Even though February is technically the shortest month, sometimes it feels like we’ll never get to March. Winter is definitely here for a few more weeks, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay inside your house until the thermometer hits 60 degrees. The four food joints listed below are perfect havens for getting out of the cold to rest a while. Read on to find a new winter-weather hangout.
- Cozy Café. This restaurant serves up breakfast, lunch and dinner with an eclectic menu that includes items ranging from omelets and blue-plate specials to spaghetti and meatballs made with Graziano sausage. The Waukee Cozy Café (one of eight locations in the Des Moines metro area) also offers specials on certain days of the week, like free pie on Wednesdays and all-you-can-eat fish on Fridays. The wide range of dishes combined with reasonable prices and an inviting atmosphere make this café a great option any day of the week.
- Smokey Row. There’s often a line of cars in the drive-thru lane in the morning hours of operation at Smokey Row—and with good reason. The coffee is a local favorite, but the café also serves up breakfast items, soda fountain drinks, salads, sandwiches, and burgers to hungry customers. The interior of the Des Moines location (there are others located southeast of the metro) is spacious, with tall windows and wood floors. The counter is long and features soda-fountain-inspired stools on one end and a large pastry case full of goodies on the other. Whether you’re stopping in to grab a quick breakfast sandwich or settling into a booth to enjoy soup in a bread bowl, you’ll love the cheerful vibe at Smokey Row.
- Waveland Café. This local breakfast giant has two locations—Des Moines and Booneville—so you can choose whether you’d like to have your pancakes in a small town or in the big city. Customers rave about the crispy hash browns and cinnamon French toast. In true Midwestern-diner-style, the décor is homey and the service is friendly. The Des Moines location has seen many politicians walk through its doors during campaign season, which adds a bit of historical weight to this casual breakfast joint.
- Jethro’s BBQ ‘n Jambalaya. If you’re longing for some food that will remind you of a warmer climate during this bleak winter’s end, Jethro’s BBQ ‘n Jambalaya is the place for you. This is one of Jethro’s many locations in the Des Moines area, but it’s the only location with Creole and Cajun cuisine. The menu features Louisiana classics such as shrimp jambalaya, chicken and sausage gumbo, and red beans and rice. Jethro’s is essentially a sports bar that serves up barbecue, so you’ll be able to catch the game as you sit down for a meal. Also, due to the generous portion sizes, you’ll most likely be able to take some Cajun cuisine home with you as an added bonus.