“Bluesberry” Fruit Burst sour from Iowa Brewing debuting this Friday Night @Blues Night in the Park in Cedar Rapids!

A big Friday night awaits in Cedar Rapids as this Friday, May 19th, Iowa Brewing will be debuting their newest addition to their extremely popular “Fruit Burst Sour” portfolio as “Bluesberry” debuts! Making the debut even more significant is that it will be coming and pouring at Blues Night in the Park (Green Square in Cedar Rapids)!

This beer features blue raspberry, orange, and pineapple flavors that give it a sweet, juicy and slightly tart taste and it checks in at 6% ABV. This beer will only be available on draft and possibly your only chance to get a taste will be at the Blues Night event!

The event itself has a $5 cover and will feature recognized blues acts such as BF Burt, Keesha Pratt Band, Matthias Lattin, and Ken Valdez.

Local food vendors will be on hand to try their delicious items as well! Need Pizza, Willy Ray’s Q Shack, and The Hip Stir will have their wonderful food available and Chophouse Downtown will have cotton candy! Gates will open at 5 p.m. and music will go from 6-10 p.m.!

With the “Bluesberry” release Iowa Brewing will also have the following beers available:
-Iowa Eagle Light Lager
-Eagle Amber Lager
-Surf Zombies IPA
-ZOINKS! Session IPA
-Big River Cold IPA
-Untitled Art Seltzers

Don’t miss this amazing event!

Iowa Eats First Look! Taco Gato; Cedar Rapids, IA!

The latest restaurant endeavor from the creative minds of FNF restaurant group will be officially opening their doors to the public this coming Tuesday! (4/18) Taco Gato (209 3rd St. SE) is the newest restaurant in downtown Cedar Rapids and features spins on Mexican and southern cuisine.

I was lucky enough to be invited to the soft opening this past Friday night and was joined by three kids. The decor of the place is definitely Mexican inspired and my kids enjoyed seeing the array of Luchador wrestling masks around the restaurant. The bar was dimly lit as light from the beautiful stained glass showcased the many bottles of booze that go towards the many cocktails Taco Gato offered.

Upon seating and seeing the menu my kids are instantly drawn to anything that reads “queso”. So, a starter of salsas (red/traditional + tomatillo) along with guac and the ever popular queso. Chips were delicious and well seasoned. I’m a sucker for tomatillo salsa and would put it on about anything. A great start to the meal. Queso didn’t stand a chance.

I let the kids decide what to order as my focus automatically goes to fish tacos and pastor tacos. My son went with the fried crawfish tacos but also wanted to try the shrimp and grits, and my daughters went with the gumbo. Enough to feed an army but grateful my kids are willing to try and experience new foods.

The flavor on every single dish was out of this world. The fish tacos were perfectly cooked….crunchy and a delicious batter. Your taco orders of two come in a bento style serving box accompanied by delicious refried beans, rice, and fried edamame. I’ll get the fish tacos every time! Pastor were just as good…fresh pineapple pico and perfectly cooked pork. I was lucky enough to get a small bite of the fried crawfish tacos as my son isn’t exactly the best at sharing meals, especially when they taste as good as this.

The gumbo was excellent. A dark roux with copious amounts of crawfish and chorizo. Wonderful and filling! The star of the show that everyone raved about however was the “Almost Shrimp and Grits”. Cotija creamed corn, chorizo, collards, and enough blackened shrimp to feed an army. So much flavor, so delicious. Besides the tacos, if there’s a dish that Taco Gato can use as a calling card it may be this one!

Overall: Another wonderful dining experience. It’s what you come to expect from the FNF restaurant group…wonderfully talented, creative, and inspired dishes that make visiting their establishments an always memorable experience. Can’t recommend enough, opening Tuesday to the public! Cheers!

Clock House releasing “Aqua Waves” sour this Friday! (4/7)

Another sour is being added to Clock House Brewing’s delicious portfolio as this Friday they are releasing “Aqua Waves” sour! Along with the latest release their patio will be opening as well! Here’s more on this fruit filled sour courtesy of Clock House:

This sour features a combination of ripe pineapple and zesty lemon followed by waves of coconut cream and blue raspberry.

Our patio will also be opening this Friday to add to your tropical experience!

Available on Draft, in Growlers, and 16oz 4-packs. Cheers

Iowa Eats: Sacred Cow Tavern; Cedar Rapids, IA

It’s always fun when you are traveling through a big town or city and see a random restaurant/bar/tavern pop up on a neighborhood corner far seemingly far removed from the chains that have taken over main drag USA. Heading down a street in the Oak Hill Jackson neighborhood in downtown Cedar Rapids and seeing a lovely sign of a cow with a halo over its head was a welcomed sight! Sacred Cow Tavern was calling my name and I couldn’t wait to answer!

Opened in October of 2022 as a the brainchild of the FNF restaurant group, this restaurant has quite a history, including being a church a few different times! This restaurant group is known for a wide range of food items that can satisfy any diet and they’ve done an amazing job incorporating vegan/vegetarian dishes to be part of their main menu as well. Appetizers, smash burgers, sandwiches, wings, salads and much more with a wonderfully revamped image of those dishes and executed perfectly as well as their vegan/vegetarian options that are more than just a black bean burger, this menu is packed with flavor.

The ambiance upon walking in gives you complete comfort, a homey vibe and a place where you don’t necessarily want to leave. First point of order….BEER…..need to check out the beer menu. Although Sacred Cow does not have any tap beer, they do offer a variety of cans from local breweries plus a fully stocked bar for mixers and wine. I went light, a Backpocket 319 lager, knowing that I was going to be putting some food away.

It was restaurant week and so, like many other local establishments, Sacred Cow had a few specials that they were advertising. One special was Elote Chicken Wings. If you’re not familiar with elote, it’s a popular Mexican street dish of corn on the cob slathered in mayo/cream sauce dusted with chili powder and cilantro. Sacred Cow took the sauce dimension, added some grilled corn and cilantro to their extremely crispy chicken wings and final result were some of the best and most creative wings I’ve had! Hoping these find their way to the menu!

The other special item for “Restaurant Week” was a walking taco smashburger. I’m a lover all of kinds of burgers and smashburgers are always hard to pass up, add walking taco ingredients to it and I’m sold. A smashed patty, perfectly cooked, topped with cheese, doritos, a cilantro lime crema and lettuce was more than a mouthful in every bite! Excellent burger, something I would order again.

Overall, this is a place I hope to be a patron of for a long time to come and I hope many more neighborhood bars begin popping up in our area. Sacred Cow Tavern is definitely a welcoming place for any and all! Cheers!

Backpocket, Trees Forever, and FNF restaurant group team up for “Recovery Red IPA”!

Backpocket Brewing Company has partnered up with Trees Forever and the ReLeaf project for Cedar Rapids to help with planting trees in the community along with making a beer to help raise money for the project.  They have also collaborated with Cedar Rapids based FNF Restaurant group as they will have the beer on draft at their locations (LP Street Food, Cliff’s Dive Bar, The hip-stir, Bricks Bar and Grill, MOCO) to support the cause.  All of the grain and hops were donated by Backpocket suppliers and it will be a limited release in the Cedar Rapids metro. 

“Recovery Red” checks in at 6.5%.

Lion Bridge 8th Anniversary this Saturday (3/5)! Crushberry Sour and Shindig Hazy IPA releasing!

A big weekend of beer, music, food and fun is coming up at the Lion Bridge Brewery taproom in the Czech Village in Cedar Rapids as the brewery celebrates their 8th Anniversary! They will be releasing two new beers, Crushberry Sour and Shindig Hazy IPA, Winterland will be playing, there will be free cake and of course their tasty food menu! Party starts when the doors open at 11 a.m., band starts at 5!

Here’s more on the two new releases:

Crushberry Kettle sour – 6.7% – For our 8th Anniversary, we wanted to come up with something that embodies the “terroir” of Cedar Rapids. When Crunchberry Day gives its sweet aromatic embrace to our fair city, we are children again; innocent and giggling. We hope this beer if fun for you. Drink on Crunchberry Day for extra enjoyment.

Shindig – (Hazy Double IPA with, Idaho 7, Galaxy, Bru-1, Sabro, Vic Secret 8.8%) – 8 years is no small feat for a small business. We are grateful for your support and we are grateful for super pungent tropical hazy IPAs. Cheers!