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LV Recommends: Black Sheep Social Club

When Black Sheep Social Club recommends reservations, they aren’t kidding. The new Cedar Rapids restaurant hummed over the lunch hour on a recent Tuesday. Located in the former Great Furniture Mart building on First Street downtown, the social club opened for business Apr. 19 and has generated plenty of conversation among the city’s foodies. The […]

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LV Recommends: Trumpet Blossom Café

If you’re anything like me, you know there is no greater tradition than brunch. It’s the perfect midday gathering of friends to top off your weekend. You get a satisfying meal, drink(s) and above all: bacon. My friends and I were a perfect example one recent weekend. After visiting Trumpet Blossom Café and trying an […]

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LV Recommends: Lebowski’s Bar & Grill

As a connoisseur of both stoner flicks and all vodka-related beverages I was thrilled to learn of a Big Lebowski-themed restaurant opening in Robins, Iowa (925 Robins Square Dr.). Advertised as a bar and grill, this establishment, opened in February by Shawn and Nola Bodensteiner, was practically begging me to come judge their White Russians […]

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LV Recommends: Casey’s General Store

Casey’s is not a gas station, a friend once said: It’s a pizza place that has amenities, and those amenities happen to include gasoline. Looking at it this way takes some of the shame out of gas-station pizza, a shame the chain seems to insist on by putting its slices on triangular plates that go […]

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LV Recommends: Sauce Bar & Bistro

If there is a grapefruit-infused beverage, I’m probably going to order it. Overtly fruity beers should be illegal, yet I’ll drink an IPA with hints of grapefruit all day long. So it was with great rejoicing that I discovered my new favorite drink at Sauce Bar & Bistro: Rosemary’s Salt of the Dog features Hendrick’s […]

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LV Recommends: Bar’ber Shop

If I hadn’t looked at the reviews online, I would have flown right by it. “Bar’ber Shop? I searched restaurants!” But upon more investigation, it appeared this place (located at 218 1st Ave. in Coralville) wasn’t serving up a shave and a haircut, but meals made from locally sourced foods at an affordable price. So, […]

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Chicken Little Reviews: The Lost Cuban

Since 2012, The Lost Cuban in Cedar Rapids has been consistently serving flavorful Cuban favorites, garnering well-deserved buzz along way. The restaurant’s dining room is colorful and clean, free from the clutter of knickknacks. Customers order at the register, and friendly, helpful servers bring the food out to the table when it’s ready (which doesn’t […]

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Chicken Little Reviews: Osaka Japanese Restaurant

Located in the heart of downtown Iowa City in the space formerly occupied by Iron Hawk, Osaka Japanese Restaurant opened in fall of 2014 and has a large menu that seems to be fairly cut-and-dried as far as Japanese cuisine goes around here: lunchtime bento boxes, soups, salads, sashimi, nigiri, sushi rolls, katsu, dumplings, tempura, […]

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Chicken Little Reviews: Orchard Green Lounge

When the lights are shining, and it’s filled with diners, I am thankful for Orchard Green Lounge. On a recent evening, my dining partner and I nabbed a parking spot outside the back entrance of Orchard Green Restaurant (521 S. Gilbert St.). Upon entering, we were greeted by a host stationed at the desk at […]

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Chicken Little Reviews: 30hop

Coralville’s new American grill, 30hop (900 East 2nd Ave., Coralville), is enormous, with two stories and a rooftop patio that’s open in warmer months. The boards above the bar—lumber salvaged from an old barn—add to the restaurant’s spacious feeling. I found myself juggling 30hop’s conflicting aesthetics: It presents an unresolved conversation between old and new, […]

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Chicken Little Reviews: Sushiya

Moshi moshi! Irrashaimase! If you’re greeted at a sushi restaurant by by three men in immaculate chef’s whites calling out from behind the small sushi bar, “irrashaimase!” (roughly translating to “welcome” in Japanese) and “moshi moshi,” trust that you are in good hands. At Sushiya — North Liberty’s newest Pan-Asian restaurant focusing on approachable Japanese […]

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Chicken Little Reviews: Kalona Brewing Company

Kalona Brewing Company 405 B Avenue, Kalona, Iowa Over the past year, the number of craft breweries in Iowa has grown from 40 to 52, with seven more currently in the planning stages of opening. This increase reflects a nationwide trend in both the food and beverage worlds of returning to local and small-scale production […]

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