**Sorry, this restaurant is now permanently closed.
As you probably know, the Iowa Beef Industry Council recently announced the Top 10 finalists in the 2012 Iowa's Best Burger Contest. Now, just like the pork producers Best Breaded Tenderloin contest, this is a contest we can really get into - we both loooove burgers.
One of the finalists is The Farmer's Kitchen in Atlantic. We've had several people mention that we should eat there and put it on the blog, so we thought this would be the perfect time to pop over to Atlantic and try this restaurant. The Farmer's Kitchen is located right in the main business district of Atlantic at 319 Walnut Street. Like they say on their website, "it's a little bit of country right inside town."
I think the front of the menu lets everyone know what to expect when you eat here - it's the Top Ten Reasons to eat at The Farmer's Kitchen. Since we were there to try the burgers, it was nice to see #2 - their burger is ground fresh everyday from local beef by Henningsen's Meats!
The burger menu features several specialty sandwiches including CJ's Cy-Hawk Burger - this 1/2 pound burger with 2 slices of smoked cheddar, crisp bacon, sauteed onion, leaf lettuce, tomato, fresh herb butter and roasted garlic BBQ chipotle mayo won them a 2009 burger contest sponsored by WHO radio.
Grant decided to go with the classic Cheeseburger - a full 1/2 pound patty covered in American cheese. The burgers are cooked on a flat-top grill so they get those nice crisp pieces of flavor. He really liked the pickles that were served with the burger, too. Served on a ciabatta bun, this beefy burger was delicious.
For his side, Grant had the homemade clam chowder.
I had to go with my favorite burger combo, the bacon cheeseburger and fries. So in addition to the juicy 1/2 pound of burger and American cheese, there were two scrumptous slices of bacony goodness. The fresh ground burger is really tasty, nice beef flavor and the grind is spot on. The toasty ciabatta bun was a little unexpected, but really soaked up the juices and added another layer of flavor.
Of course, The Farmer's Kitchen is famous for their homemade pies. The pie case was full of different kinds of pie just waiting to be devoured by hungry patrons.
And even though I would venture to guess Grant wasn't really 'hungry' after downing that big burger, he rarely can turn down homemade pie. He ordered up a slice of their Sour Cream Raisin and savored the sweetness.
So, The Farmer's Kitchen was a great place to start our burger contest adventures. We wouldn't hesitate to go back and try some of the other menu options, of which there are many. Do let us know if you've started on your own burger contest sampling - we can compare notes!
The Farmer's Kitchen
319 Walnut Street
Atlantic, IA 50022
Menus and more information at www.farmerskitchen.net