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“Great service, good food and nice atmosphere” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Linn Street Cafe

Linn Street Cafe
121 N Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52245
+1 319-337-7370
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Ranked #20 of 189 Restaurants in Iowa City
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $9 - $29
Cuisines: American, Wine Bar
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Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Entertaining clients, Romantic, Local cuisine, Doing business
Dining options: Dinner, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Off-Street Parking, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Street Parking, Takeout, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: Our menu is a combination of Midwest classics and internationally influenced new American cuisine. We serve the finest cuts of choice Iowa meats, the freshest sustainable seafood and seasonal produce from local farmers. We put in hours of preparation each day in anticipation of the evening's guests. Great food, great wine, friendly and knowledgeable service are our specialties. Our menu includes items like grilled beef tenderloin with roasted garlic mashed potatoes and pecan crusted chicken with a Dijon cream reduction and Seared Diver Scallops served with vegetable stir fried coconut rice and a grilled pineapple pico de gallo. Wine Spectator magazine has recognized our extensive wine list as one of the best in the world. Locals have voted us as the best restaurant for a "Romantic Dinner" for 19 years. We are proud that our commitment to the art of fine cuisine comes through in every appetizer, entree, and dessert we serve. We invite you to join with us in savoring the Linn Street Cafe experience!
Bonita Springs, Florida
Top Contributor
75 reviews 75 reviews
59 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“Great service, good food and nice atmosphere”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

We haven't been here in awhile. Our waiter, Ryan was very professional and friendly. The coconut shrimp appetizer was good and our entrees, pecan chicken and stuffed pork loin, were very good. Had a nice couple of glasses of wine. Had a window table and people watching was fun.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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93 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    44
    30
    8
    8
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Lakeville, Minnesota
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
“Casual Dining with a Dressed-up Price”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2013

Downtown Iowa City has been resurrected and turned into a location that is safe and convenient to visit. A variety of interesting restaurants line the sidewalks of Linn Street; we chose the Linn Street Café. We were greeted by an attentive staff, linen-dressed tables, and a neutral décor. The menu listed American entrées ranging from $17 per plate for a simple pasta meal up to $35 for a meat dish. The tab was on the high end of the local market, but we suspected that the prices were probably in line with other chef-owned establishments in other cities. But at that elevated level, the food & service better be really good! We placed our orders and settled in with glasses of Viognier and Chapoutier white wine. But it seemed like forever until our dinners were delivered.

The pre-entrée roasted beet salad, with balsamic vinaigrette dressing & Maytag blue cheese crumbles, was very good. On the other hand, the house salad was an unadorned collection of greens with an adequate balsamic vinaigrette. Her entrée was the seared duck breast ordered medium but delivered quite rare. The black rice side dish was satisfactory but the beans with roasted peppers were not good – the beans were tough and the red peppers were soft mush. My entrée, the seafood feature, was a well-prepared fillet of grilled Canada salmon. The accompanying rice pilaf was tasty but otherwise unexceptional. Surprisingly, the six Brussels sprouts were inconsistent in preparation – firm or squishy, depending upon which one was eaten; in fact, it was hard to imagine that all the ΄sprouts were cooked at the same time. Fine restaurants make their name with skillful and imaginative preparation of vegetables and salads. Alas, Linn Street Café’s veggies were pretty awful.

Table service was perfunctory, the food was more or less palatable, the plating & presentation were average, and the dinner plates were delivered warm, not hot. The whole operation struck us as an over-priced, small-town restaurant pretending to be an upscale, big-town restaurant. Certainly their culinary skills need work. In so far as restaurant reviews are concerned, we admit that one snowflake does not a winter storm make. However, the Linn Street Café cannot afford to miss with out-of-town strangers very often.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Great!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2013

Food was great: Pecan crusted chicken and walleye special. White Bailey cheesecake was delicious! Waitress was attentive and had good recommendations for cocktails. Kudos on atmosphere. Only complaint was it was loud due to it being busy and lots of conversations. Appreciated being able to make a reservation, and we were able to get our table early.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Iowa City, Iowa
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Awesome!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2013

We have tried Linn Street three times and each time was better than the last. One of our guests was a vegetarian and the chef and waiter could not have been more accommodating (I thought that were more knowledgeable vegetarians than our guest). The wine selection is vast and the staff is wonderful. My only knock is that they couldn't manage a low salt menu for their specialty nights - but they did give us fair warning. Probably the best restaurant in IC!

  • Visited December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Iowa City, Iowa, USA
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
“I love my food piled high on the center of each plate... don't you!!!!”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 28, 2013

There has to be somewhere for high-roller doctors from the mega-hospitals to take their nervous wives. This is the place.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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