Biz Buzz Monday: Area eatery opens with focus on homestyle cooking

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Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from the tri-states. In addition to this development from Guttenberg, Iowa, we will share other news in Tuesday’s edition.

GUTTENBERG, Iowa — A new Clayton County diner has opened along the Mississippi River with a focus on classic, homestyle comfort food.

Driftwood Diner recently opened at 531 S. River Park Drive in Guttenberg. The locally owned diner offers a variety of hearty Midwestern favorites such as casseroles, tenderloin and burgers, in addition to all-day breakfast offerings and various baked goods.

“My generation grew up eating dinner with family around the kitchen table,” said owner Ann Moore. “You had bread and butter, a good casserole and some sides. … I’m looking to recreate that feeling here at the diner.”

Moore has worked at various food-service establishments for the better part of the past decade, but it wasn’t until last summer that she started seriously considering opening a restaurant of her own.

The last of her kids recently had graduated from high school, she said, and she had heard rumblings around town that people were jonesing for another local dining option after the February 2023 closure of Picket Fence Cafe & Catering.

“The community was asking for something, and with my background working at different (food-service establishments) in Guttenberg, I just decided to go all in,” Moore said. “I joked with my husband that it was my midlife crisis, but it’s actually something I’m really excited about.”

Driftwood Diner now operates at the space formerly filled by Picket Fence, Moore said, so the community already is used to visiting the location for a good meal.

She said she intends to build on that reputation by offering a rotating list of menu items in addition to the diner’s enduring classics. The fresh baked goods and other desserts will change regularly, as will the soups and other items.

“I’m just excited to see the familiar faces stop in from some of the other businesses I’ve worked at,” Moore said. “I want to offer something for the community, just somewhere nice to go and sit for a little variety in town.”

Driftwood Diner is open 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday. More information and a full menu can be found online at