Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches

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Porker93
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2005/05/23 18:19:50 (permalink)

Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches

Does anyone know the name of the town & the cafe north of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, (I'd guess maybe about 15-20+ miles north just off Hiway I-380.)?
I had visited the area a year ago or so, & the people I was with took for me a drive north of town a few miles on the freeway, & made a right/east back into this small town.
At this small town cafe, they were well-known for their Pork Tenderloin sandwiches. They were excellent & huge, ...
Now I can't find any information about either, & I'm planning on going back that way next week & would like to find this place again to share it with some other family traveling with me.

Anyone know the details?!?
#1

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    Porker93
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/05/23 18:52:30 (permalink)
    Just wanted to note that I understand there is a place southeast of Cedar Rapids, in a town called Solon, tht has some excellent looking tenderloin sandwiches also. But not the direction I traveled last year, I know we went north-nw on I-380.
    #2
    Jim Ross
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/05/23 21:08:32 (permalink)
    It might be Mahoney's in Alburnett. My relatives go there for the broasted chicken, which is excellent. I've heard the tenderloin's are good too, but we always get the chicken. If you get the chicken, be prepared to wait because it's cooked to order and takes a while. Have a cold one while it cooks.
    #3
    plb
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/05/23 22:19:32 (permalink)
    So, they really have Indiana pork tenderloin sandwiches in Iowa.

    I had one a few years ago at the California State Fair. The stand was called something like Iowa Tenderloin Sandwiches. After I “grilled” the owners they admitted they were from Indiana, had never been in Iowa, but thought Iowa sounded more realistic.

    #4
    wanderingjew
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/05/23 22:58:51 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by plb

    So, they really have Indiana pork tenderloin sandwiches in Iowa.

    I had one a few years ago at the California State Fair. The stand was called something like Iowa Tenderloin Sandwiches. After I “grilled” the owners they admitted they were from Indiana, had never been in Iowa, but thought Iowa sounded more realistic.




    Not being from the midwest, I don't consider myself an expert, however if you have read some of the Roadfood books, the Sterns indicate that the Tenderloin Sandwich is Shared by several states in between I-70 and I-80 from the Indiana border to Nebraska.
    #5
    Davydd
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/05 17:56:26 (permalink)
    From what I can tell Indiana is the true home of the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich mostly attributed to Nick's Kitchen in Huntingdon, IN about 1908. Iowa probably caught onto it because of the preponderance of hog farms. However, if you go to the Iowa Pork Producers Associaton web site you will see they don't even recognize the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich.

    http://www.iowapork.org/recipes/sandwiches.html

    That says a lot. The book, AMERICAN SANDWICH, Great Eats from All 50 States, by Becky Mercuri attributes the pork tenderloin sandwich to Indiana. Iowa gets credit for the Loosemeat sandwich. If you check just the reviews in this forum you will see Indiana leads in featuring this sandwich.

    I just got back from the Indy 500 where I partook in three 'loins from two restaurants and the track. I was impressed that just about every restaurant and pub in and around Indianapolis featured this gourmet delight. There were enough that Indy Men's magazine had a feature countdown of 64 sandwiches from different restaurants to arrive at a winner. There first place choice was the Nickel Plate in Fishers, IN an Indianapolis suburb. So I tried it, and I can say I can agree with their choice. But there are so many more to try by this 'loin starved Minnesotan surviving on breaded walley sandwiches.
    #6
    wanderingjew
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/05 19:02:47 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Davydd

    From what I can tell Indiana is the true home of the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich mostly attributed to Nick's Kitchen in Huntingdon, IN about 1908. Iowa probably caught onto it because of the preponderance of hog farms. However, if you go to the Iowa Pork Producers Associaton web site you will see they don't even recognize the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich.

    http://www.iowapork.org/recipes/sandwiches.html

    That says a lot. The book, AMERICAN SANDWICH, Great Eats from All 50 States, by Becky Mercuri attributes the pork tenderloin sandwich to Indiana. Iowa gets credit for the Loosemeat sandwich. If you check just the reviews in this forum you will see Indiana leads in featuring this sandwich.

    I just got back from the Indy 500 where I partook in three 'loins from two restaurants and the track. I was impressed that just about every restaurant and pub in and around Indianapolis featured this gourmet delight. There were enough that Indy Men's magazine had a feature countdown of 64 sandwiches from different restaurants to arrive at a winner. There first place choice was the Nickel Plate in Fishers, IN an Indianapolis suburb. So I tried it, and I can say I can agree with their choice. But there are so many more to try by this 'loin starved Minnesotan surviving on breaded walley sandwiches.



    Not being from the Mid West, I wasn't sure, I guess the Sterns were simply wrong.
    #7
    Hastyman
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/05 20:10:22 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Porker93

    Does anyone know the name of the town & the cafe north of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, (I'd guess maybe about 15-20+ miles north just off Hiway I-380.)?
    I had visited the area a year ago or so, & the people I was with took for me a drive north of town a few miles on the freeway, & made a right/east back into this small town.
    At this small town cafe, they were well-known for their Pork Tenderloin sandwiches. They were excellent & huge, ...
    Now I can't find any information about either, & I'm planning on going back that way next week & would like to find this place again to share it with some other family traveling with me.

    Anyone know the details?!?


    Joensy's (that's how it's spelled) in Center Point, right in the middle of town. Not too bad, but in that area, I prefer Oscar's in Hiawatha. The tenderloins at Oscar's are good, but the breakfasts . . . talk about an all-day meal . . .
    #8
    Hastyman
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/05 20:13:08 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Davydd

    From what I can tell Indiana is the true home of the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich mostly attributed to Nick's Kitchen in Huntingdon, IN about 1908. Iowa probably caught onto it because of the preponderance of hog farms. However, if you go to the Iowa Pork Producers Associaton web site you will see they don't even recognize the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich.

    http://www.iowapork.org/recipes/sandwiches.html



    Nobody in Iowa makes tenderloins at home. It's drive-in food.

    Interesting that a recipe for "Really Made Rights" appears on the Iowa Pork Producers' website . . . I guess we know where they stand on the whole loosemeat nomenclature issue.
    #9
    6star
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/05 20:14:31 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Porker93

    Does anyone know the name of the town & the cafe north of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, (I'd guess maybe about 15-20+ miles north just off Hiway I-380.)?

    Anyone know the details?!?


    I am going to guess that the town is Center Point, IA, on the east side of I 380 at Exit 35. The exit would be about 17 miles north of Cedar Rapids. There are 2 restaurants in town that might be the one you were looking for. (They are about a mile and a half north of the exit and about 2 blocks apart on the same street.) They are Joensy's Restaurant at 220 Franklin St. (Ph. 319-848-1789) and Susie's Family Restaurant at 427 Franklin St. (Ph. 319-849-2920). If I am not too late with the info, I hope this helps you.
    #10
    Davydd
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/05 20:23:22 (permalink)
    Wanderingjew,

    In your previous message you quoted I-80 and I-70 to Nebraska by the Sterns. That pretty much takes in Indiana, Illinois, Iowa and Missouri. The Sterns were not wrong. That is where you will primarily find pork tenderloin sandwiches and the drop off is severe the farther you get away from those states. Iowa has them because they are a major hog state. Indiana started them in my opinion and embraces them like no other state. Illinois and Missouri fall in line out of proximity.

    When you get in Minnesota, a border state to Iowa, you start to find variations such as heavily flavored breadings, cheese added, double tenderloins, swirl toast, etc. Iowa and Indiana seem to stick to the basics with the overly large pounded loin on a bun.

    The Culvers chain makes a fairly good fast food facsimili of the breaded pork tenderloin but the only true traditional loin I have found in Minnesota is at the Peppermint Twist drive-in in Delano, MN. There are others I am aware of that I have not checked out yet.
    #11
    Ort. Carlton.
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/05 21:47:49 (permalink)
    Dearfolk,
    The best tenderloin sandwich I ever remember eating was in a cafe on Oquawka, Illinois, right uphill from the Mississippi River... and right downhill from the county courthouse, were an elephant named Norma Jean is buried on the courthouse lawn... she was struck by lightning in 1972.
    As for the tenderloin, it was half-again as big as the bun, if not more. The one I ate at The White Mill (Home Of Wyatt Earp) in Monmouth, IL. came in second to that one.
    Unchunchingly, Ort. Carlton in Loinless Athens.
    #12
    santacruz
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/10 14:54:21 (permalink)
    I am heading up to the great state of Iowa for my July 4th family vacation. I am looking forward to two roadfood items to partake in.

    1. Pork Tenderloin sandwhich in Britt Iowa, fantastic light and mealt in your mouth port meatyness huge on a fluffy good bun.

    2. MadeRite or Tavern loosemeat sandwhich. My wife the Iowan says everyone knows what they are and they are delicious if made right.

    The Tenderloin sandwhich when created correctly is out of this world.

    So I usually don't look forward to going on my vacation to Iowa in the summer but now I am motivated.
    #13
    cindyloo
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/10 15:10:29 (permalink)
    Porker93, based on your description of going north of Cedar Rapids on the interstate and heading back east into the small town, you're definitely talking about Joensy's in Center Point. There is another Joensy's (the original) in Solon as well, which I would consider more of a tavern atmosphere. The Center Point location is more like a cafe.

    I hope you are able to find it on your return trip. Enjoy!

    Cindy
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    Bogeyman
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/10 15:19:04 (permalink)
    I thought I got this link from this forum but maybe not.
    These are some tasty looking sandwiches.
    Santacruz I am also headed to Iowa the fourth to visit my wife's family.
    Do you know if a tenderloin sandwich is available around Mason City?
    I've already given up on finding any BBQ up there.

    http://www.allenbukoff.com/wildBPTiowa03/
    #15
    tsores
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/10 15:43:40 (permalink)
    I think the place you are looking for is:

    Joensy's
    101 West Main Street
    Solon IA 52333

    They do have a gigantic pork tenderloin sandwich. It must be 9 inches in diameter and not quite 1/2 inch thick. When it is that thin, it becomes a breading sandwich with just enough meat to hold it together. I was disappointed with the product but am probably in the minority. The place does a good business and the tenderloin sandwich is their specialty.
    #16
    Bill B.
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/10 16:36:58 (permalink)
    I like the tenderloins at Darrell's Place, in Hamlin, Iowa:

    http://www.iowapork.org/pork_checkoff/restaurant/darrellsi.html

    Here is a decent Des Moines Register story about Iowa pork tenderloins:

    http://www.dmregister.com/entertainment/stories/c2124444/23675061.html
    #17
    wanderingjew
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/10 17:39:08 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by santacruz

    I am heading up to the great state of Iowa for my July 4th family vacation. I am looking forward to two roadfood items to partake in.

    1. Pork Tenderloin sandwhich in Britt Iowa, fantastic light and mealt in your mouth port meatyness huge on a fluffy good bun.

    2. MadeRite or Tavern loosemeat sandwhich. My wife the Iowan says everyone knows what they are and they are delicious if made right.

    The Tenderloin sandwhich when created correctly is out of this world.

    So I usually don't look forward to going on my vacation to Iowa in the summer but now I am motivated.


    Another fine road food tradition in Iowa are Pork Chops. Either Stuffed or Served with Mushroom Gravy and either Real Mashed Potatos or Hash Browns on the Side. The White Way in Durant used to serve a fine version of this, sadly they went out of business because they couldn't keep up with the chains.
    #18
    santacruz
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/13 16:06:05 (permalink)
    Bogeyman,

    In Britt which is outside Garner a little ways not far from Mason. It is either the Red Rooster or Hob Nob Lodge. They are very good.

    http://www.brittchamberofcommerce.com/Dining_Catering.html

    I'm going to try a place in Clear Lake for Bar B Que:

    http://www.mckennasbbb.com/themenu.htm
    Also I am going to check out a Greek place that has good steaks in Mason City.

    Boy I hope it's not to HOT
    #19
    tiki
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/13 16:57:38 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by wanderingjew

    quote:
    Originally posted by santacruz

    I am heading up to the great state of Iowa for my July 4th family vacation. I am looking forward to two roadfood items to partake in.

    1. Pork Tenderloin sandwhich in Britt Iowa, fantastic light and mealt in your mouth port meatyness huge on a fluffy good bun.

    2. MadeRite or Tavern loosemeat sandwhich. My wife the Iowan says everyone knows what they are and they are delicious if made right.

    The Tenderloin sandwhich when created correctly is out of this world.

    So I usually don't look forward to going on my vacation to Iowa in the summer but now I am motivated.


    Another fine road food tradition in Iowa are Pork Chops. Either Stuffed or Served with Mushroom Gravy and either Real Mashed Potatos or Hash Browns on the Side. The White Way in Durant used to serve a fine version of this, sadly they went out of business because they couldn't keep up with the chains.


    Lets see--i will have one stuffed with hashbrowns and one with gravy and mash---extra gravy with thw mashed please!......and a mess of greens!!!
    #20
    santacruz
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/06/14 11:25:09 (permalink)
    Tiki,

    I still prefer northside Boston or the Willows outside Nevada City up on the way to the ridge, but who can resist Bar B Que next to where Buddy Holly did his last gig?
    #21
    Bogeyman
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/07/11 11:32:42 (permalink)
    SantaCruz,
    Heard that The Other Place in Mason City had a really good tenderloin. Played golf with my brother in law on Sunday at the All Vet in Clear Lake. Afterwards we went to The Other Place in Clear Lake. Were told they didn't do the tenderloin there only in Mason. They did have an excellant grilled chop though.
    Didn't eat at McKenna's but did see it next door to the Surf Ballroom Saturday night when we saw Ted Nugent. What a show. Wife's niece lives a block from the ballroon so we ate there.
    #22
    carlton pierre
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/07/11 12:06:24 (permalink)
    I've had wonderful tenderloins in every Midwestern state and it's one of the things I miss terribly in the south so I make them at home. Mine are good but not as good as the ones you buy in the midwest for sure. I had a great one just last week at a neat little place in Plattsburg, MO called Bert & Ernie's.
    My favorite was a little town in western MO, I cannot remember the name of the town or the restaurant but they served tenerloins and frozen custards. Wow!

    BTW, I just heard the Sterns on The Splendid Table yesterday singing the praises of the Mug and Bun in Indianapolis.
    #23
    santacruz
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/07/11 14:16:46 (permalink)
    I did not get a tenderloin this time, but attended wifes class reunion in Ventura had a really good smoked pork chop. Wanted to see Ted Nugent but was in Iowa just a little while (Garner and Ventura). Had excellent bbq chicken up in St. Croix Wis. also one of the best filet mignon's in La Crosse Wis. Excellent meats. Also wanted to try the Northwest steak house in Mason but did not have time. Will do later.
    #24
    mammascookin
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/07/14 14:56:34 (permalink)
    If you are looking for BBQ in Iowa you need to come to Des Moines. Especially around Drake Relays. There are tons of vendors on the streets that are very popular for their BBQ. The other place for BBQ is Big Daddy's BBQ here. He passed away not long ago so I am not sure that the restaurant is still open...will have to check into that...but his was THE BEST!

    Here's a link and be sure to click on About to get more information on Big Daddy! He was a great person and helped the community in so many ways! He will be missed!

    http://www.bigdaddysbbq.net/
    #25
    BBQ Barney
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/08/03 21:31:44 (permalink)
    I don't know who first created pork tenderloin sandwiches, and find it unimportant--but today we had our first experience at Darrell's Place in Hamlin, Iowa---we both thought it was the best we had ever had--including Mother's hand made version of years ago. Light breading, perfectly trimmed and pounded, and served super hot on a bun half the size of the loin. Pickle, onion, mustard and you've got a superb sandwich. A basket with fries, slaw and sandwich was $5.25!! Truly a small town Iowa experience. Darrell's is just eight miles north of interstate 80 in western Iowa--worth the short detour! Open M-Sat.
    Thanks to BillB and, of all things, the awful Des Moines Register for suggesting this great place!
    #26
    NeedaTenderloin
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/08/15 22:31:18 (permalink)
    NE1 know where I can get a Pork Tenderloin sandwich in Northern California? I am from the midwest and haven't had one in years.
    #27
    meriheart
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/09/12 13:16:06 (permalink)
    I have read this thread with interest, especially the claim about Indiana eating more pork tenders than anyone else. I have lived in both Indiana and Illinois. My sister lives in Fort Wayne but was raised in Illinois, and the same with my step sisters.

    We all agree that Pork tender sandwiches (the fried ones that overwhelm the bun) are much more prevalent in Illinois. There are several places that have takeout where they are served in pizza boxes they are so huge. Schooners in Peoria and Morton (both Illinois) are both in this category, along with a few of the bar-type places along the Illinois River. Hunts in Peoria was famous for its pork tender but it just recently closed and I will miss it dearly.

    I now live in Little Rock and down here there is no one that even knows what a true pork tenderloin sandwich is. I saw one on a menu once and got excited but when they brought it, it was slices of pork medallions on a bun and you were supposed to put barbque sauce on it. I could have cried. I found this site by doing a web search trying to get a recipe so I can make my own.

    I firmly maintain that pork tenderloins are huge in Illinois.
    #28
    plb
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/09/12 13:52:58 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by NeedaTenderloin

    NE1 know where I can get a Pork Tenderloin sandwich in Northern California? I am from the midwest and haven't had one in years.


    The closest thing I have found is the pork schnisal (sp) sandwich at Andronico's. It is precooked, reheated on a grill and costs $6.99. And you have to request it on a bun, or you will get it sliced on a roll.

    In a 5/23/05 post above I mentioned that I had had a real one at the California State Fair. But that was a few years ago, the last time we went there we did not see it.
    #29
    CharlieS
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    RE: Iowa Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches 2005/09/12 20:10:28 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by NeedaTenderloin

    NE1 know where I can get a Pork Tenderloin sandwich in Northern California? I am from the midwest and haven't had one in years.


    In Northern California, I think you'll have to make your own, which I do. It's not hard.

    Get a package of thick boneless loin chops. Trim the fat & silverskin (I use scissors to make it fast & easy). Pound out to about 1/4 inch thick. Season with salt & pepper. Dab with water (or other wash: milk, milk & egg, water & egg). Then dredge in cracker meal--Nabisco sells this in a box, or use a food processor or blender to grind up soda crackers. Deep fry until golden brown.

    Serve on a bun with condiments of your choosing. At the A&W where I worked in high school in a small town in Iowa, "everything" was ketchup, mustard, onion, & dill pickle.


    Mmmm!

    Call it a pork tenderloin sandwich or a pork schnitzel sandwich, it's good eating.

    CharlieS
    #30
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