2021 T-Bone Trail · Iowa Food · Southwest Iowa

Classic Café in Malvern, Iowa (Mills County): The T-Bone Trail-Western Iowa

*Mills County came roaring into the inaugural T-Bone Trail with another trip to a great rural Western Iowa community. We’re on the lookout for many cuts of steak and we found one you’ll want to see. Our meal at Classic Café was complimentary and the views expressed in this blog post are of our own. Now, Let’s Gallivant this steak!

Main Street-America in it’s Classic form. The beauty of Mills County can be seen in something smoky, tender, and beefy in Malvern. 317 Main Street.

Malvern, IA: Mills County

There’s a phrase that I hear on my travels that gets me excited every time and I’m not the only one in this club: “Prime Rib night!” It can be heard in who knows how many towns, and it won’t ever get old to me. Just about every place I go has locals that tell me how great this special is in their hometown restaurant and in my travels we’ve had some phenomenal slices of this beefy majesty. Our last Gallivant to Malvern was one of those stories where folks kept telling us about their own weekly specialty that we HAD to try. I had my sights on the Prime Rib long before I showed up to Mills County, but it was still exciting to hear how much they loved it too. It’s time for a slow smoked evening at Malvern’s Classic Café!

Randi was geared up to get our order to the kitchen and she knew exactly what we needed first.

I love taking time to share a laugh with anyone, especially when it’s on the road. Classic’s whole crew was buzzing around the dining room and still keeping an entertaining attitude with every table I could see. Randi was a great ambassador to Malvern as well as a fantastic server. She said that we better get after the spinach artichoke dip and I wasn’t going to turn that down.

We Iowans love our spinach artichoke dip, and Classic Café is honestly one of the tastiest you’re going to get. Served with toasted-buttery rye and house fried tortilla chips. Creamy, cheesy, and rich!
Second course coming right up! The Classic’s Caesar salad is highly recommended too. Dressing made from scratch and topped with their homemade croutons.

First two courses were blissful and we haven’t even gotten a glimpse of the meaty moment we were about to enjoy. Zack Jones, local artist and Art Church owner, joined me and he knew exactly how my face would light up when Randi returned after getting our salad plates.

Like a kid from the 1980s who just opened up the original Nintendo gaming system with the Super Mario Bros/Duck Hunt game AND the robot is how I looked. I wanted to hug Zack like he was Santa Claus showing up in my own living room.

There’s traditional Prime Rib that’s slow roasted for many hours which produces some amazing beef filled memories for me. There’s also the smoking method of cooking Prime Rib which is how Classic Café prepares it. Hey, dudes…..Like seriously. This is the best smoked Prime Rib I’ve ever had. Period. I didn’t travel to a metro area of thousands to find it, I just landed in a Southwest Iowa town of hundreds and proceeded to let the locals take the wheel. That simple. Just watch the video below and see me gush over this beefy beauty….

Hey…..Um…..Randi. Can I get that Prime Rib’s number?

Smoky, yes, and still with that beefy flavorsome sensation you want out of a quality Prime Rib. Great marbling, perfect seasoning on the outside, and tender. Topped with a thick au jus that coats every bite. Sweet mother of steers in our righteous rolling pastures this was a beautiful meal. Big serving for mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, dinner roll, and plenty of visits from Randi filling up beverages with that SW-Iowa grin of hers.

My trust level sky rockets when a restaurant uses mason jars for their beverages!

Classic Café is near the Loess Hills and it’s scenic byway, Wabash Trace for the bicyclists out there, I-29 for the long haulers, and anyone who is just plain looking for a meal that’s not plain. Malvern is just south of the Omaha/Council Bluffs area, not too far from Kansas City and Des Moines, and nestled into a corner of Iowa that’s primed for more folks discovering it. Never underestimate the talent you can find in some of our smallest communities.

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4 thoughts on “Classic Café in Malvern, Iowa (Mills County): The T-Bone Trail-Western Iowa

  1. Have lived here all my life. We are so fortunate to have Classic Cafe in beautiful downtown Malvern located in the heart of Mills County; Enjoy reading about the different places you have visited (making a bucket list) and reviewed.

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