Des Moines will soon welcome a number of new restaurants and bars to its landscape. Lurra Cocina, Guru BBQ, Fuzzy’s Tacos, Crust Punks Pizza, and other establishments are readying for openings in the coming months. Here is a look at some of the new additions to the Metro’s dining scene.
Perhaps the most hyped/anticipated opening will come on October 16, when Lurra Cocina opens its doors. The 5,200-square-foot restaurant will open at 1420 Locust Street in Downtown Des Moines in the old car dealership across from the Papajohn Sculpture Park. Lurra Cocina’s kitchen will be headed by Chef Nick Illingworth, who cut his teeth with award-winning chefs Lynn A. Pritchard (at Table 128 Bistro + Bar), and David Baruthio (at Blue Tomato Kitchen). Look for the Spanish/Mediterranean menu to feature dishes like Paella, Red Snapper Fresco, Shrimp Alhinho, and Calamares Rellenos (Stuffed Squid). The menu will include a variety of tapas (small plate) dishes designed to share. Lurra Cocina will be open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. You can get a sneak peek at Illingworth’s cooking skills at Adventureland Park’s Oktoberfest celebration this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The former Old Tavern Brewery location at 300 MLK Jr. Parkway in Downtown Des Moines will house several new restaurants. Nestled between the Science Center of Iowa and Principal Park, a new three-building complex will hold Guru BBQ, a Fuzzy’s Taco Shop, a Jimmy John’s sub shop, and 3hundred Craft & Rooftop, as well as retail businesses and an Anytime Fitness. Guru BBQ is expected to open sometime in October. The trio of Patrick Cashman and Ryan and Marc LePera started out in competition barbecue and expanded their horizons to include an eclectic mix of Cajun, French, Korean, Mexican, Spanish, Thai, and other cuisine styles. The three pitmasters started offering their fare at 515 Brewing Company in Clive while developing their brick-and-mortar business. Guru will offer ribs, chopped pork, brisket, chicken, a variety of fresh slaws/salads/sides (like Crisp Jicama Bacon Dijon Slaw, Broccoli Raisin Salad, Cornbread Casserole, Cheddar Ale Mac & Cheese, and Asiago Hashed Potatoes), and exotic specialties like Indian Curry Chicken, Glazed BBQ Shrimp Etoufee, Honey Mustard Ribs with Crushed Pretzel, Thai Chili Lime Wings, and Rasta Jerked Chicken.
Fuzzy’s Taco Shop is expecting to open its second Metro location in the same building as Guru BBQ on November 2. The first location, at 2732 E Delaware Avenue (Suite 300) in Ankeny, opened in late August. The chain started in Fort Worth, Texas and has expanded to around 80 units/franchises spread out over 10 states. Fuzzy’s is known for their Baja style tacos, but they offer a full menu of Mexican favorites from enchiladas to burritos and tamales to fajitas. The fast casual restaurant chain also has a kid’s menu and a breakfast menu. The Ankeny location’s hours are Sunday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., so expect similar hours for the MLK location.
3hundred Craft & Rooftop will take up the tradition of the Old Tavern Brewery, which was closed by Prohibition 95 years ago on the same spot. The bar will take up the entire third floor of the building it is in, totaling 2,800 square feet indoors and roughly 3,500 square feet of rooftop and deck outdoors. The bar will feature locally-brewed beers and Iowa-made liquors, DJs on weekends, and beautiful views of Downtown, the river, and Principal Park. As of now, the bar will not serve food, but there is talk of putting a version of a food truck on the roof to serve street vendor food. No opening date has been announced yet for either 3hundred or the new Jimmy John’s sub shop that will open in the same complex.
From the beautiful mind of Chef Sam Auen (Tacopocalypse and Krunkwich Ramen House), two new restaurants are taking shape. Crust Punks Pizza was originally planned to open earlier this month at 1610 6th Avenue in Des Moines. The restaurant has since been delayed and no news on a new opening date has been announced. CPP will offer fusion style pizzas like Red Curry Chicken Pizza, Korean Chicken Pizza, Bulgogi Pizza with Kimchi, and Bacon Chorizo Pizza. When Chef Auen is finished with that opening, he will turn his attention to his latest idea, Downtown Doughnuts & Fried Chicken. Not much is known yet about DDFC except that Auen is planning a 2016 opening.