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Italian in KC

  • j

Spending Labor Day weekend in KC and want to search out more Italian restaurants.
Have been to Lydia's and Cascones on Oak Traf. Way. (Both would highly recommend) Lived in KC 30 yrs ago and remember great place downtown called Gaitanos (sp) but figured they are long gone. Any suggestions for locally owned type fare?
For breakfast, we love First Watch in Westport area. The turkey eggs benedict keeps us going back.

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  1. la sals in columbus park is open m-f for lunch only, but its famous for its italian pastas and sandwhiches. garozzos in the same neighborhood has been around forever, been rebuilt after a fire and serves huge portions of fairly traditional american-italian food. the service is fun and the environment is casual.

    1. Carmen's in Brookside is a favorite and the food is always first rate. Tarantino's new location is close the the P$L Dist- i haven't been to that one yet but I'm sure its worth a trip.

      1. You might like Il Trullo, though it sounds as if it'd be a bit of drive south? http://www.iltrullo-kc.com/ I actually haven't been lately, but haven't had a bad meal there in the past.

        1. You might try the new Mike & Charlie's at Harrah's casino. Or Cupini's is good.


          1. Just had a very good meal at Osteria il Centro, just south of the plaza at about 51st and Main. I had grilled chicken and penne in a gorgonzola cream sauce, and hub had eggplant parmesan with linguine. Both reasonably priced for the quality.

            Accurso's Main Street Deli across Main Street is a very good red sauce Italian place. Slightly more casual.

            I've also had a very nice, very simple meal of Italian sausage, red sauce, and fettucine at Cucina di Mamma in Brookside. A more casual place.

            1 Reply
            1. re: heatherkay

              I second the vote for Osteria il Centro. I used to live just blocks away--have since moved back to my hometown of Minneapolis--and it was our go-to place for good Italian. I love the chicken spedini, haven't found anything quite like it in the Twin Cities, and go back almost every time we visit the KC in-laws.

            2. Italian is my favorite but in KC is a tough one. Lydia's (which you've already done) and Il Truilo (already mentioned) are the best -- if you're looking for Italian that's like food people eat in Italy. For the american-italian variety Cascone's is probably best. And Garrozzo's is very popular. Il Centro isn't really Italian -- though they have pizza and some dishes made with pasta. It's really just a place that's conveniently located and serves basic food. I've never been to Carmen's, can't get anyone to go (supposedly overwhelming portions type of place?) I almost never recommend non-local chains, but given the absence of options in this category, Brio on the Plaza is actually pretty good.

              3 Replies
              1. re: illycat

                It's Lidia's, not Lydia's. Still the best.

                For a fun red sauce place, try Anthony's at 701 Grand. Very old fashioned and now that KC restaurants are non smoking, much more attractive!

                1. re: zataar

                  always wanted to try Anthony's!
                  Is Italian Gardens still around? It was downtown, too?

                  1. re: stellamystar

                    Much to my husband's dismay, Italian Gardens is closed. That was a great piece of KC history. My grandma had her first glass of wine (and I'm guessing only glass of wine) at IG when she was in college.

              2. I would suggest Vivace in the River Quay area (River Market). Family owned and although it's a small menu, the food is very good.

                  1. re: jdl98

                    We had dinner at Jasper's this past spring. As much as I wanted to like it, I really did not like it. Every sauce and every vegetable tasted like chicken base. You know, the dark yellow paste that is used instead of real chicken stock. It tasted like it was in all the pastas, too. We were all wondering why they would put it in everything. Nothing tasted at all fresh or real, except the salads. The salads were nice.The service was nice, too. Everyone there was extremely pleasant and hard working.

                  2. While Cascone's out south is our favorite, Garrozzo's and Carmen's are very close seconds. The 5th & Harrison location, which is ten blocks east of the River Market area, is our favorite Garrozo's, but the food is probably just as good at the College Blvd location out south. Carmen's is in the Brookside area about twenty blocks south of the Plaza.