Tour De North Iowa: Gus & Doc’s

Our 3rd stop on the Tour De North Iowa takes us to the small town of Ackley, Iowa. The Restaurant on the docket: Gus and Doc’s.

We had never heard nor seen the place before, therefore didn’t know what to expect. I called a couple weeks before our adventure to determine if this was a restaurant we need to make reservations at or not. I don’t recall if I talked to Gus or Doc on the phone but he chuckled when I asked about reservations. We concluded they were not needed.


We loaded up the Mom-Mobile one Saturday afternoon (Little E joined us for the adventure, too! He travels so great–LOVES WIND TURBINES,) and headed south toward Ackley. As we followed the phone GPS we had thought it was leading us in the wrong direction because we totally went through town, and then a ton of country–but before you know it, we happened upon a cute little diner whose sign design reminded me of a teepee.

When we went in we were immediately reminded of the historic Barrel Drive-In in Clear Lake. They have a menu fill of broasted chicken, burgers kids dishes and more. Oh…and Ice Cream.

IMG_5468There was only one other family there so we were interested to see the outcome. The atmosphere was very small town, homey feeling place. I did love their huge chalk board menu at the cash register.

The boy at the cash register shared with me some of their best selling dishes include an open face beef sandwich or their burgers, however their facebook page had a picture of some stellar looking broasted chicken that Riley just HAD TO HAVE.


Bacon Cheese Burger and CHEESE CURDS

Along with the chicken I ordered a bacon cheeseburger….can’t forget the cheese balls, Everett got a hamburger with fries, with milk for him and pops for us.

Wondering what we thought of the food? I really, REALLY enjoyed my burger. it was so juicy and flavorful, the bun was perfect as well as the bacon and cheese balls being crispy and cheese being cheesy. I’d definitely travel there again for a fun diner experience.



Riley said he liked the broasted chicken. It was hot and crispy, but he can’t get past all that is the Barrel Drive-In’s Famous Broasted Chicken.

We couldn’t leave without getting dessert. We got a hot fudge sundae and strawberry malt (Everett enjoyed the malt more!)

We are definitely glad Gus & Doc’s was recommended on our Tour De North Iowa, we will be excited to travel there again soon. If you’re thinking of eating at Gus & Docs, I’ll let you know it’s a very, very casual place, you don’t need to worry about dressing up. I imagine farmers come in off the field to enjoy I nice lunch or dinner. I would definitely recommend it to you! let me know if you’ve eaten there!

Rumor has it, we will be traveling to St. Ansgar next, can you guess which restaurant we will be checking out?


My cute boys.

2 thoughts on “Tour De North Iowa: Gus & Doc’s

  1. Your teepee recollection is very accurate as when I was little, I believe the restaurant that was there was called the Big Chief! 😉 I’ve never been to Gus & Docs, but now I just might have to! Fun daytrip!

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