Biz Buzz Monday: Dubuque casino to serve up big outdoor dining area

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Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from across the tri-states. In addition to this update from Dubuque, we will feature more business developments in Tuesday’s edition.

With the expansion of an existing dining option, as well as the introduction of a new one, Q Casino and Hotel in Dubuque is beefing up its culinary amenities.

Houlihan’s plans to unveil a sizable new outdoor dining area over the Labor Day weekend, according to Q Director of Hospitality John Torres.

The new area, located just to the west of Houlihan’s, will have seating for 60 people under a canopy and an additional 48 people in a “picnic setting,” Torres explained. It also will feature a fire pit, four large-screen televisions and heating lamps that should make the new area usable even when temperatures begin to cool later in the year.

Torres noted that the outdoor area also will feature live, acoustic musical acts.

The idea for the outdoor expansion largely was born out of the unique circumstances of the past year.

“Due to the current circumstances, a lot of people are still more comfortable with open-air dining,” Torres said. “We previously had a very small patio area with just a few tables, and we experimented with some other ideas in the last year. We wanted to create a larger outdoor dining area that people could enjoy.”

Houlihan’s also partnered with a Chicago-based restaurant to bring a new dining option to the community.

Wow Bao, which specializes in Asian street food, began operating a ghost kitchen out of Houlihan’s in early August, according to Torres.

The eatery specializes in a yeast-leavened bun known as bao, which serves as a key portion of a variety of Asian dishes and makes them easily portable for consumers on the go. Wow Bao also sells pot stickers, dumplings and rice and noodle bowls.

Wow Bao is available for carryout and delivery only. It can be reached by visiting