Alba Restaurant

Alba Restaurant
524 E 6th St
Des Moines, IA 50309

(515) 244-0261
Dinner: 5:00 PM - Close (Tuesday - Saturday)
Lunch: 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM (Wednesday - Friday)

We were a bit confused as to where to enter, though I am glad we went into the bar, because we were able to see how neat it was, along with the open kitchen. It was pretty impressive to see the cooks at work in the kitchen. Certainly a nice touch. Holly's dad suggested that we should sit at the table right in front of the kitchen, but we didn't. We ended up in the main dining room. I have to say that I like the decor. Holly told us that they guy that was redoing parts of her dad's house also did this restaurant. I liked the doors on the ceiling, the walls, the tile...The concrete trough for the sink in the restroom (though I like the faucets) was a bit...well...underwhelming. I know concrete can look a lot better.

After being seated at a table, we had a good view of the the entire restaurant or a great view out the window. The menu was a little odd. Broken up into appetizers and salads on one side and mains on the other, except the gnocchi, which, according to our waiter Greg, should've been on both.

I ordered the Chorizo Fries and the Pork Burger. Shannon ordered the Warm Goat Cheese and Seafood Linguine. Chris and holly ordered the gnocchi and the Salmon or some fish, poached in red wine.

While I like the chorizo fries, it reminded me a lot of the cheesy fries that you can get any number of places, except better, though no cheese. The fries were good and had a nice spice added to them. Though the fries were covered in chorizo, I thought it might be something more...I liked it, but was it really fine dining fare?

Shannon's warm goat cheese was some goat cheese wrapped in, I believe, prosciutto. It was pretty good. Certainly a good presentation.

The Chris and Holly's gnocchi was probably the highlight, at least in my mind, of the appetizers that we had. I think I've had better, but it was still pretty good.

For the mains they came out together, except for Chris's which came out a little afterward. Then then brought out a small plate with 4 slices out of what appeared to be a ciabatta loaf.

My pork burger was topped with pineapple, jalapeno was good...though the pork didn't really stand up to the pineapple and peppers. It should have been spiced with something more. Though I did like the sandwich over all, the drawback on the pork was something that would've made it into a great sandwich. More fries, these were not spiced like the others, but were still good...

Shannon's Seafood Linguine tasted more like spinach then seafood. If you would've said Spinich Linguine then it would've been right on, but for me, it tasted too much like spinach and not enough like seafood. Shannon liked it though.

For dessert I got an apple crisp, Shannon got the chocolate molten cake, and Chris and Holly split the banana foster. All were pretty good, but nothing was really outstanding.

Over the course of the dinner I had two glasses of the Los Vascos Cabernet Sauvignon, which I liked, and it was fairly inexpensive. I may have to see if I can find it.

Our service was attentive with a few flubs. Greg accidentally split water on to Holly's purse. I was missing silverware (Holly went and stole me some from a vacant table), but he was very quick on returning our checks after we put our credit cards in the folder. Overall service was pretty good.

With two glasses of wine, appetizers, mains and desserts our bill came to a total of $78.44 with tax. With tip, under $100. I believe Chris and Holly's was fairly similar.

Overall I wasn't astounded, but it was good, I'd go back to try more things.