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December 3rd, 2004


On our move back to Chicago from Denver, we naturally passed through Iowa (what a fun experience!) and stopped at the Amana Colonies, which is often our stopping-off point for this trip. This time we noticed a new restaurant had opened – Maid-Rite. We’d both seen signs for Maid-Rite before so we figured we’d give it a shot.

The restaurant itself was pretty nice. It was a 50s diner style, pretty clean too with foam soap in the bathroom. We both ordered a Maid-Rite, without really being sure what it was. All we knew was that it was meat and, “Too good to be called a patty.”

What this meant, however, was that we both got our first ever loose meat sandwich. I mean, loose! Meat! Sandwich! Three words that shouldn’t be together, anywhere. The overall opinion of the sandwich was that it was pretty good, but it did a terrible number on our stomachs.

I don’t know if I ever need to have a loose meat sandwich ever again, although I think there’s a golden opportunity for a loose Boca Crumbles sandwich restaurant here. (It’d probably be better anyway.)

Posted in Food and Beverage

FROM: Dave
DATE: Friday December 3, 2004 -- 12:56:24 am
Check this out..

FROM: Ryan [E-Mail]
DATE: Friday December 3, 2004 -- 9:33:19 am
Maid-Rite should be called Speld-Rong.

FROM: Heather
DATE: Friday December 3, 2004 -- 11:09:55 am
I wish we had Steak-n-Shake out here in the west...that's a good sandwich!

FROM: Chris
DATE: Friday December 3, 2004 -- 4:54:16 pm
I wish we had Steak and Shake in the DC area. That restaurant is my one exception to the "milk shakes are a dessert" rule. At Steak & Shake, it's practically a requirement that you get the shake with the meal.

FROM: jk
DATE: Friday December 3, 2004 -- 9:06:12 pm
I assumed Maid-Rite was a cleaning company that you had hired to get your place ready for holiday visitors!

Loose me out you mean roasted and carved meat rather than processed and sliced off a roll of meat? I love a good hot roast beef sandwich on wheat bread with mashed potatoes....I could eat diner food everyday.

FROM: Paul
DATE: Saturday December 4, 2004 -- 8:39:53 am
jk, loose meat sandwiches are basically sloppy joes without the sloppy. Just... ground beef. On a bun. Nothing to hold it together.

Steak & Shake is quite good... we missed those out in Denver.

FROM: jk
DATE: Saturday December 4, 2004 -- 9:59:13 pm
That's something I never heard of! What holds it together? It sounds like Hamburger Helper without the helper.

Rumors continue to abound here about a possible Red Robbin coming to our county; they have decent shakes too.

FROM: Paul
DATE: Sunday December 5, 2004 -- 1:42:32 pm
jk: What holds it together?


That's why every Maid-Rite comes with a fork, because it's up to one's strong grip to keep the thing together.

Red Robin is pretty good, if not a bit pricey.

FROM: Richard
DATE: Wednesday January 26, 2005 -- 2:02:57 am
Although I've lived in California for 46 years, I'm originally from Iowa. The Maid-Rite is sacred there. There are a lot of copycat recipes on the web because midwest expatriates still long for the taste of Maid-Rites.

FROM: Melissa [E-Mail]
DATE: Wednesday January 26, 2005 -- 5:23:07 pm
To the gentleman who visited our Maid-Rite at Little Amana on Interstate 80 in Iowa:

Thanks for visiting our store! Maid-Rites have been an Iowa staple and a franchise restaurant since 1926. They have recently undergone some major upgrading and imaging improvements, but the sandwich has remained the same for all these years.

We would love to have a little clarification on "it did a terrible number on our stomachs" comment. We'd love to send you some antacid or perhaps a Maid-Rite package to acclimate your stomachs to mid-western food!

Thanks again for stopping at our restaurant. We hope you stop in again and let us know you're there -- We'll treat you rite!!!!

Melissa Schuerer

FROM: Joseph
DATE: Thursday January 27, 2005 -- 10:57:56 am
Wow. The Ping is developing corporate pull. Recently, the ping heard from the Clip-n-Seal guy, and now Melissa from Maid-Rite.


Of course, the "terrible number" incident could just be a sign of successful competition with White Castle, where part of the expectation of eating something nicknamed a slider is self-explanatory.

FROM: Melissa Schuerer [E-Mail]
DATE: Wednesday February 9, 2005 -- 4:40:16 pm
Check us out!

FROM: Melissa Schuerer
DATE: Wednesday February 9, 2005 -- 4:41:15 pm
Oops! I thought the website would show up in the text.

FROM: Paul
DATE: Thursday February 10, 2005 -- 7:00:27 am
Thanks for the offer, Melissa. I can say, though, that my wife and I are pretty accustomed to midwestern food having grown up in the Chicagoland area.

Insofar as clarification of "number on our stomachs" goes, we were pretty ill the evening after we had our sandwiches. And I'd rather not go into further detail - this site isn't Fark.

Of course, I'd love to get antacid in the mail....

FROM: Joseph
DATE: Thursday February 10, 2005 -- 1:20:58 pm

Nice photo on the opening page of your website. I see that your dining room has lots of tables and chairs that are not anchored to the floor. So, it seems that along with your loose meat you also offer quite a few, wait for it . . . wait . . . for . . . it . . . loose stools.


FROM: Michael
DATE: Friday June 10, 2005 -- 12:02:35 am
Having lived in Iowa all of my life, (Newton, Knoxville, Cedar Rapids, Marion), I guess you could say that I've had several occations to eat one or two Maid-Rites.

I really cant see what would have caused you any stomach distress as a Maid-Rite is only ground beef and a few common spices and seasonings.

Are you sure you didn't have a few to many Amana Beers or some Amana wines before or after dinner!?!?!? ;o)

FROM: darr
DATE: Monday July 18, 2005 -- 11:19:43 am
I had a Maid-Rite in MN while on vacation. I asked about how the meat was seasoned and was told that it is a Franchise and they didn't know, because it is seasoned when they get it.

FROM: Gloria Tharp
DATE: Tuesday July 26, 2005 -- 1:34:32 pm
I am English by birth, my first trip to
America was 51 years ago.. I ate
my first Maid-rite then in Iowa, and
I have never forgotten how good they tasted. I wish I had one right now.. it sure didn't upset my stomach, made it feel pretty good.
too bad they don't sell them in Texas.

FROM: Charlie
DATE: Thursday July 28, 2005 -- 10:34:52 am
I am from Saint Joseph, Missouri now live in Miami, Florida. When everI return to Saint Jo Made-Rite is my first stop.
when are you going to open in Florida

FROM: Christopher A. Wheeler [E-Mail]
DATE: Wednesday September 21, 2005 -- 12:20:18 pm
I'm sorry you had distress; I love Maid-Rite. Born and raised in Muscatine, Iowa, I've had MORE than my fair share of Maid-Rite sandwiches. Kinda making me hungry now just thinking about it.

FROM: Andrew
DATE: Friday April 28, 2006 -- 4:45:16 pm
My roommate is from Iowa and raves about these "maid-rite" sandwiches. I've looked all over the internet and have found several recipes. I just contacted the corp office to see if I can get a case/dozen delivered (we live in Los Angeles). Now, the picture on the maid-rite website looks like a sloppy joe without the sloppy. Is it actually ground hamburger or slow a cooked roast that is grinded down. Also, what kind of spices are added. Any information would be really appreciated.


FROM: Brandon
DATE: Tuesday June 27, 2006 -- 4:47:10 pm
I am from Marshalltown, Iowa where the original successful MAID-RITE flourishes, and I can say I have never eaten anything close to it for flavor from just meat. My father went to school with the current owner and has told me many stories about the place, and I can tell you there is nothing in it that should upset anyones stomach. Not only are their sandwiches good but they bake fresh pies and make their own ice cream. The butterscotch malt is especially good. I currently live in Wisconsin where they are just recently starting to put in a few MAID-RITE'S, and people are loving them! They are so good in fact, that I am looking to open one with another MAID-RITE fanatic.

FROM: Connie from Audubon IA 50 years ago
DATE: Sunday July 16, 2006 -- 12:21:57 pm

Ahh I still remember the Maid-Rites. We had to drive to other towns to get one but it was worth it. I see on the web-site that Loveland CO is opening one and I will search it out when visiting my grandsons @CSU FT Collins. In CO for 53 years and IA is good memories.....

DATE: Friday August 11, 2006 -- 2:27:19 am
I have lived in Muscatine, Iowa my whole life and have worked at the Original Maid Rite for a couple of years and id just like to say that we get people daily come in and go on about how we still have the best maidrites and we always will and i will tell u i make the meat myself and there is nothing that should make ur stomach upset unless u have health problems anyway. So in that thought Muscatine Hershey Avenue Maid-Rite, owned by the Meyers, is and always will be the best and original. And id also like to say those of u that search for the recipe you will never find the correct one. It is untold for as long as maid rite has success.
Amy of Muscatine

FROM: Paul
DATE: Friday August 11, 2006 -- 9:20:24 am
there is nothing that should make ur stomach upset unless u have health problems anyway.

That's an impressive diagnosis!

Obi-won January 6, 2007, 6:16 pm

We had Maid-rites in Central WI. The stores did not go over very well and closed within a year. We really liked the sandwiches. The hoop-la over the fact that ground meat is bad for your health. That can easily be rectified by using a 50/50 mix of ground turkey-ground chuck or even leaner beef.

I regret our 2 locations closed down…Thank Maid-rite for at least giving it a try here in Wisconsin. If we didn’t consume so many cheese curds. Moderation is the key to anything.


Wayne King April 1, 2007, 4:29 pm

I grew up in Hannibal, MO. One of the two popular local drive-Ins was the Maid-Rite. There were several rows of autos were parked there every night. The Maid-Rites were out of this world. I now live in CA. and wish there was someplace locally that made them.

Darlene November 11, 2007, 5:18 am

I was born and raised in Iowa lived in Davenport for years when we moved to Nebraska we really missed the Maid Rites- Live in Texas now my Bother lives in Missouri we were to take a trip back to Kansas City area we got on the Inter-Net to find out where the Maid Rite shops were on our way. Iwas visiting Davenport a year or so ago I had bragging rites to my brothwer how many Maid-Rites I had while I was there. I even sent him 1/4 of one of my sandwitchs so he woudn’t feel left out.HA! I have eaten in Red Lobster and get an upset stomach after wards, or even my own cooking.
Waiting for a Maid Rite Shop in Texas Hurry Up.

Diana June 12, 2009, 6:14 pm

We had a Maid Rite in the town I grew up in in MN. I even worked there the summer before my junior year. Those were the best burgers I have ever had. We also made our own french fries (not frozen) — I never peeled so many potatoes in my life. And, we had the best shakes and cherry cokes. I live in AZ now and I would love to have a Maid Rite here. One opened here quite a while ago (in the late 80’s early 90s), but the owner was a jerk and he obviously was cutting corners because his Maid Rites were very dry — went there once and never went back. That’s probably why he is no longer in business here. I look for Maid Rites every where I travel just to get my fix — can’t wait to go back to MN next summer and hunt down the nearest Maid Rite!

John September 2, 2009, 9:35 pm

Gotta say maid-rites are the bomb, I used to live in Davenport, Iowa we had a couple of stores there and everytime I got a chance I would have a couple, I could probably live on the things, I moved to Texas back in 79 and hadn’t had one in years when I discovered that someone had opened one up in south Arlington, went there with my wife whom had never had one , even she was impressed at how good they were, the only thing I can say to the guy who got a upset stomach is maybe you ate too many, its easy to do.

Paul September 2, 2009, 11:01 pm

If by “too many” you mean “one,” you’re right.

Lin January 16, 2012, 11:52 pm

Paul, whatever you ate, it could not have been the Maid-Rites that caused you to have such an upset stomach. Absolutely not! I have eaten them for years every single time I go back to Iowa. They are just ground beef and seasonings with fabulous taste. I have eaten at Marshalltown and Cedar Falls as thousands of other people have done. Yours is the only complaint I have ever heard about a Maid-Rite. Sorry, but I do not believe you are on the right track blaming a Maid-Rite. For all you know you and your wife got exposed to someone who had the flu while on your trip. There can be no other reason. Again, it was NOT the Maid-Rites you ate!

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