214 N. Linn St.
Iowa City Iowa 52245United States
Hamburg Inn is an authentic sit-at-the-counter restaurant that has managed to preserve the charm and dining excellence it established in 1948.
There are many great reasons to visit Hamburg Inn. Not only is it warm and inviting -- the kind of place where you feel like a regular on your first visit -- but it's also an institution. The Burg is a frequent stop for presidential hopefuls in advance of the Iowa caucuses, and their photos line the walls at the historic diner. But the food and friendly service won our vote. The burger was authentic Iowa beef, formed by a burger "specialist" who comes in at 4 a.m. daily to make the patties. At our evening visit, the burgers ($6.65) were juicy, served on a kaiser roll with pickles and onions and a side of crispy fries. The menu is generous -- two pages of spectacular breakfasts, imaginative soups of the day, many sandwich choices and baskets al a clam strips, chicken strips and more, plus desserts and fountain drinks to order. The downtown Iowa City location may be small, but its size adds to the exclusive appeal. Though it was established in 1948 and retains much of the 50s ambience, it's authentic; not the kind of Happy Days re-creation you often see. Hamburg Inn is a great Iowa City tradition. It's a place where locals and out-of-town visitors share space with university students and families. It's the kind of place where you can enjoy quality dining in a big group or alone with your newspaper.