Opinion: Iowa City needs a Waffle House

The city could benefit from the Southern-based restaurant, which would be the first in the Hawkeye State.



People have lunch at the Waffle House in Cocoa Beach, on Tuesday, September 3, 2019.r

Conner Hanke, Columnist

Iowa City is home to a lot of restaurants, but there’s one thing our town is missing: Waffle House.

Hear me out. First off, who doesn’t like breakfast food at any hour of any day? Sure, Iowa City has plenty of breakfast options downtown, including Hamburg Inn No. 2 and the Bluebird Diner — both phenomenal places in their own right — but neither are open at night. Not to mention I don’t think it’s possible for another business to generate as long a line to sit down to eat as Bluebird does. You may as well bring a cot and nap while you’re waiting for a table.

We even have a location for our new Waffle House. After years of bringing in bands and musicians from every corner of the country, The Blue Moose is closing its doors for good. Now the bar is nothing but history from this time forward.

When formulating an idea of the best business to replace Blue Moose, two things come to mind: what is absolutely foolproof and what would differentiate itself from the plethora of other bars and restaurants that inhabit the area?

Just as all Waffle House patrons know through experience, the restaurant has mastered the art of immediate service. There really aren’t many things better in the world than sitting down to eat and having your food on your table in less than 10 minutes, especially when it tastes as good as Waffle House’s.

How successful would this prospective business be? As far as I’m concerned, the place would become something of a tourist destination. The closest Waffle House is currently in Kansas City, Missouri.  With a Waffle House in Iowa City, we would be the only place in the Hawkeye State with a Waffle House. We’d firmly grasp the title of best breakfast food options in the state, with Bluebird, Hamburg Inn No. 2, and Waffle House all residing within the same few blocks.

This place would do just fine throughout the course of the week, but Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m.? Look out. Envision how packed Dumpling Darling (delicious in their own right) gets on those nights, then apply that visualization to a place as spacious as the building Blue Moose used to be in. Honestly, they may as well just turn it into the world’s first Waffle House buffet.

I don’t know why this is just now crossing my mind, but going to a breakfast buffet after leaving the bars would be equivalent to passing through the gates of heaven. I just can’t think of a single negative to all-you-can-eat breakfast food after a night on the town.

Here’s another perk of getting a Waffle House in Iowa City — we can do our part to reverse the incorrect belief that eggs, bacon, hash browns, sausage, and waffles are only meant for consumption before noon.

Iowa City is all about standing up for important causes. We may as well try to reverse society’s accepted times for breakfast food consumption to the list while we’re at it.

Columns reflect the opinions of the authors and are not necessarily those of the Editorial Board, The Daily Iowan, or other organizations in which the author may be involved.