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Spaghetti Works is still a Court Avenue favorite

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Spaghetti Works (310 Court Avenue, Des Moines)


Spaghetti Works has been a fixture on Court Avenue for decades. The Italian restaurant set in an old 19th Century hat factory has made some changes through the years (like adding and later dropping their comedy club), but the quality food and reasonable prices have stayed the same.

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Spaghetti Works' menu offers a large variety of Italian and American favorites priced from $6.49 to $14.99. Highlights from the menu include the Alfredo Chicken and Mushroom Bake ($11.49), the Eggplant Parmesan ($9.99), and the restaurant's create-your-own pasta option. The latter allows you to pick your own pasta and top it off with one of their twelve sauces and a variety of extras. I thoroughly enjoyed their rigatoni pasta topped with meat sauce, sautéed button mushrooms, and a large meatball ($11.77). If you can't make up your mind, try the Works Plate and choose a pasta to be topped with samples of all twelve sauces. While I enjoyed all twelve sauces, the tangy Beer Cheese was definitely my favorite. Check out the accompanying slideshow to take a look at some of the restaurant's delicious dishes.

The restaurant offers several different dining rooms, party rooms, and even a patio. While this allows for the ability to seat a large number of diners, it sometimes spreads the service staff a little thin during busy dinner rushes, especially on weekends. My service was more than adequate during my visits, but I did see a few tables around me that suffered long waits to order, get drink refills, and receive their checks. Through it all, the staff was very friendly and did everything that they could to make things right for the customers when they did have to wait.

Overall, all my dining experiences were positive ones. The food and prices were both exceptional, and despite the high volume of customers, the restaurant was very clean during my visits. I would highly recommend Spaghetti Works for a weeknight dinner or a lunch anytime. Just be prepared to wait a little if you plan to dine there for dinner on a weekend.