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Jul 18, 2006 11:34 PM

Des Moines with a group

Visiting Des Moines with the family and need suggestions for dining out with a group (10-12). I'm afraid we'll end up at places like Applebees since we are staying on a new strip of malls in West Des Moines. Is the Tool Shed worth driving to? Thanks so much!

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  1. Rube's Steakhouse in Waukee, IA is pretty close and a great place for a group. Great steaks that you cook yourself.

    1. You are in chain hell out there. Will you have transportation?
      What are some things you might like? You should know that if you have a car, you are 20 minutes or less away from anything here.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Bobfrmia

        Yes, we will all have cars, but there will be a baby and some kids in the group. Local food sounds great--are pork tenderloins worth trying? Any especially good pie? Thanks for your help!

        1. re: ketchupgirl

          I'm not sure how much help I can be here. It has been many years since I needed a place that was kid friendly. By the tool shed I will assume you mean the Machine Shed. Probably a good choice for a group with kids. Never been, but know a lot of people that like it. It will be better than your national chains. You're not to far from The Tavern. They could probably handle you. Sandwiches and good pizza. I'll look for some additional input. When are you coming?
          Now, as for are Pork Tenderloins worth trying? Yes. If you've never had a breaded pork tenderloin sandwich, you should. If for no other reason than to say you have. Problem is, you need a good one, and tenderloin opinions are all over the place. Some like the thin and huge, others the thicker and just real big. Michaels in Beaverdale makes a great loin. Nice place with good food. You might call them and bounce the group with kids question off them.
          I believe the Machine Shed has a tenderloin on the menu. Can't vouch for it. Basically, ask if the 'loins are hand cut and breaded. If so you're usually ok. Machine Shed also is supposed to have good homemade pie and other desserts.
          I'll keep thinking.

          1. re: Bobfrmia

            Thanks, Bob! I greatly appreciate your help. Good idea to ask if the pork tenderloin is freshly made--imagine many of them are frozen and not worth it. We're going to be there this weekend for a family reunion at Colby Park. Is that close to anything? Thanks again!

            1. re: ketchupgirl

              Colby Park is in Windsor Heights. You are actually just down the street from Sage. One of only two or three 5 star
              restaurants in the Des Moines area. For a summer special they are offering some small plate items in the bar. Also have a Wine Spectator recognized wine list that they are offering many by the glass. Make up an excuse to get away and duck into Sage for the best of Des Moines. Believe me, if the forcast holds true, you'll need to get inside for awhile.
              You're also not far from the Twisted Parrot. Not something kid friendly, but I need to mention them cause I like them :-). Basic bar and grill, but they have a killer Italian Sausage sandwich made with Graziano's sausage. Graziano's is what Des Moines should be known for. Hands down the best Italian Sausage on earth.
              Farther east on University is the Waveland Cafe. Just a old time cafe/diner place that makes killer breakfast. Also do a fine job with home cooked type dinners. Probably even have Walleye on the menu this time of year. They could handle the kids. Wallet friendly. About 1 1/2 miles east of Colby park.

      2. Bob is right about chain city where you are staying. However, there are some local alternatives within short driving distancee, One is Phat Chefs, a small cozy place that would easily accomadate your group. Food is excellent as is the service. If the weather is OK, there is also an outdoor seating area. They say on their web site that they accomodate large groups but you might want to call ahead.

        1 Reply
        1. re: DrWine

          PS: If they have seafood chowder go for it.