Bauder’s ice cream is famous in Iowa, especially so among people who attend the annual state fair, where it is a highlight of the endlessly good grazing grounds near the show pavilion. Year around, the pharmacy is a place to come for a cherry Coke, a Green River, or a lime phosphate. You can indulge in a turtle sundae (caramel, nuts and hot fudge topping), as well as shakes, malts, sodas, and floats of every stripe. All the ice cream treats are made from Bauder’s own ice cream, the flavor rotation of which includes fresh strawberry and peach in the summer months.
Ice cream is Bauder’s claim to fame, but it is also a nice place for a sandwich: cold cuts, hot Reubens and fried eggs, or a “Roosevelt Special” of turkey, Swiss and mustard on a long roll.
The nostalgic reverberations of this old drug store take you back to an America that long predates modern franchised restaurants. Ice cream became part of the pharmacy repertoire shortly after World War II, when it was hand-cranked up front in the window where passers-by could watch.