11 Must-Try Des Moines Restaurants | Des Moines Iowa’s Top Restaurants

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Des Moines, Iowa, features a bustling food industry. I was pleasantly delighted to discover that the city is a foodie’s and casual diner’s dream. Apart from its reputation as a great dining haven, the city is also a fantastic spot to spoil oneself.

From award-winning steakhouses like 801 Chophouse to the vibrant ambience of neighborhood tapas eatery Stuffed Olive, your taste buds will enjoy all of Des Moines’ delightful eateries.

Every tourist to Iowa’s capital city would want to sample the greatest eateries in Des Moines. Because of the different ethnicities that have moved here since the nineteenth century, the state boasts one of the most diversified gastronomic options.

Experience real ethnic food, world-class steakhouses, and gourmet cuisine right here in the heart of America.

The 11 Best Restaurants in Des Moines

Restaurant Alba

Des Moines, IA +15152440261524 E 6th St

Alba is an upmarket American restaurant and wine bar that serves colorful cuisine cooked with fresh fruits , vegetables and grains from across the world.

The restaurant provides excellent city views via curving windows and boasts reclaimed old wooden doors hanging from the ceiling in a historic, well-restored structure evocative of European architecture in downtown Iowa City.

Alba has made it a priority to employ as many local items as possible due to the location and design.

A tapas-style menu with tiny quantities of fresh salads, antipasti, and cured meats, with some items more known than others.

The innovative cheddar cheese wontons with sunflower seeds, honey, and pears arranged on a platter were my favorite. The French onion soup with aged Gruyre cheese was also delicious.

Chophouse 801

Des Moines, IA +15152886000801 Grand Ave STE 200

801 Chophouse is a fantastic restaurant in the middle of downtown Des Moines. Since its inception in 1996, the restaurant has catered to both locals and guests looking for a one-of-a-kind eating experience.

Nowadays, it is regarded as one of Iowa’s greatest restaurants for both residents and visitors to dine on The Best Cuisine In Town!

801 Chophouse should undoubtedly be on your list of outstanding Des Moines eateries. With just one glance at the menu, you’ll know you’ve discovered the ideal spot for an upmarket meal in Des Moines.

The restaurant features traditional steakhouse fare and fresh seafood, as well as creamed spinach, shrimp cocktail, and caviar. They also provide a large selection of pasta, hand-carved meats, and house specialities that will keep you wanting more.

The tranquillity and quality of the cuisine are regarded as the primary reasons to dine at 801 Chophouse, but they are quick to note out that their warm and pleasant service is also crucial to their reputation.

The wine selection is vast, and the skilled staff may recommend a bottle or two depending on your interests. Thus, I urge that you visit 801 Chophouse since it is one of the top Des Moines restaurants, if not the best!

In the Scala House, Aposto

+15152441353644 Des Moines 18th St

If you’re looking for an amazing restaurant in Des Moines, Iowa, don’t miss Aposto at the Scala House.

It’s housed in a 100-year-old Victorian home in downtown Des Moines’ Sherman Hill district, and it has a superb wine cellar and an attractive fine-dining ambience.

Tony Lemmo, an award-winning restaurateur, created the restaurant, which offers seasonal wine-paired Italian, French, and Mediterranean dishes.

Southern Italian, French, and Mediterranean cuisine are served with seasonal wines and made using locally sourced vegetables and ingredients. The restaurant provides a good assortment of foreign wines and traditional cocktails in addition to a comprehensive wine list.

Tall ceilings, beautiful chandeliers, exquisite artwork, contemporary furniture coupled with elegant banquette seating, walnut tables, and soft cream-colored chairs create a striking and enticing atmosphere. The elegant wood tones that pervade the area are reflected in the glass-enclosed wine cellar next to the kitchen.

The atmosphere is both pleasant and inviting, as well as sophisticated and exceptional. The service was attentive, pleasant, and well-paced, making for an excellent overall experience. I had a fantastic supper at Aposto!


Des Moines, IA +15152574744200 10th St

Bubba blends outstanding cuisine with the ambience of a turn-of-the-century home, housed in a 1912 Caldwell Bankers Mansion. The old executive dining room has been transformed into an attractive restaurant while retaining its historical beauty.

The crew at this restaurant strives to make every client feel like a member of the family. Bubbas is a terrific spot to get up with friends and talk over a bottle of wine or beer while enjoying a delicious meal and competent service.

The Bubba, a Southern-inspired restaurant, provides a really unique eating experience. Fried green tomatoes, shrimp and grits, poboys, deviled eggs, fried chicken and waffles, meatloaf, and gumbo are among the typical Southern delicacies on the menu.

Bubba’s menu also includes Southern delicacies such as shrimp, scallops, and fish. Every week, all of the seafood is transported in fresh from the Gulf Port. Vegetarians may order from a special menu that includes many Bubba favorites made with non-meat components.

Its cushioned seats and backboards, fascinating artwork, and crystal chandeliers make it an ideal setting for a romantic supper.

Stuffed Olives

+15152434456208 Des Moines 3rd St

The Stuffed Olive, situated in the center of downtown Des Moines, is a popular and busy restaurant. With martinis and tapas on the menu, as well as hefty meals, you’ll have a difficult time deciding what’s finest on the menu at this modern bistro-style restaurant.

With good reason, The Stuffed Olive is renowned as the greatest restaurant in downtown Des Moines. Their food is one-of-a-kind and excellent. Everything from their tapas to their martinis is well made, from the olives packed with prosciutto to blue cheese.

Bruschetta, Risotto Croquettes, Crab Rangoons, Calamari, Seared Tuna Tartar, Spinach Artichoke Dip, Mediterranean Shrimp Skewers, and more Mediterranean tapas are available at the restaurant. Moreover, the bar menu includes over 100 exceptional yet simple Martinis that may be paired with little masterpieces of food.

Thus, whether you are a fan of Mediterranean cuisine or are discovering it for the first time, you are in for a tasty culinary adventure.

The Cheese Shop

+151527778282925 Des Moines, Ingersoll Ave

The Cheese Bar is an entire restaurant devoted to dairy specialties. The Cheese Shop expanded to a more prominent restaurant site along Ingersoll Avenue, bringing even more cheesy pleasure to the community.

You may order grilled cheese sandwiches, tabletop fondue, and genuinely spectacular dessert fondues in addition to your cast-iron mac and cheese (complete with chocolate delicacies).

With its island bar-style seating and enthusiastic attitude, the venue is lively. There are usually a few daily specials on the blackboard, which complements their drink menu.

Risotto, shrimp and grits, and fried green tomatoes are available for those who like traditional fare.

Along from appetizers, salads, and entrees, the menu also includes dishes from their award-winning bar. If you like wine and cheese, there are several inexpensive wine flights to compliment your dinner.

A restaurant

Des Moines, IA +151528280852932 Ingersoll Ave

From exquisite pizzas and tempting meals to amazing desserts, Restaurant A adds a savory, Mediterranean touch to American classics. The restaurant’s small environment is ideal for a romantic night or a family supper.

Traditional pizzas, salads, and sandwiches are available, as are delectable dinners such as fresh shellfish grilled with lemon butter or luscious pork tenderloin on a bed of creamy grits.

Enjoy skillfully prepared meals with flavorful wines from all around the world, or sip specialty beverages like apple martinis or delectable ice tea cocktails.

If you want a more conventional American dining experience, start with appetizers such as seared scallops or short rib pot pie before moving on to the main meal. But save room for dessert. Restaurant A is well-known for its great range of in-house prepared sweets.

A wonderful restaurant is distinguished not just by its cuisine but also by its ambience. Even the greatest dinner can be elevated from excellent to memorable with the right mood lighting and design. And Restaurant A in Des Moines has long been regarded as one of the top eateries in the city due to its welcoming environment.

Fongs Pizza Company

+15153233333223 Des Moines 4th St

Fongs Asian Restaurant in Des Moines, Iowa, has become a favorite among pizza enthusiasts. The restaurant first opened its doors in 2010 and is situated downtown on Court Avenue. It is located next to numerous popular bars.

Hawaiian fusion cuisine has made this restaurant a neighborhood favorite for many years. Visitors go here to eat at the finest Chinese restaurants.

Pizza, spaghetti, and Asian fusion dishes including Chicken Pot Pie Eggrolls, Polynesian BBQ Tofu, and Portland Crab Rangoon Pizza are available.

This fusion restaurant is a must for any fan of exotic food, with tiki-inspired beverages and dishes like the legendary Crab Rangoon Pie. The late-night crowds demonstrate how handy this location is, especially for those looking for a piece of pizza after midnight.

Lotus of Fortune

+151526284882721 Ingersoll Ave, Des Moines

Lucky Lotus is the place to go in Des Moines for Southeast Asian cuisine. This restaurant on Ingersoll Avenue serves a range of delectable appetizers, noodles, and curries.

The ambience at Lucky Lotus is as lovely as the cuisine, with pastel-colored decor and paper umbrellas hanging from the ceilings.

Lucky Lotus provides family-style meals; two individuals may comfortably consume a dinner and have leftovers. They also provide gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, and meat alternatives, making it simple to invite friends or coworkers.

Whatever you’re searching for in Southeast Asian food in Des Moines, Lucky Lotus has something for you.

With a menu that mixes traditional Thai cuisine with intriguing tastes from Japan, France, the United States, and elsewhere, you’ll be hard pushed to select just one dish at Lucky Lotus.

The cuisine there is certainly interesting enough, but the restaurant also provides a complete bar. In addition, the terrace offers an outstanding view of the Des Moines skyline.

Restaurant Proof

+151524406551301 Des Moines, Iowa, Locust Street C

Chef Sean Wilson at Proof will provide you with an exceptional fine dining experience using local, organic foods.

They provide delectable dishes like as Bay Scallop Crudo, Berkshire Pork Secreto with cashew cream, melting leeks, and black garlic, and for dessert, the Matcha Meringue coconut cake.

Many James Beard Award semi-finalists and Best Chef Midwest finalists have worked at the restaurant. Esquire Magazine has named it one of America’s greatest new eateries.

It’s difficult to find a restaurant that will leave you wondering where else you can get cuisine as excellent as the dinner you just enjoyed. That is exactly what proof does.

Proof, which anchors the new Court Avenue sector with its minimalist industrial and rustic architecture, delivers Mediterranean-inspired meals that are not just among the finest in town, but among the greatest Ive ever had.

The Restaurant Noah’s Ark

Des Moines, IA +151528822462400 Ingersoll Ave

In the center of downtown Des Moines, Noahs Ark Restaurant & Lounge is a vintage-style, old-school Italian restaurant. The original Noah’s Ark, which dates back to the 1940s, offers traditional Italian and Mediterranean dishes. The restaurant has gorgeous stained glass decor and comfy leather seats, creating an intimate atmosphere.

Noahs Ark’s spin on classic Mediterranean meals is as eye-catching as its interior décor, with a range of quirky, retro-themed drinks, champagne, and beer on tap.

Tender veal medallions served with lemon butter and white wine sauce, fresh seafood like baked filled clams, and plump jumbo shrimp cocktail served with paper-thin potato chips are among the restaurant’s exquisite Italian menu highlights.

French staples such as veal liver parfait drowned in onions sautéed in a buttery cognac sauce and mushroom-stuffed snails are also worthwhile indulgences.

The dining room and bar area provide a lovely vibe. There are anthropomorphic creatures and toy troops all over the walls. You’ll nearly feel like you’re sitting in a beautiful paradise.

Synopsis of the 11 Best Restaurants in Des Moines

There is no doubt that Des Moines has a plethora of excellent eateries. As a consequence, both locals and tourists may find it difficult to pick where to eat in the city.

Several Des Moines eateries have received national recognition in publications. Thus, whether you’re seeking for sophisticated dining in Des Moines or a more informal ambiance, you’ll find the ideal location.

Hundreds of options might be intimidating, but if you’re not sure where to begin, check out my recommendations for some of the greatest Des Moines restaurants above.

The city’s culinary sector is expanding at breakneck pace, with trendy new eateries launching every year. If you have any doubts about how wonderful it is, just ask a local. So, while in Des Moines, check out these eateries.

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