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Friday, January 29, 2016

L’École Culinaire – More Than “Just” a School

L’École Culinaire – More Than “Just” a School

Last Thursday I had dinner at L’Ecole Culinaire’s Presentation Room on the Plaza.  If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a private cooking school with locations also in Memphis and St. Louis.  They offer classes to us ordinary mortals as well (see our current wine contest for their wine class on February 12th!) as well as degree classes and diplomas in culinary skills and restaurant management.  Students do the cooking and baking as well as the serving and hosting. 

BUT, what I want to talk about is this dinner we had.  Prepared and served by students, it was delicious and remarkably, and I mean remarkably, inexpensive.  The charcuterie board was amazing, four or so different meats and pates, grilled bread, scallions, beets, couple of difference sauces – it was, truly, a meal for two all on its own.  Seven bucks.   Entrées were $12 and you could choose from five – a fish, sirloin, lamb, and a chicken lasagna that was unusual and excellent according to my co-taster.  I had the pork chop which was perfect and served with probably the best Brussels sprouts I have ever had. There was a choice of three desserts, each at $3, which included flaming bananas foster.  The place has a bakery outlet downstairs which is open five days a week and serves coffee as well. 

You can only get dinner on Wednesdays and Thursdays and reservations are preferred of course.  Call 816-627-0100 for those.  And check out their evolving classes on chocolate, wine, pizza, and more for amateurs by first checking out our website which will take you to their classes. Or go there for lunch, Monday through Thursday.

L'Ecole Culinaire Presentation Room
310 Ward Parkway 
Kansas City, MO 64112 
Ph. 816-627-0100 


Monday, January 25, 2016

Slurping oysters will win one lucky team $1,000

Slurping oysters will win one lucky team $1,000 at the second annual Jax Fish House oyster eating competition on February 27
Jax declares February Oyster Month and will feature weekly food and drink specials and 10 cents per oyster shucked donated to Leukemia & Lymphoma Society during the month
 Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar has declared February Oyster Month and is planning a month-long celebration, highlighted by its second annual oyster eating competition on Saturday, Feb. 27 with a grand prize of $1,000 and free crab for a year. Guests will also have the opportunity to enjoy weekly food and drink specials all month created by Chef de Cuisine Theresia Ota and Lead Bartender Kenny Cohrs. Finally, ten cents per every Emersum oyster shucked at Jax during the month of February will be donated to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Oyster Eating Competition

Jax’s second annual oyster eating competition will take place on Saturday, February 27 at 2 p.m. Teams of four will attempt to swallow the most oysters in a 2-minute battle. The team that slurps the most oysters in the given time will win $1,000 cash. The entry fee for the oyster eating competition is $400 and all proceeds will benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Those who wish to enter the oyster eating competition can register by calling Jax at (816) 437-7940 and asking for Tim Roy or Margaret Adams. The last day to register is February 20. Space is limited.

Oyster Month Food & Drink Specials

Chef de Cuisine Theresia Ota has created four oyster-inspired dishes for the oyster month celebration. Each special will run for one week during February.

        Week 1 (Feb. 1-7)- Duane’s Spicy Fried Oysters $15- Sriracha hot sauce, sweet and sour fennel, yuzu aioli, toasted sesame seed, puffed rice

        Week 2 (Feb. 8-14)- Fried Oyster Biscuit and Gravy $15- Andouille, white gravy, sunny egg

        Week 3 (Feb. 15-22)- Dietzy’s Banh Mi $17- Rice flour fried oysters, Nam Pla Pickled vegetables, cilantro, sriracha mayo, chicken liver pate

        Week 4 (Feb. 23-29)- Tempura Oyster and Ahi Udon $19- Soy marinated mushrooms, ahi noodles, kimchee, miso broth, nori

Lead Bartender Kenny Cohrs has also developed a number of oyster month drinks that will run throughout February including:

        Precautionary Measures - Featuring Deveron 12 year scotch, Pimm's No.1 liqueur and Combier, the original triple sec.

Charity


Ten cents of every Emersum oyster shucked during the month of February will be donated to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). Jax will also donate the registration fees from the oyster eating competition to LLS. 

4814 Roanoke Pkwy
Kansas City, MO 64112
Ph. (816) 437-7940 

Donate to JCCC Food Pantry

Donate to JCCC Food Pantry and receive 20% off your order at The Pastry Shop
(Open every Friday when classes are in session from 3 p.m. until sold out or 5:30 p.m.)
The pastry program is partnering with the colleges food pantry and will accept items on Fridays during the sale. Please bring items from the list below and we will make sure you receive a 20% discount during checkout.
Canned meats, tuna, chicken, and meat pasta sauces, peanut butter, canned fruit, chunky meat soups, protein or whole wheat, pastas, whole grain cereals.  If possible, please no canned vegetable products particularly canned corn and bean products (we have boxes and boxes).

If you would like to make a cash donation
Let the cashier know how much you are contributing above your total and it will be donated to the pantry.
You may go to https://secure.touchnet.com/C20110_ustores/web/store_cat.jsp?STOREID=3&CATID=606&SINGLESTORE=true to make the donation.
Checks should be made out to “JCCC Foundation” then in note Food Pantry.

Send checks to
JCCC Foundation
Johnson County Community College
12345 College Blvd.
Overland Park, KS 66210-1299

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Like Travel? Like Wine? Then you'll love

If you like food & wine, you will love this...


Publisher of the Restaurant Guide of Kansas City, Kathy Denis, a French government certified tour guide in the Bordeaux area in the 1990s, decided to lead twice-yearly culinary tours three years ago. Her husband is from France, and after their marriage, they moved to Kansas City and started publishing the restaurant guide.

     “We had always given advice on travelling to France and helped people plan their vacations. While on a family trip to France in 2012, we decided to ‘officially’ share our knowledge, experience, and personal contacts in France by launching a sister-business called Global Culinary Escapades,” explained Kathy.

     The main area they focus on is the city of Bordeaux, its surrounding vineyards including the town of St. Emilion, and the Dordogne Valley, including the medieval town of Sarlat. Kathy Pelz (Kansas City) and two former Dames have been among the 15 travelers on each tour.

     “We have personally known for years many of the artisans and restaurants that we visit, so the biggest challenge in planning tours is narrowing down the places where we can actually take people on the tours because of time constraints. There are so many fantastic artisans passionate about what they do and amazing places to visit with such rich history that we could easily spend a lot more time in each area,” said Kathy.

     Unusual things sometimes happen during tours. Kathy relates, “We were having dinner in a private room of a castle that had a fire lit in the fireplace, large candelabras and candles everywhere, and it was thundering and lightening When the server left the room, we decided that the atmosphere was more authentic without the electric lights from the chandelier so we turned them off! She was surprised upon returning and thought there was a problem with the electricity. We convinced her that we were perfectly fine without the electric lights on and finished our meal in a completely medieval atmosphere. Also, I ran into French movie star Franck Dubosc when we were visiting Sarlat’s Saturday market and got my picture taken with him.”

     Foods typical of the region where Kathy takes her tours are oysters, foie gras, confit de canard, red wine, canelés (small dessert cakes from Bordeaux), black truffles (from Perigord), and cèpe mushrooms.

     Pleased guests wrote, “We saw and did so much that the trip now seems magical.” “Wow – beyond my expectations with a surprise around every corner.” “Fabulous trip of a lifetime.”

More information click here or 913.766.8067

Monday, January 4, 2016

Happy Hour V

Bring in the New Year . . . Skipping the Bubbles
Well, I am just about there – ready to say no more alcohol!  Between the food and the drink, I’ve successfully gained a few pounds this holiday season, which of course I needed.  So maybe it’s time to kick it down a notch.  Hmmmm, where to go to have a drink that’s not a drink and not just a drink that they subtract the alcohol from?

I don’t want to talk about coffee or tea or diet coke or a green smoothie here.  I want it still to be pretty and sparkly if possible.  Like the seven Italian cream sodas, including orange or pomegranate or blackberry at Webster House.  My friend loves the Not Your Father’s Root Beer at Cleaver & Cork but they also serve Little Freshie seasonal hand crafted sodas, too. For the ultimate, perhaps, try the “Nara Cure” at the eponymous restaurant – it’s made of healing elixirs: botanicals of cucumber, thyme, lemon and orange are said to promote a youthful glow and spirit.

Of course, maybe I can get that youthful glow by returning to my inner child and just ordering a Shirley Temple (probably from someone who doesn’t know who Shirley was and why there’d be a drink named after her).  Make mine with club soda.  And extra cherries.  The low cal ones of course. 


Cheers to 2016!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

It’s in the Details


The word of the year, according to Merriam Webster, is a suffix.  This got me thinking . . .

Despite the freneticism, the skepticism, and the commercialism, one of the reasons I truly love the holidays is the details.  Mostly, besides the good feelings I, and most others, seem to automatically have, it’s the new décor that interests me. The small, or large, touches that whisper, or shout, hey, there’s something special going on -- so lookie here, lookie here.

Our K.C. restaurants, like those everywhere, join in this spirit.  Sure, it’s a great season for eating out but I get the feeling it’s more than a chore.  The purple tree at Bo Lings Plaza is festive and different.  801 Chophouse in Leawood has a giant tree not to be missed.  Walk into the Hilton President and gander at the garland, the tree and the many touches in this classic place before you dine at Providence.  Walk the Plaza streets and even look at the light poles before you cross over to Jax or JJ’s. Go the other direction and duck into Café Trio – wow!

Some places also include special, tiny décor additions like Webster House.  Some do big splashy additions like the poinsettia tree at the Block Space.  It’s fun that everywhere you go, there is both new minutiae and grand displays – both there for only a while. It’s all guaranteed to make you feel holidayish. 

Enjoy it while it lasts.


It’s definitely a time for merryism  and happyism!   

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Shop, Don’t Drop



It occurs to me that not only is it already December, but that brings Christmas and Hanukkah along with it – and the, let’s face it, responsibility and accountability of gifts.  Every year, the month is apparently a surprise – and somehow I’m never ready.

There are a few ways to go here – endless, mindless traipsing, on-line clicking and re-clicking and then hoping it gets here or there in time, or simply knowing a few great places that somehow always seem to work.

Among those places, for me, are Pryde’s  Kitchen &Necessities in Westport and the FrenchMarket  in Prairie Village.  Everyone knows Pryde’s whether your loved (or just liked or heck, just the person who works for you) wants premium cutlery or Fiesta Ware or a molcajete.  They have some really nice gift baskets I notice – whether the receiver is a barbeque fan (local of course!) or a gourmet coffee drinker.  Or, they’ll put together and package whatever you choose so beautifully the recipient will be impressed (and know you didn’t do it).

You may not have noticed that Prairie Village has become quite the boutique-y place to shop recently with items not found typically elsewhere.  That’s really true for the French Market.  Personally, my idea of a GREAT present would be someone dropping by a complete dinner (which they do) for spouse and me, but they also have a unique selection of specialty imported items from France ranging from fabulous French table linens to canisters to dishware you won’t see elsewhere.

Oh, one other idea – give that truly loved person a trip of a lifetime.  The one I’m looking at is aimed at foodies and their ilk – it’s in Bordeaux.  I found it at globalculinaryescapades.com. Ok, so after all, clicking could be one way to go.  But in any event, I feel sure I’ve solved most of your merry shopping dilemmas today.


You’re welcome.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Fogo de Chão Introduces Special Holiday Items and Extended Hours

Fogo de Chão Brazilian Steakhouse will have special hours during the holidays, with several locations open on Christmas Day, and offer holiday menu additions included as part of their Full Churrasco Experience. New items include a classic slow roasted beef roast; Quentão (keen-tao) – a warm Brazilian mulled red wine made with fresh oranges, cinnamon, clove, and ginger; Sweet Potato Casserole with rich butter, cinnamon, and toasted marshmallows; and tender New York Strip steak carved tableside by gaucho chefs.

Fogo offers a lively and elegant atmosphere that is perfect for celebrating with family, friends and loved ones during this holiday season. Fogo de Chão shares the centuries-old Southern Brazilian cooking technique of churrasco, the art of roasting meats over an open fire, and espeto corrido, or “continuous service.” Their menu features a wealth of savory, fire-roasted meats perfectly seasoned, prepared and carved tableside for each guest by a team of authentic Brazilian-trained gaucho chefs. Additionally, guests can also enjoy the gourmet Market Table & Feijoada Bar, which includes seasonal salads, soups, fresh vegetables, feijoada (traditional black bean stew with rice, fresh orange and toasted yucca flour), and authentic Brazilian side dishes. To further complement the dining experience, the restaurant offers an award-winning wine list, tempting dessert menu, and creative and classic cocktails.

“The holidays are a time to celebrate and being from Brazil, celebrating is part of our DNA,” says Larry Johnson, CEO. “We’ve added new holiday-inspired menu items to make our dining experience even more exciting; couple that with our team’s warm Southern Brazilian hospitality and Fogo is a not-to-be missed stop this holiday season.”


All locations will be open Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day. Hours vary by location. Locations open on Christmas Day include Addison, TX; Atlanta, GA; Baltimore, MD; Beverly Hills, CA; Boston, MA; Chicago, IL; Houston, TX; Indianapolis, IN; Kansas City, MO; Las Vegas, NV; Minneapolis, MN; Orlando, FL; San Antonio, TX; and Washington, D.C. Reservations are highly recommended. Visit kcrestaurantguide.com for more information, hours of operation, and to make a reservation. The limited time menu items are included as part of the Full Churrasco Experience from December 24 through January 1st



Quentão, a traditional Brazilian mulled wine, is simmered with fresh oranges, cinnamon, clove, ginger, and star anise and served warm. Available December 24 through January 1st.



The Sweet Potato Casserole embraces a savory combination of butter and cinnamon, topped with toasted marshmallows and served warm.  Available through January 1st.



Picanha is the house-specialty meat. A Brazilian favorite, it is the prime part of the top sirloin, sliced thin and lightly seasoned with rock salt or garlic.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Winter Wining By Chris Becicka

Kansas City Restaurants’ Wine Programs: A Guide


As winter envelops us, thoughts may turn to cozy evenings in front of the fire with a bottle of wine and some pâté, let’s say. 

There is a better approach, however – bundle up and trek to a great Kansas City restaurant and have that bottle of wine selected by an expert to go specifically with what you’ve chosen for appetizer and dinner. Let your cares and issues dissolve . . . you’re not at home.

Plus, even better perhaps, you don’t have to agonize over difference between an 88 or 92 wine rating (not that much it turns out.) 
Gaslight Grill’s Wine Room displays some of their finest bottles

But first, a few fascinating wine facts. Wine has been part of life probably longer than you think – since around eight thousand years ago. The oldest glass wine bottle was found in Speyer, Germany in an ancient Roman chest, theoretically dating back to 325 AD. Although there are thousands of wines created from around 10,000 wine grapes available worldwide, they all fit into just three basic categories: table wines including the finest, fortified wines and sparkling wines. 

But for those three categories, there are thousands upon thousands of different bottles of wines produced, translating into very healthy and continuing to rise US wine revenues at some $38 billion per year. (Other statistics are available in our on-line version of this article.) No matter how you count it, we drink a lot of wine, borne out by the fact that the U.S. has been the largest wine consuming nation since 2010. 

Just these few facts may hint that knowing much about this industry is a huge job. There are oh, maybe around 14,000 – 15,000 different wines on the market; knowing a substantial number of them is the task of that earlier mentioned expert. Often the best at that task are called wine stewards or sommeliers. Pronounce, with my simple non-symbolled phonetics, with me: (sum maul yay). Say this originally French word that meant transporter several times.

Certified or Certificated 

We are fortunate to have many such experts in Kansas City; several are “registered,” or more accurately, “certificated” sommeliers.

Anne Woods of the Sommelier Society of America points out there is no way to assess the number of "certified" sommeliers in the United States, or the number of sommeliers by state and the title; the profession, does not require state certification. However, there are many courses and classes exist that include stiff, difficult written exams along with blind-tastings for wine identification and descriptors, given by several organizations recognized by the wine industry. 

The first such organization is the Sommelier Society of America which was established in 1954 – the very first time that "wine waiters" succeeded in achieving recognition and status. Their knowledge and expertise in wines and food pairings created a separate prestigious position in the restaurant. At that time the common title was Wine Captain. Another is the Court of Master Sommeliers, located in California, established in 1977. The North American Sommelier Association is another association that provides sommelier certification and was founded in 2006. 

So, a sommelier is a trained and knowledgeable wine professional, one who specializes in all aspects of wine service as well as wine and food pairing. He or she is probably responsible for the development of a restaurant’s wine list, its purchase and delivery of the wine service, training other restaurant staff, and pairing and suggesting wines to complement specific menu items as well as complete meals. This means a full recognition of how food and wine, beer, spirits and other beverages work in harmony. Sommeliers usually also work the floor and must work within the taste and price parameters of their patrons, even if they’re not terribly sure of what those might be. 

Sommelier Training 

There are levels which require increasing years of arduously gained knowledge. To achieve even the minimum level, these oenophiles require a good memory and a good palate, one able to distinguish among those varieties, the regions all over the world that produce the grapes, and even the years the wine was produced. 

The North American Sommelier Association has three phases and two tiers: Silver-Pin and the higher Gold-Pin. The Court of Master Sommeliers has four levels of certification from Level I to IV. Others include the Wine and Spirits Education Trust, the Society of Wine Educators, the International Wine guild, the International Sommelier Guild. Several colleges offer programs. Many choices, many variations. 

Besides the time and effort involved, the courses are not inexpensive, either. There are college degrees available requiring two to four years. Though a basic education may be attained for anywhere from $1,000 – $4,000 over the course of six months, advanced professional certification requires years of costly study, practice and experience. Keep in mind that while some have chosen to go this route, others have decided against it and simply continue to enhance their expertise through their own reading, studying, and working. And we assume, tasting. 

Why, Why, Why

David Crowe, the Wine director at Pierpont’s, a Certified Sommelier (Level 2) from the Court of Master Sommeliers, will make his first attempt at the Advanced Sommelier (Level 3) in 2016. It’s grueling, he says, but he started down the path because he quickly figured out just knowing grapes and their countries was nothing compared to “understanding what the guest is looking for in his personal experience that evening, and going above and beyond what the guest is expecting.” Working towards the Level 3 is a natural progression for him. 


Rick Compton at Jax Fish House and Oyster Bar, not only has his sommelier designation from the Court of Master Sommeliers, but also has his Certified Cicerone. He says that the biggest impact from having the designations is that he is better able to match a wine or a beer to a guest. “There's a lot of importance placed on beer/wine/food pairings, but at the end of the day, I believe that pairing a beer or wine to food is much less important than pairing the beer/wine to the guest.” 

Wine Spectator Awards 

Four restaurants in Kansas City earned the esteemed Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence in 2015: the American in Crown Center, 801 Chophouse in Leawood, Story in Prairie Village, and JJ’s in the Plaza. The task of building that list is typically the job of the sommelier or a combination of owner or manager and sommelier. Owner Jimmy Frantzé of JJ’s, regarded for having the most extensive wine list in town for many years before the 2013 explosion that destroyed his restaurant and some 7,200 bottles of wine, has rebuilt his list beginning with the 6,000 bottles he had stored in a different location. 

Another 18 Kansas City restaurants earned the Spectator’s Award of Excellence including the 801 Chophouse Power and Light, 801 Fish, Final Cut Steakhouse, Fogo de Chao, Gaslight Grill, Pierpont’s, Room 39, Sullivan’s Steakhouse, and the Melting Pot. But what do these awards mean and why do they matter to you, the drinker? For starters, this means that the restaurant management is interested enough to apply for the recognition. Winning an award is a great honor which they do their best to publicize. 

So Many Wines, So Little Time 

Of course you need to narrow down those choices that the wine experts have already made for you. Personally, I think one of the very best ways to do that is to go to wine dinners or tastings that usually include special menus. And Kansas City is in luck, there. Genovese and Story, for instance, have a regular wine dinner every month. Webster House hosts tastings and lets people “vote” – and the winner ends up on their list. The best way to find many of these wine dinners is, modestly, to go to our web site and click on Calendar Events. You may also find additional events and offers by signing up for your favorite restaurants’ emails or newsletters – truly handy for discovering such events as Stephen Malloy heavily discounting wines at the Classic Cup starting in January and running through mid-March. 

I’d be remiss if I didn’t also say that it’s smart to take advantage of the many wine specials our restaurants offer. Beyond Happy Hours which almost always have discounted wines, we’ve found more opportunities. What is especially cool is that they are available almost every day of the week. We’ve done the research on our favorites for you. The increasing number of wine drinkers and their improved knowledge is one trend that Jimmy Frantzé has noticed. With nearly 30 years in the restaurant business, he says that nothing surprises him but the number of new regions producing good wine is a source of wonder to him. He cites South America, Portugal, southern Italy, even South Africa. He also adds, “But there is no doubt that Americans are more savvy and more interested in drinking good wine and knowing about it than they ever have been” – not that he’s endorsing the pinot noir trend. 


Matt Nichols, Partner, General Manager & Wine Expert at JJ’s

Perhaps that interest in wine is somewhat fueled by media attention like the recent article headline in the October Wine Spectator which exclaimed: “Moderate Wine Consumption May Fight Alzheimer’s,” a conclusion from Chicago’s Rush University Medical Center. The article explained the (many) finer details, but the headline is enough for me. 

 And I will definitely continue my practice of asking the experts what I should try next – they’ve always been veracious. I have a friend who, not originally, says, “Life is too short to not drink good wine.” I think the best way to do that is to consult your knowledgeable and helpful wine expert on these long winter nights – or any time you want a good glass of wine.

K.C. Restaurants’ Wine Programs: 


Wine Spectator Award  2015 * Certified Wine Expert on Staff Wine Dinners / Tastings Wine Flights or Pairings Wine Specials Offered
801 Chophouse Leawood BAE
801 Chophouse P & L AE
801 Fish AE
Andres (Main St.)
Cafe Verona
Cafe Trio TU & SU
CHARISSE W
Classic Cup
Cleaver & Cork TH
Em Chamas
Espirito do Sul
Final Cut Steakhouse AE W-TH
Fogo de Chao AE
Gaslight Grill AE SU
Genovese M
Grünauer
Hereford House SU-M
Jax SU
JJ's BAE SU
Le Fou Frog
McCormick & Schmick's
Ophelia's
Pierpont's AE
Piropos
Providence SU-M
Ricco's W
Room 39  AE M
Story BAE
Sullivan's Steakshouse AE SU
Tannin SU
The American  BAE F (Lunch)
The Journey
The Melting Pot AE TH
Webster House
* BAE = Best of Award of Excellence
* AE = Award of Excellence

Printed version: K.C. Restaurants’ Wine Programs


Wine and Spirits Magazine Poll
 Their annual poll discovers the top 50 wines ordered in restaurants throughout the United States.  Of those 50, the top ten most popular of 2014: 
1. Jordan Vineyard & Winery
2. Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars
3. Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards
4. Duckhorn Vineyards
5. Cakebread Cellars
6. Caymus Vineyards
7. Silver Oak Wine Cellars
8. Kistler Vineyards
9. Veuve Clicquot
10. Chateau Ste. Michelle

How many of these have you had?  Several are quite pricey, by the way, a variation from the trend to more moderately priced wines.


I Did Not Know That
The amount of wine imbibed by North Americans has continued to increase every year for the last 22 years.
Screaming Eagle, a really famous “boutique” or cult cabernet that can retail for up to $3,500, is owned by       , a  Wal-Mart billionaire.
In order from #1 down, the top wine producing states are probably:  1- California, 2- Washington, 3- Oregon, 4- New York, and 5- Virginia.  Texas perhaps instead of Virginia.  Missouri is about #10 or so  (# of vineyards among the lower number states keeps changing)
Swirling your wine is really not showing off.  It’s adding oxygen which allows more aroma to escape.  (Well, I knew this, just wanted to make sure you did, too.)

Missouri has about 175 wineries and Kansas about 40.

About 60% of our wine is from California, 31% is imported internationally, and 9% is from another state.

If someone offers to buy you a jeroboam of wine, say yes.  It’s 4 bottles of wine.  A Methuselah is 8 and the king of them is: Nebuchadnezzar, 20 bottles in one.  That’s a party. But who can pour it?

Per capita wine consumption in the U.S. is a bit more than 3 gallons per year.  I’m doing my part, how ’bout you?

Did you find this article interesting? 

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Hour IV: Drinking (& Eating) at Cleaver & Cork

Happy Hour IV: Drinking (& Eating) at Cleaver & Cork


You already know how much I love happy hours in K.C.  It’s not just the fact that food and drink are cheaper, truly.  It’s not just that they are an early excuse to start the party. It’s not just that you can eat lighter if you so desire.  Or that I basically like sitting at bars.  No, a big part of it for me is that happy hours are a way to sample . . . and to help me decide if I wanna come back.

My first happy hour, many months ago, did just that.  Cleaver & Cork’s starts early, at 4 p.m. and ends three hours later – a real plus for chatters – and the bar usually seems less noisy than the tables section. It does pick up of course – you are in the Power and Light District!  Their drinks are price-reduced, including their craft cocktails like my favorite, at least in the summer, the Horsefeathers (whisky, ginger beer and bitters).  They have $5 wines and $4 draft beers. Some menu items are half priced – and not half sized. Their pulled pork sandwich is dinner by itself and the fries with the skins on are delish and when you ask for them extra crispy, they are.  (Not always true I can assure you.) The cheese curds are mouth-poppable and the homemade bratwurst has that crunchy outer skin that’s so important.


A couple of happy hours later, I went back for dinner.  Though I’m still not sure what a gastropub is, I do know the menu is pretty comprehensive and I was there with a large party – and everyone was happy.  Still. 

1333 Walnut Street 
Kansas City, MO 64106 
Ph. 816-541-3484 


Cleaver & Cork Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato