You voted on for the top 50 watering holes in the central Iowa, we crunched the data, and now the results are in. Johnny’s Hall of Fame took first, with east side Toad’s Tavern, downtown’s Royal Mile/Red Monk and the beer drinker’s favorite, el Bait Shop rounding out the top four.
How it worked:
We solicited Iowans’ favorite Des Moines area bars, receiving nearly 800 write-in top five lists — in other words, about 4,000 votes for individual bars. Each list funneled into a database weighted according to rank; each No. 1 bar pick received 5 points, each No. 2 received 4 points, and so on. We accepted bars from a five-county region: Story, Polk, Warren, Dallas and Jasper counties (roughly the Des Moines and Ames metro areas). We excluded major national chains (sorry, Bonefish Grill, TGI Fridays and others) but accepted chains with local ties. For purposes of the list, we didn’t distinguish between multiple locations of the bars by the same name (Wellman’s Pub on Ingersoll or in West Des Moines).