Five Iowa Restaurants That Were Featured on “Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives”
The long-running Guy Fieri show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives is one of the ultimate comfort shows. Like the hearty, comfort food it often showcases, it's become a staple of Food Network's schedule. The show revolves around Guy Fieri traveling all over America looking for the best greasy spoon restaurants in the country.
There's been several occasions where Fieri has come to the state of Iowa in search of some delicious eats. I decided to take a look at five Iowa restaurants he's eaten at on the show. Here are five eateries in Iowa that were featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.
Smokey D's BBQ:
Smokey D's BBQ was featured on three episodes of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. The barbeque joint was first featured in the episode "Fresh Fish & Funky Chicken," and later, in the episode "Dynamite Desserts" and "Triple D Nation: Flavortown Favorites."
Guy Fieri made sure to sample and showcase some of the restaurant's staple menu items, such as the Smoked Pork Philly and the Apple Dumpling dessert, which looks delicious (see video above). Smokey D's has expanded to three different locations, with the main restaurant being located at 5055 NW 2nd Avenue in Des Moines.
In the episode "Fish, Fries and Feet," Fieri checked out the Flying Mango, which has been around as a catering establishment since 1997 before opening as a full-service restaurant. Flying Mango has been featured on three episodes of the show ("Triple D Nation: Fried and Smoked," "Fish, Fries and Feet," and "Takeout: Sendin' the Surf & Turf") which confirms just how highly Fieri thinks of the place.
Flying Mango serves up everything from Shrimp Pontchartrain to smoked pork to Memphis-style ribs, and more (see video above to get your mouth watering). Flying Mango is located at 4345 Hickman Road in Des Moines.
If you weren't already aware, West Des Moines is home to a popular Ecuadorian restaurant known for their authentic South American empanadas, chicken with rice, and more! The restaurant, Mi Patria, earned high praise on the Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, and was featured in the episode "Fresh Fish & Funky Chicken." Here's the write-up from the show's website
It's quite a rare and pleasant find these days to find an authentic Ecuadorian restaurant in Iowa. We've been visiting this location for years, so it's great to finally have it featured for the worldwide audience. Open only a few short years, there is no question that they are surely here to stay. Owner Cesar Miranda, whom was born and raised in Ecuador, has brought traditional culinary skills to the kitchen. Latin cuisine is perhaps some of the best in the world and while quite popular in the south, it's great to see it spread with popularity to the north as well. There are several must-have's on the menu, but we'll let you decide on your favorites. Some of ours include the Lomo Saltado, Arroz Marinero, classic Carne Asada, Patacones which are fried plantains, Beef Empanadas, Llapingachos, Churrasco, Tilapia Frita, Hornado con Mote and much more. If you're new to Latin cuisine and in the area, don't hesitate to pay them a visit and improve your pallet!
Mi Patria is located at 1410 22nd Street in West Des Moines.
Sadly, Tacopocalypse, which was also featured on the episode "Fish, Fries and Feet," reportedly closed after five years in business back in 2018. The cleverly named restaurant. Another location was planned, but seems never to have materialized. Not even Fieri's enthusiastic praise could save it:
One of the best Asian Fusion style restaurants we've had the pleasure to visit; and their variety of incredible tacos will leave you speechless (and full!). You can find a vast assortment of traditional as well as Asian style foods here and best of all, all of their ingredients are locally raised in the city of Des Moines.
George the Chili King:
Like Tacopocalypse, George the Chili King in Des Moines closed. The titular Chili King himself, George Karaidos, Jr., died back in 2019 at the age of 86, leaving behind a legacy of great food and smiling faces who made his eatery one of the most popular in Des Moines.
The restaurant was founded in 1920, and was featured on the Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives episode "Oldies But Goodies." While the experience of George the Chili King's diverse menu of foods is gone, you can still try your hand at the eatery's onion ring recipe!
See all the Iowa locations featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives on the show's website!