Art & Life

Quarter Barrel: Not just pizza

Quarter Barrel
The front sign at the Quarter Barrel restaurant in Cedar Rapids on Sept. 25, 2021. PHOTO BY ZAVIER ALEXANDER

Quarter Barrel Arcade and Brewery is a pizza place that also has retro arcade games. The inside of the restaurant has a lot of pop culture artwork and items inside.

Quarter Barrel is open Wednesday and Thursday 3pm – 10 p.m., Friday 3pm – 11 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. – 11- p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. The kitchen closes one hour before the bar.

Owner Chris Ellis talked about some of the aspects that make Quarter Barrel unique and some of their most popular menu items. 

Q: What makes your business unique? 

A: The Quarter Barrel Arcade & Brewery is, as our name states, an arcade and a brewery. We have close to 30 video arcade games, mostly classics from the 70s, 80s and 90s and eight pinball machines on the floor. 

And we’ve got some of the best pizza in town. 

Q: What upcoming events/activities do you have? 

Events have been fewer and farther between since the pandemic started. But we have been getting back into our regular schedule of team trivia nights. 

Because space is limited, we have teams register in advance to ensure that a table will be available. It only costs $5 to register a team, and we donate that registration money to various local charities. You can find a link to register on our Facebook page. 

Q: Do you offer weekly specials? 

We have new items on our specials board every week. We also have a $5 pasta bowl special every Thursday. 

Q: What are popular menu items? 

Quarter Barrel is a pizzeria and I’d argue that we’ve got some of the best pizza in town. What I find funny is that two of our bestselling pizzas appeal to such different groups: The Bowser is a meat-lovers dream—pepperoni, Italian sausage, bacon and red pepper flakes; the other is a vegetarian version of our buffalo chicken pizza (you are able to substitute seitan or tempeh for the chicken) topped with coleslaw tossed in bleu cheese dressing.  

Q: What do you have for entertainment? 

For the most part, the arcade is the entertainment. We also host some fun events. My wife and I are trivia buffs, so we host team trivia nights once a month. Those are a big draw. I can’t remember the last time we held a trivia night that didn’t sell out. 

Q: Do the menu items change and how do you decide on menu items? 

On our food menu, we try to switch things up seasonally. We try to source a lot of fresh ingredients from local vendors, so there’s a lot of seasonal variability on that end that we need to work with. 

Image courtesy of Zavier Alexander

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