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Thread: To those around Des Moines, IA

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Escondido, CA
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    5,167

    To those around Des Moines, IA

    On the 15th of May I will picking up a friend from the airport in Des Moines around 5 PM. We are staying the night in town, and leaving in the morning for Dubuque. The occasion is my graduation on May 17.

    So, two questions. I can get to Des Moines before noon if I had a reason. I know about the Woodsmith store. I have no interest in a Rockler or a Woodcraft store. I am always up for a shop tour! What do I not want to miss, if I have a few hours on my hands?

    Second, dinner. My friend has lupus and watches her diet (mine, too!) very carefully, so I am looking for something with a wide variety. Perhaps a super fantastic salad bar with a very good fish or chicken main course. She is not a red meat eater. Moderately priced, like under $20 per entree.

    I am returning her to the airport the following Tuesday. We will need to find lunch before her flight. Again, something light. Perhaps a sandwich shop with soup and salad and artisan breads.

    As you can probably tell, I am not a fan of chain restaurants. They have no imagination, are generally overpriced, and the food is, at best, mediocre.

    Any suggestions on either of my two questions?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    DSM, IA
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    5,719
    Carol, I won't be in town that weekend! There are quite a few great local restaurants in town that have just what you looking for. Many of them are very close to the airport and a few close to Woodsmith as well. Short on time right now, but I will put a list together for ya....
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
    My Website


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Indianola, Ia about 12 miles south of Des Moines
    Posts
    440
    Just south of the airport is Johnny's Italian Steakhouse. I know it is a steakhouse but also has chicken, shrimp, and salads. It is great food with good service. Not cheap but should be in your price range. As far as tool stores we also have Acme tool I haven't been there but they carry all kinds of tools.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    DSM, IA
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    Carol....here is some info for you....

    What to do before the airport:

    Here is a great link that can tell you quite a bit about the Des Moines Metro...and dialed down to attractions

    1. Woodsmith - say hello to Terry, he's the "Router Guy" there.
    2. Des Moines Art Center - Quite a collection of great art and the best part is that it's free!
    3. Woodchip Shop - I've heard it's hit or miss if he is open, but also heard he is a great resource and teacher
    4. Just do a "walk about" downtown...lots to see, good architecture, lots of shops, etc.

    Restaurants: Here is a complete list of most in the metro, but I'll point out a few that I like and also in the area's you might be in.

    Close to airport:
    1. Skips - local place, good food, good atmosphere (don't pay attention to the 1 review on the site)
    2. Johnny's Italian Steakhouse - sort of a chain, but great food and real close to airport
    3. Mezoddi's - Local place with good food, can get a little loud for later at night.
    4. Francie's - little bar and grill close to airport. great food again can get loud at night, but one of my favorite places on that side of town. Might be better for lunch on the "back in town day", friday nights can be very busy.

    Downtown:
    1. Court Ave. Brewery - great food
    2. Raccoon River Brewery - great food as well.
    3. Spaghetti Works - I know, it's a chain, but the salad bar is great and there is also a patio, should be nice by then.
    4. Lot's of other local places, some good, some great, some way overpriced...


    In the area of Woodsmith:
    1. Waterfront Seafood - Best seafood in town!
    2. El Rodeo - Best Mexican in town!
    3. Iowa Machine Shed - A staple of Des Moines...BIG portions!
    4. Buffet City - Name says it all....a little of everything.

    If you have any specific questions, please let me know and I'll do my best to answer.
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
    My Website


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Escondido, CA
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    Thanks, Jeff.

    I've got some surfing to do!

    I don't know where we are spending the night yet, so that will have an effect on where we have dinner. I appreciate the noise ratings! A quick look at the food fare looks real representative of Iowa fare. Hearty! Much more hearty than we are used to in the Southwest! As for Mexican, I am more of a fan that she is, and I am very leery of Midwestern Mexican food. After four years of sampling, I've yet to find a place I'd return to. Every area of the country is different. In Arizona it is more flavorful than 'hot.'

    My friend has Lupus so a great deal depends on how tired she is after the trip. She is likely to appreciate a place with a really good salad bar.

    Thanks for your effort. I really appreciate it.

    Haven't scared up a FWW shop tour or member visit, so I am unlikely to come in early. If I do it will be a quick visit to the Woodsmith store on the way to the airport. I am looking for a threaded insert so I can mount my lathe chuck on the live center in the tail stock. Or on a threaded M2 shank for the purposes of reverse mounting and centering on a vacuum chuck with no fuss.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    DSM, IA
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    Glad I could help...just wish I could be around to meet you.

    Congrats on your upcoming graduation too!

    Will you be heading back to the southwest?
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
    My Website


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Escondido, CA
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    Indeed, late in May I will be going back home to Arizona.

    However, I am making a slight detour. I will be going to visit Jay and get some inside info on organ building!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tellico Plains, Tennessee
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    4,351
    Quote Originally Posted by Carol Reed View Post
    Much more hearty than we are used to in the Southwest! As for Mexican, I am more of a fan that she is, and I am very leery of Midwestern Mexican food.
    Carol,
    Can't help with anything in Iowa.. never been in the state. I'm putting my 2 cents worth in because of your comments on the Mexican Foods....

    I had to look up where Strawberry is... I spent about 18 months in Tucson a few years back... Love Arizona and if had had choice would have retired there... My wife and I are great fans of Mexican food and our first trip or two out in Tucson was really different... the style there is Sonoran rather than the TEXMEX we were used to. Fell in love with the Fish Tacos they served in Chuy's (although seemed like I got a fish bone everytime but my wife never did).
    It's taken some searching here in Tennessee to find a good Mexican restuarant we would go back to... so far we've found 3.. one in Etowah, one in Maryville and one in Lenoire City. I think my wife would eat MF 7 days a week.. she even cooks MF about half the time, especially for breakfast.

    Have a good trip and enjoy your visit.
    Chuck
    Tellico Plains, TN
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/TellicoTurnings
    My parents taught me to respect my elders, but it's getting harder and harder to find any.
    If you go looking for trouble, it will usually find you.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Kea'au Hawaii. Just down the road from Hilo town!
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    1,357
    Have a friend and his wife that should be getting to Pine today. They called from Flagstaff yesterday on a road trip from Brookings Oregon. They had a place in Pine but sold and left when the trees were dieing off so badly about 2002 or 03. Very pretty area from the photos they showed us in the past
    Aloha,

    What goes around, comes around.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Escondido, CA
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    My brother lives in Pine, Royall. I know what you mean about the trees. He lost over 900 on his lot. So far he has planted about three hundred back.

    The forest is recovering, though there are still brown blights that paint the hillsides. New growth is poping up, but there is a ton of clean-up to do.

    On my little half acre I lost 6 trees and that has been just from 2004. It ain't over yet. But I hope we are seeing the end of it. We have had a couple of good rainy winters. Droughts that last a decade or more of consecutive years create problems that don't go away quickly.

    I am really looking forward to getting home. My sinuses are way overdue to getting out of allergy alley here in Iowa!

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