Iowa pork - Kalmes & Delancey's

2008/04/28 14:46:49
Last week my wife and I had a chance to stop at Kalmes Restaurant in St. Donatus, Iowa; I ordered the pork tenderloin sandwich and she had a bacon cheeseburger.

The menu says it's lightly breaded but it seemed almost "naked" to me...but I have no complaints. It was nicely seasoned and grilled (on a flattop, I suspect); it was done but not dry nor excessively drippy. I ate it plain although it's available with lettuce, tomato, cheese, etc. and thought it was just fine without any extras. And on an off-topic note, the burger was good, too...we had a decent lunch before getting back on the road.

While in Des Moines we stopped at a little sandwich/burger/barbecue joint called Delancey's (or maybe it's Delancy's) next to Campus Cleaners and across from the Drake campus. He has a working smoker out front where he makes his barbecue, but since he has 2 sizes (8 oz. & 12 oz.) of BPT on the menu we opted to split a larger one. It was hot, crisp, and tasty, although as it was pretty thin it might qualify as what some call a fritter and I wasn't packing a pair of calipers with which to measure it. It came on a plain white bun (which was way too small) with ketchup, mustard, and pickle chips; onion is part of the standard garnish but we declined that. AFAIK it might be the only BPT option in the campus area but that's still 1 more than when I was a student there; a place like this would've been a welcome change from the pizza and fast-food shops we were surrounded by back then.

post edited by Brad_Olson - 2009/03/31 14:08:10
RE: Iowa pork - Kalmes & Delancey's 2008/04/29 15:35:04
Were you in town for the Relay's?

If you went to Drake decades ago, Milies Drive-In on 10th and University was the place for tenderloin. Bibbs was once located in an out-building in front of what is now a welfare office/public clinic in the Forest/Carpenter/MLK Blvd area. It moved to a nearby location before moving across town.
This is my write-up of the place now:

I wanted to know if the new BBQ Smoker place, Jethro's, is worth the hype. I usually steer clear of the crowds/traffic during relays but I think Jethro's had a big tent for a grand opening last week.
RE: Iowa pork - Kalmes & Delancey's 2008/04/29 21:04:48
Yes, the Relays. I was at Drake from '81-85 so I guess that qualifies as "decades" but rarely got downtown (no wheels) so I don't know if Millie's was operating, although the name sounds vaguely familiar. 10th & University isn't that far from 11th & Forest, which IIRC is where the infamous Robert's Lounge was...or maybe it was on University as well.

Where's Jethro's located? The new food area is located directly west of the stadium; is that where their tent was? I heard that Delancey's had a stand there but didn't verify.

RE: Iowa pork - Kalmes & Delancey's 2008/05/03 14:57:16
I tried the pork tenderloin at the place across from Drake a few weeks ago and was a tad underwhelmed. I'd love to know more about the barbecue, though. Still looking for truly good bbq in Des Moines. Sad when your go-to place is a chain, even though I think Famous Dav's is pretty good.
RE: Iowa pork - Kalmes & Delancey's 2008/05/05 11:35:32
I didn't realize there was a food tent area because I don't drive on Forest during the relays.

Jethro's claims to have a 75 cubic foot smoker, its website has a menu:

Delancey's on 28th and University is operated by the same people who bought Hank & Sharon's Giant Tenderloins on the Eastside. Their tenderloins are a little too tough and have way too much salt on top. It is a real tenderloin cut of pork, just not done right. I think their grinders are better.

I think that if you wanted a truly undiscovered BPT in Iowa, you would have to go find a Sale Barn on auction day:

Tenderloin's came up in the DM Register food forums when they had a link from the frontpage:

RE: Iowa pork - Kalmes & Delancey's 2008/05/06 17:52:42
I've never noticed BPTs on the menu, but for my money the best sale barn food in the state is in Waverly. Pies are fantastic and the best entree is the chicken and noodles served on homemade mashed potatoes. The Kalona sale barn is also very good.
RE: Iowa pork - Kalmes & Delancey's 2008/05/29 09:15:29
Some poor photos from Kalmes' and Delancey's.

My "pork t", as they call it:

My wife's cheeseburger:

Delancey's tenderloin and the smoker out front:

I feel compelled to go back just to get better photos...
EDIT 3-31-09: Per a different post by Trzhotel, Delancey's closed later in 2008.

post edited by Brad_Olson - 2009/03/31 14:06:11