Kansas City, opinion, cocktails, snark.

August 18, 2008

Stuff we did today.

Bought a Dyson Slim. The phrase ‘sucks like a Hoover’ should immediately be replaced with ‘sucks like a Dyson.’ This is probably the most well-designed thing we’ve ever owned. Even the box is a marvel of invention.

Hung a print I bought & framed. The artist, James Amerson, took pictures of drag queens during Mardi Gras & Southern Decadence, painted portraits from the photos and auctioned the portraits to benefit Habitat for Humanity. Now he’s selling prints. This is Fonzie Martini and she has pride of place in our dining room, just above the liquor cabinet.

I had brunch at Avenues Bistro with Leigh Anne & Joe. Wow. This place is good and provides a cheap brunch. For $12.95, you get your choice of a couple dozen entrees and as many trips to the brunch buffet as you like. The buffet is divided between an antipasto section consisting of various meats, cheeses and pickled vegetables and a section of cold salads & various breads and pastries. We had 10am reservations but didn’t need them, though it was beginning to fill up when we left shortly after 11. Of course, people were standing 10 deep outside of Sharp’s. If you’re a Sharp’s Sunday devotee, save yourself some wait time and a mediocre meal and make a reservation up the street. The food & service are way-betta.

July 21, 2008

The end is nigh, motherf%$#@&!

Filed under: Food, General — Tags: , — akcb @ 10:17 pm

CNN, always helpful, tells us what will kill us today. Do you know where your children are?

Also, it’s an imported Mexican pepper. Not only are they invading our country, taking our high-paying landscaping jobs, and enciting our women to turn to lustful & immoral ways, now they’re trying to kill us through our love of delicious fresh salsas. Brown devils!

June 2, 2008

God’s chosen lunch.

Filed under: Food, kansas city — Tags: , , — akcb @ 2:11 am

Here’s a thing you should do next year. Visit KosherFest 2009. The fine folks at Congregation Ohev Sholom are in their second year of celebrating Jewish foodways with this amazing Prairie Village festival. I can’t recommend it enough. It’s the perfect festival in that there’s really nothing to do but eat (there’s some live music & dancing and some kids’ crap sort of out-of-the-way & around the back, but food’s the focus here). And the food is glorious! We enjoyed some amazing traditional dishes: latkes; chopped liver sandwiches; bagels with cream cheese, lox, onions and tomatoes; cabbage rolls & the most amazing honey cake into which I’ve ever set tooth. I think this is my new favorite Kansas City festival.

May 1, 2008


Filed under: Food, kansas city, Local Restaurants — Tags: — akcb @ 1:27 am

After a repugnant “meal” at Jose Pepper’s a number of year’s ago, you’d think I’d learn not venture off the Boulevard for Tex-Mex (or away from the divine Tienda Casa Paloma for a more authentic Mexican experience…and a Google search tells me TCP has recently been sold; Lisa, what happened?), but tonight I found myself telling The Husband I wanted to try Taco Bueno near North Oak and Vivion as we made our way back from a harrowing rush-hour trip to Jos. A Bank (seriously, the suburban school districts must be amazing considering how many people are willing to put up with Broadway traffic at 5pm).

If you have the opportunity to try Taco Bueno, don’t. The food is mediocre at best and so incredibly salty that I downed three glasses of water after. While you may find slightly fresher lettuce and tomatoes than you would at Taco Bell, it’s just not worth the trip even if you live just around the corner which I don’t.

April 27, 2008

Justus Drugstore: a reason to go to Smithville.

Filed under: Food, kansas city, Local Restaurants — Tags: — akcb @ 6:40 pm

I’m not a food writer; bear with me.

Ladybird & Maureen have been going on and on about Justus Drugstore in Smithville for a couple of months now. So it was with much excitement that we packed provisions and saddled up the horses last night for our dinner club’s excursion to the Great White North.

While we had 8:30 reservations, we weren’t seated until nearly 10 as other diners lingered over dessert & coffee. This was to our benefit for two reasons. It gave us ample time to thoroughly sample the cocktail menu (the Sazerac d’Oise & the Silver Elder Fizz receive my highest recommendation). Also, it gave our Baldwin City stragglers, LAB & Joe ample time to put the pedal to the floor and show up just as we were being seated.

Here’s the thing about the food at Justus. It’s amazing. It’s some of the best food I’ve ever had in this city. As a first course, I ordered the Foie Gras Terrine. The terrine is chock full of pecans & figs and served with fresh pear slices, a ginger pear port syrup & cinnamon brioche french toast. While excellent, it was my least favorite dish of the night. I had a chance to sample Mo’s Crawdad Cakes with a delicious remoulade and they were a revelation. Even LAB, who can’t stand the thought of mudbugs, gave them a rave review.

For my salad course, I ordered the Curly Endive Salad. It’s a bed of curly endive with a mustard vinaigrette, bacon lardons, smoked trout roe, truffle oil and a terribly beautiful breaded soft-boiled egg. It is heaven on a plate. The helpful waiter explained that its meant to be eaten with a bit of everything in each bite. I don’t think I’ve ever had a better salad. The interplay between the salty bacon, the creamy egg, the crunchy breading, the sharpness of the endive, the sweet smokiness of the roe and the tart vinaigrette…beautiful. I could have ordered half a dozen more.

By the time the main course arrived, I was starting to get a bit full. I ordered the Berkshire Pork Ribeye served with a small piece of braised pork shoulder, fig sauce, green beans and a house-made pasta with Maytag blue cheese sauce. Formerly known as Pork Two Ways, this dish had been hailed by both Ladybird & Fi as the Best Thing on the Menu. It did not disappoint. The ribeye was cooked to perfection, perfectly seasoned and paired beautifully with the fig sauce. The sauce on the noodles was sublime, creamy and slightly sharp perfection. I love this dish. I want to marry this dish.

Some advice:

If you go, and have reservations, still be prepared to wait a bit. This is not a meal you want to rush through, nor should you expect others to rush.

Do not go with a large party. Stick to four or fewer. They aren’t set up anything more and the bookish hostess with the frizzy hair will not push the tables together. Well, they wouldn’t for us. They pushed two tables together for another large party, but I think the owner’s mom was in that group. So I guess it’s who you know. We finally managed to push ours together once they stopped seating folks at 11.

Go with your wallet full. Expect to come home with it empty. It’s rare that I spend $100 dollars on dinner, but it was easy to do at Justus. It’s even rarer that I feel like I actually got my money’s worth. Justus did that in spades. So put your affairs in order, hire an Indian guide and make the trek to Smithville. You’ll be glad you did.

March 26, 2008

Chalk one up for the big guy.

Filed under: Food, kansas city, missouri, politics — Tags: , , — akcb @ 3:54 am


Kansas and Missouri lawmakers are proposing limiting language on milk bottles. Looks like aggie drug pushers & DFA dairies are afraid small, locally-owned dairies like Shatto are cutting into their piece of the pie. Sadness.

Killer quote: “Some customers, however, don’t trust the FDA and want to avoid milk from hormone-treated animals.”

I can’t imagine from where this lack of trust comes . It’s a puzzle.

I’m a big fan of Shatto products for a couple of reasons, chiefly their glass bottles are returnable for the deposit, so I’m producing less waste and that’s less to carry out on trash day. And I’m really lazy.

March 12, 2008

Are you a good lobbyist or a bad lobbyist? and other exciting links.

Filed under: Food, General, kansas city, politics — Tags: , , — akcb @ 12:33 am


March 5, 2008

Paula Deen for Preznit of the United States of America.

Filed under: Food — akcb @ 1:49 am


My friend Sarah sent me this link today.


I, of course, responded with own personal favorite Paula Deen receipt. How can any recipe that begins with “Cube two dozen Krispy Kreme donuts in a large bowl” be wrong?

Paula, you are a visionary and America needs you! Lead us, Paula. Lead us.

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