The District is an unlikely dining experience in the middle of Iowa.
The Best of
You’ll find big-city offerings in cuisine and amenities, while also enjoying small-town vibes from the local owners and entrepreneurs that put their hearts and souls into the area.
– Flavory Bistro –
Celebrating Local Craftsmen
The District offers some of the best local restaurants, stores and experiences in the area. Attracting the best of the best, you’ll find men and women who are true craftsmen of their trade, including authentic ramen and a beloved local hot sauce turned national brand. At The District you can experience first hand the incredible work of local chefs, restaurateurs and entrepreneurs who are breaking the mold here in central Iowa.
Plan a stop at Wasabi to revel in the magic of chef Jay Wang’s pork ramen (featuring a silky pork broth that’s to die for), a recipe which he mastered after a weeklong ramen training with a Japanese chef. Or drop into Flavory Bistro for the best Mediterranean food around. Chef Lisa is truly a magician, transforming locally sourced ingredients into steaming plates full of Mediterranean fare. Come hungry, because every inch of your plate will be filled! And for an afternoon of sipping and learning, make sure Winestyles is on the top of your list where you can taste and learn about hundreds of different wines.
A true destination for everything from working and working out, to eating and entertaining.
– WineStyles Ankeny –
A World of Cuisines
You might not expect to experience more than a few different Cuisines in central Iowa, but one drive down the main drag at The District and you’ll quickly realize this area is different. There’s truly something for everyone, and for any time of day.
If you love Irish food and a good pint, make sure to secure yourself a booth in the corner of Magee’s Irish Pub, where the environment is moody and the energy is always laid back and positive. I love ducking into a cozy bar for a quick bump on a Saturday afternoon, and Magee’s is just the place.
Just next door you can enjoy some of the most unique pizza around. Get your fill at the ever-popular Asian-fusion pizza joint, Fong’s. Don’t expect to find traditional pie here, they’re known for their Crab Rangoon Pizza—it’s sure to confuse your taste buds in the best possible way.
While on your world tour, make sure you try something from Hidalgo’s extensive menu. They’re serving up authentic Mexican with just about any tequila drink you can imagine (make sure to try their Paloma!).
Whether you’re planning a girls night out,
celebratory date night, or family outing,
there’s something to do and somewhere to eat all in one place.
– Whisky River –
Striking the perfect balance between a walkable pedestrian mall and a downtown city center, it’s no surprise this area draws people from all over the state.
– Lola’s Fine Kitchen-
The District Has It All
One of the most impressive aspects of The District is the incredible balance it strikes between big city offerings and small town feel. It’s no secret how diverse The District is when it comes to cuisine; offering Mexican, Mediterranean, American, Irish, Japanese, and more. But it’s more than dining, it’s also about the experience.
I love the big city offerings of The District—including restaurants, exercise studios, and stores all featuring impressive interiors and unique vibes. No two places are the same. Plus, with numerous patios you can enjoy the warmer months morning to night. Start the day with a cycle class then hit up a patio for brunch and mimosas. Or plan an afternoon of shopping and wine tasting, finished off with appetizers while watching the sun set.
The District has found a way to create an area that feels slower-paced and relaxed, yet upbeat, energetic and lively. It has the feel of a seaside get-away, sans the sea of course, and it’s right in your backyard! Stroll down the wide sidewalks and window shop with an ice cream cone in hand, or plan a fun bachelorette party full of shopping, pampering, dining, and dancing.
The throughline of it all are the passionate owners and entrepreneurs that make The District the destination that it is. Just like the downtowns across Iowa, you’ll find owners and workers who are devoted to serving and investing in their community.
People who remember your name, know your latte order
by heart, and who are the reason you keep coming back,
time and time again.
Visit our restaurants in The District!
Top L to R: The Olive Tap, Fong’s Pizza, Hidalgo’s Mexican Grill, Magee’s Irish Pub & Eatery,
Flavory Bistro, Rise and Grind, The District Venue, District 36 Wine Bar & Grille
Lauren Grant is a professionally trained Culinary Food Scientist, Journalist, and former magazine editor. She’s a Des Moines food blogger and total foodie so we knew she was the perfect person to take a tour and sample the menus of our restaurants here at The District.
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