The population of Sioux Falls is close to 190,000, but when you walk into Rosie's Cafe at 2200 West Madison Street it's like entering a small town diner.

Four waitresses, a dishwasher and the cook (the owner) held down the fort on a recent stop. The cafe has 8 tables, three booths and five stools at the counter. It fills up pretty fast during the lunch rush, but the food comes out fast.

Rosie's has been a Sioux Falls staple for over 35 years. The restaurant is clean and the staff is super friendly. The surroundings are modest. The iPad cash register almost seems out of place.

On my most recent visit, I was surprised by the clientele - young businessmen in dress shirts and khakis, an elderly man and woman, a couple of construction workers, three ladies who were trying Rosie's for the first time and a couple of gentlemen who were obviously regulars. The waitresses knew their name and what they were going to have. It was turkey and dressing day, and it's a popular choice.

The owner isn't Rosie. Rosie sold the place a few years ago to her daughter Becki Mettler. Becki has continued the tradition of good, homemade food at affordable prices.

So, let's talk about the food.

You get a good-sized portion that will fill you up and you won't spend a fortune.

Breakfast is hearty and cheap. The staples populate the hanging menu board. From eggs, bacon, pancakes, french toast, and even biscuits and gravy, breakfast at Rosie's is a great way to start your day.

For lunch, the menu is small, but full of your favorite comfort foods. Rosie's features two or three specials a day along with your lunch standards like a hamburger, cheeseburger, grilled cheese or roast beef sandwich. You can get a hot roast beef with mashed potatoes and covered in gravy.

Almost everything at Rosie's is homemade. The desserts are made from scratch. They boil and slice potatoes for the American fries and hash browns. The beef is roasted every day and the drippings make the best beef gravy.

You can't go to Rosie's and not get dessert. No matter how full you are, you need to order it. Selections include homemade pie, cake, crisp, bread pudding, or ice cream.

Specials of the week include:

  • Monday - Baked beans or scalloped potatoes
  • Tuesday - Beef stew
  • Wednesday - Baked chicken or liver & onions
  • Thursday - Turkey and dressing or goulash
  • Friday - Salmon loaf

They have meatloaf daily and you can get it as a sandwich or with mashed potatoes and covered with gravy. There's always a pot of chili or a soup-of-the-day.

Rosie's is only open for breakfast Monday through Saturday and lunch Monday through Friday. The cafe is closed on Sundays and holidays.

Rosie's food is home-cookin', comfort food. The food and atmosphere aren't pretentious.  It will take you back to a simpler time - at least for your 30 minute lunch break.

*Prices on menu board may have changed since we first posted this story.

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