Waveland Cafe – a Des Moines classic

The Waveland Cafe at 4708 University is one of those down to earth eateries that makes you feel like you have been going there all your life. While the menu won’t win any fancy shmancy James Beard Award, I also don’t have to wonder what the hell I’m eating. Is it a salt shaker or an entree? Is it dead or alive? Was it ever alive? Nope. You won’t have that problem at the Waveland Cafe. Its likely to be eggs, pancakes, potatoes (in some form) or meat (sausage, bacon, etc.) in the morning and the usual food later in the day. I did some checking online to see what sort of reviews it gets and it looks like some people don’t like to wait in line. It can be busy on a Saturday morning. If you don’t like crowds, go to a restaurant that nobody likes. Works almost every time. And, like I said, it does not offer breakfasts that you can’t make yourself (another complaint). If you are looking for powder puff squid brûlée for breakfast, don’t go here. But the coffee is pretty good and there is something nice about sitting down and having someone else do the hard work.

I didn’t try the bacon, but according to the written story available on each table, the Waveland sources its own bacon.

The best part about the Waveland for me is the fact that with the smoking ban you can actually breathe the air and taste the food. The smoke used to be pretty intense at times. That is one of those things that I forget when I think about the places I’ve visited in years past. The Waveland Cafe is one of those places that is becoming increasingly rare. The number of locally owned and operated restaurants and cafes that serve standard fare continues to dwindle as the chain restaurants and even convenience stores try to fill every single food niche, including breakfasts.

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