Many of the truly notable and popular restaurants in Ames, home of Iowa State University, are located on or very near four main roads in town: Main Street, Lincoln Way, Welch Avenue, or Duff Avenue. However, there is one particular restaurant that is worthy of accolades but is just a little bit harder to find. That particular spot is West Street Deli, located (of course) on the west side of the Iowa State campus.
Since I drive to Ames every month to get a haircut at Tommy's Salon, I usually try to also hit up a restaurant that I would occasionally enjoy while in undergrad at Iowa State. It's my chance to bask in some nostalgia and attempt to feel young again. West Street Deli is in my usual rotation of spots to enjoy. They are in a relatively modest sized commercial building with limited parking, but they do a pretty brisk business feeding the large population of nearby students, staff, and faculty.
Inside, you find a waiting area with a large menu, a counter where you order, and a prep space where you can see your sandwich being made.
They have a wide selection of sandwiches that can be customized. You can also create your own with just about an unlimited combination of breads, sauces, meats, cheeses, vegetables, and more. They also, like any good deli, have selections of soups, sides, desserts, and beverages.
I usually keep my order pretty simple. On this particular evening, I ordered a hot ham and cheese on ciabatta. It was, per usual, outstanding! I am also a fan of their French Dip.
You can take your order to go or they do have a nice little seating area that is very cozy and tastefully decorated.
There is a number of different wooden booths and tables accented with nice Tiffany lamps and Andy Warhol artwork.
As a former CyRide bus driver, I always appreciate this particular bus clock.
Next time you are in Ames and are looking for somewhere different, I'd certainly recommend West Street Deli. In fact, one time when I was in there several years ago, I turned the corner into the seating area only to find former men's basketball coach Fred Hoiberg and his assistants enjoying a meal. Thus, you could say, it's definitely a legit Cyclone Country approved locale.
As always, I welcome your suggestions of places to visit and profile whether in Story County or any of the other 98 counties in Iowa. If you have a good idea or would like to host the Iowa Adventurer, please drop me a note through this website.