The Best Pork Tenderloin West of the Mississippi!

When I return to my home state of Iowa, I have to make at least one trip to Butch’s River Rock Cafe’   in Oakland Mills, Iowa. This tucked away gem sits along the Skunk River in southeast Iowa, in Henry county. It’s not far from my hometown, Mt. Pleasant.

When I was a kid, my grandparents and dad would take me fishing on the river, and we’d stop at the Bait Shop…AKA… Butch’s,  for a pop and a snack.

In 2013, Butch’s had the distinct honor of serving Iowa’s best pork tenderloin. And, in this state that means something!


Their tenderloin are so big, crispy, and delicious that I order just the tenderloin without the bun, when I go there.

When I was in high school, I car hopped at the Dream Drive In after school, weekends, and of course, summers.Sometimes I helped in the kitchen, and one of my jobs was to pound the tenderloin until they were the size of dinner plates. So, I understand… the tenderloin!

Breaded, deep-fried tenderloin was and is one of Iowa’s best-loved sandwiches. You’ll find this delicacy in little out-of-the-way places, all over the state.

The best haunts are those whose exterior architecture leans toward the primitive. They are added on to, well-worn establishments. The decor inside is made up of mismatched chairs, worn tables and counter tops. The aroma of deep-fried everything greets your olfactory senses as soon as you step over the threshold.

Their menu is simple–you can pronounce every entrée’, and it’s good because they’ve done it so long, and well.

I don’t even want to guess how many calories are in just one, without the bun, but I’m sure it’s a substantial amount.

They are sooo good!

I love mine thin and crispy. I also love to dip them in ketchup and mustard eaten alternately with dill pickle slices. It’s the best!

I had to bring half of this one home. I’ll finish it tomorrow.

If you’re ever in the area, stop in…you won’t regret it.


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