After my buddy and I spent nearly 3 hours in the morning exploring the historic and rather incredible Iowa State Penitentiary in Fort Madison, we adventured on down to Keokuk to find some lunch and check out what else was going on in the community.
Since I grew up in the total opposite part of the state from Keokuk, it was definitely never a convenient destination. As such, this was actually my first ever stop in the city.
After doing a little research online, my friend saw some recommendations for Dr. Getwell's Bar and Gril as a good place to grab some grub. As they say, you shouldn't always believe everything you read on the web - but in this particular instance - this was a very good recommendation.
Located on Main Street in the downtown area of town, Dr. Getwell's is located in a corner building - presumably a spot that once housed a pharmacy or clinic.
It's obviously a clever name - but they kept the whole theme going in literally just about every aspect of the restaurant - from the decorations and menu to the "hours" of the business. It was very well done. I was impressed.
Once inside, you are greeted as "patients" and directed to where you'll receive your "treatments".
The entire place adhered to the theme with some other good puns mixed in as well. For example, you can get some "shot therapy" near the bar.
Elsewhere, the kitchen was the "emergency room" and there even the usual "staff only" signs were fun.
Elsewhere, I found lots of interesting medically themed decorations to enjoy. For example, there were a couple of antique wheel chairs either on top of a wall or suspended from the ceiling. There was also an antique medical cabinet that was very nice.
There are lots of great vintage signs too.
The restaurant is obviously in a historic building and there are some nice elements that have been beautifully showcased, like the ornate ceiling, woodwork, and flooring.
There are multiple dining room areas as well as spots to eat or drink in the "pharmacy bar" area, which is where we dined.
There's even enough room for a large billiards table, for those who are into that.
As noted earlier, even the menu fit the themes. My pal and I had some good laughs with some of it.
Appetizers known as "first responders"? Clever.
Salad menu as "code green"? Love it.
The children's menu is "pediatrics"? well done.
A "challenge" known as the "heart attack"? I wouldn't expect anything else.
I certainly was not hungry enough for a "heart attack" but my buddy got the bacon ranch burger and I went with the bacon cheddar burger. My burger was delicious. They were generous with fresh vegetable side toppings - lettuce, tomato, pickle, and onion - upon request. Each burger came with a side and our server strongly suggested the "fresh cut fries". I can't speak for the rest of the side choices, but I know I ate every last one of them. Outstanding.
This is a great restaurant for Keokuk and I highly recommend it next time you are in the area.
I don't know if the restaurant is into selling "merchandise", but they could probably come up with some fun t-shirts or other items that would sell. "I was cured at Dr. Getwell's" would be fun. Not that they need to go totally overboard, but having the staff get in on the theme with either their clothing or a stethascope of sorts would be great. Maybe the checks could come on an Rx pad? The marketing fun is near endless.
At any rate, check out their Facebook page and give them a follow. As always, I welcome your suggestions on places to visit - either in Lee County or one of our other 98 counties - so please drop me a note through my website.