We're getting ready for both a STL and a KC visit - I know about some of the local/regional specialties of St Louis, (crispy snoots, fried ravioli, egg fu young sandwiches, provel cheese, gooey butter cake) but what about CanCity, as our resident friends pronounce it? Has CowTown evolved its own unique culinary delights? The only one I know about is NuWays, but I believe that is regional and is sometimes called MaidRite. Right? Please advise.
We are thinking about OK Joe's and Jack's Stack for bbq and Bichelmeyer's in Tonganoxie for steak but we'll be staying for more than 3 days and would love some more suggestions. FYI: we are not into white tableclothes, tuxedoed waiters and so forth. Deliciousness holds more interest that ambience.
We don't want to waste time or calories on food that isn't good/fresh/unique and I've learned the hard way to only rely on recs - which if why I turn to Chowhound! Thanks so much and I will post a reply when we get home.
Where will you be staying, will you have a car, and are you willing to drive? (The last is obvious, I guess, since you're going to Tongie for steak!) Also, are you all strictly carnivores, is that what you're looking for?
We are staying off the 435 just east of Stateline, or whatever it's called in the south part of the metro area. In MO in other words. And yes, we'll have wheels.
We are omnivores, I'd say. We live in SoCal and have just loads of Cal-Mediterranean-fusion--fresh catch-of-the-day with a light whatever sauce (or free range chicken tenders) kind of places from which to choose here. What we are looking for are restaurants and/or specialty items that are unique to KC and/or the region. We can go back to calorie counting when we get back home.
Hope this helps narrow things down. Or expands our choices.
What is truly unique to KC when it comes to Q, are Burnt Ends.
If you are staying near 435 you won't be far from LC's. About 2 miles west of 435 on Blue Prkwy.
LC's burnt ends are like none other.
I'm heading to KC the 19th for the beer fest. I will leave Des Moines, and the next time I get out of my car will be in LC's parking lot.
I will tell you it is a dive, so feel free to get it to go.
Smoke Stack BBQ!!!!!!!!!!!! It's close to where you will be. Approx. 83rd/ Wornall. The food is fantastic. You could always hit Gate's bbq. The atmosphere is unique within itself. Screaming staff, and sandwiches that fall apart they're piled so high w/ meat and douced in yummy sauce. I've heard Jasper's is great for Italian. Located across the street from Gates in the Royal Liquor lot. Approx. 435/ Stateline.
Maid Rites are really more of an Iowa thing, although I think you can get them a few places around town. You might want a pork tenderloin sandwich -- again more of an Iowa thing, but a true conoisseur said that one of the best he'd had was at Woodswether Cafe in the West Bottoms. That place is definitely a trip.
I've been trying to think of Kansas City food experiences, and it's hard to think of something truly unique to KC (other than BBQ). The thing about KC is that it's a crossroad between the west, the east, and the south. I'd recommend breakfast. A good option might be the Bluebird Bistro at 17th and Summit, for the local-foods, organic, homegrown version. Another option would be RJ's Bob-B-Que for the I'm-going-to-chop-cotton-all-day version. Or Cascone's in the River Market for the old-school-KC Italian version.
As an ex-pat, the places I'd want to hit would be:
Stroud's for Chicken
TownTopic for hamburgers w/onions
Woodyard and LC's for Q(and others, but you gotta priortize)
In A Tub for deep fried tacos
? for Italian Steak Sandwiches
Jerry's Woodswether Cafe for A Pork Tenderloin-as per Davydd's report.
GoChickenGo for a gizzard pack, wings, and livers. + electric yellow gravy.
A greasy list for sure.
You could make a quick visit to Lawrence and knock off a Runza or two.
Boulevard for your local beer
Jaspers and Fritz's are right by you.
If you want EXCELLENT barbeque. I would recommend Smokehouse (135th/ Metcalf)--it's newest location. In addition, Bates City BBQ is some of the best in the state. Located just north of 67th and Quivira. Tom, the owner is a real family man with a taste for smoked meats. His family friendly restaurant is one of my favorite stops when in the Shawnee area. I like J. Gilbert's for steak (see 95th/ Metcalf). A great hole in the wall Italian place is Villa Capri (approx. 82nd/ Metcalf). Do not miss Villa Capri if you're close and in the mood for authentic homestyle italian cuisine.