill

Steak Night on Saturdays.

a must for anyone looking for a laid back bar

100 First St SE, Mount Vernon, 319-895-9464,

on the eastside of Iowa City., $$

Scratch Cupcakery

Located in the oldest building on Main

927 E 2nd Ave, Coralville, 319-359-2256,

Short’s Burgers Eastside

Street in Mount Vernon, Sing Along Bar and, $

521 Westbury Dr, Iowa City, 319-338-7743,

Grill centers around a 1910 player piano and

With more than 125 cupcake flavors on the, $$

encourages patrons to select a song from the

menu, Scratch rotates through a regular

Short’s Burgers & Shine

200+ available scrolls and join in the chorus.

selection daily, offered in mini and standard

18 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-337-4678,

Offering signature cocktails and made-from-

sizes as well as gluten-free and vegan, $$

scratch, homestyle cooking, this restaurant

preparations. If you’re one of those folks

There are 26 different burger options

fosters a sense of community and connection

who eats the cupcake for the frosting, you

Short’s, along with chicken and black bean

through music.

can make a special order for their delectable

alternatives, so it’s nearly impossible for the

buttercream with a bit of advance notice.

menu to ever get old. The beef comes from

Skillet Cafe

within Iowa’s own state lines, and they pride

101 1st St NE, Mount Vernon, 319-895-8540,

Seoul Grill

themselves on their vast selection of Iowa

201 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-338-5747, $$

craft beers and ciders. Be sure to taste the

Occupying a corner spot on the main drag in

Have you ever tried Korean food? If not, or if

stellar Short’s Whiskey that they distill in

Mount Vernon, the Skillet Cafe serves up fresh

you already know how hard it is to find good

partnership with Cedar Ridge micro distillery

made-to-order breakfast & lunch dishes in a

Korean food outside of Korea—check out

in Swisher. Winner: Best Burger in Best of

comfortable environment.

Seoul Grill! Their hours are limited so be sure

the CRANDIC 2018 Sno Biz of Iowa City

to stop by the first chance you get! Siamville Thai Cuisine

812 S 1st Ave, Iowa City, 319-558-8012, $


3635 1st Ave, Cedar Rapids, 319-364-1955,

Sno Biz of Iowa City is shaved ice made right.

819 1st Ave, Iowa City, 319-337-7275,

With an array of fruity flavors and a friendly, $$

This shopping-center eatery offers an

staff, this seasonal operation takes the classic

Wherefore art thou tater tots? This

impressive variety of authentic Thai plates.

sno-cone to the next level. Mix and match

neighborhood bar serves some of the best

Siamville offers a fine dining experience at a

your favorite flavors to create your ideal

pub food in town. The friendly staff and

budget-friendly price.

summer treat.




Soseki Sushi Cafe & Sake Bar

Stop On Bye

from sushi and sashimi to rice and noodle

227 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-351-1800,

1616 6th St SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-362-0788,

bowls that are delivered by a highly attentive, $$, $$


Fresh sushi, poké bowls, noodles and

The broasted chicken is the highlight on the

donburi—a little bit of everything is available

menu at this local, family-owned restaurant

Sushi Kicchin

at this newly opened sushi joint in downtown

and the small-scale bar allows every seat to

201 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-338-1606, $

Iowa City. Visit for great lunch combos and a

be the best in the house for watching the

If you love sushi—and we know you do—stop

selection of sake as well.


by Sushi Kicchin for their fast, affordable

Sparti’s Gyros

Studio 13

dumplings and rolls—both available in veggie

61 2nd St, Coralville, 319-512-5005,

13 S Linn St, Iowa City, 319-800-1354,

options—are fresh and flavorful. This is a great, $, $

place to stop by for lunch if you are in a hurry

An extensive selection of traditional Greek

As Iowa City’s only LGBTQ+ bar, Studio 13

to get back to the office.

food and Chicago-style American fare with a

has shows and specials almost every night

smattering of fried sides. Available for online

of the week. Anyone 19 and older can come


ordering, drive-through service or delivery in

by for their infamous drag shows, featuring

745 Community Dr # A, North Liberty,

the Iowa City-Coralville area.

seasoned professionals and beginners. Studio

319-626-6666, $$

13’s mission is to promote diversity and create

This strip mall sushi place in North Liberty


a welcoming environment for everyone in the

is everything you wouldn’t expect from a

1006 Melrose Ave, Iowa City, 319-887-5564,

community, so anyone of any background is

strip mall sushi place. With some of the, $$

welcome to dance the night away in flashing

most unique dishes (ex: broiled yellowtail

Sink your teeth into a mouthwatering burger

lights and techno beats.

collarbone, Wagyu beef) fresh nigiri,

menu that is sure to hit the spot. Their

sashimi and small plates, Sushiya is as good

made with Iowa-bred beef, a house-made vegetarian black bean burger or a grilled

Sushi House

as any sushi on the coasts, or anywhere,

chicken sandwich topped with anything from

2665 Edgewood Pkwy SW, Cedar Rapids,

really. It has some of the freshest fish in

mango jalapeño salsa, to prosciutto and

319-396-1990, $$

the area, combined with great service and

stone-ground mustard. For something a little

A long-running family-owned and operated

an exceptionally clean environment, a visit

different, try the gumbo or jambalaya.

Asian eatery serving Chinese and Japanese

to Sushiya makes for a truly wonderful

cuisine, Sushi House’s inclusive menu ranges





Little Food Trucks of Happiness The ultimate symbol of freedom and good weather. Marco’s Grilled Cheese This Iowa City classic serves late-night grilled cheese and quesadillas. If you’ve ever been downtown on a weekend night, chances are you’ve had a taste. The Box Lunch This food truck is kitted out like an old-school ’50s diner and serves up burgers,


’dogs and grilled cheese as well as hand-dipped milkshakes and floats. You can find them at the Iowa

Banh Mi Amore Owner Greg

ZZ n T You can sink your teeth into

O’s Grill You’ll find this truck within

City Farmers Market and Science

Millsap was the winner of the 2018

the varied and eclectic offerings

a two-hour radius of the Cedar

Thursdays at the University of Iowa

People’s Choice Award at Iowa

of this truck—waffles topped

Rapids-Iowa City area, including

MERF Building.

City’s Top Chef event for his take

with pulled pork, fried bologna

Anamosa at times with their Moroc-

on the traditional Vietnamese banh

sandwiches and classic Midwest

can-, Greek- and Thai-style gyros

Caribbean Kitchen Cedar Rap-

mi sandwich. Banh Mi Amore food

meatloaf with a twist—as it travels

on soft pitas with all those fresh

ids-based Carribean Kitchen focus-

truck can be found on the Iowa

between Hills, Coralville and Iowa

veggies you love and incredible

es their efforts on—you guessed

City Ped Mall late weekend nights.


sauces over beef, lamb, chicken or

it—Caribbean cuisine. Reminiscent

He’s also posted up at lunchtime on

of “mama’s house on Sunday,” their

Science Thursdays.

vegetarian greatness handed to Local Burrito One of Iowa City’s

you hot and made to order.

most popular authorities in the

menu is based on authentic JamaiRevel’s Mobile Meatery Serving

world of burritos can be seen

RioBurritos The Cedar Rapids

up meats of all varieties—pork and

during farmers market/festival

Farmers Market has this burrito

El Gringo Loco Because we always

ribeye meals, burgers and chicken—

season, and you can also get your

staple feeding locals all season long

need more tacos, keep your eyes

this food truck out of Keota makes

favorite wrapped masterpiece at

with the occasional catering gigs

peeled for El Gringo Loco. Making

the rounds between Kalona and

wedding receptions, private parties

featuring their famous burritos,

the circuit between Washington,

Iowa City. Catch them at Science

and catered events by request.

tacos, tortas, tamales, smooth gua-

Iowa City and Cedar Rapids farm-

Thursdays and stay tuned to their

ers markets and pop-up events,

Facebook for additional locations.

can comfort food.

camole and more fresh, Mexican Island Vybz Mobile Rasta-Rant


You can find this Caribbean

diners can expect tasty street tacos Street Hawk The University of

-inspired food truck in downtown

Rodney’s Jamaican Jerk & BBQ

Iowa stepped up their dining game

Iowa City during lunch times and

Rodney’s truck is mainly in the

Keeping Up With the Jones’ This

lately with the roll-out of their food

the Coralville Residence Inn during

Iowa City area, but they’re known

tagged-up truck’s menu really runs

truck. The menu is well-curated

dinner hours with their own twists

to take their Jamaican award-win-

the gamut, serving everything from

and on-trend, serving up specials

on burgers, wraps, sandwiches and

ning culinary creations all over the

pulled pork to chicken and waffle

like bulgogi mac ‘n’ cheese and


Corridor and beyond. Something

skewers, chicken wings to Baja fish

jackfruit tacos alongside staples

jerked, curried, smoked, stewed and

tacos. Find ’em at the Cedar Rapids

like burgers and pulled pork. Visit

more are waiting for you from Chef

Downtown Farmers Market, Food

them on Mondays and Wednesdays


Truck Wednesdays at NewBo City

at the Main Library Plaza, Tuesdays

Market and Science Thursdays at UI

and Fridays on the T. Anne Cleary

MERF Building.

Walkway and Thursday at the Iowa

and flautas.

Memorial Union. 98



Sun Cafe

Tap N’ Tacos

1681 S 1st Ave, Iowa City,

808 5th St, Unit 8, Coralville,

319-351-2287, $

319-354-5250,, $$

This adorable little hole in the

This new establishment is in the

wall Vietnamese restaurant is a

heart of Coralville and features

great place for richly spiced pho

tacos, tortas and entress of the

pure in flavor and authenticity.

Mexican variety. Multiple TVs will keep you up-to-date with

Sykora Bakery

whatever sporting event is on

73 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids,

and an outdoor patio space

319-364-5271,, $

is available for warm weather

This family-run bakery tucked in


the historic Czech Village offers handmade rolls, bread, cakes and

Taste Of India

classic pastries, but be sure to

1060 Old Marion Rd NE, Unit D,

save room for a bowl of goulash!

Cedar Rapids, 319-294-6999,, $$

Szechuan House

This spacious Indian restaurant

320 E. Burlington St., Iowa City,

and buffet on the northeast side


of Cedar Rapids serves generous, $$

portions of Indian favorites.

The menu can be daunting, but the rewards at Szechuan House

TCB Pool Hall

are worth the investment. The

114 E College St, Iowa City,

food is super authentic and is

319-887-2665, $

often sublimely delicious. Under

The great beer selection,

new ownership, the restaurant was

well-maintained pool tables,

recently remodeled, though the

shuffleboard and darts make this

menu remains mostly the same.

bar one to check out.

Taj Mahal Restaurant Grocery

Teddy’s Bigger Burgers

3939 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar

324 E Washington St, Iowa City,

Rapids, 319-294-4953,, $$


If you’ve never ventured into, $

the grocery section of Taj Mahal

Garlic fries. You need these

Restaurant, this is some of what

in your life immediately. This

you’ve been missing: homemade

Hawaii-based fast-food franchise

Indian sweets and savory

makes creative burgers,

samosas, a kaleidoscope of

sandwiches, fries and ice cream.

colorful grains and legumes, and any kind of nut you can imagine.

Thai Flavors

Smells of chicken tikka masala

340 E Burlington St, Iowa City,

and saag paneer waft through

319-339-8900,, $$

the grocery from the kitchen

Thai Flavors is Iowa City's go-to

next door and compel you to

authentic Thai food destination

buy Aloo Bhujia, a spicy fried

for dine-in, carry-out, or delivery.

potato noodle snack, and Besan

The atmosphere is cute and

Laddu, sweetened gram flour

casual, and your check won’t

balls, a favorite of the young

break the budget. They adhere to

woman working the register, who

what Thai food believes in: flavor

promises you can’t eat just one.

building. Their entrees feature interesting and delicious mixes

Taj International Food

of flavor, such as their Red Curry

2419 2nd St, Ste 2, Coralville,

which is cooked with carrots, bell

319-354-1901, $

peppers, bamboo shoots, sweet

A small store offering an extensive

basil and coconut milk.

selection of Indian ingredients and imports where you can find a small selection of produce and just about anything else you might need to make your favorite dish at home. BREAD & BUTTER 2019



MEET A FARMER Shanti Sellz works to make fresh food accessible. BY HELAINA THOMPSON


ocated down a rolling gravel road just about eight miles west of Iowa City is Muddy Miss Farms at Walker Homestead, where farmer Shanti Sellz grows vegetables for her 22-week CSA share. The season begins in early May and continues through October, when her members regularly visit the farm to pick up a weekly supply of vegetables. “I know our customers have appreciated the relationship to where their food is being grown and having access to it,” said Sellz of her farm. “I want people there, I want them to be a part of it.” Those who visit Muddy Miss Farms can also explore Walker Homestead, the 85-acre plot of land on which Sellz’s farm sits along with a growing orchard, vineyard and winery, and an agriculture education and celebration center. When members come to pick up their shares, Sellz invites them to have a glass of wine and watch the sun set. Last year, Sellz was awarded the 2018 Woman in Sustainable Agriculture Award for her work






as a farmer, as well as as an advocate for food access. Joining a CSA is a big commitment to a seasonal way of eating, and Sellz hopes to make her own vegetables more accessible to those who may feel hesitant to become CSA members. While members traditionally pay upfront, Sellz said she is happy to arrange payment plans with families. This year she will present a handful of “work-for-share options,” which offers those who may have limited financial resources a weekly share in exchange for volunteer hours. “I know a CSA is not necessarily accessible to everyone, and I want to support anyone who wants to make that commitment and needs to make it work for their budget,” Sellz said.


About Field to Family: We envision a strong, community-based Eastern Iowa food system where people eat with the seasons, farmers make a living and our ecosystem is diverse, abundant, and healthy. Field to Family coordinates the Farm to School program, Farm Stands in Food Deserts, an online local farm listing and is launching a wholesale Food Hub that works to expand access to locally-grown food for more people in the community. Visit to learn more.

Abbe Hills Farm Laura Krouse 825 Abbe Hills Rd, Mount Vernon 319-895-6924

Sellz also encourages members to split shares with other individuals or families to lighten the load, picking up a share every other week. Because local produce is not spending a week or two in transit across the country, it can hold that much longer in the refrigerator. “Everything that you’re getting from our farm, unless it’s a storage crop [such as cabbage or potatoes], has been picked within a day or two,” said Sellz. Sellz is also a regular fixture of the Iowa City Farmers Market, with in-season offerings on colorful display for those passing through. But becoming a regular CSA member is the most direct way community members can support farms, said Sellz. “It’s the epitome of putting your money where your mouth is.” Bountiful Harvest Farm Angie Scharnhorst ry

4045 245th St NE, Solon


“I know a CSA is not necessarily accessible to everyone, and I want to support anyone who wants to make that commitment and needs to make it work for their budget.”

512-644-1623 ns Illustratio

en Gl by

L Buffalo Ridge Orchard

Echollective Farm, LLC

Marcus and Emma Johnson

Derek Roller and Molly Schintler

1337 Rollins Rd, Central City




Calico Farm

Farmer Dave

Bonnie Riggan

David and Mickey Miller

1380 Dodge St Ct, Iowa City

24051 30th St, Lisbon


319-321-6904 Garden Oasis, LLC Terrance Holub 3235 330th St, Coggon 319-435-8588 Grinnell Heritage Farm Andy and Melissa Dunham 1933 Penrose St, Grinnell 641-236-4374





Morning Glory Farm

Sundog Farm/Local Harvest CSA

Donna and Bill Warhover

Carmen Black

681 Hwy 1 S, Mount Vernon

5025 120th St NE, Solon



Muddy Miss Farms at Walker

Trowel & Error Farm


Carly McAndrews and Bryant Mann

Shanti Sellz

Iowa City

3867 James Ave SW, Iowa City


Iowa Grown Market


Bethany Fischer

2613 Newport Rd, Solon



Wild Woods Farm Kate Edwards Rainbow Roots Farm

3167 Rapid Creek Trail, Iowa City

Corbin Scholz


Kroul Farms


Matt Kroul


245 Hwy 1 S, Mount Vernon

319-895-8944 Small Frye Farm

Susan Frye The Millet Seed Farm

11150 New Liberty Rd, Maysville

Iowa City

816 River St, Iowa City


319-936-1216 ry Illus

The City of Iowa City’s Edible Offerings Tyler Baird, assistant superinten-


ow nL

to sweet potatoes—in medians

south side of the Robert A. Lee

and planters around town. This

Recreation Center. Signs indicate

summer, herbs are the theme, he

which edible crops, such as

said. Iowa City dwellers are wel-

kale and cherry tomatoes, are

come to pick rosemary, lavender

available for free harvesting and

and St. John’s Wort to dry and

when they are ready. Meanwhile,

make herbal teas. Culinary herbal

the Wetherby Edible Forest

offerings will include chives, lem-

is located in Wetherby Park,

ongrass and fennel.

just south of Highway 6. Crops available for public harvest there

City, wants to see more people

going to ruin them by picking

include Egyptian walking onions,

picking his plants. “They are re-

a little bit here or there,” Baird

rhubarb, peaches, apples and

ally there for everyone to benefit

said. “It’s not going to hurt them

berries. Both projects are led by

from,” Baird said.

at all.”

the educational nonprofit Back-

Last year, Baird began grow-


ns by Gle

“Don’t be afraid that you’re

dent of parks for the City of Iowa



Fruits and vegetables for

yard Abundance, and no synthet-

ing a number of edible plants for

public harvest can also be found

ic pesticides or herbicides are

public harvest—from Swiss chard

in the Edible Classroom on the

used in either of the landscapes.










A few tricks for identifying local on the menu


You want to support a food system



that creates and retains jobs in


agriculture, enhances our environ-


ment and keeps food dollars in our


local economy, so how can you tell


if a restaurant or cafeteria includes food sourced from local farmers? FROM THE IOWA DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND LAND STEWARDSHIP


Check out the chart above for a comprehensive list of fruit and vegetable grow seasons

in our region. Learn what grows


Check the menu. Does it reflect the season or is it the same menu year-round? If it’s the

same year-round, the seasonality


Ask your server! Iowa farmers raise livestock for meat and dairy, and grow fruits, mush-

rooms, vegetables, grains, legumes

in Iowa and when. If you’re eating

of foods probably does not influ-

and herbs. Even it if is specified on

tomatoes in January rather than

ence their menu choices.

the menu, ask if they are currently

July, August or September, those

using their crops. “Who is your

tomatoes are most likely not local.

produce farmer? Where do you

If you’re eating a strawberry in

get your Iowa pork? Are these

June, it might be from a local

mushrooms grown in Iowa?” Don’t

farmer! Peppers in the spring? No.

be afraid to get the details. If they

Sweet potatoes in May? Probably

can’t name a farm or a farmer, ask

not local, unless stored from the

them if they work with a local food

winter. Asparagus in May? Could

distribution hub, such as Field to

be local!

Family’s Food Hub. If the answer


Encourage them to source seasonal local foods for their menus. Chefs want to make

their customers happy. If you want local, let them know!

is “no,” they are most likely getting their food from non-local sources.




Thai Spice

Three Samurai Japanese Restaurant

many events they host and enjoy on of their

1210 S Gilbert St, Iowa City, 319-351-2581,

1801 2nd St, Coralville, 319-337-3340,

excellent cocktails as well., $$, $$

Thai Spice is known for their authentic,

Three Samurai offers both sushi, poke bowls

Tuscan Moon Grill on Fifth

flavorful dishes. Their menu is extensive, so

and Japanese inspired entrees.

203 5th St, Kalona, 319-656-3315,

you’ll be sure to find something you like. The, $$$

friendly staff is happy to help if you can’t

Timmerman’s Supper Club

It is more than worth the drive to Tuscan

decide between the Kang Dang or the Red

7777 Timmerman Dr, East Dubuque, 815-747-3316,

Moon—a fantastic surprise awaits you. Entrees

Curry!, $$$

are all top notch but order the lobster if it’s

Timmerman’s Supper Club has been a

available. The vast patio and a charming

Thai Spice Noodle House

Northeastern Iowa institution for years.

enclosed outdoor bar allow you to make use

725 Mormon Trek Blvd, Iowa City, 319-339-1999, $$

Situated on the bluffs of the Mississippi River,

of the space even in cold weather.

This offshoot of the popular Gilbert Street

the expansive dining room has amazing views.

location opened with a noodle-focused menu

Expect classic steakhouse and supper club

Twelve01 Kitchen and Tap

ranging from soups to entrees with some

fare and you won’t be disappointed.

1210 1st Ave, Coralville, 319-338-1201, $$$

favorite appetizers, salads and rice dishes

Formerly the River City Beefstro (facepalm), Ting’s Red Lantern

this is connected to the Radisson Hotel &

540 Boyson Rd NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-294-8666, $

Conference Center and Hampton Inn, just off

Thew Brewing Company

On the hunt for traditional Chinese staples

of I-80 at the First Avenue exit in Coralville.

301 2nd Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-343-8439,

in Cedar Rapids? This is your place. Food is

The rebranded Twelve01 offers breakfast,, $

delivered in an unpretentious setting and

lunch and dinner seven days a week and is

Opening March 2018, this new brewery in

portions are generous.

recommended for the Amish Chicken with

thrown in for good measure.

Asparagus, Beef Brisket and Grilled Reuben.

Cedar Rapids’ Kingston Village produces a wide variety of different beers using a system

Tomaso’s Pizza

is that lends itself well to smaller batches and

3234 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar Rapids,

Uptown Bills Coffee House

experimentation. The taproom at Thew does

319-364-4313,, $$

730 S Dubuque St, Iowa City,

not serve food but does allows guests to

1111 7th Ave, Marion, 319-377-6102,

319-339-0804,, $

bring outside food in from nearby restaurants., $$

Uptown Bills is a gathering place where

Stay tuned for regularly scheduled visits from

1061 N Center Point Rd NE, Hiawatha,

individuals of all abilities are welcome. Part

local food trucks during warmer months.

319-393-5610,, $$

coffee house, part performance venue, and

One of a handful of long-running pizza

part community meeting place, Uptown

Thirsty Camel

establishments in the area—Tomaso’s

Bills is dedicated to encouraging those with

18747 IA-70, Conesville, 319-725-6891

remains a powerhouse on the Cedar Rapids

disabilities to live their best life. The soda pop

First opened in 1970, the Thirsty Camel

pizza scene. Choose from a range of crusts

selection is by far the most diverse in Iowa

delivers on fried appetizers, dinner with a pass

including a thin New York style, middle of the

City, giving customers an array of options

through the salad bar and rotating nightly

road Detroit crust with a cheesy caramelized

when it comes to root beer in a bottle.

specials let you sample all this roadside

edge, or a thick and doughy Chicago deep

supper club has to offer. Try the Camel Turds

dish. The original Mombo Combo is a crowd

Uptown Snug

or the catfish.

pleaser, but feel free to create your own

760 11th St, Marion, 319-200-6996, $


You won’t find any food at this upscale

Tin Roost

Irish pub, but beyond Guinness and a solid

840 W Penn St, North Liberty, 319-626-2331, $$

Toppling Goliath Brewing Co.

lineup of beers, the bar is well-equipped for

Tin Roost provides a relaxed and social

1600 Prosperity Rd, Decorah, 563-387-6700,

whatever cocktail your night on the (Up)town

atmosphere for customers to enjoy food and

might call for. Cozy up fireside during the

drinks with friends. Their extensive menu

This brewery got its start in 2009 after

winter and enjoy the back patio in summer,

includes all the American classics with a

smashing success in homebrewing. Now

overlooking the Uptown Artway—one of

southern twist, homespun cocktails and over

brewing over 30 beers and distributing

several Marion alleyways activated with

36 beers on tap. Relax by one of their three

to more than eight states, the brewery’s

public art installations year round by ArtPlace

fire pits in the winter or on their spacious

previously small and humble taproom has

America grantees ImaginArt in the Alleys.

patio in the summer.

been transformed into a 100-barrel brewery

Tip Top Cakes

with canning and bottling lines, taproom,

Urban Pie

restaurant and event center all under one roof.

200 State St #101, Cedar Falls, 319-260-2045,, $$

708 5th St, Coralville, 319-359-1191,, $

Trumpet Blossom Cafe

1138 7th Ave, Marion, 319-200-2399,

Whether you need a high-end wedding cake,

310 E Prentiss St, Iowa City, 319-248-0077,, $$

a cup of coffee, or a pastry to treat your, $$

This fast-fired personal pizza concept

sweet tooth, Tip Top Cakes has what you are

At Trumpet Blossom, being vegan does not

started in Cedar Falls with a second location

looking for. Adam, the owner and award-

mean sacrificing your favorite comfort foods.

in Marion. The menu inspires with topping

winning baker, strives to amaze his customers

Their brunch, lunch and dinner menus have

combinations you won’t find anywhere else—

whether they come in for a custom cake or a

something for everyone at the table to enjoy.

even including a dessert pizza and a breakfast

dozen cupcakes.

Come by in the evening to attend one of the

pizza—but you can always build your own,



A festival exploring the unknown, discussing the creative process, and presenting new work.

November 1-2, 2019




Retail in Detail These are a few of our favorite things.

Ten Thousand Villages 105 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-519-2104 Stocking fair-trade artisan gifts from around the world, Ten Thousand Villages is the place to go when looking for ethically and sustainably produced goods. Hand carved by artisans from Cambodia, this citrus reamer made from sustainably sourced palm wood brings an extra dose of beauty to your next batch of lemon bars.

Rare Bird Soap Shop

AKAR Design

1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids, These

257 Iowa Ave, Iowa City, 319-351-1227,

high-quality, all-natural, vegan-friendly small-batch soaps are Akar curates the work of

made from coconut oil, sustainable palm oil, sunflower oil and

ceramic artists across the country, selling

olive oil and make for the perfect kitchen accessory whether

and displaying beautiful and functional

you’ve been busy meal-prepping or just reaping the benefits of

pieces that elevate daily life. The selection of

your favorite home chef.

drool-worthy handmade ceramic mugs make an exceptionally thoughtful gift for anyone aesthetically inclined.

Design Ranch 701 E Davenport St, Iowa City, 319-354-2623, Design Ranch carries collections from many of the world’s greatest classic and contemporary designers. New this season from Alessi: strikingly saturated bowls (in a variety of sizes) that will bring just the right pop of color to your counter and tabletops.

Iowa Artisans Gallery 207 E Washington St, Iowa City,



Sweetopia Handmade Chocolates

319-351-8686, iowaartisansgallery.

4444 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-294-4281

com Specializing in showcasing the

These handmade and handpainted (!)

work of Midwestern artists, Iowa

chocolates make a beautiful host gift to bring

Artisans Gallery offers outstanding

along to your next dinner party or an indulgent

handcrafted options for your tabletop.

treat for yourself. Boasting 20 flavors to

These cutting and cheese boards are

choose from, Sweetopia’s truffles, creams and

smooth as butter and while made by

chocolate confections are almost too pretty to

hand there’s none of the usual tell-tale

eat. We said almost.

hand-hewn signs; these are perfect.



too. (That goes for the salad as well.) Breadsticks and wings round out the menu of this fast-growing, family-friendly startup. Urban Greens

A purveyor of delicate micro-greens and sprouts grown in a hydroponic environment, Urban Greens expanded their offerings to include a beautiful mix of beet, kale, cabbage, broccoli and bok choy greens and other lettuces. Find them at the Iowa City Farmers Market and at local grocers like New Pioneer, Bread Garden and Hy-Vee. Vesta 849 Quarry Rd, Coralville, 319-338-3782,, $$

Nestled in the Iowa River Landing, Vesta features Mediterranean-inspired cuisine and offers both a gluten-free and dairy-free menu for those with dietary restrictions. The spacious patio is a favorite perch during summer months. Village Meat Market & Café 92 16th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-265-6328,

In the heart of the Czech Village in Cedar Rapids, Village Meat Market & Café provides customers with a southern twist on a classic butcher shop. Everything is homemade and of the highest quality and rest assured you’ll be headed home with the best fine cuts, smoked meats, homemade brats, and candied bacon around. Vine Tavern & Eatery 330 E Prentiss St, Iowa City, 319-354-8767,, $$ 39 2nd St, Coralville, 319-338-7770,, $$

Students and residents head to the Vine for the bar food and daily food and drink specials. The Iowa City location has a more classic college-bar atmosphere, with dimmed lighting and giant TVs, while the Coralville location is more family friendly. Vino’s Ristorante 3611 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-363-7550,, $$

The surprisingly intimate setting of this strip mall restaurant makes it a great place for a dinner date. Vino’s offers traditional Italian dishes executed well, a full bar and an extensive wine list. Stop by RG Books’ lounge, adjacent to Vino’s, after enjoying your meal, for an after-dinner drink and relax in comfy seating as jazz and blues music plays overhead.







enchanting creation of cheese and peppers,

4100 River Ridge Dr NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-393-8727,

the Nutcracker features a basil pesto and is, $$

topped with pistachios. This pizza will change

Visit this casual cafe atmosphere for your

the way you look at pizza.

favorite Italian-American dishes like pizza, pasta and calzones, and a full bar.

The Whippy Dip 121 College Dr, Decorah, 563-382-4591

Learn the fine art of healthy relating, emotional growth, and living a fulfilled life with Marty Carpenter M.D., psychiatrist, and host of The Heartache Connoisseur podcast

VUE Rooftop

The Whippy Dip’s long lines through the

328 S Clinton St Ste A, Iowa City, 319-519-4650,

summer season are a sure sign of the town’s, $$

love for this Decorah institution. Operational

Iowa City’s first high-rise rooftop bar and

since 1954, you’ll find the standard ice cream

restaurant, located in the newly built Hilton

shop favorites as well as “tornadoes,” the

Garden Inn, offers primo views of downtown

Whippy Dip’s take on the patented Dairy

Iowa City and beyond. Delight in that superior

Queen Blizzard.

feeling that washes over you while casually sipping a martini and dining on steak 12 floors

White Star Ale House

above all those regular peons below.

305 2nd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 319-362-2000,

Wadadly’s Island Flavorz

A popular downtown hangout with creative

2000 Wiley Blvd SW, Ste 106, Cedar Rapids,

American food and almost 100 beers

319-390-1600, $$

available! White Star has daily specials and

Sure there’s a burger and chicken wings on

free late night entertainment on Fridays and

the menu, but where can’t you find a burger


these days? What you’re really here for are the jerked chicken and pork, the salmon


croquettes, the fried catfish or the housemade


ginger beer. Don’t miss this Cedar Rapids

Wild Culture Kombucha


210 N Linn St, Iowa City,, $

Walker Homestead 3867 James Ave SW, Iowa City,

This 85-acre farm is the perfect backdrop to inspire an agricultural educational


experience. If you’re interested in growing a variety of foods, raising animals and have an appreciation for farm life, fresh foods,


culinary sensations and good wines, Walker Farmstand is a destination. The location also

Iowa’s first kombucha taproom is open in

plays host to The Farmer’s Table, a seasonal

downtown Iowa City! We serve our own

dinner series that brings farmers and diners

naturally brewed kombucha, plus all-local

to a common table. A newly added event

beer, wine, cider, mead, coffee, tea and

and venue site makes it perfect for your next

snacks. While you enjoy your drinks, relax in

group gathering.

our comfy lounge area with one of our board games, or grab a seat at the bar and munch

The Wedge Pizzeria

on our selection of made in Iowa food.

517 S Riverside Dr, Iowa City, 319-337-6677,, $$




The Wedge offers takeout and delivery of

Wig & Pen

their many specialty pizzas, in addition to

1220 Highway 6 W, Iowa City, 319-354-2767,

a few calzone options. Made with local and, $$

organic ingredients whenever possible, the

363 N 1st Ave, Iowa City, 319-351-2327,

Wedge offers a large selection of pizza, $$

for vegetarians and even offers a vegan

201 Hwy 965 NE, North Liberty,

cheese option. If you’re searching for a, 319-665-2255

unique pizza with a taste all its own, try

Popular with families and sports fans, Wig &

the Nutcracker pizza from The Wedge. An

Pen is the perfect spot for those looking for

2019 Local Dining Horoscopes Jupiter will be in its home sign of Sagittarius from November of 2018 to December of 2019. These 13 months are all about growth, new beginnings and transformation. Allow the impulsive, fun-loving energy of Sagittarius to inspire your local dining choices this year, with these up-and-coming restaurant recommendations for each sign.





NaRa Thai Cuisine, 1725 Blairs Ferry Rd, Ste 102, Marion This year, the stars want you to expand your horizons, Aries! With Jupiter in your ninth house of expansion, it’s a perfect time to finally expand your palate! This year is also a great time for you to travel, so be sure to try the authentic local cuisine while you’re there. If you can’t book a trip to Thailand on such short notice, try out NaRa Thai Cuisine in Marion, Iowa. The dishes are inspired by the chef’s childhood, making it the perfect place for an Aries to spice up their sustenance! Melk, 116 E Washington St, Iowa City Oh Taurus, I know how you love to indulge in luxury—but I recommend reeling those instincts in during 2019. Venus and Jupiter are both spending time in your eighth house of intimacy and relationships. This means you’ll experience greater closeness with loved ones, as well as strong urges to spend money. Try investing in more humble luxuries—like the splendid cereal bar at Melk! This diner-slash-cereal bar is in downtown Iowa City and it’s sure to be a go-to spot for students and locals alike. Come by for a quick bowl of cereal and enjoy the chill atmosphere, Taurus.


Goosetown Café, 203 N Linn St, Iowa City Oh Gemini, my lovely air sign—get ready for a year of forming exciting new connections. This coming year is likely to be a social one for you, as well as one for focusing on your own health and wellness. Try out Goosetown Café. It has plenty of options ranging from fried egg sliders to duck pot pie and with its brunches, family-style dinners, and cocktail soirees— it’s the perfect place to socialize with all those new friends you’ll be making in 2019.


Wild Culture Kombucha, 210 N Linn St, Iowa City Cancers, it’s likely you’ve had way too much on your plate these past few months. In 2019, its time to stop overloading yourself with tasks and responsibilities. Focus on keeping yourself grounded, centered and healthy by visiting Iowa City’s local kombucha taproom, Wild Culture Kombucha! Nothing says wellness and self-care quite like fermented tea chock full of probiotic cultures. Their taproom is the perfect place to wind down and focus on the body—be sure to give the seasonal flavors a try.


Bourbon Creek Smokehouse, 411 1st Street SE, Cedar Rapids This year should be full of romance and creativity, Leo. Your fire energy pairs well with Sagittarius, making you ready to break out of old habits and create new routines in order to reach your goals. While we’re talking about fire, look to Bourbon Creek Smokehouse for some inspiration about smokin’ hot fresh takes. They’ve got all the classics served fresh and in their own unique style, not to mention their wide selection of bourbons to pair with your smoked pork ribs. Treat yourself to a romantic night out, Leo, you know you deserve it.


Bo Mac’s, 219 16th Ave SE Cedar Rapids Virgo, you and I both know how badly you need to take some time for yourself. For these 13 months of Jupiter in Sagittarius, do your best to prioritize your own happiness and comfort. Bo Mac’s makes you feel right at home with live music, an intimate setting and comfort food. The 120-year-old building has undergone extensive renovations to get where it is today (I know how you love projects) so savor that burger and cold beer while you appreciate the fruits of your and Bo Mac’s labor.

One More Bite, 1100 3rd St SE, Cedar Rapids These next few months are a prime time for you to start big projects, Libra. Jupiter will be direct in your third house of communication. This means you have all the tools to be the articulate and attentive justice-seeker you are. While you are focusing on plans and connection—simplify your lunch breaks by visiting One More Bite in the NewBo City Market. This, too, started out as a passion project for the dynamic husband-wife duo that run it, and now serves delicious sandwiches, wraps and fries from their booth and food truck. Dash Coffee Roasters, 120 3rd Ave SW Ste 2, Cedar Rapids | 287 N Linn St, Iowa City (coming soon) After spending last year in your sign, Scorpio, Jupiter has learned a lot about appreciating strong friendships and the growing pains of transformation. Now, it’s time to focus on feelings of gratitude, integrity and courage as you face this new transit. Joyful success could easily be yours as long as you remain focused and what better way to get in the zone than their signature “sassy” latte from Dash Coffee Roasters? They believe that good enough is never good enough, and their drive to be better is exactly the energy you need to start each day of this coming year.


Local Pour Street Food, 302 3rd Ave SW, Cedar Rapids This ought to be an amazing several months for you, my Sag friend. Jupiter is in your first house meaning that everything about you can grow and move forward. Focus on how you can be as authentically you as possible, remain optimistic about the future, and you will surely reap the karmic rewards. For this exciting and uplifting time in your life, I recommend checking out Local Pour Street Food. Here you can get authentic international street food such as gyros, ramen, and poutine.


La Regia Taqueria, 436 Highway 1 W, Iowa City Breathe the bad vibes out and let the good energy in, Capricorn. The stars say you will finally feel the closure you have been looking for, as long as you take baby steps and remain patient with yourself. You have worked tirelessly to become who you are, just like La Regia Taqueria has spent years transforming from food truck to full-service restaurant. They may not be an up-and-coming restaurant, but their recent renovations make them a great match for you. The energy here is perfect for Capricorns who know more than their fair share about hard work.


Paradise Bar and Grill, 5200 Fountains Dr NE, Ste 100, Cedar Rapids Good news, Aquarius, this transit will be a great influence on your social life for the next year! Your ability to connect and build community is heightened with Jupiter in your eleventh house. Additionally, your goals and aspirations are being influenced favorably, so get to work on those dreams! If you find yourself looking for a nice place to have a dinner party, check out Paradise Bar and Grill! They boast an innovative blend of traditional and fusion Indian dishes and have several vegetarian options.


The Dandy Lion, 111 S Dubuque St., Iowa City At long last, Pisces, you are finally getting the recognition you deserve. With Jupiter in your tenth house (career and responsibilities live here) you’ll notice this especially in professional spheres. Keep your intentions optimistic and don’t be afraid to collaborate when strategizing for success. Consider taking your colleagues to The Dandy Lion for lunch to celebrate your next big win, or visit this quaint luncheonette for a filling breakfast that’ll start your day right every time.




Chicago-style pizza while residing in the Hawkeye state. Take a seat at the bar—all locations provide a classic pizzeria and pub atmosphere that will make your day or evening more enjoyable. Try the popular Flying Tomato style pizza. This award-


winning thin crust pizza is cooked in a deep dish pan with whole slices of tomato and flooded with a variety cheeses.

Where marketing projects support journalism in eastern Iowa

Yumei’s 901 1st Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-378-2910, $$

Offering an excellent selection of fresh Asian produce that is hard to find anywhere else in Cedar Rapids, this Asian grocer stocks a wide selection of fresh and frozen grocery items at great prices. Yotopia Frozen Yogurt

Websites and Search Engine Optimization

132 S Clinton St, Iowa City, 319-338-0500, $

This is downtown Iowa City’s only locally owned frozen yogurt shop. Whether you like your froyo sweet or tart, Yotopia has you covered. A wide variety of flavor

Custom Brand Assets

15 14








10 9 8 7

options combined with a massive selection of candy toppings will keep your taste buds guessing every time you stop in. Zeppelins Bar & Grill 5300 Edgewood Rd Ste 500, Cedar Rapids,

6 5

319-393-3047,, $$

4 3 2 1 Plain, clear,

glass vases

only with

s or chips

no crack

Find upscale casual dining with in a contemporary ambience at Zeppelins. Their menu includes all of the expected American staples with a few notable standouts (like the Parmesan Fries) and great happy hour deals. Zombie Burger 1451 Coral Ridge Ave, Coralville,, $

With a menu made for horror movie fans, Zombie Burger offers several options for their creative burgers. Stop by and grab one of their impressive burgers with a shake and split a meal while out at Coral Ridge Mall.

Cross-platform advertising to a total reach of over 400,000 monthly readers.

Everything you need to establish, maintain & promote your brand in the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City area.

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Bread & Butter 2019: Dining Guide to the Iowa City area and Cedar Rapids  

Published by Little Village

Bread & Butter 2019: Dining Guide to the Iowa City area and Cedar Rapids  

Published by Little Village


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