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Bourdain in KC

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Anthony Bourdain is coming to town and we all know what he likes and doesn't- so if you got to take him out for a bite to eat in KC where would you take him?

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  1. When will he be in town, I think a drink at Gilhouly's at 39th and bell is right up his alley.
    It is where a good amount of chefs in K.C. hang out.

    1 Reply
    1. re: cochon

      well if hes gonna hit that up, id say he needs to hit D'Bronx before hand and get the Bell Street Bomb and a reuben. Love that place so much, i take everyone from outta town there, and of course he has to go to Oklahoma Joes. However, if its burgers he craves, theres none better than the Westport Flea Market with some tasty boulevard wheats and fried pickels as an appetizer

    2. More than "what place," I'd like to know what the take on the city should be/will be. I can think of a couple -- "Kansas City, the town made of meat" or "Kansas City, cuisine at the crossroads." Either way, you'd start out at Bichelmeyers, with the mix of BBQ cuts, chorizo, and kielbasa. You should get BBQ, Mexican, Croatian, Italian, steaks. If a study of the rise and fall of the stockyards, you could get a walking tour of the West Bottoms, with a stop at Woodswether. If a study of the food intersections of rail and river, you could talk about the recent rise of local food suppliers and the rise and fall and rise of Kansas City breweries. I'd like to see his take on Boulevard Brewery, and the passion that inspired it. You could even expand the crossroads theme to talk about the Crossroads neighborhoods (hit Chris Elbow and Michael Smith and Grinders) or recent immigrations (the transition of Italian to Vietnamese in the Old Northeast).

      I don't think there is any one restaurant in KC that is going to rank with the best restaurants in the world, with the possible exception of a couple of BBQ meccas. But I do think there is a huge amount of food history in this town that is interesting to talk about.

      Just a few ideas.

      11 Replies
        1. re: heatherkay

          I'd be really interested to see what Chef Bourdain (does calling him Chef Bourdain make me sound too pretentious?) thinks of your ideas. BBQ is a must but shouldn't be the only thing. I think Grand Street Cafe would be a consideration.

          The Peanut should also be on that list. He needs some wings and bleu cheese sauce they make there.

          Grinders would definitely be cool. Great atmosphere and the pizza's good enough.

          1. re: kcbluelion

            Grinders...would you really take a native New Yorker to a pizza place here in town? At least he'd feel right at home w/ plenty of attitude and hipster pretentiousness...

            Bourdain is a pork lover. Take him to a BBQ joint for pork. All of you D'Bronx lovers, don't even bother getting your feelings hurt by taking him to this place.

            $55 bucks just to hear him speak is a bit steep. I'd like to think that it would be a great way to spend the evening, but have doubts. Considering, a guy like him shines after all the film from a shoot has been edited down to the essentials. Unfortunately, live speaking doesn't give 2nd chances for editing out the noise.

            1. re: aboyer

              well I agree with you that pork might be a way to his heart..like the chicharon at Bichelmeyers- but the rest of your poo pooing is disheartening. I'd like to think he can appreciate regional food for what it is.

              1. re: goroe

                I would definitely not take him to d'Bronx. I'm a 35 years old, corporate, IT nerd. I have never been treated like a 35 years old, corporate, IT nerd at Grinders. The pizza's ok, but the art and atmosphere makes it better than most places.

                He should get a burger from the Flea Market (or even the Corner Cocktails at 85th and Wornall - same meat and he can get a pitcher of Busch to wash down the cheese fries too).

                Hereford House at 20th and Pershing.

                1. re: kcbluelion

                  you just lost all credability when you said busch

                  1. re: kcbluelion

                    I could think of better steakhouses to take someone to than Hereford House. Jess & Jims, Golden Ox, Plaza III come to mind.

                    1. re: pollymerase

                      All of those are good. I don't like Plaza III. I think it's lost it's sheen. I couldn't remember if the Golden Ox was still open.

                      Jess and Jim's good. I hate the parking there though. Stroud's would have been a consideration before the tore down the one by BB's.

                      The other beer on tap at Corner Cocktails is Natural Light. My mother and the Pope are the only two people in this world above drinking cheap beer. Credibility is completely overrated.

                      1. re: kcbluelion

                        Glad someone else doesn't like Plaza III. It's a different thing now, but back in the day it was what I always thought of when reading Calvin Trillin's portrait of the archetypical pretentious hinterlands restaurant - "La Maison de la Casa House - Continental Cuisine."

                  2. re: goroe

                    Sorry to hurt your feelings, but NYC pizza is near and dear to my heart. To give you some perspective, the video here on Chowhound w/ Anthony from Una Pizza Napoletana is dead on how I feel about pizza. I never realized I had it so bad, until I tested the pizza waters of NYC. The pizza horse has been beaten to death on this board anyway. Luckily there are some folks bringing simple pie to the midwest. Before I wear out my soapbox, I'll just say that D'bRonx and Grinders are serving the same slices you can duck into any Times Square touristy corner pizza store and pickup, so I suppose you could call them NY Style and they serve their purpose...cheese, bread, tomatoes quick and cheap, but the same can be said about McDonalds or Wendy's.

                    The Pizza Snob

                    1. re: aboyer

                      My feelings aren't hurt Pizza Snob, i can agree with you to some extent. But the question was where in town to take the guy- I wasn't looking for a piss and moan about the lack of a slice you'd eat.

            2. How about sampling some of the local brew? Freestate and Boulevard...

              2 Replies
              1. re: amy_rc

                That's a good idea. And not too far from the brewery are some pretty decent mexican restaurants. La Fonda is still really good. I've never eaten at La Bodega but I hear it's really good.

                1. re: amy_rc

                  Ooooo, how about a bottle or two of Sixth Glass? Love that stuff!

                2. I'd drive him to St. Louis. :D

                  Seriously, doesn't it have to be a bbq joint? I remember going to Bryant's once upon a time and falling in love with the burnt ends, yet I rarely see it mentioned on the boards. Is it closed/falling in quality/forgotten?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Pylon

                    Went to Authur Bryant's a few months ago and had burnt ends - it looked like stringy brisket and tasted about the same. I even asked them if it was burnt ends and they said 'yes'. I wouldn't take anyone there.

                  2. Take him to Le Fou Frog for late night cocktails and the charcuterie plate.

                    1. B.B.'s Lawn Side BBQ - Bourdain seems to like the 'joints' better than the upscale dining

                      1. Bluestem or The American for upscale

                        1. I love Anthony. I think he would be pleased to eat whatever we cared to show him. It is our town, and our foodie story to tell. Wherever you would take him it would be because you wanted to show it to him. Since, I am crazy for Anthony Bourdain, if I were given this task here's where I would take him to eat:

                          Breakfast: Poco's for American and Mexican breakfast favorites - Menudo!
                          Lunch: The original Arthur Bryant's or LC's BBQ (local 'que covered) OR Kitty's for Pork Tenderloin sandwiches - I would pack some beer in a cooler in the trunk.
                          Dinner: Le Feu Frog for Steak and frites (best steak in town) and great french wine
                          Dessert: Pie Lady Coffeehouse in Lenexa for a slice.
                          Cocktails: Harry's in Westport, so he could drink with his own kind.

                          Here's what else I think he would like to see:
                          Tour Boulevard Brewery
                          See Christopher Elbow's Shop
                          Bad Seed Farms
                          Fevere Bakery

                          We have so much to offer . . .he will love KC!

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: jvergara

                            right on jvergara. I couldn't agree more

                            1. re: goroe

                              Since my original post was too harsh (I guess) because I was amused by the complainers. He's coming to KC....that's awesome. He's the biggest celebrity thing in food right now and if you went to a concert to see U2, the Stones, Springstein, etc., good luck getting $50 good tickets.

                              Anyway, I think it will be great and glad several on this post are supportive.

                              Vergara, I think he'd love your list but I could certainly see him at either Harry's sitting at the bar. I had a fried bologna sandwich the last time I was at the River Market location. Scotch and fried bologna...heck yeah!!!

                              1. re: BurtonBailey

                                Okay, this is way off-topic here, but does anyone know why the cocktails at Harry's Country Club aren't better?

                                I love Harry's, the beer list is great, the whiskey is great, the music is great, and yes, even the food is at least pretty good, sometimes better.

                                And they do seem to *care* about their cocktails, which is pretty critical. But they never come out all that great, in my experience, to the point that I would no longer recommend ordering them.

                                1. re: Aaron Deacon

                                  Hi Aaron, I don't know why the cocktails aren't better at Harry's Country Club, but I do know that there is serious confusion between: Harry's Bar & Tables in Westport and Harry's Country Club in the City Market. Different places, different owners - always confused.

                                  I would suggest you ask your friends at Harry's Country Club why their drinks aren't better the next time you go in. See what they say, they might not think they have an issue.

                                  My preference and the Harry's I was referring in my post to is Harry's Bar and Tables in Westport. It's where the Chefs and SIN folk hang out after work on their nights off, and the bartenders in there are considered the best in the city. I have seen everything from top shelf Whiskey, to Cosmo's, to shots, to beer, to high end Champagne bottle service go down at Harry's in Westport - they can do it all. And given the stairwell of a kitchen they have back there, they also make some pretty decent bar snacks. Besides, you can't beat the atmosphere and patio.

                                  Harry's in City Market - has it's fans, most of whom seem to be men who fall into three buckets: 1) Those who work in my office in the River Market. 2) Those who drink aged Whiskey or 3) Those who are in the law profession - judges or lawyers who retire to Harry's Country Club after being in court all day, which happens to be located right across the highway. I think the food is Applebee's on a good day, and I have heard the patio can get hoppin', but since I am not a man, who drinks aged Whiskey or is in the law profession, I am usually not found there. Although, the mere suggestion of a fried bologna sandwich from our friend above may cause me to reconsider. Yum!

                                  If I am in the City Market area and needing some liquid refreshment . . .I am at Delaware Cafe or Le Feu Frog.

                                  1. re: jvergara

                                    Harry's CC has the best fish & chips - only on Fri. for lunch special.

                          2. yes. harrys has an amazing bar! one that tony would appreciate for both its offerings as well as its appearance. i am so fond of the colombus park neighborhood and all it has to offer. kim longs is a high traffic vietnamese grocery/eatery that has a great pho ga. in fact all their soups are very good. happy gillis is an awesome cafe/hangout/breakfast/lunch spot where everything is made from scratch and personality radiates throughout the whole restaurant. he would def be interested in this one.
                            on the opposite end of the spectrum i am a huge fan of the american restaurant. food is taken seriously here.

                            1. El Taco Nazo in the 'Dotte for awsome pig's foot tacos and budweisers.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: chileheadmike

                                I went to his lecture at the Midland last night. It was everything I hoped it would be. He is a very good public speaker. The question and answer section was kind of lame with desperate people trying to coherse him into hanging out with him. I went to the reception at The Bristol afterwards. I was a little let down by that. For the price, I thought there would be decent food and wine. It turned out to be just the usual past apps, a small buffet with slim pickins and some skunky wine. I really can't complain, it was better than the usual Tuesday nights that I have. At the meet and greet he seemed really appreciative of the people that came to meet him.

                                After meeting him, I think he's an even better tv personality than I thought.

                                1. re: chinkymonkey

                                  I was lucky enough to see him speak also. I thought he was great and the crowd was awesome...so into it. I thought the food was wonderful and especially the oyster shooters. Chinkeymonkey...what did you think of the Midland? KC is coming alive guys.

                              2. I think that you all are missing the point. AB isn't coming to KC for French fine dining or any fine dining. that's not what KC is about. as heatherkay said above, KC is a town that's made of meat. that's why AB is coming. I'd expect him to hit Arthur Bryant's. it's the old school BBQ. thanGates, for what a system can do for a restaurant that still serves good BBQ. Then Fiorella's and Oklahoma Joe's and maybe a few of the other's. Then the Golden OX and/or Jes & Jim's for steak and maybe Winstead's for a shake and burger as a change of pace, and a KC institution. A walk around the Plaza and a summary in front of the shuttlecocks at the Nelson and that's a wrap. At least that's my prediction.

                                1. So I was fortunate enough to attend the media event beforehand and he asked what local beer was and ordered a Boulevard Pale Ale. Some one in the crowd asked him if he liked it and he said yes, he'd had one at lunch. So now I was intrigued and asked where he had eaten lunch.

                                  Turns out, in his hotel room. He'd just had a burger. I know he is busy but for all the talk of trying new foods and going out, I was a little dispirited he settled for a hotel burger.

                                  1. If Anthony Bourdain came back to visit KC in 2010, I would not recommend any pizza place. Hes probably tired of pizza and grinders since he is coming from NYC thats the mecca of pizzas. Do not mention D'Bronx. Im originally from Brooklyn NY and they are not close to NY pizza. Pizza is not bad but its not like NY.

                                    The only thing I would recommend is to check out most of the BBQ places.