Our last morning in the Lake Okoboji area found us having breakfast at another place we passed many times during our time at the lake, the Koffee Kup Kafe. Located on the main drag through Arnolds Park, we decided to give it a try before we hit the road.
The Koffee Kup is one of the many seasonally open restaurants in the Lake Okoboji area. It opens in early May and closes in late September. Hours are a little strange - they open at 7 a.m. daily, but close at 1 p.m. Owned by Rhonda Revland-Nelson, it's one of those places that fits in well with the political conservatives in Northwest Iowa as they continue to have Freedom Toast on their breakfast menu instead of French Toast. (Interestingly, they have French Fries on their lunch menu.)
The Koffee Kup shares its parking lot with Okoboji Middle School just north of the corner of Highway 71 and Broadway (see map). It was just after 9 a.m. when we walked into the restaurant and found the wooden booths and most of the tables were full on the north side of the restaurant (below left). We finally found a small table up against the wall.
The south side of the restaurant features counter service and a handful of booths (above right). That's where the kitchen is, as well. I'm guessing the north side of the restaurant had been added on to the building at some point.
A waitress came by and dropped off a couple of breakfast menus for us to look through. Breakfast is served during the six hours the Koffee Kup is open, so you can get a late breakfast at 11:30 a.m. if you like. Most of the items on the menu are the standard breakfast fare - eggs, omelets, pancakes, French toast - excuse me, FREEDOM toast, Belgian waffles and their homemade cinnamon rolls that are baked fresh daily in a large pan. The large cinnamon rolls are the same ones the Koffee Kup have had for over 20 years and are a favorite of both locals and vacationers to the lakes area.
Another thing they have on their menu is a fruit-based French Toast - sorry, I just can't get that right - FREEDOM Toast. (Note to Koffee Kup - let it go!) The apple or blueberry flavored bread is made fresh daily at a local bakery. The Koffee Kup also features some breakfast skillets they call "Browns". Basically, it's a large order of hash browns with a number of different additives such as meats, veggies and cheese, but no eggs added. You may be able to get some eggs added, but I didn't ask.
I was sort of intrigued by some of the omelets they had on the menu. The "Boji" omelet was loaded with ham, green peppers, onions, mushroom, hash browns and cheese, then topped with bacon and more cheese. Whoa! They also had the "Bottom of the Lake" omelet - ground beef, sausage, ham, bacon, tomatoes, green peppers, onion, mushrooms, and black olives, all topped with cheese. Double Whoa! Or you could get the "Meatlovers" omelet with ham, sausage, bacon and, for a buck more, the seasoned ground beef and cheese.
But I was also thinking of something along the line of the blueberry Belgian waffle or the blueberry French toast. (I'm sorry, I'm not going to call it Freedom toast.) When it came time to order, I almost pulled the trigger on a sausage, mushroom and cheese omelet, but I decided to get the blueberry Belgian waffle instead. Cindy went basic - again. She just got the one egg - over easy - with hash browns and bacon breakfast. She also got some white toast with it. She had been thinking about getting a waffle, as well, but decided against it. "We ate so much, so late last night," she explained. Yeah, but we were on vacation!
While we were waiting for our food, two couples came in and were seated in a booth near us. After a bit, I heard one of the guys ask a waitress, "So, what's Freedom toast?"
She said, "It's basically French toast."
He said, "You're kidding me. You guys still call it Freedom toast?" She sort of shrugged her shoulders. I was thinking along the same lines as the guy.
Our breakfast came out and the Belgian waffle was basically a waffle with fresh blueberries and a pop of whipped cream on top. The waffle was light and fluffy, and the blueberries had that great tart taste to them. It was a good waffle.
Cindy's breakfast was pretty basic. The bacon was crisp as she likes it, there were a nice pile of hash browns on the plate, and the toast appeared to come from homemade bread. She said the breakfast was good, but nothing truly outstanding.
Still the breakfast at the Koffee Kup was a pretty good value. Of all the places we had breakfast at during our visit to Lake Okoboji, I'd rank them this way - 1) Family Diner; 2) O'Farrell Sisters; 3) Koffee Kup; 4) Dry Dock Galley and Lounge. But that may not be very fair because they were all pretty darn good for what they had to offer. We weren't disappointed with our breakfast at the Koffee Kup in the least. We'd give it a good recommendation for breakfast.