Every time Gerd and I would drive back to Illinois to see our families, we would pass this sign for The Fainting Goat in Waverly, IA. We always wanted to stop, but never timed it right. I also found out they’re not open until after 3pm during the week and at 11 on weekends – just a warning. So I tracked down this place since it’s not on the beaten path. I was glad I did.
And for those of you who don't know what a fainting goat really is, watch this video. I CRACK UP every time I watch it. (0:49 is the best scene)
I sidled up to the bar since I was flying solo. The bartender was super friendly without being annoying or overbearing and asked what the plan was. He also called me “boss” which I absolutely love (side note – this is why I love Coach’s name because it commands power and respect. Maybe I should call myself lieutenant or chief or something – yes, I’m jealous). I asked for a menu and told him I planned on grabbing some food and chilling out for a while.
After perusing the menu, a lady came over and asked what I was thinking about. I asked her what they were known for and she said the tenderloin and the chicken bites. Both are hand breaded and from local meat place and people really liked them. Hand breaded tenderloins are a favorite of mine, so I decided to go with that. It came with a side and she said the broccoli cheddar soup was good. That sounded awesome since it was 9 degrees outside. And The Fainting Goat proudly serves Pepsi products (go Iowa), so I was able to score a Dew to pick up my spirits on the long drive back to Illinois. They also have Woodchuck (Amber and Granny Smith), but I thought that might slow me down too much on the drive, so I stuck with the dew – it was a tough call though…
The broccoli cheese soup was delicious. It had carrot shavings in it, which I wasn’t expecting, and I ate the whole thing pretty quickly. A third bartender came over to find out how I was doing and didn’t seem surprised that I liked the soup. Apparently, it had been a big hit since that day or something. I was more impressed with the number of people helping me out. It was kind of nice, actually. Lots of people to talk to, without pestering me. I also got to hear more about deer hunting than I ever remember hearing. Bartenders, customers, cooks, random people dropping things off for people – apparently, everyone in Waverly loves to hunt deer.
Bartenders in Waverly also love to crack Tiger Woods jokes, talk about drinking they did previous nights, and talk about girls. I totally forgot Waverly is a college town (a tiny college town, but a college town, nonetheless), but some discussion I overheard reminded me. It was all in good fun and no inappropriate discussions or anything.
My tenderloin arrived and I probably had a bigger smile on my face than I should have. It was pretty huge and looked fantastic. I was looking forward to this. It was even more awesome than it looked. It definitely had some grease to it, but not like I needed a shower or anything. Just the right amount. No wonder it was one of the things they’re known for. It’s that good that it could have a reputation just based on the tenderloin. I’m definitely getting the hand breaded chicken bites the next time I go here. And I WILL be going here again.
I also scored an awesome shirt from the place that I will wear proudly.
Top 5 things about The Fainting Goat
1. Hand breaded tenderloin
2. Broccoli cheese soup
3. The have DEW
4. Super awesome staff working
5. They have a lot of things on the menu I would like to try
Bottom 5 things
1. I felt bad eating here without Gerd, since we talked about it so many times and never made it. It probably wouldn’t have impressed her that much, since she wasn’t a fan of tenderloins and she already had a favorite chicken bite place
2. I feel like I could teach a class on deer hunting now
3. It’s tough to get to, since it’s not just off the highway
4. I wanted to stay until 10pm – there’s a note on the website that says “After 10 pm, we are the place your mothers warned you about” (I fixed the punctuation errors for your reading pleasure…)
5. They have screwy hours – who opens at 3pm?