Bev’s on the River

To end the course, we decided to eat at some restaurants that were local and classy. These restaurants oozed ambiance and serve as wonderful weekend date locations. The prices are a bit higher than we’d experienced, but we hoped to experience the upper echelon of what Sioux City has to offer. The first such restaurant was Bev’s on the River, the restaurant connected to the local Hilton Garden Inn. Bev’s has a long history in Sioux City and was temporarily shut down due to the flooding of the Missouri River in 2011. Up and running again, Bev’s served up a first-class lunch.

El Tapatio

We only went to one Mexican restaurant during our course (Rebo’s had some good Mexican food, but it wasn’t a fully Mexican restaurant). El Tapatio purportedly serves food reminiscent of the Jalisco state of Mexico, with specials that focus on food from seafood. It’s an inconspicuous restaurant on Gordon drive, but the outside of the restaurant doesn’t reflect the interior or the menu. The students enjoyed the food, especially the parrilla(nicknamed “the meat tower” by the students), which included shrimp, pork chops, chicken, chorizo, and many other tasty edibles.

Indigo Palette

Our final week of the course began, after an extra day off for Memorial Day, at Indigo Palette.  One of the newest restaurants in town and on 4th Street, Indigo Palette is the only coffee shop, restaurant, bar, art gallery in town (that your humble writers knows of). The ambiance is unique, and the owners pride themselves on using local, fresh ingredients for the food. The menu (both for food and wine) boast an incredible variety. In addition to the tasty food and drinks, Indigo palette hosts local musicians and artists during the weekend–and on Sundays they host Wine and Brushes on Sundays where wine is offered alongside painting lessons.

Trattoria Fresco

One of the newest additions to downtown Sioux City (though not the Siouxland area) is Trattoria Fresco. Before coming to Sioux City, the restaurant was located in South Sioux City, but the new location offers a more central location for all of Siouxland. The owner also has a branch of the restaurant in Chicago. This is a classic family owned restaurant. The owner was flitting around from table to table making sure everything was fresh and tasty and family members are involved at all levels of the restaurant.

Trattoria Fresco is a family-style Italian restaurant. Appetizers are meant to be shared, pasta is made fresh, and the sauces are numerous and delectable. In an unassuming building downtown on Jackson Street, the inside couldn’t be more different from the concrete exterior. Take a date. Take the family. But no matter what you do, eat there.

Diamond Thai

The curator of this blog’s favorite restaurant in town is Diamond Thai. The charm of the restaurant cannot be overstated, but the food is even better. Located on West 7th Street (near two of the other eateries we frequented: Da Kao and Red Bones Cafe), Diamond Thai has the best Thai food I’ve ever eaten. It’s more authentic and tastier than any Thai food I’ve had in larger metropolitan areas and cheaper by far. It is a true Sioux City gem.

Here’s what the students had to say:

Tokyo Japanese Steakhouse

Our second foray into Asian cuisine took place at the Tokyo Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar. The restaurant is a fairly typical hibachi-style eatery, but it stands alone as a unique eating experience in Sioux City. As you will see from the students’ blogs, eating at a restaurant like this is as much about the experience as it is about the food.  Though the food is great, a big reason people want to go to Tokyo Japanese Steakhouse is to be entertained while the meal is cooked in front of them.  However, this type of cooking is only one aspect of the restaurant–the sushi is regarded by many to be the best in town and is surprisingly fresh for the middle of the country.

Enjoy the students’ written-offerings!

Da Kao

This week, we will be eating at three different Asian restaurants.  One Vietnamese, one Japanese, and one Thai. The first of the three is Da Kao, a local Vietnamese restaurant that is the favorite of the majority of Morningside’s Vietnamese students. Located on West 7th Street, Da Kao is an unassuming building–a hole-in-the-wall, as many students described it–but as usual with this type of restaurant, the outside didn’t match the quality of the food or the cleanliness inside. Many of the students ventured into unfamiliar territory when entering Da Kao; the majority of them had never eaten Vietnamese food, and I encouraged them to try something new. Many of them did! Here are some accounts of their first stab at Vietnamese food:


Fourth Street is the culinary center of Sioux City. For our first foray onto Fourth Street, we went to one of my personal favorites: Rebo’s. Rebo’s is a bit hard to pin down: it has a dash of Mexican, a pinch of Caribbean, and a sprinkle of Cajun. To fully understand what Rebo’s has to offer, check out their menu. Students had almost exclusively good things to say about the restaurant, and I was grateful that they were able to accommodate us. Because of a scheduling snafu, we only gave them one day notice that we were coming and they pulled off great service to our large group without much warning.  Thanks, Rebo’s!

Milwaukee Wiener House and Coney Island

Our Thursday meal was a bit different than the previous meals.  Instead of just eating at one place, we tried two! These blogs focus on comparison and contrast between two Sioux City mainstays.

Coney Island has been in Sioux City since 1921, and its owners claim it to be the oldest restaurant in town–and we saw no reason to doubt them. The owner’s father opened the eatery, and the current owner have been running the place for quite a few years.

Milwaukee Wiener House is another family owned business in Sioux City, owned and operated by a pair of brothers. Even though the Wiener House is technically older (founded in 1918) than Coney Island, it’s been in the family since 1960.

Both eateries were enjoyable, but you’ll have to read on to see which one the students preferred:

Red Bones Cafe

Our third restaurant for the semester was Red Bones Cafe. Red Bones Cafe is one of the newest culinary additions to Sioux City. Located on West 7th street (near two other restaurants we hope to frequent this semester, Diamond Thai and Da Kao). Red Bones serves “Food for the Soul” and has a menu that revolves around Southern favorites. While I could go on for a while about the place, I think the local ABC affiliate, KCAU 9, summed up our visit quite nicely:

Special thanks to Diana Johnson for the wonderful work-up of our class and Red Bones Cafe!

For some insight into what the students thought about the restaurant, check out these strong pieces of writing about Red Bones: