Although the staff of Park Place Catering happily travels to homes and businesses to help host events, they also open the doors of their own venue to up to 300 guests at a time. When renting this spacious, brick banquet hall, planners can choose a variety of spreads from the menu, which includes everything from breakfast to barbecue and Italian food. But they also get to enjoy more than just lovingly prepared cuisine. The space sits directly across from Kinnick-Feller Riverside Park, a forested sanctuary with a quaint white gazebo at its center. Walk off your meal during a leisurely stroll to the pavilion, or have a friendly game of meatball bocce on one of the park's athletic fields.
In the summer of 2000, Bob Young took over Italian Villages, and made the restaurant a family affair by running it along with his children Brenna and Perry. Thirteen years later, the chefs are still crafting a menu of familiar Italian staples alongside American dinner entrees such as steak, seafood, and chicken breast draped in American flag sauce. And in keeping with the restaurant's family-friendly vibe, the menu also offers a kids menu featuring classic childhood favorites such as grilled cheese and spaghetti.
Green Yoga House offers prospective pretzels an abundance of stretch sessions, from pre- and post-natal to hot Vinyasa, inside its two spacious studios in Clive and West Des Moines, as well as lunchtime yoga classes in the skywalk on Grand Avenue. Owner Lily Hou has been practicing yoga for 14 years and teaching since 2003, and was voted the Best Yoga Instructor in Des Moines by Cityview in 2009. Learn bendy basics at the West Des Moines location, mastering foundational poses, breathing techniques, and meditation practices. Build body and mind muscle at the Clive location by bringing hand weights to the Yoga with Weights class, designed to increase strength and endurance while generating energy flow, improving balance, and moisturizing parched yoga mats.
BangBang Mongolian Grill's guests are in charge. At the all-you-can-eat ingredient buffet, guests fill bowls with whatever vegetables, meats, sauces, and spices they want, assembling tailored meals from a colorful selection of ingredients. Once their bowls are filled with favorites?none of which contain MSG?guests hand them off to the chefs.
These culinary practitioners man an enormous, circular grill. And they invite guests to watch from the curved countertop that encircles this cooking station, as the grill's 650-degree surface sears their custom dishes. Flames billow from the circle's center, adding bombast to the already interactive culinary experience. When the last morsel of the meal has been savored, diners?if they have any room left in their bellies?can continue their hands-on dining adventure at the probiotic frozen yogurt buffet.
Tired of huddling around a small TV to watch the big game with their friends, Champps Americana’s founders opened a small sports bar called Concourse 7 in Minneapolis. They served burgers—made from scratch and piled with toppings—and a large selection of brews as sports played on huge TV screens overhead.
Today, what began as a small gathering place has become a franchise with locations across the country. However, Champps' exciting, game-day atmosphere and made-from-scratch approach to cuisine has not changed. As players charge across large, wall-mounted TV screens, servers deliver made-to-order burgers, salads, pastas, sandwiches, and desserts. Behind the bar, bartenders shake and stir creative cocktails and conceal the fact that they are wearing pajama pants. A kids’ menu is also available.
A third generation of the Foggia family helms Gino's Food & Restaurants, which still cooks the recipes founder Gino Foggia first created in 1966. At the restaurant's Des Moines and West Des Moines locations, chefs stuff housemade ravioli with meat, layer lasagna with housemade meatballs, and toss freshly rolled cavatelli with sausages made onsite. Other pasta dishes, such as chicken marsala served over linguine, join pan-seared fish and the kitchen's signature steak de burgo, which comprises two fillet medallions with butter-garlic de burgo sauce, on the menu of Italian favorites. Wines, martinis, and desserts such as spumoni complement meals with the charm of two mismatched but lovable roommates.