A restaurant that closed late last year has finally started serving food again!

According to a recent Facebook post, White Star Ale House in downtown Cedar Rapids has reopened their kitchen after closing back in November of 2020. The popular downtown eatery is under new management, and they're in the process of making some big changes., including a new menu and lots of renovations.

Let's start with the food. White Star has their new menu posted on their website, and I'm happy to report that my favorite menu item, the White Star Wontons, are included! Brain and I were invited to stop by the restaurant yesterday, and we were told that the recipe is the only one they kept exactly the same. I'm so glad, because they really are the best cheese wontons on the planet!

By the way, White Star has officially begun selling lunch for the first time! If you're looking for a place to stop in the downtown area, it will be available Thursdays and Fridays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and on upcoming Downtown Farmers Market dates. We stopped in for lunch around 11 a.m. yesterday and honestly, the food was really, really good. In addition to the wontons, we also tried other appetizers like the Loaded Potato Skins, wings, chicken strips, and Loaded White Star Shingles. We were almost too full to eat our entrees, which were the 5 Season Burger and the Tropical Thunderstorm Chicken Sandwich.

As far as renovations go, the famous leg lamps that lined the windows of the building on 2nd Avenue are now gone, and so is the giant moose head. If you stop by, you'll notice that construction is currently underway, with more changes to come. I think the biggest change will be the addition of a full-size stage so that they can feature live music on weekends. Plus, the new owner told us yesterday that they're hoping to add some special interactive tables! A post on Facebook from last month reads:

"...we'll include live performance artists from around the US and local talent starting in the July/August period, major sport events with breakfast and lunch served, and an amazing experience in dining entertainment yet to be seen that will be exclusive to our restaurant and throughout the Midwest."

The new White Star plans to have a grand opening celebration in August, but in the meantime, you can stop in for some delicious food and beverages for lunch or dinner. Keep up to date with the latest information on White Star via their Facebook page HERE.

Courtlin's Favorite Iowa Mac & Cheese