Everyone knows that small towns do everything better – including restaurants. From pizza to burgers to BBQ and more, these small town restaurants, diners, and cafes have a little bit of everything to offer:
1. Keokuk - Angelini's Pizza
Angelini's offers delicious pizza, pasta, steaks, salads, fish, and more to people in the Keokuk area. Plus, every Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday they have a pasta bar, where you can make your own pasta. They also offer gluten-free options.
2. Le Mars - Archie's Waeside
Archie's Waeside is an award-winning restaurant in Le Mars that serves some of the best dry aged steaks around, plus seafood, burgers, chicken, and more.
3. Orange City - Blue Mountain Culinary Emporium
Blue Mountain Culinary Emporium is a unique restaurant that is split into three different themed eateries. There is The Smokehouse Grille, which serves BBQ and pizza, The Passport Club, which serves soups, salads, pizzas, and other globally inspired menu items, and The Lodge, which serves steaks and other classic dinner favorites.
4. Fairfield - The Cider House
The Cider House in Fairfield has some seriously delicious burgers and it's no surprise, as they won the title of Iowa's Best Burger 2015, a yearly competition held by The Iowa Cattleman’s Association and the Iowa Beef Council. The restaurant itself also provides a very fun, yet relaxed environment, and they have some delicious hard cider.
5. Elgin - The Irish Shanti
The Irish Shanti is home to the Gunderburger, a large burger that was created in the '70s to put Gunder on the map. The Shanti serves more than just burgers, though, and you can find some delicious turkey tenders, pork loins, boiled cod, and ribeye steaks. They also have a variety of import beers, and Guinness on tap. Plus, they offer a gluten-free menu.
6. Marion - Q-Dogs BBQ Company
Next time you're in Marion, make sure to make a stop at QDogs - you won't regret it. Get their brisket, ribs, corn bread, and au gratin taters. Not only is the food great, but the atmosphere is great and the restaurant is super unique!
7. Dexter - The Rusty Duck
The Rusty Duck in Dexter offers mouthwatering steaks and burgers, as well as gigantic, delicious, pork tenderloins. All their portion sizes are very generous, so you won't leave this place hungry.
8. Clear Lake - Starboard Market
A real hidden gem, Starboard Market is a charming and unique restaurant in Clear Lake that offers tasty sandwiches, soups, salads, and a variety of homemade desserts. Plus, they offer gluten-free options.
9. Osage - Teluwut Grille House & Pub
Teluwut is an awesome, family-friendly restaurant that offers delicious steaks, original pastas, seafood, salads, sandwiches, burgers, and more. The restaurant has been such a success, the owners have now opened up two more locations in Cresco and Lake Mills.
10. Mason City - Northwestern Steakhouse
It may not look like much on the outside, but Northwestern is truly a hidden gem. Since 1920, Northwestern has been serving the best Greek steaks in the Midwest. You may have to wait a bit for a table, but just know that it will be worth every second.
With so many amazing, delicious restaurants in the state, this list just barely scratches the surface. What are some small town restaurants you would add to the list? Share your favorites with us!