While on vacation in the Lake Okoboji area, we had dinner one evening at the house of our friends, Craig and Kathy Evert. Beer and wine flowed all evening long and it was 11:30 p.m. before we made our way back to the Pioneer Beach Resort. The next morning I was a little hungover. Thinking that bloody mary with a beer would set me right, I remembered a place that Craig was telling me about the night before - the Dry Dock Galley and Lounge. (Actually, he also told me about O'Farrell Sisters as another place around Lake Okoboji where you could get a bloody mary with breakfast.) We decided to try the Dry Dock for breakfast that particular morning.
The Dry Dock Galley and Lounge is part of the Four Seasons Resort hotel on West Lake Okoboji (see map). While it shares its name with the highly exclusive and elite Four Seasons hotels, it's far from being a similar property. Dean Mitchell of the Mitchell Investment Group is the long-time owner of the Four Seasons Resort in Arnolds Park. The place was actually sort of nice. We had looked at staying there, but for some reason we didn't pull the trigger. We did take a look around the property after breakfast and determined that even though we liked the rustic charm of Pioneer Beach Lodge, we'd probably stay at Four Seasons the next time we came up.
We pulled into the parking lot of the restaurant around 9:30 on a nice weekday morning. We went inside to check the place out. There are two parts of the Dry Dock Galley and Lounge - actually three, if you count the outdoor patio that was closed for cleaning that particular morning. You initially walk into the lounge area with a sloping ceiling toward the bar. Like a number of other restaurants/lounges on the lake, the place had a nautical theme to it.
We were seated in a hardwood paneled dining room with a polished teak wood ceiling and large windows looking out over the patio and lake. Heavy tables and chairs were spaced throughout the smallish, yet cozy dining area. A large party of older women took up two of the tables near us and they were all enjoying a bloody mary before they ordered breakfast.
Yes! A bloody mary! That's what I ordered when our waitress came over to drop off a couple menus for us. I asked for a beer chaser with it and she said, "Oh, the bloody mary automatically comes with a beer chaser." When she brought it out, however, I was disappointed in the size - both with the bloody mary and with the beer chaser. The bloody mary was in a 10 oz. tumbler and the beer chaser was in a 6 oz. plastic cup. It wasn't even filled to the top. And this all cost $5 bucks. I said, "You got to be kidding me! This will be gone in two minutes!" And just like that, it was. I got a second one when we ordered breakfast and the second beer chaser was, maybe, half full. While the bloody mary was pretty good, it was not a very good value, to say the least.
We looked over the menu to see what we wanted for breakfast. The had the usual stuff for breakfast including something called the Eggs Benedict Arnold - a play on the Arnolds Park name. It was, basically, eggs Benedict on ham and an English muffin with a side of hash browns. I ended up ordering that along with a side of bacon. Cindy wasn't as adventuresome - she just got a egg over easy with a side of hash browns, bacon and toast.
Our waitress brought our breakfast out to us after awhile and I was pleasantly surprised with the portions. While they skimped on the bloody mary and the beer chaser, they certainly made up for it with the breakfast. The poached eggs were large and swimming in a hollandaise sauce atop a large slab of ham that eclipsed the English muffin underneath. I got four pieces of bacon with the eggs Benedict and an ample amount of hash brown potatoes.
Cindy's breakfast looked a lot larger than it read on the menu. The egg was large and covered nearly half her plate. It rested on a portion of her hash browns and she had three pieces of crisp bacon, just as she likes her bacon.
Quite actually, the breakfast was pretty good. The eggs Benedict were very good with the rich hollandaise sauce on the top. Having the slice of ham was a nice surprise versus having just a couple slices of Canadian bacon like you normally get with eggs Benedict. After the eggs Benedict and the bacon, I hardly made a dent in my hash browns.
Cindy said her breakfast was good, but nothing special. "I don't know how you can make eggs, bacon and hash browns be anything special," she said.
The Dry Dock Galley and Lounge also serves lunch and dinner with steaks, chops, seafood and sandwiches on the menu. If we do get back to Lake Okoboji next summer as we've been talking, we'll probably end up at the Four Seasons Resort and back at the Dry Dock Galley and Lounge for breakfast and probably dinner. While I felt somewhat cheated on the size of the bloody mary and the beer chaser, the portion and flavor of the breakfast more than made up for it. At first I was skeptical, but I ended up being happy with our visit to the Dry Dock Galley and Lounge.