If you find yourself southeast of Des Moines looking for a square meal, drive around the town square of Sully until you spot the Coffee Cup Café. With its short counter, laminate tables, and menu of heartland square meals, this inconspicuous eatery is a hearty slice of Roadfood, Iowa-style.
At breakfast, we love the plate-wide golden pancakes accompanied by rounds of sausage; and this being Iowa, of course the kitchen makes beautiful cinnamon buns (the unofficial state pastry). The buns are not huge, but they are mighty good, served warm from their pan with plenty of butter on the side.
The lunch menu includes hot beef sandwiches and tenderloin steaks, and there is one big hot meal every day – such fare as baked ham, roast chicken, and pork chops. Whatever else you eat for lunch, have a Dutch salad on the side. This is a regional specialty made of crisp iceberg leaves bathed in a warm sweet and sour creamy mustard dressing with pieces of bacon and slices of hard-cooked egg.
Of course, dessert at the Coffee Cup Café must be pie. The kitchen’s cream pies are ethereal, virtually floating off their crusts; the fruit double-crust pies are dusted with sugar crystals and are the sort that you simply don’t find outside the pie-happy state of Iowa.