The lighter side of real estate

These 15 Quad Cities Restaurants Will Blow The Taste Buds Out Of Your Mouth

Get ready for Quad City pizza and a whole load of other deliciousness.

Jess Novak

1 articles, 0 comments

1. Climb The Magic Mountain At Ross’ Restaurant

Ross’ Restaurant - Bettendorf - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Ross’ Restaurant via Facebook

Ross’ Restaurant
430 14th St
Bettendorf, IA 52722
(563) 355-7573
Yelp: 4 stars

Yeah, these kind of mountains really are made of magic. Don’t think too much about the impact on your arteries, just order this amazing mash-up of Texas toast, ground beef, French fries, and cheese sauce.

If that sounds like too much to handle, try out their gigantic, pillowy cinnamon buns.

2. Experience Quad Cities-Style Pizza At Harris

Harris Pizza - Rock Island - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source:  Harris Pizza via Facebook

Harris Pizza
3903 14th Ave
Rock Island, IL 61201
(309) 788-3446
Yelp: 4.5 stars

Quad Cities-style pizza is kind of a big deal, and nobody makes that special, regional take on classic pizza quite like Harris.

The Taco Pizza, topped with seasoned pork, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, and taco chips, is easily the most famous item on the menu—and with good reason.

3. Enjoy Authentic Mexican Tacos At La Rancherita

La Rancherita Rock Island - Quad Cities Restaurants

La Rancherita
4118 14th Ave
Rock Island, IL 61201
(309) 794-1648
Yelp: 4 stars

With their incredible pico de gallo and truly traditional offerings like tongue and dried beef tacos, this cash-only joint is a favorite with locals. Although the meat-based dishes are delicious, La Rancherita also offers some of the best vegetarian options in the region.

4. Go Farm-To-Table At The Barley & Rye Bistro

Barley & Rye Bistro - Moline - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Barley & Rye via Facebook

Barley & Rye Bistro
1320 5th Ave
Moline, IL 61265
(309) 757-1557
Yelp: 4 stars

Focusing on fresh, sustainable ingredients sourced from local farmers, Barley & Rye supports the community and offers truly delicious seasonal dishes.

Try their quali and waffle, a spicy play on the southern classic, and don’t forget to order one of their well-developed craft cocktails.

5. Indulge Your Sweet Tooth At Café d’Marie

Café d’Marie - Davenport - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Café d’Marie via Facebook

Café d’Marie
614 W 5th St
Davenport, IA 52803
(563) 323-3293
Yelp: 5 stars

A perfect blend of sweet and savory offerings, Café d’Marie provides their patrons with delicious quiche, fresh soups, and inventive paninis, but the desserts are the focal point here: don’t miss the amazing peanut butter cup cookies and stand-out chocolate cake.

6. Get True Down-Home Cuisine At Smokey’s Country Diner

Smokey’s Country Diner - East moline - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Flickr user jeffreyw

Smokey’s Country Diner
561 17th Ave
East Moline, IL 61244
(309) 912-9001
Yelp: 4 stars

Serving up huge portions of delicious down-home cooking, Smokey’s is famous for its perfectly tender pulled pork drowned in thick, sweet barbeque sauce, homemade mac-and-cheese, hand-cut fries, and massive, tender sirloins.

Don’t miss their tasty breakfasts options, as well (the waffles are that perfect level of fluffiness).

7. Try Flavorful, Healthful Options At Downtown Central Perk

Downtown Central Perk - Davenport - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Downtown Central Perk via Facebook

Downtown Central Perk
226 W 3rd St
Davenport, IA 52801
(563) 324-9560
Yelp: 3.5 stars

A perfect spot for vegetarians, vegans, and healthily-minded meat-eaters alike, Downtown Central Perk offers renowned, direct-trade Intellgentsia coffee, as well as tasty menu options like soysauge pizzas, nachos, flatbreads, and quinoa cereal.

Try their fresh-squeezed juice bar for a healthy morning pick-me-up.

8. Locally-Made Beer And Great Food Shine At The Front Street Brewery

Front Street Brewery - Davenport - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Flickr user Larry Hoffman

Front Street Brewery
208 E River Dr
Davenport, IA 52801
(563) 322-1569
Yelp: 4 stars

Offering up the best mahi mahi fish tacos in town, Front Street Brewery is also one of the Quad Cities’ best microbrews. Sample 4-ounce servings of four, six, or eight of their handcrafted beers (be sure to check out the Cherry Ale and Vanilla Porter).

9. Take Your Palate On A Tour At Lemongrass Café

Lemongrass Café - Moline - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Lemongrass Café via Facebook

Lemongrass Café
1419 5th Ave
Moline, IL 61265
(309) 797-4100
Yelp: 4.5 stars

“Asian fusion” restaurants are typically pretty blah, but Lemongrass Café is the happy exception to this rule.

Their super spicy gra pow, dancing shrimp salad, and Thai bouillabaisse are all packed with bright flavors, and their happy hour specials are not to be missed.

10. Get Seriously Gourmet Pizza At Crust Stone Oven

Crust Stone Oven Pizza - Bettendorf - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Crust Stone Oven Pizza via Facebook

Crust Stone Oven Pizza
2561 E 53rd Ave
Bettendorf, IA 52722
(563) 424-5502
Yelp: 4 stars

Crust doesn’t serve a Quad Cities-style pizza, but it does make a stellar gourmet pie. Start off with their wildly delicious beer-battered white cheese curds, which come with a raspberry-jalapeño dipping sauce (you read that right), then move on to one of their inventive, delicious pizzas: the Kimchi, Three Pigs, and Chorizo-Potato stand out from the pack.

11. Enjoy Freshly Made Diner Favorites At Jimmy’s Pancake House

Jimmy’s Pancake House - Bettendorf - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Jimmy’s Pancake House via Facebook

Jimmy’s Pancake House
2521 18th St
Bettendorf, IA 52722
(563) 355-2799
Yelp: 4.5 stars

You have to try the breakfast at Jimmy’s Pancake House. Everything is homemade, and they excel at all the traditional American breakfast staples (waffles, French toast, and pancakes). Despite being a classic greasy spoon-style diner, all of their toppings are fresh. They never use the gross syrupy stuff.

12. Stop By Funky Desi’s For Fun Atmosphere And Flavorful Dishes

Funky Desi - Moline - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Funky Desi via Facebook

Funky Desi
1409 5th Ave
Moline, IL 61265
(309) 517-1962
Yelp: 4.5 stars

Funky Desi offers an atypical mix of excellent Indian cuisine—featuring layered, delicately spiced dishes—and a fun bar vibe, with a pool table and local microbrews. Be sure to check out their tandoori chicken and paneer makhni.

13. Experience A Romantic Night On The Town At Trattoria Tiramisu

Trattoria Tiramisu - Bettendorf - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Trattoria Tiramisu via Facebook

Trattoria Tiramisu
1804 State St
Bettendorf, IA 52722
(563) 323-2787
Yelp: 4 stars

If you’re looking for a romantic restaurant for a special date in the Quad Cities, Trattoria Tiramisu is a stellar option. Start off with the calamari, then try their ravioli Rossini or linguine alla bolognese. Be sure to save room for dessert—this place doesn’t take its namesake lightly.

14. Try Exceptional Mexican Fare At La Rosa De Michoacan Taqueria

La Rosa De Michoacan Taqueria - East Moline - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Flickr user jeffreyw

La Rosa De Michoacan Taqueria
1821 19th St
East Moline, IL 61244
(309) 755-4462
Yelp: 4 stars

La Rosa De Michoacan Taqueria offers perfect, crispy chimichangas, a welcoming atmosphere, and more authentic Mexican food than you are likely to find nearly anywhere else in the area: both huaraches and pozole, a traditional Mexican soup, are on the menu, and they’re both exceptional.

15. Enjoy Beer Pairings At The Blue Cat Brewpub

Blue Cat Brewpub - Rock Island - Quad Cities Restaurants

Source: Flickr user Sodanie Chea

Blue Cat Brewpub
113 18th St
Rock Island, IL 61201
(309) 788-8247
Yelp: 4 stars

Great beer and delicious food… what more do you want? Check out the duck drummies or Scotch eggs to start, then move on to classic steak au jus and battered fries. Their beers are great, but the Arkham Stout and Wigged Pig Wheat are especially excellent brews.

What’s your go-to for great grub in the Quad Cities? Tell us in the comments below!

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posted on: October 9, 2014
135,436 views, 18 comments


  1. Heather

    Downtown central perk is a hipster hangout that happens to have the best soups and salad I have been able to find in the QCA. Excellent yummy drinks and the prices are great! Give it a chance!

  2. Beth

    I find these to be an interesting chooses. Local restaurants I assume are not in order to favorites. I have not heard of many of these places and/or menu items listed. Where as Whitey’s and Jim’s are already well known. I can appreciate someones thoughts even though they may not be my favorite local restaurants. I will be interested in visiting these locations and trying new dishes.

  3. Cassandra

    What about great beer at Bent River??

  4. nick smith

    No mantra? No jims rib haven? No boozies? No whiteys? I am glad to see la rancharita on there though….

  5. Sam

    maid rite
    happy joe’s
    machine shed
    jim’s (even though I don’t really care for their ribs)
    hungry hobo

  6. Michael

    If this list doesn’t have Los Primos on Bridge and Locust in Davenport, this list is no bueno. “No bueno” means “no good” in Spanish, right? I was trying to be witty but now I am just second-guessing my understanding of Spanish.

  7. Frank

    When I saw that she included Ross’ Restaurant, I thought it might be a satire on the cuisine of the Quad Cities. The author obviously have never been in the QC to sample the food at any of these establishments. In my opinion, the most notable missing was Ganson’s Neighborhood Bakery and Cafe. Very excellent food. Exotic Thai is another, although she was correct to include Lemongrass on the list (who is associated with Exotic Thai). Blue Cat and Front Street are worthy of note, but Harris Pizza and it’s clones aren’t. I was happy that Crust was included, as it is a serious change from the greasy stuff that Harris and it’s clones offer. Nice try, but maybe Ms. Novak should have taken the time to actually try the food she hypes.

  8. Pat

    My husband visits QC once a month for work. He enjoys the pork chops at Harlans.

  9. Theresa Foltz

    Where did Adolph’s rate??? They are my #1 stop whenever I come back to the QC’s.

  10. Brian Lovett

    I would like to add Miss Mamie’s in Moline…it is our preferred restaurant…

  11. toni

    Not all mom and pop are here .I can’t believe every time someone’s opinion are always hurtful:( These places work hard and create jobs to local areas. I wanted to mention some but I rather have it still best secret:) at his places have been around before the chains started! Everyone has to cut down these places cuz they have no popularity? Its always through this internet deal folks cut down these places. How do u think America moves on? Just saying..

  12. Nancy

    Cafe Indigo is one of the best in my book!

  13. Dr Bob

    This site could expand a little more.There are so many great restaurants and buisnesses that are locally owned in the Q.C. that need to be mentioned.In fact we should be known as [Quad Cities Locally Owned].I have often said”That the Quad Cities may be divided by borders and tax and law.But we all support each others buisness through our recomendations and our wallets,therefore we all share the same dollar. See ya soon

  14. Joe Woods

    Of course Ross’s (Magic Mountain & Volcano), & Harris, (QC Style Pizza) -(missing my Van de Reuben from BV :-(….)what abt Jim’s? QC style ribs & the best. & Whitey’s?,the (Machine) Shed w numerous pork awards, & Stashu’s (Boli Roll & Kielbasa)- lots of other good places but these are institutions…. NY? & they write abt. the QC – Don’t know what QC is? or where – podunck, Iowa who cares? Grrrr…. Couple weeks ago msn had a list of the best restaurants in IA – no QC anything (the Shed is in Des Moines too – no mention)

  15. mark

    It’s pretty close. Or, if I’m not on the road, I can cook most anything, if invited to your house lol. Better than a restaurant!

  16. Pammie

    Must say I would never put some of these on a list, and that includes the ones people have added themselves in their comments. Jim’s Ribs??? Really?? No way. I mwill buy the ir sauce and put on ribs at home, or take it with me to the Circle Tap. Now there they have some GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD ribs!!, Fall off hte bone tender! and Biagi’s, yuck! Give me Tratoria Tirimisu anyday!!! Ross’s, another NO!!! High priced and not worth it! You want a sub style sammie, go to Arthurs Garden Deli. Fresh and in my opinion, they could charge more, but I’m glad they don’t!! Too many good pizza places around to say Harris is #1. Pastuer and Le Mekong are #1 in my book for Asian. I could eat either every day!!! Le Figaro (just went up for sale but will remain in tact until it sells), Red Crow, Steventons and Duck City for a date night are great spots. Burger you want, go to 14th Ave Cafe in Rock Island. Best burger deal you will find anywhere, size, flavor and price…incredaile deal!! Wings (Daytona) = Parkside in Moline!!!

  17. Kim

    Everyone needs to try The Phoenix downtown Davenport, right next to nasty Woodfire Grill. They have delicious, good quality food and fun, tasty martinis. And all at good prices! It’s my favorite place to eat in the QC and I feel more folks should know about it! I will agree on Jimmy’s Pancake House (awesome breakfast and lunch), and I’ve only had the cheese curds from Crust, but I’ve heard only good things about that place.

  18. chris

    Ganson’s Bakery and Cafe
    Blue Indigo


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