East Central Iowa · Iowa Food

Will Travel For Sweet Corn-Out Windham Way

Late September in rural Iowa. Gigi finding her wild (flower) side. Near Sharon Center, IA.
Late September in rural Iowa. Gigi finding her wild (flower) side. Near Sharon Center, IA.
Windham, IA: Johnson County

Parnell, IA: Iowa County

How far will you go for legendary Iowa sweet corn? Luckily, during its peak season you don’t have to go far. Local produce stands, grocery stores, and festivals all over the state have ample supplies of Iowa’s most well known produce staple during the heat of the summer. As the locals know all too well that as the summer comes to a close, so does the availability of the motor that allows you to eat pounds of butter all summer long with little to no guilt. The challenge to locate the local growers that still have a fresh inventory increases after the Labor Day holiday. And wouldn’t you know it, Team Goodvin found that grower who was enjoying a late season boost from his harvest. We’re heading 25 miles to the county line with nothing but winding country roads on our path!

Where the counties of Johnson meet, past the concrete bridge, left on the second dirt road and 2 miles, as a crow fly's, is the near autumn sweet corn provider of Miller's farm.  2864 YY Ave. Parnell, IA
Where the counties of Johnson and Iowa meet, past the concrete bridge, left on the second dirt road and 2 miles, as a crow flies, is the near-autumn sweet corn provider of Miller’s farm.
2864 YY Ave.
Parnell, IA
Not only was it one of the last local producers that was still pumping out sweet corn, its also worth the drive all season long. The Miller’s sweet corn is on point and can go up against anyone who would want to put its quality to the test.

"Just look for the white shed when you drive up to the house. Leave your money on the table when you leave." WHAT?
“Just look for the white shed when you drive up to the house. Leave your money on the table when you leave.” WHAT? Leave your money on the table when you leave? And check out the old building to the left of the shed. That houses the original homestead’s old “summer kitchen”. How awesome is that!
Yup. An old co-worker of mine from Oxford, IA told me about this farm last summer. The Millers go by the honor code system. Not too surprising to have local Iowans be so trusting. This just gave the trip that much more charm.

Inside the temperature controlled shed, Gigi, The Iowa Gallivant's official expert on all things corn related, picks out the day's mission.
Inside the temperature controlled shed is Gigi, The Iowa Gallivant’s official expert on all things corn related, picking out the day’s mission.

Please slip the big bills in the safe and simply put all the Washington's and Lincoln's in the tray. Pen's are available if you need to write a check. Wow.
Please slip the big bills in the safe and simply put all the Washingtons, Lincolns, or coins in the tray. Pens are available if you need to write a check. Have a nice day. Wow.
As we loaded up our dinner’s centerpiece for the evening, (That’s right. The main attraction for our meal is the sweet corn. Welcome to Iowa!) Frank Miller surfaced from his morning chores and introduced himself. The proud owner of the farm that we heard about and discovered came over. Thank you, Miller Family! And now we double back through Windham, headed for home, and….What was that! Gigi, we have another blog destination.

Right off of Black Diamond Road is Windham Bar & Grill. Another fun rural Johnson County destination! https://www.facebook.com/windhambarandgrill?fref=ts
Right off of Black Diamond Road is Windham Bar & Grill. Another fun rural Johnson County destination!
https://www.facebook.com/windhambarandgrill?fref=ts
Many of our adventures have a ripple effect. We sought sweet corn and found a unique restaurant that lured us back onto Black Diamond Road a few days later. Right off the county road is Windham Bar & Grill in the unincorporated town of Windham. And now for our meal. Get ready!

And extra sour cream please.  Friday night's special at the Windham Bar & Grill is perfectly cooked ribeye steak and fried catfish. A side salad loaded with fresh veggies and a HUGE baked potato! Thank you to Christine, who  welcomed us and took our order. Holly, who poured the ice cold Slingshot from Backpocket Brewing. and Andrea, who cooked us a delicious meal. Who all were happy to see us and made sure we had a great time. Job well done ladies! We'll be sending fellow travelers your way!
And extra sour cream please. Friday night’s specials at the Windham Bar & Grill is perfectly cooked ribeye steak and fried catfish. A side salad loaded with fresh veggies and a HUGE baked potato! Thank you to Christine, who welcomed us and took our order, and Holly, who poured the ice cold Slingshot from Backpocket Brewing. And Andrea, who cooked us a delicious meal. They were happy to see us and made sure we had a great time. Job well done ladies! We’ll be sending fellow travelers your way!
What do you think of when you hear that someone is visiting Johnson County, IA? Naturally the majority of us bring up the Iowa City/Coralville metro area and the University of Iowa with all of their shopping, entertainment and culture. What do you think of when you hear Iowa County? The Amana Colonies or perhaps Williamsburg with it’s huge outlet mall. All quality destinations and places we visit quite often and tell oodles of visitors to Eastern Iowa about. Let’s never forget about the roller coaster like hills and weaving country roads that this area provides. And through these areas are people and places that are churning out fond memories for locals and travelers alike. The outskirts are calling!

Thanks for reading! -Team Goodvin

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