Yotty's ice-cream is next door to Yotty's Hardware, on what I considered to be Kalona's 'main street'.
The ice-cream is really rather good, soft and swirly and in a variety of flavours. I believe it is 'home-made' but i think (*think*) this simply means they use their own machine to swirl up the mix rather than buying ready-made ice-cream. My apologies if this is incorrect.
They also sell coffees, sundaes and 'fountain soda' (I don't know what this is but no doubt US readers will).
It's a tiny place with just a couple of tables inside and a bench outside. Nothing special at all, but very pleasant...and the ice-cream is good.
There are serveral good restaurants in Kolona. The main difference between eateries here and other places is that the food is served "family style". The only other place I have seen this is in the Amana Colonies. That means you order you meat or main course and then they bring the side dishes. These are usually a salad, mashed potatoes and gravy or fried potatoes, bread and usually saurkraut in serving bowls. These are to be passed around the table. and they will refill them as needed. If you leave hungry it is your own fault.
When we were at the Chamber of Commerse in Kalona, we asked about places to eat. They gave us many choices. Of course, we could only choose one.
However, I think it appropriate to give these two highly recommended places for others to peruse:
1. Ethel's Gourmet Kitchen Bed & Breakfast The hostess is Ethel Bontrager.
1070 Highway 1, Kalona, Iowa 52247-9271; (319) 656-2481; www.ibbg.com/ethelsbandb.htm;E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org
This Restaurant and bed and breakfast advertises "gourmet food and old fashioned hospitality in a country home".
The Breakfast Menu includes:
(all you can eat)
Main Entrees could be Stuffed Quiche, Gourmet pancakes or waffles, Ham & Eggs Brunch Braid, Cheddar Chive Breakfast Casserole, Brunch Enchiladas, Ham, Bacon, or Sausage.
Rolls and Breads could include Cinnamon Rolls, Danish Delight, Kaiser House Favorite Coffee [Cheese] Cake, House Special Muffins, Prize Strusel-Filled Coffee Cake...baked fresh each morning and served warm.
Fruits include grapes, blueberries, pineapple, orange slices, jices, and other seasonal fruits.
Coffee is Starbucks and many other gourmet varieties that are freshly ground and brewed.
Favorite Dish: 2.Der Sommerkuche Restaurant, Buffet and Gifts. Proprietors are Lowell & Dorothy Miller. 110 1st Street [Hwy. 1]; 319-656-2517; www.dersommerkuche.com; Monday-Thursday 6:30 am-2:00 pm; Friday & Saturday 6:30 am-8:00 pm.
The name of this family restaurant is German for "the summerkitchen". The goal at Der Sommerjuche is to provide memories of an old fashion home cooked meal that features items such as real mashed potatoes, bread pudding, homemade breads, Grandma's stuffing and noodles, homemade pies, and sweet delights baked right in their kitchen. If you long for the taste of authentic Amish/Mennonite cooking and baking, you will find it at Der Sommerkuche.
There's a seafood buffet on Friday evenings. I noticed that they have catfish, a local favorite and a favorite of Jill and Dee!
The buffet features over 50 items such as Rotisserie chicken, homemade soups, salads, desserts and an ice cream freezer. They also have a full menu which does include all-day breakfast.
Tuscan Moon Grill on Fifth in Kolna, Iowa, is located where the historic Kalona Hotel once resided. It has the original wood floors, exposed brick, an extensive wine cellar, antique booths, and a massive outdoor eating area. They also have entertainment that is scheduled and listed on their website. For this small town in Iowa, it seems unusual.
Their motto seems to be: "You'll think that you are in Italy"! They do have Mediterranean-inspired food and decor, but it's difficult to image Italy right here in this mid-American town. Warren and Paula Miller are co-owners and have recently added a room that seats 30, and it is called Top of the Moon. [That brings the seating capacity to 90 with the downstairs and the patio.] This new room will no doubt be used for business meetings, rehearsal diners for weddings or for graduation parties and the like.
We visited on a Tuesday, May 22, 2007 with the intend on eating our lunch here. However, we discovered that it was closed on Tuesdays [even though the advertisements indicated otherwise.].
It advertises that Dinners are available Wednesdays, Thursdays [5 p.m.- 9 p.m.] and Fridays and Saturdays [5 p.m.-10 p.m.]
Lunches were to be served on Tuesdays through Saturdays [11 a.m.-2 p.m.]
Favorite Dish: For dinner, Tuscan Moon Grill on Fifth features Salads, Appetizers, Pasta, Steaks [Beef Tenderloin, Porterhouse Steaks, and Ribeye], and Seafood. They are famous for their Desserts, especially their Cheesecakes. They offer Specials daily.
For lunch, they offer Appetizers, Salads, Wraps, Pasta, an 8-oz. Black Angus Burger along with many other specials.
I wish that we could have experienced this delightful restaurant; however, we were satisfied with our alternative, The Fireside .
While in Kalona, we originally wanted to eat at The Tuscan Moon; however, it was not open. Thus, we decided to eat at The Fireside Grill Steak House and Martini Bar. We were quite fortunate because it turned out to be just wonderful.
The Fireside Grill is open every day from 10:00 am until 9:00 pm. On Thursday nights, the owners and hosts [Riella and Wes Rich] welcome their guests and present by Eddie Piccard's Band. They play from 6:30-9:00 pm. There is no cover charge.
This is like an old fashioned but hip Supper Club. It is quite large and well appointed. I especially liked the mural on the wall.
They offer appetizers, salads, steak pasta, BBQ ribs, salmon, hot and cold sandwiches, wraps and a child's menu. They have a grand dessert menu which includes gelato, tiramisu, cheesecake, chocolate layer cake, homemade pie, sundaes, and floats.
They also have espresso and lattes, soft drinks, and a full-service bar. During weekends, they offer a musician such as a piano player or a saxaphone player.
Favorite Dish: Jill and I were very pleased with our waiter, Effriam. He just happened to be from Chicago originally, and he just happened to be the owner's son! What a smile and what a pleasant personality. He made our eating experience even that much better.
Jill and I shared a Chicken Casadilla [we agreed it was the best we had ever tasted!]
Jill also had a "loaded Potato Soup" in a cup. She loved it, too.
But, the very best part of the meal was, of course, the dessert. Our waiter suggested it to us: Coconut gelato with slivered almonds and chocolate sauce. We were "in heaven"!