Best of the CRANDIC 2021: Food & Drink

The results are in! Browse the winners of Little Village’s 2019 Best of the CRANDIC competition in the Food & Drink category, representing voters’ favorite restaurants, bars, growers and innovators in the Cedar Rapids-Iowa City area.

Best African Cuisine or Market

Tee’s Liberian Dish

1271 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, 609-516-4427,

Tee’s Liberian Dish, 1271 1st Ave SE in Cedar Rapids. — Malcolm MacDougall/Little Village

Best Appetizers/Small Plates

The Webster

202 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-800-0720,

“Sorry, literally every other restaurant in Iowa. Three months in, they are already IC LEGENDS.”

—Kelly S.

“All the appetizers and sides are rich and delicious. Special call out to the biscuits.”

—David Z.

“Simply the best food in Iowa.”

—Don T.

Best Atmosphere

The Webster

The Webster in Iowa City’s Northside Neighborhood features an open kitchen. — Adria Carpenter/Little Village

“Open kitchen and lively atmosphere bring joy to the dining experience.”

—Brent C.

Best Bakery

Deluxe Bakery

812 S Summit St, Iowa City, 319-338-5000,

Photos by Tiffani Green, illustration by Jordan Sellergren/Little Village

Best Barbecue

Jimmy Jack’s Rib Shack

1940 Lower Muscatine Rd, Iowa City, 319-354-7427,

Best Bartender

Emma Rogers, Pullman Bar & Diner

17 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-338-1808,

“Emma is the best bartender around! She truly has a passion for serving others and makes everyone the best drinks around town!”

—Mackenzie B.

“If you’ve had a drink made by Emma… you’ve seen God!”

—Stephanie L.

Best Beer Selection (On Tap)

Big Grove Brewery

101 W Main St, Solon (Brewpub),
1225 S Gilbert St, Iowa City (Brewery and Taproom)

Best Beer Selection (On the Shelf)

John’s Grocery

401 E Market St, Iowa City, 319-337-2183

A shelf of craft beers for sale at John’s Grocery, Iowa City. — Emma McClatchey/Little Village

“A little liquid power from John’s Grocery helped me through the year.”

—Alea W.

Best Breakfast/Brunch

Pullman Bar & Diner

People eat dinner at Pullman Bar and Diner, 17 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, July 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

“The staff is always overwhelmingly positive and encouraging to be around.”

—Karson B.

Best Burger

George’s Buffet

17 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-351-9614

Best Catering – TIE!

Amos Dean’s Catering

1829 Mehaffey Bridge Rd NE, Solon, 319-321-7779,

Feedwell Kitchen & Bakery

560 Boyson Rd NE Suite A, Cedar Rapids, 319-409-6905,

Best Chef

Sam Gelman, co-owner/chef of The Webster

“One of the true chefs to make Iowa City farmers’ produce shine through in innovative ways while adhering to the seasonality and progression of time. Knowing full well certain ingredients won’t last forever, he immediately changes his offerings to promote what the next season brings, which conversely piques the interests of his patrons on a weekly basis.”

—Gerardo R.

Best Chicken Wings

Vine Tavern & Eatery

330 E Prentiss St, Iowa City, 319-354-8767,
39 2nd Ave, Coralville, 319-338-7770,

Best Cocktail Menu


1507 C St SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-200-2515,

Cardamom Daydream from Rodina — Zak Neumann/Little Village

“Rodina offers a balance of classics and originals, all executed with care. I could drink any of their cocktails and immensely enjoy what I’m imbibing.”

—Phoebe A.

Best Coffeehouse – TIE!

Dodge Street Coffeehouse

2790 N Dodge St, Iowa City, 319-569-1722

Press Coffee

1120 N Dodge St, Iowa City, 319-887-1500,

Best Cold Treats

Heyn’s Ice Cream

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

Best Beer Selection (On Tap)

Big Grove Brewery

101 W Main St, Solon (Brewpub)
1225 S Gilbert St, Iowa City (Brewery and Taproom)

Best Craft Brewery

Big Grove Brewery

Best CSA (Community-Supported Agriculture)


879 Echo Ave, Mechanicsville, 319-325-3910,

Best Dive Bar

George’s Buffet

George’s, 312 E Market St, Iowa City, in November 2021. — Jordan Sellergren/Little Village

Best Donuts

Daylight Donuts

1681 S 1st Ave, Iowa City, 319-338-1429,

Bags of dounut holes ready to go at Daylight Dounuts. Thursday, May 9, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

Best East/Southeast Asian Cuisine or Market

Thai Spice

1210 S Gilbert St #200, Iowa City, 319-351-2581, 725 Mormon Trek Blvd, 319-339-1999

Thai Spice Express

101 Windflower Ln, Solon, 319-644-8095

Best European Cuisine or Market

Baroncini Ristorante Italiano

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

Baroncini pizza — Chosie Titus/Little Village

“Delicious selection of authentic antipasti as well as fresh salads.”

—Claudia M.

Best Farmers Market Vendor – TIE!

Buffalo Ridge Orchard

1337 Rollins Rd, Central City, 319-521-1353,

“BRO staff are exceptional, their vegetables and apples are exceptional. Their motto says it all: ‘Growing quality local produce responsibly.’”

—Mary P.

Maestro Empanadas

1337 Rollins Rd, Central City, 319-521-1353,

A fresh empanada from Maestro Empanadas in Coralville. — Jordan Sellergren/Little Village

“These pastries are like pieces of art.”

—Hanna S.

Best Food-Scene Game-Changer

The Webster

The Webster in Iowa City’s Northside Neighborhood features an open kitchen. — Adria Carpenter/Little Village

Best Fries

Oasis Falafel

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

Oasis Falafel, Iowa City
Oasis Falafel, Iowa City — Zak Neumann/Little Village

“Generous portions and impeccable seasoning.”

—Megan W.

Best Gluten-Free-Friendly Options

Trumpet Blossom Cafe

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

Trumpet Blossom’s Rainbow Bowl — Zak Neumann/Little Village

Best Grocery Store

New Pioneer Co-op

1101 2nd St, Coralville, 319-358-5513,
22 S Van Buren St, Iowa City, 319-338-9441
3338 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar Rapids, 319-365-2632

“Absolutely no other grocery store returns more toward the varied needs of its community than New Pi.”

—Joseph W.

Best Late-Night Food

George’s Buffet

Best Liquor Store

John’s Grocery

Best Patio/Outdoor Dining

Big Grove Brewery

An October evening is warmed by fire and a fresh IPA at Big Grove Brewery, Iowa City. — Emma McClatchey/Little Village

Best Latin/South American Cuisine or Market

La Regia Taqueria

436 Hwy 1 W, Iowa City, 319-341-8226,

La Regia Taqueria, Iowa City, 2019 — Jordan Sellergren/Little Village

Best Local Farm

Wilson’s Orchard & Farm

4823 Dingleberry Rd NE #1 Iowa City, 319-354-5651,

Wilson’s Apple Orchard is now Wilson’s Orchard & Farm, growing and selling a variety of fruits, vegetables and products. — Wilson’s Orchard & Farm/video still

Best Middle Eastern/Mediterranean Cuisine or Market

Oasis Falafel

“Kudos to handling the pandemic so well, for giving the entire staff time off to get vaccinated, and for the always-tasty food, and for the commitment to NOT ship their addictive hummus everywhere, in order to not use preservatives. A smiley face to Naftaly, Ofer and staff, made of falafel and hummus! RAWR!”

—Andrea T.

Best Pizza

Wig & Pen Pizza

1220 US-6 West, Iowa City 319-354-2767,
363 N 1st Ave, Iowa City, 319-351-2327
201 Hwy 965 NE, North Liberty, 319-665-2255

Best Place for a Business Lunch

Goosetown Cafe

203 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-351-1924,

Shrimp and Grits from Goosetown Cafe in Iowa City — Zach Berg/Little Village

Best Produce

New Pioneer Co-op

Best Pub Food

Shakespeare’s Pub & Grill

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

A Reuben from Shakespeare’s Pub and Grill — Jordan Sellergren/Little Village

“The most welcoming place in town.”

—Wendy D.

Best Restaurant

The Webster

Best Restaurant for a First Date

The Webster

Best Restaurant for Delivery/Takeout

Oasis Falafel

Best Restaurant Staff

The Webster

Best Restaurant to Cure Your Hangover

Pullman Bar & Diner

Best Restaurant to Take Your Parents To – TIE!

The Webster


Best Seafood

St. Burch Tavern

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

Best Soul Food

Vivian’s Soul Food

2925 Williams Pkwy SW, Cedar Rapids, 319-396-2229,

Briana Smallwood shows off the Sunday menu at Vivian’s Soul Food in Cedar Rapids. — Jav Ducker/Little Village

“The food here is absolutely delicious, like it came down from the heavens. The staff and atmosphere really round out the experience! I love coming here!”

—Anna S.

Best South Asian Cuisine or Market

Masala Indian Cuisine

9 S Dubuque St, Iowa City, 319-338-6199,

Best Sushi

Oyama Sushi & Steakhouse

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

Best Tacos

La Regia Taqueria

Best Use of Local Ingredients

The Webster

Best Vegan Options

Trumpet Blossom

Best Wine Selection

Brix Cheese Shop & Wine Bar

209 N Linn St, Iowa City, 319-359-1999,

Most Innovative Menu

The Webster

Little Village’s Best of the CRANDIC – Food & Drink is presented by CHOMP.

See who else won!