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Iowa_Smitten's Profile

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Iowa City

Ate at Linn Street Café in Iowa City last night. We were seated right next to the host station although only one other table was occupied and it was early in the evening. The staff gathered around the station and talked loudly amongst themselves (at one time there were four staff members hanging out), cancelling any pleasant ambiance to be had. Not a good practice in respecting your customers. It is a small restaurant but just stepping away to the bar area to talk, limiting exchanges to business, and lowering their voices would have helped.

We had not eaten there in a long time, mostly because the service was so slow. Using a Groupon coupon was a way that we could check it out again without being out big bucks. Service this evening was fine and the wait for our food reasonable. Husband's pasta was good, but my sweet pepper side dish was over-cooked and over-salted.

With other good dining options in Iowa City, we probably won't return.

Aug 22, 2012
Iowa_Smitten in Great Plains

Iowa City 2012

The better Iowa City restaurants will probably be much cheaper than Scottsdale. There are lots of independently owned restaurants featuring fresh food.

May 15, 2012
Iowa_Smitten in Great Plains

Iowa City

I agree with LifeB about Baroncini. We went there this Saturday. They had flown in lobster and we saw several customers indulging in a whole lobtser served with a chili sauce. I ordered lobster raviolini which was wonderfully creamy and delicious and my partner reported that the swordfish was excellent. We were given a basket of small homemade rolls, served with an aromatic, fruity olive oil. A house salad was very light dressed - the only negative was that the garbanzo beans kept rolling off my fork and impossible to skewer. On a previous visit we had pasta with the best black olives I have ever had. We have never tried the desserts.
The chef/owner, John-Luc, was out in the dining room frequently, serving food or talking to his customers. He grew up in northern Italy and went to cooking school in Italy.
Reservations would be a good idea, especially on weekends, as it is has a fairly small dining room.

Sep 26, 2011
Iowa_Smitten in Great Plains

Iowa City

As far as I know, the Mondonaros (Fresh Food Concepts) still own it.
It features the old bar from Donnelly's Bar and is located a couple of doors down from Prairie Lights Books.

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Prairie Lights Cafe & Bar
506 Main St, Tipton, KS 67485

Aug 25, 2011
Iowa_Smitten in Great Plains

Iowa City

My views on places for Iowa City dining places that don't seem to be mentioned much but which we like to frequent:
Oasis - owned by a couple of Israelis. Great falafel and hummus. Very low key.
Deluxe Crepes - assortment of sweet and savory crepes. Fast and tasty.
Basta - interesting pizzas.
Thai Flavors - good service and prices.
Micky's - one of the Mondonaro places. Their sandwich breads are wood oven baked.
La Reyna - best enchiladas suisse, tacos, and pork tamales.
El Bandito - second to La Reyna, but both far above the pack.
Baroncini - been only once - decent food but pricey for Italian.
Bluebird - good hamburgers, hefty meatloaf, excellent vegetarian polenta.

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Thai Flavors
340 E Burlington St, Iowa City, IA 52240

Aug 25, 2011
Iowa_Smitten in Great Plains

Iowa City

Red's is closed.

May 26, 2011
Iowa_Smitten in Great Plains

Iowa City

Hearth has 1/2 price wood-fired oven flatbreads from 4:30-6 on week nights. They are definitely a meal! They also have breaks on some of the other "appetizers" and on wine. A pleasant spot to relax after a day's work.

Oct 05, 2010
Iowa_Smitten in Great Plains