dsmWeekly: May 25, 2022
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May 25, 2022

Shade comes in many forms and spring is such a great time to plan an artistic statement that is unique to your family. Add functional charm to your home with an arbor, pergola or gazebo by the award-winning designers and builders at Silent Rivers. Read more.
The spring vegetable salad, complete with peas, cucumber, asparagus, whipped feta and labneh, is one of the many new menu additions chef Rateb Aburas has in store for Mulberry Street Tavern.

First Look: Mulberry Street Tavern’s New Menu

Writer: Karla Walsh

Remember when hotels were only for vacation? In the past 10 years, Des Moines hotels, with their related bars and restaurants, have stepped up their game so much that they’re a destination for locals, too. The Surety Hotel’s Mulberry Street Tavern is one of them.

The venue opened at a challenging timeNovember 2020yet drew travelers and locals alike, thanks to its upscale comfort food like the Roast Chicken with Aji Amarillo Sauce and Grilled Romaine Salad. After chef Marque Collins departed to helm another hotel restaurant, Surety welcomed in a visionary veteran—and a precocious one at that, at just 28 years old—in executive chef Rateb Aburas. He comes to Des Moines after honing his skills at two other sister properties that are part of the Aparium Hotel Group. Along with Aburas’ experience and his family’s Palestinian and Canadian heritage, he brings a host of global flavors to the table, along with a lot of stories and loads of warmth.

During my “first look” visit, Aburas told me he’s slowly adding his own flair to the menu for brunch, dinner and the upcoming lunch and courtyard services. His vision is to usher in more worldly influence and shareable options as part of the tavern’s menu, while keeping enough riffs on familiar entrees to please any palate. One standout during our initial visit was the spring vegetable salad (pictured, $15) with peas, cucumber and asparagus alongside a swoosh of whipped feta and labneh. Another can’t-miss dish? The wood-fired trout ($40), a flaky, roasted whole trout from Wisconsin garnished with a refreshing and beautifully briny salsa Veracruz. Add a squeeze from the charred lemons and this is the ultimate warm weather entree that’s hearty enough to share.

“We want to end up being your no-brainer for an evening out, delivering consistent food and something for everyone,” Aburas says, including vegans, gluten-free diners and those who appreciate local sourcing. Aburas already has forged relationships with farmers, cheesemakers and butchers.

Once the restaurant’s new outdoor bar is complete, mark your calendars for the courtyard launch in early June, and watch for upcoming “yappy hours” (Surety is a dog-friendly hotel inside and out), farmers market after parties and more events to inspire regional and local visitors.

Mulberry Street Tavern (206 Sixth Ave.) is open Tuesday through Thursday 4-11 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 4 p.m.-midnight, plus Saturday for brunch 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Watch for an updated menu soon at and follow Mulberry Street Tavern on Facebook to learn about events, specials and the lunch launch.
Different Asian Villages will showcase cultural performances at the Bravo Main Stage in Western Gateway Park. Photo: courtesy of the Iowa Asian Alliance.


Celebrate AAPI Heritage Month at CelebrAsian 2022

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month continues through May, and what better way to celebrate than by attending CelebrAsian 2022? The annual event showcasing AAPI cultures returns this Friday and Saturday to Western Gateway Park. Explore more than a dozen Asian Villages, where you can sample authentic cuisine, view educational exhibits and see live cultural performances.

A few highlights: a culinary tent featuring chefs whipping up traditional dishes, a K-pop dance group performance, and robotics demos from teams from First Tech Challenge, a robotics program and competition for middle and high school students to design, build and operate their own robots.

Check the list of vendors and find more details here.
Daybed All Day Sleepers

Two new innovative designs offer custom alternatives to fold-out sleepers. They're beautiful and super-easy to use. Sectionals too!
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Fridays at the Farm (Friday, 4:30 p.m.): Head to Middlebrook Farm (4300 Cumming Ave., Cumming) to kick off your weekend with their Fridays at the Farm summer programming. Every week, see live music, tour the farmers market and purchase fresh organic produce and other food and drink, all at the sprawling agrihood. This Friday’s event includes an outdoor movie night, with “The Greatest Showman” showing at 7:30 p.m. See the list of vendors and musical guests on the farm’s website.

Plumero at xBk (Friday, 7 p.m.): A rock band consisting of four girls graduating from Roosevelt High School this spring, Plumero will celebrate the release of their debut EP with a show at xBk. The groupMia Prosperi, Ada Fender, Leah Stringer and Charlotte Byershas performed at more than 20 local venues, festivals and events since they formed in middle school. You also can find their EP on Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon. Be sure to check it out; we were impressed with their preternatural mature and engaging sound and lyrics.

Olson-Larsen Galleries exhibit opening reception (Friday, 5-7 p.m.): Olson-Larsen Galleries will host the opening reception for its Annual Landscape Show, a group exhibition featuring five landscape artists, Friday night. See details on the event here. This reception will be the last event held at 203 Fifth St. in West Des Moines, as the gallery prepares to move operations to other temporary locations in Valley Junction while awaiting the completion of its new permanent space, which will be housed a half block south of the current location on Fifth Street. Stay updated at

Moberg Gallery exhibit opening reception (Friday, 5-8 p.m.):
“Contemporary Abstraction” will open at Moberg Gallery on Friday. The new exhibit will feature 22 artists from five countries, who created abstract pieces in a variety of media forms, methods and narratives. Some of our favorite artists exhibiting are Ruben Sanchez, Pamela Staker and Charoula Nikolaidou. Preview some of the exhibit’s works here. The exhibit will run through July 30.

The Original Des Moines Brew Tour (Saturday and Sunday, 11:45 a.m.-4:45 p.m.):
Expert guides will take guests on behind-the-scenes tours of some of Des Moines’ top breweries. Learn about the history of beer and sample up to 16 beer styles with a guided food pairing. Find tickets and more information on the breweries here.

Honorees announced: We are pleased to announce this year’s honorees for dsm’s annual LGBTQ Legacy Leader Awards: Pamela Duffy, Des Moines, retired associate professor, Des Moines University; Mark Kassis and Terry Lowman, Ames, retired restaurant owners; Jordan Selha, Des Moines, program manager, NuCara Staffing Services; Bruce Teague, Iowa City, mayor; Rebecca Gruber (ally), Des Moines, former artistic director and conductor of the Des Moines Gay Men’s Chorus; and Aiden Vasquez, Davenport, founder, Aiden Vasquez Foundation. Mark your calendar now for the fourth annual LGBTQ Legacy Leader event Oct. 19 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the River Center.
Quartet summer season: Civic Music Association has announced the schedule for the Belin Quartet summer concert series, to take place at Salisbury House and Gardens. Pack a picnic and enjoy the next evening of music on the lawn May 31. The free shows will continue every Tuesday in June, and on a varied schedule in July. Check the full list of dates here.

Rose Farm owner Karri Rose grew all the flowers and foliage in this bouquet. She offers premade arrangements as well as flower-arranging classes for budding floral stylists.

Rose Farm Offers Colorful Experiences for All

Writer: Veronica Lorson Fowler

Photographer: Laura Wills Photography

Karri Rose is living testament that when life hands you lemons, you not only make lemonade but you add a splash of artisanal vodka, serve the beverage in a beautiful glass, and use the remainders in a charming centerpiece.

In September 2017, Rose was working as a beauty company executive overseeing sales in a seven-state territory. “I called it my dream job,” she recalls.

At home, she was enjoying the new white farmhouse-style home she and husband Patrick, a firefighter, had built on 25 acres with a small pond, several chickens, a greenhouse made from reclaimed materials, and extensive vegetable gardens, all tucked snugly into the gently rolling hills south of Norwalk. She was also mom to two then-high schoolers, Cassie and Joey.

Then the company got new leadership, and Rose’s position changed. She was offered the option to stay, but she’d have to travel full time away from her family and haven. “I cried like someone had given me divorce papers in a marriage I didn’t know was unhealthy,” she recalls.

Rose resigned, opting for the severance package, and then embarked on a sabbatical: “I wanted to take a timeout. I wanted to take time just to dream.”

For fun, she started selling vegetables on Facebook Marketplace to use for home canning. “That was kind of my focus group,” Rose says. “People kept saying, ‘I want to see your farm.’”

Read how Rose transformed her hobby farm into a full-time business
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