LV Recommends: Tapas, small plates and charcuterie in the Iowa City area

Brix cheese shop and wine bar in Iowa City

If you’re looking to hit the town, but can’t sit still for an all-night, multi-course affair, count on the following destinations for quality small plates and cocktails.


209 N. Linn St., Iowa City

Start on the Northside at Brix, which has a warm, homey interior and offers an excellent, regularly changing assortment of cheese, charcuterie, beer and wine. Portions on their cheeseboards are generous. If it’s available, make sure to try the Cypress Grove Truffle Tremor, a goat cheese flecked with black truffle, as well as Iowa’s own Milton Creamery Prairie Breeze aged cheddar. Ask the knowledgeable staff for their recommended wine pairings.


117 N. Linn St., Iowa City

After Brix, head down the street to Devotay, where the dimly lit atmosphere and excellent selection of Spanish and Portuguese wines has led to many romantic evenings. They have an expansive list of tapas, but make sure that you try the chorizo with mushroom and sherry, and also their lamb and beef meatballs in hazelnut pepper sauce. The staff is accommodating and patient, so do like the Spanish: Relax and take your time exploring their many options.



210 S. Dubuque St., Iowa City
Facebook page

Next, head to the heart of the Ped Mall. Located on the first floor of the Sheraton Hotel, the spirit of Share is captured in the name. Small plates, like braised lamb in green curry or the smoked chicken and caramelized onion quesadilla, make up much of the menu; chefs draw inspiration from various global cuisines. Their patio is right next to the summer music stage and is a prime outdoor dining spot in the warmer months.

Clinton Street
Social Club

18 ½ S. Clinton St., Iowa City

Finish the night at Clinton Street Social Club. Though it can be painfully crowded at times, try to belly up to the bar for some creative, delicious food and a cocktail.

Their inventive and fun cocktail list offers one of the better selections of boutique spirits in the area; if you’re in the market for a glass of Pappy Van Winkle 15-year bourbon, this is your place. (But the cheaper stuff’s tasty, too.) Their food menu draws much inspiration from hearty American cuisine.

Taste their deviled eggs—then loosen your belt and dig into some house-battered cheese curds, a grilled artichoke with tarragon aioli and a decadent small plate of chili-glazed pork belly.



Thoughts? Tips? A cute picture of a dog? Share them with LV »



Summer Programs 2020

Get 150+ local restaurants delivered to your door in the Iowa City & Cedar Rapids areas!

Don’t let other people’s opinions win.

Vote for your favorite people, places and events in the Iowa City-Cedar Rapids area! In a time when local businesses need our support more than ever, your vote will send a little love to the places that make our community special. And don’t forget to tell us why—the best comments will be published in our December Best of the CRANDIC 2021 issue! Voting ends September 30.

Read the Best of the CRANDIC issue, on stands now

The Future is Unwritten

You look to Little Village for today’s stories. Your sustaining support will help us write tomorrow’s.


$10/mo or $120/year
The cost of doing this work really adds up! Your contribution at this level will cover telephone and internet expenses for one month at the LV editorial offices.


$20/mo or $240/year
$240 is enough to cover one month’s costs for sending out our weekly entertainment newsletter, The Weekender. Make a contribution at this level to put a little more oomph on your support and your weekend.


$30/mo or $360/year
(AUTO-RENEW) connects eastern Iowa culture with the world. Your contribution at this level will cover the site’s hosting costs for three months. A bold move for our boldest supporters!

All monthly and annual contributors receive:

  • Recognition on our Supporters page (aliases welcome)
  • Exclusive early access when we release new half-price gift cards
  • Access to a secret Facebook group where you can connect with other supporters and discuss the latest news and upcoming events (and maybe swap pet pics?) with the LV staff
  • Invitations to periodic publisher chats (held virtually for now) to meet with Matt and give him a piece of your mind, ask your burning questions and hear more about the future plans for Little Village, Bread & Butter Magazine, Witching Hour Festival and our other endeavors.