You Gotta Eat: The Dovetail Inn

Updated: Nov. 24, 2022 at 6:00 PM CST
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EMDEN (25 News Now) - This week, I’m looking for some family-friendly food, and there’s a spot here in Emden serving plates you may not find anywhere else.

Todd Schmitgall comes from a family of restauranteurs, and earlier this year, he opened the Dovetail Inn in honor of his son, Gage, who died in a tragic car accident.

“It is a kind of tribute to him,” Todd said. “He loved doves - he was just fascinated with them. We do it for Gage - I’m doing this for Gage.”

You can find the Dovetail Inn at 219 Lincoln Street in Emden.
You can find the Dovetail Inn at 219 Lincoln Street in Emden.(25 News)

The Dovetail is serving up Midwest comfort food, highlighted by a ton of fried favorites. But this isn’t your typical small town menu.

“We throw in a little crazy stuff here and there - we keep ‘em wondering,” Todd said. “You never know what you’re gonna get.”

Popular plates include chicken, fish and a long list of hearty sides. And for the adventurous - alligator, frogs’ legs, and Todd’s specialty - chicken gizzards.

“I have a long process of making my gizzards - they’ll melt in your mouth,” Todd said. “People have said they are the best they’ve ever had.”

Todd serves me a ton of amazing plates, and I start with the gizzards. Don’t let the name fool you - they are fantastic!

Next, I continue the fried food frenzy with some incredible crispy chicken, beer-battered walleye and catfish fingers.

Catfish fingers with a side of baked beans.
Catfish fingers with a side of baked beans.(25 News)

This comfort food brings on a happy mood - cheesy baked Italian macaroni and homemade ham n’ beans.

Plus, for dessert: silky cinnamon sweet potatoes, apple cheesecake and a bread pudding spongy enough to sleep on.

Todd says when you come to the Dovetail, he wants good food to fill your belly and a warm feeling to fill your heart.

“It’s getting back to the family origins. Let’s go out as a family - let’s take a little drive,” Todd said. “That’s what they always did for my parents, and now they’re doing it for me. It’s amazing.”

You can find the Dovetail Inn at 219 Lincoln Street in Emden.

Here are their hours:

Monday: Closed.

Tuesday: 5:30 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Wednesday: 5:30 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Thursday: 5:30 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Friday: 5:30 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Saturday: 5:30 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Sunday: Closed.