When Craig and Lea Culver created the first Culver’s restaurant in 1984, they wanted to serve homemade burgers like Craig’s mom used to make. These burgers—now known as the ButterBurgers—are made with fresh, Midwest beef patties, and served on a toasty, buttered bun. The burgers are also what helped put Culver’s on the map—there are now more than 500 locations scattered across 19 states. At each restaurant, patties are cooked right on the grill. The other main hallmark of Culver’s menu is its rich, creamy frozen custard, which you can have drizzled with hot fudge or use as a foundation for a signature Concrete Mixer and have it decorated with Oreos and Butterfingers.
Now in its 40th year, Medicap Pharmacy stocks its shelves with an array of healthcare products, specializing in a neighborhood-friendly atmosphere staffed by personable pharmacists. Guests are invited to peruse Medicap Pharmacy's thoroughfares lined with medicinal home goods, or stop by the pharmacy counter to fill a prescription or ask about seasonal flu shots. Customers can tenderly tend to wounded ankles with an ankle brace ($29.90), reward immune systems with reinforcing cold medicine ($1.59–$11.49), or keep the body stocked with the vital nutrients by picking up women’s vitamins ($8.90). Medicap Pharmacy also keeps customers in tip-top shape by offering preventative health screenings as well as at-home delivery.
Peace Tree Brewing Company takes its name from the ancient sycamore tree that currently peeks its head through the watery surface of Lake Red Rock. Legend has it before the tree was half submerged in water, it served as a meeting place for negotiations between natives and traders. Above all, the tree stood as a symbol of neighborly conversation, friendship, and agreement—aspects of life that Peace Tree Brewing Company hopes to facilitate with their frosty beers and neighborhood atmosphere.
Inside Peace Tree’s taproom, which is open Wednesday through Sunday, visitors can gather for tours of the brewery or sit and enjoy its year-round beers on draft. Sippers can introduce their taste buds to the malty flavor of Red Rambler or prepare themselves for the blend of American and English hops in the Hop Wrangler. Occasionally, guests might find seasonal brews available for taste, such as Cornucopia, an ale brewed with Iowa sweet corn, or the heavy and malty Imperial stout. Since the taproom has taken a vow of hunger, it doesn’t serve food, but it does have a bundle of local takeout menus that visitors can use to order food they can enjoy alongside their drinks and the occasional performance of local live music.
Inspired by trips to the state's northwestern lakes, Okoboji Grill conjures the wayfaring spirit of summer vacation with hearty American comfort food. Chefs marinate chicken strips in beer before hand-breading them in a secret blend of spices, crown crispy onion strings with Iowa-raised pork chops, and stack thin-sliced meats into towering club sandwiches and edible replicas of the Chrysler Building. Okoboji Grill also culls recipes from international cuisines, adding an American take to greek gyros, housemade tzatziki sauce, and italian bruschetta and pastas.
The culinary fusionists at Yanni's Grill & Vineyards meld vivacious flavors of Greek and Italian cuisine in cozy rooms adorned with murals and sparkly white lights. Peruse a bilingual dinner menu, and untangle hunger pains over uncomplicated plates of buttery garlic knots ($3.95/10 pieces). Sip carafes of wine while servers engage in culinary pyrotechnics with flaming plates of signature saganaki ($5.95). Yanni's signature penne careens down throat canals, gliding along thanks to a tomato-cream sauce and accompanied by sidecars of sweet peas, mushrooms, and ham ($12.95). The chef's coastal lineup of fresh fish ($15.95–$17.95) tempts seafaring folks, who may jump back on shore at the sight of the signature steak Deburgo and its 10-ounce crown of beef medallions bejeweled in wine, mushroom, and basil sauce.