We arrived at a busy time, and when I peered in the lobby found a lot of people waiting for lunch. The restaurant looked impressive enough, but Belinda and I didn't have the time to wait for a table. Take your time though :-)
When it was decided that I would be driving to the Amana Colonies I explored its website and decided that, if I were to be visiting, I would like to eat at the Ox Yoke inn.
I liked the look of the menu, I liked the fact that it had been established for a long time (since 1940) and was in an older building (1856).
Unfortunately, the heat of the day, the effects of jetlag and the stressiness of driving on the wrong side of the road for the first time in a year combined to substantially reduce my appetite.
The interior is very pleasant, with tables covered in gingham oilcloth. I think the effect aimed for is 'family home', a variation perhaps on the communal kitchens and dining which were the norm in Amana until the 1930s.
I had a soft roll with pulled pork and gravy, a 'special'. It was very pleasant, although I was bemused to find that the accompanying 'salad' consisted of one segment of orange and a leaf of what I think was kale. It was certainly too tough to be any type of lettuce...
My companion just had dessert, a huge wedge of rhubarb and custard 'pie', with squidgy meringue on top. She was very pleased with it.
We both drank iced tea.
Prices were reasonable (but not low), service was satisfactory (although I think a little annoyed that we did not order more food) and the place was certainly busy on a mid-week, mid-August day.
An Amana Colonies tradition since 1940. Daily lunch, dinner and Sunday Champagne Brunch. Child's menu. Sandwiches, daily specials and home baked desserts. Wine, beer and cocktails. Gifts. Free wireless Internet.
Favorite Dish: We had the chicken dinner, family style. Wonderful food.
I can't imagine that the rather stern pietists who found the Amana Colonies would have approved of the Chocolate Haus dessert and coffeehouse, but it's nice for us "English" to have it here.
Note the simple signage on the exterior of Amana's shops and restaurants. Nothing garish. It's one of the thing that makes this a pleasant place, a welcome break from Interstate Monotony and boredom.
Family-style dinners and traditional country cooking are on the menu here. This old-fashioned establishment orignally served the Amana Colonists from their communal kitchens.
Not an ideal place for vegetarians, but if you are one, they would probably make you a nice big salad if you asked nicely.
Wonderful German family-style meal. You choose your entree, and the side items are brought to the table "family style", where they will bring you bowls of mashed potatoes, gravy, beans, and the like. It's like having a home cooked German meal, but you don't have to do the cooking!
This restaurant is a tradition for locals. I grew up in Cedar Rapids, 15 miles east of Amana. We ate made a point to drive to the Ox Yoke Inn as a family (aunts, uncles, cousins) regularly.
This is Iowa’s oldest microbrewery. The Amana’s, like other German communal groups, allowed for alcoholic consumption. They have a long history of brewing low alcohol beer and making wine. There is a nice outside terrace great for warm weather sitting in front of the Brewpub.
Another long standing option in Amana for dining is the Ox Yoke Inn, which again, we didn't try. Check out the website Here