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Sponsored by: The Brown Bottle

Top 3 Reasons to Eat Here

1. Award-winning Italian
1. Award-winning Italian
"the Lasagna is to die for"
_iaholic57
See reviews that mention italian
2. Top notch service
2. Top notch service
"The staff was incredibly friendly and helpful"
Kelly N
See reviews that mention staff was incredibly friendly
3. Surrounded by nature
3. Surrounded by nature
"enjoyed watching the flying birds, turkey, and rabbit along the river"
Grammie1950
See reviews that mention family
Reviews (196)
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LanguageEnglish
Traveler rating
111
49
17
12
7
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All reviews lasagna prime rib salad twice baked potato meat sauce prosciutto shrimp cakes cedar river wine menu is full bar excellent food and service italian waterloo pepper
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Reviewed 2 days ago

My husband and I have been dining at the Brown Bottle in Cedar Falls since it opened in 1972 and have continued to eat there whenever we come to town. This past Sunday, May 2, 2021, we had reservations to dine there again. Upon arriving...we noticed that not one staff person was masked, including the manager. Since the country is only about half-way through this COVID pandemic, we thought it was highly irresponsible of management to permit this practice. Not only does it put their staff at a health risk, it puts their patrons at risk as well. As staff moves from table to table viruses can be spread throughout the restaurant, possibly infecting those who haven't been vaccinated or who are more at risk for infection. It was very disappointing, and if we hadn't been meeting another couple there, we would have turned around and walked out as soon as we noticed the maskless staff. Sadly for us as we always enjoy the food, we will not be back to the Brown Bottle again for a very, very long time.More

Date of visit: May 2021
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Restaurant's Favorite
Reviewed July 3, 2020 via mobile

Hands down the best Italian restaurant in the area. The food is delicious. I’ve had lasagna, manicotti, pizza, prime rib and spaghetti and all very flavorful. My new favorite is the vegetarian lasagna. And the service is AMAZING every time I go there. Highly recommend!

Date of visit: March 2020
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Reviewed 4 days ago

We appeared at the Brown Bottle in Cedar Falls at 4:30 pm for dinner before driving home (90 miles). I had eating at the downtown Waterloo Brown Bottle in 1974--as a southern Iowa junior college student attending a play at UNI with a drama professor....We at there on our wedding night in 1987, too--a drunk was obnoxiously trying to bribe a kid to eat until he threw up. This time at the original BB on the river, we were seated in a room with a fascinating view of trees and bird feeders to which woodpeckers, red-winged blackbirds, sparrows, cedar waxwings, et al., flocked. We were masked; the waitperson was too. A young couple who came into the room was maskless. The menu had gunk on it. The waitperson was efficient; I ordered an iced tea and she brought me a second without being asked. Scout decided to try the Italian manicotti; I, the salmon with peach salsa. We both had spring green salads with raspberry vinaigrette and parmesan dressing--they came with a tiny piece of toast. The salmon was done with a funky spice mixture, and the peach salsa was delicious. My side of herby sweet potatoes could have been warmer, but it was tasty. We cleaned our plates and decided not to order a Pink Squirrel because we had Cupcakery cupcakes in the car. As Scout put it, "the ambiance was great; the food was good."More

Date of visit: May 2021
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Cedar Falls Brown Bottle has always been one of our favorite restaurants in the Cedar Valley. We went yesterday and was very disappointed. Now the food was VERY good. The disappointment was manger and employees not wearing masks. Cedar Falls has a mask mandate but...management decided it would be all the employees choice. We had a choice also and could’ve left. My wife wanted to but we decided to stay as it wasn’t busy. When we received our salad I was surprised they didn’t offer the special pepper they would grind on the salad. The waitress’s response was we can’t do this because of Covid. I thought about this for a short moment. They can’t grind pepper on your salad but the waitress can breathe on you and spread whatever it is that she may have. Next time we go out I will make sure I go to a restaurant that follows the mandate, that’s put into place to protect it citizensMore

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?1  
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Food is good but management and staff(except for one person) disregarded pandemic health protocols with no masks. When we asked waiter he claimed they were 'following CDC guidelines' The Iowa governors' guidelines are not CDC guidelines. This contempt is as much a disrespect for customers...as a health issue.More

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?1  
Reviewed February 27, 2020 via mobile

We had a wonderful waitress and she was very attentive. Our food was absolutely delicious! The chicken marsala and twice baked potatoes word out of this world!

Date of visit: February 2020
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Reviewed December 24, 2019 via mobile

Excellent food and service. Good wine list. Seafood lasagna, garlic pasta with shrimp and pasta with mushrooms and prosciutto were all delicious! Wanted a special dinner with our son and his girlfriend and none of us were disappointed. Will definitely return the next time we...visit.More

Date of visit: December 2019
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Reviewed December 10, 2019 via mobile

Great food great dinning experience. This is a restaurant in a old four story home between the Cedar River and some creeks. Great location year round with lost of windows to see the river and animals. The food is Italian based with most dishes being...baked. The pizza is always great and there is a full bar. The wine menu is always good. Service is normally good. Parking in the upper lot is limited but there is plenty of parking in the lower lot. For a full Italian restaurant this is the best in Cedar Falls/Waterloo.More

Date of visit: November 2019
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Reviewed November 22, 2019 via mobile

I haven't eaten at The Brown Bottle for over 35 years. On a recent visit to Cedar Falls I had the opportunity to once again visit my favorite restaurant in the city. The food was as wonderful as I remembered with the lasagna being the...main star, as always. The decor had been updated but the restaurant was still the same wonderful experience as I recalled.More

Date of visit: November 2019
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Reviewed November 11, 2019 via mobile

We were in town from St Louis, it had been years since we'd been to Brown Bottle. I knew exactly what I was going to order at the first mention of going. Lasagna!! And Brown Bottle exceeded my memory! Their lasagna is perfection of meat...sauce, cheese and pasta, all hot and golden brown served in a large serving. I'm still thinking about my meal there. The restaurant has been nicely updated. Our server was nicely attentive. Highly recommend a visit when in Cedar Falls!!More

Date of visit: November 2019
Helpful?2  
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Questions & Answers
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Abbey W
October 12, 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from linda1930 | Reviewed this property |
Yes
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Tiffany B
January 16, 2015|
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Response from melissammb | Property representative |
Hi there - Looks like you may have accidentally posted your question on the wrong site. The Brown Bottle is located in Cedar Falls, IA and is not associated with any resorts. But your trip sounds lovely - good luck and have... More
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Frequently Asked Questions about The Brown Bottle

  • Yes, The Brown Bottle offers takeout services.

  • Yes, The Brown Bottle offers delivery services.

  • The Brown Bottle is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travelers:
    • Food: 4
    • Service: 4.5
    • Value: 4
    • Atmosphere: 4