WAUKON, Iowa — Iowa's top tenderloin of 2022 can be found in Waukon.
Lid's Bar & Grill won the annual Iowa Pork Producers Association contest, beating out four other finalists: Ludlow's steakhouse (Corydon) was the runner-up, plus Main Street Bar & Grill (Massena), St. Olaf Tavern (St. Olaf) and 5th Quarter Bar & Grill (Van Meter).
The sandwich is a third-pound tenderloin cut and tenderized at Quillin's Food Ranch, a local market.
"We wanted it to be thick enough that you could actually taste the meat," said co-owner Kelly Liddiard.
The restaurant was originally a car dealership the couple owned, but with the COVID pandemic deadline car sales, they transformed the building into a now-booming eatery.
"There was just hardly anything left for restaurants here in town," co-owner Dan Liddiard added.
The full basket: a tenderloin served with lettuce and mayo on a lightly buttered and toasted bun, plus a side of crinkle-cut fries.
"To be nominated for this was absolutely incredible,” Dan said. "To win is 10 times that. It’s pretty great."
Lid's Bar & Grill will have a plaque and large banner to display their achievement, plus a $500 award.
"IPPA received 4,812 nominations for 449 different establishments during a spring nomination period," IPPA said ina release. "The restaurant and foodservice committee reviewed the top 40 restaurants in the summer. Each was scored on the quality of the pork, taste, physical characteristics, and eating experience."
Last year's winner was Victoria Station in Harlan.