Best Places to Eat in Iowa City After an Iowa Football Game
POV: You’ve just spent hours in the sun sitting in the stands at Kinnick Stadium, screaming with every interception and cheering when you can almost taste a touchdown.
Your feet are tired, you may be buzzing – both from the drinking and the thrill of the game – and your stomach seems to be rumbling louder than the thousands of fans who just watched the game.
It’s time to snack.
If you’re still in Iowa City and looking for a place to eat, there are certainly plenty of great choices.
From mouth-watering burgers to pizza, the Press-Citizen recommends these three places to try before or after an Iowa Hawkeyes game.
Micky’s Irish Pub & Grill
Step into Micky’s Irish Pub & Grill, the local bar that’s been in Iowa City for four decades. Dark wood paneling along the bar, neon signs of Budweiser and Guinness, and softly dim lighting add pub-appropriate ambiance.
Micky’s offers a variety of burgers with tasty toppings – onion rings, fried egg, ham and more. Opt for the Bruce Hornsby, named after the singer-songwriter because he called it his favorite burger when he visited in the 1980s, according to Micky’s Irish Pub & Grill. The pub also serves sandwiches, breakfast items and plenty of starters to share, including cheese curds and pretzel bites.
Prices range from around $6 to $15.
Micky’s Irish Pub & Grill is located at 11 S. Dubuque St. and is open 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Pizza Pub wig and pen
With three locations right in Johnson County, Wig & Pen Pizza Pub isn’t just a tasty option, it’s convenient for folks who want a bite to eat without being on the busy downtown streets.
The pizzeria takes its name from a London club for lawyers and journalists dating back to the 17th centuryaccording to the restaurant’s website.
If you want Chicago-style pizza or a thin crust, pineapple on top or mounds of spicy Italian sausage, Wig & Pen has it. To keep with the UK theme, try the Union Jack pizza, made with Italian sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms, onions and red peppers.
Keep in mind that the Coralville location is the only place to dine, but that doesn’t mean you can’t grab take-out pizza and picnic in one of Iowa City’s many parks or eat on the sidewalk in other places.
Prices range from around $7 to $27.
Pizza Pub wig and penThe Iowa City location is at 363 N. First Ave. The restaurant is open from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. daily.
Hamburg Hostel No. 2
If you manage to get a seat at this Iowa City staple, enjoy.
The Hamburg Inn No. 2 serves up all the dinner classics and pie shakes – a must. If you’re ok with breakfast being any time of the day, do you order some home fries, biscuits and gravy.
Hamburg Inn No. 2 opened in 1948 by Fritz Panther before being passed on to his son and longtime owner David Panther in 1979. In 2016, Michael Lee purchased the beloved spot.
Prices range from around $4 to $20.
Hamburg Hostel No. 2 is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and closes at 3 p.m. from Monday to Thursday.
Need a bar to watch the game? Here’s Where to Watch an Iowa Football Game in the Iowa City Area
Now, if you choose to catch the game at a local bar, you’re spoiled for choice in both downtown Iowa City and the surrounding area.
Some Iowa City favorites include At Joe’slocated at 115 Iowa Ave. It closes at 2am everyday and has a rooftop bar which is a real treat when the weather is nice.
People may also want to stop at Tavern and restaurant of the vine at 330 E. Prentiss St. The corner bar is known for its wings and also has a location in Coralville. The Vine Tavern & Eatery is open until midnight except Sundays.
Outside of downtown Iowa City is tavern blue, pizza and craft beer, mini-golf and tiki-themed bar in Coralville. Located at 805 Second St., Tavern Blue’s hours of operation are 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, perfect for a night of fun that doesn’t last until the wee hours of the morning.
Another Coralville spot is the Iowa Athletic Club, a bar that opened last year in Iowa River Landing. If the name is any indication, it’s a sports bar, and it promises to have the coldest beer in town and “the best place to watch live sports”, by the bar’s website. It is open from 11 a.m. to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. The Iowa Athletic Club is located at 200 E. Ninth St., Suite 205.
Paris Barraza covers entertainment, lifestyle and the arts at Iowa City Press-Citizen. Contact her at PBarraza@press-citizen.com or 319-519-9731. Follow her on Twitter @ParisBarraza.