12 Plates of Pork

Have you ever entered a contest on social media by commenting on, liking, and/or sharing a post? Will you enter pretty much any contest? Do you only enter those with a prize that you really want? Or do you scroll past it thinking “I never win those things.” Continue reading “12 Plates of Pork”

Exploring SW Colorado

August in Colorado = a perfect vacation for a foodie and her fly fisherman husband.

Our vacation was decided when we were introduced to a place where guided peach orchards meet guided fly-fishing trips. Three nights at the lodge of Black Canyon Anglers (near Delta, CO) and three nights in Ouray (a town known as “The Switzerland of America”) would make for an amazing trip to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary! Continue reading “Exploring SW Colorado”

Foodventurous: Farmer’s Market

It’s one of my favorite times of year. Yesterday marked the first day that produce vendors line the streets of downtown Des Moines just hours after Court Ave announced last call. After the cold winter months, the various food tents are a welcome sight, and I wasted no time in making what was the first of many summer trips to the downtown area. It’s Farmer’s Market season! Continue reading “Foodventurous: Farmer’s Market”

Foodventurous: Glazed and Infused

The morning after witnessing a heart-breaking loss requires some serious medicine. We made the trip to Chicago last weekend to watch our Cyclones play in the NCAA Sweet 16 at the United Center. Everywhere we went, we saw the Cardinal and Gold of ISU fans. Even ran into college buddies right on the streets! It’s why they started calling the United Center “Hilton East”.

Only it wasn’t.

It just wasn’t meant to be.

There were a lot of sad Cardinal-and-Gold-wearing people on the streets the next morning. We had noticed a place a couple blocks from our hotel with the word “Glazed” on the sign and assumed doughnuts had to be involved. We were not disappointed.

We walked into the door of “Glazed and Infused” and saw that we were in an area shared by the doughnut shop, a restaurant (Davanti Enoteca) and a hotel lobby (Courtyard by Marriott). There were about 20-25 people in line for doughnuts and every person that came out told us it is well worth the wait. So we got in line. Some people chose to sit down in the restaurant which offered made-to-order breakfast, a bloody mary bar and ability to order doughnuts with breakfast from the table. If you waited in line, you could then sit at a few of the tables between the restaurant and the hotel lobby. It was awesome!

After we had waited our turn and spoken with a few fellow broken-hearted ISU fans, we reached the counter and decision-time.

Blueberry Lemon
Black Raspberry Cheesecake
Maple Bacon
Boston Cream

… and who can resist a handsome server hoisting trays of goodness!

Back on topic … my final compliment for this place will be praise for its signs.

I want the “lard” sign in my kitchen and I want to be back to Chicago tomorrow for April Fool’s Day!

Let’s just say the next time I get to visit Chicago, I know where I would like to stay and eat.


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Foodventurous: The Cheese Shop DSM

Last weekend, my husband and I decided to take a little road trip to Norwalk, Iowa, to check out La Quercia Handcrafted Cured Meats, home of award-winning prosciutto. It probably sounds a bit strange to take an adult field trip to a meat curing facility, but I had somehow gotten the idea that they also had a small deli that sells sandwiches featuring their products. I was disappointedly wrong. It happens. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

So, stomachs rumbling, we decided to drive North into Des Moines (luckily not a long drive) and try another place I have been wanting to visit, The Cheese Shop of Des Moines. I had stopped in there once before just to see what the shop was like, so I knew they served La Quercia products. It is a very small shop, but that just adds to its appeal. You can stop in and they will help you pick out meats, cheeses, spreads, wine and beer to take home or to a party, or you can sit down and order from their menu. My favorite thing about this shop is the knowledge that the owners and staff will share with you about the products.

Here is one of my favorite things about smaller food shops: as they bring other customers their food, you get to see it and hear the description of their choices.

But reaching over and asking if you can try their choices is not okay. Just sayin’.

So I accomplished my goal of enjoying some La Quercia prosciutto (left picture, far left) and trying a variety of their featured products, as well as some of my husband’s Burrata sandwich (HE allows me to reach over and try his food).

The Cheese Shop is located in a small strip mall on 42nd Street known as the Shops at Roosevelt along with several other shops/restaurants I love. The breads in the pictures above come from a neighboring shop called La Mie Bakery (try the olive ciabatta and the quiche) and Vom Fass (oils, vinegars and spirits).  Talk about one-stop shopping (technically three stops but all in a row): bread, meat, cheese, spirits …

Oh and did I mention, The Cheese Shop offers picnic baskets?


If you enjoyed this post, be sure to share it on social media using the buttons below. Like what you see? You can become an email or wordpress subscriber at the top left of this page. Please do not hesitate to contact us with thoughts and questions, and if you would like us to try out a recipe or test a product, drop us a line at picniclifefoodie@gmail.com!