Food and Drink

Des Moines task force presents "foraging as a human right" resolution

A photo of  people gardening.
The Tiny Fields Project in Minneapolis uses boulevards and alley space to grow vegetables. DSM Food Security Task Force members referenced the program in making its recommendations Wednesday. Photo courtesy of Tiny Fields Project

Harvesting edible plants on public land would be a human right under a proposed resolution presented to the Des Moines City Council Wednesday.

Why it matters: The measure, which was recommended by the city's food security task force, would help provide residents with resources to grow their own food.

  • It may also drastically change the landscape of Des Moines.
Linh Ta
Oct 21, 2021 - Food and Drink

Des Moines' East Village is getting a new bar for vinyl listening

The former location of Dobre at 503 E Locust St. in Des Moines.
Do Not Disturb is moving into the former location of Dobre at 503 E Locust St, Des Moines. Photo: Linh Ta/Axios

A new, intimate cocktail bar is opening in the East Village this holiday season.

  • Do Not Disturb is a chill hangout space where you can listen to vinyl all nightlong, said Nick Tillinghast, a partner with Des Moines Does Things. It's inspired by Japanese listening bars.
Linh Ta
Oct 19, 2021 - Food and Drink

Des Moines' Dough Co. makes delicious spin on jalapeño poppers pizza

A Pepperoni Popper from Dough Co.
A slice of Pepperoni Popper Pizza with pepperoni, bacon, cream cheese, jalapeños and green onions ($6.25) from Dough Co. Pizza. Linh Ta/Axios

There are lots of places to spend your pizza money in Des Moines. In the Drake neighborhood, Dough Co. Pizza is a solid choice — especially if you're looking for a lunch deal.

  • 🔥 My spicy-loving heart went with the Pepperoni Popper Pizza — a play on America's most beloved appetizer.

What I liked: These New York-style slices are fold-in-half huge, but the quantity doesn't compromise the quality.

  • This hit all of my pizza standards: Hot, gooey mozzarella cheese. A quality, thick tomato sauce. Yeasty crust with a little bit of chew.
  • The blend of toppings makes it special — salty bacon and pepperoni + crispy onions and jalapeños are obviously a winning combo.

Pro tip: During lunch, you can get a slice, breadsticks and a drink for $7.

Open: 11am-9pm Sun-Thurs; 11am-10pm Fri-Sat; 2330 University Ave., Des Moines

New Des Moines eats: Proudfoot & Bird

A photo inside Proudfoot & Bird restaurant.
Proudfoot & Bird includes marble tables, gold ceiling inlay and a circular bar. Photo: Jason Clayworth/Axios

Proudfoot & Bird opened this week on the first floor of Hotel Fort Des Moines and we're super excited to give it a try.

  • It's in the spot where Django was previously located, 1000 Walnut St.

State of play: The hotel closed in 2015 as part of a $50 million renovation.

  • The restaurant is the first piece to reopen.

The lunch menu: A few of the small plates included butternut squash soup ($12), truffle parmesan fries ($8), shishito peppers ($8)

Main dishes: Handmade "pasta du jour" ($15), grilled pimento cheese sandwich ($12) and a burger with applewood bacon and local cheddar ($16).

Weekdays: 11am-2pm and 4-10pm (until 11pm on Fridays).

  • Weekends: Saturday: 10:30am-2pm and 4-11pm; Sunday 10:30am-2pm and 4-9pm.

Fun fact: The restaurant's name honors the hotel's original architects, Willis Proudfoot and George Bird.

A photo of Hotel Fort Des Moines.
Hotel Fort Des Moines’ $50 million renovation is nearly complete. Photo: Jason Clayworth/Axios
Linh Ta
Oct 12, 2021 - Food and Drink

Grab a homemade poptart at Des Moines bakery Jess Desserts

Macarons and poptarts
Macarons and homemade Pop-Tarts from Jess Desserts. Photos courtesy of Jess Anderson

Pop-Tarts scream childhood nostalgia, and baker Jess Anderson's twist on these toaster treats has turned into a local success story.

  • But like any good story, these hand pies were born from a situation that didn't start so sweet.

Polk County proposes bringing food trucks to Lauridsen Skatepark

Kody Tamanaha, a professional skateboarder from Hawaii, practicing at the Lauridsen Skatepark.
Kody Tamanaha, a professional skateboarder from Hawaii, practicing at the Lauridsen Skatepark. Photo courtesy of Dew Tour

One thing missing from the new Lauridsen Skatepark? Food vendors.

  • But a Polk County proposal could change that.

Why it matters: Food and fun are great teammates. Vendors and more special events could help make the venue pop.

Linh Ta
Oct 11, 2021 - Food and Drink

We tried it: Akebono 515's tofu fries

Tofu fries with two dipping sauces.
Tofu fries from Akebono 515 ($6.50). Photo: Linh Ta/Axios

Tofu is our versatile friend and at Akebono 515, the Japanese restaurant in downtown Des Moines takes a playful spin on it by transforming the thick soy sticks into "tofu fries."

Linh Ta
Oct 8, 2021 - Food and Drink

Des Moines burgers: How Lachele's creativity shines in their specials

Burger specials from Lachele's
Carne King Slopper Thing ($11) and Cajun lobster fritter w/ andouille gravy ($14). Photos courtesy of Lachele's Fine Foods

We all know what to expect when ordering a burger: a patty, buns — maybe, a slice of cheese and a squirt of ketchup.

But just off Ingersoll Ave., in a pink and blue diner, Lachele's Fine Foods takes America's favorite meal and turns it upside down — transforming it into whatever zany theme or pop-culture reference they have in mind for their Special of the Day.

Why it matters: Food should be fun. And a burger with Mountain Dew sauce or a giant chicken nugget is nothing if not fun.

  • Plus, specials break up menu monotony, keeping chefs energized and customers hooked on a you-must-come-in-now experience.
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