Prairieburg restaurant has state’s ‘Best Breaded Pork Tenderloin’

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 17th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa/IPPA) – A Linn County restaurant is the home of Iowa’s “Best Breaded Pork Tenderloin” for 2020. Iowa Pork Producers Association spokesperson, Dal Grooms, says the winning sandwich is sold at the PrairieMoon On Main in the small town of Prairieburg. “It’s about 30 miles northeast of Cedar Rapids and they’ve been in business a few years and had been thinking about what really is a good tenderloin,”Grooms says. “And they decided that they were going to focus on the flavor and the juiciness of the pork rather than the breading — although it is a breaded tenderloin.”

At PrairieMoon On Main, tenderloins are served with lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickles.

Grooms says there were plenty of entries from Iowans in this year’s contest. She says they had more than 390 different restaurants entered by some 4,500 people. “that’s really pretty spectacular when you think about the year we’ve been living through,” according to Grooms. “Some establishments had either closed or reduced the number of service hours they had because of all the pandemic related closures.”

Loren and Amy Lacy have owned the restaurant for about a year-and-a-half. PrairieMoon will receive $500, a plaque, and a large banner to display. IPPA judges selected Birdies, Burgers & Brews, located at Hillcrest Golf & Country Club in Graettinger, as the runner-up in the 2020 contest; that establishment will receive $250 and a plaque from IPPA. Rounding out the top five finalists (in no order) are Bents Smokehouse & Pub, Westgate; The Blind Pig, Cedar Rapids; and Sasquatch Jacks Hideaway Barroom & Grill, Waverly. Those restaurants will receive a Top Five plaque to display.

IPPA received 4,501 nominations for 390 different establishments during the spring nomination period. The restaurant and foodservice committee judged the top 40 restaurants in the summer, scoring each on the quality of the pork, taste, physical characteristics, and eating experience. The winners are announced as part of #Porktober20, or October Pork Month, which celebrates the state’s dedicated pig farmers, local restaurants and their hardworking teams, and a famous Midwest favorite—the pork tenderloin sandwich.

The Pub at the Pinicon in New Hampton won the 2019 contest. For a full list of past winners, visit

This was the 18th annual best tenderloin contest to be held each October during Iowa Pork Month.