Restaurant Guide of KC™ - Kansas City Food + Travel Blog

  • Porto do Sul

    Brazilian Steakhouse

  • Harvest Table

    with an array of hot and cold items

  • Traditional Brazilian Steakhouse fare

    full Churrascaria experience

  • Offers a menu in the bar area

    for those in the mood for a lighter meal

  • Newly renovated second private dining room

    for your groups of up to 140 guests

Diners love local and hate texting

A new Zagat survey tracks American dining out trends and behaviors

New Orleans diners tip the best, Hawaiians the worst, diners think that texting at the table is rude and that food should be locally sourced, organic or sustainably raised.

Those were among the findings of Zagat's survey of 153,000 diners as it compiled its 2011 America’s Top Restaurants guide, which was released Wednesday.

Sixty-eight percent of participants in the survey said they thought it was important for the food they eat to be locally sourced, organic or sustainably raised, and 60 percent said they would even pay more for such food. Nearly a third, 31 percent, said they sought out restaurants specializing in such “green” cuisine.

Most diners — 85 percent — said it was fine to take pictures of food and each other at restaurants, but 63 percent said texting, tweeting and talking on cell phones was rude and inappropriate.

Diners are eating out a little less than before the recession — 3.1 times per week, compared with 3.3 percent. Thirty-nine percent said they are paying more attention to price, 33 percent said they’re eating in less expensive places, 17 percent said they were cutting back on alcohol, and 21 percent said they were ordering fewer appetizers and desserts.

Still, the national average price of a meal rose 2.2 percent in the past year to $35.37. New Orleans, where the average tip is 19.7 percent, has the lowest average meal cost among Zagat survey participants — of $28.36.

Right behind New Orleans diners in tipping are Denver, Detroit, Philadelphia, St. Louis and Ohio, where tippers leave an average gratuity of 19.6 percent

On the low end, Hawaiians tip 18.4 percent on average, and diners in Sacramento and San Francisco tip an average of 18.6 percent.

Las Vegas is the most expensive city to eat in, with an average meal price of $44.44.

As is usual in the Zagat survey, diners’ biggest complaint was poor service, although in the most recent survey just 67 percent said service was the most irritating thing about eating in restaurants, down from 72 percent in 2006. Picking up the slack in top complaints are noise and crowds, which are the pet peeves of 14 percent of diners, up from 12 percent in 2006. Complaints about price and food quality also rose from 5 percent to 7 percent

The New Drum Room Sizzles

The Drum Room in Kansas City’s Hilton President hotel has a brand new beat. The Drum Room proudly introduces new Chef Eric Carter along with a new menu specializing in the finest steaks Kansas City has to offer, along with a variety of Chef Carter’s culinary specialties, including fish and seafood choices, as well as chicken and pork Osso Bucco.

Executive Chef Eric Carter recently joined the Hilton President and has created a unique yet familiar dining experience for the famous Drum Room restaurant. Using only 100% Natural Angus Beef along with the freshest regional ingredients available, Chef Carter has created dishes using familiar styles of simple Midwestern cooking and presents them with a unique contemporary flair.

The Drum Room lounge, with its famous Happy Hour appetizers and renowned drink specials, is the only place to be for after work cocktails or for a sophisticated evening in the Power and Light District. On Friday and Saturday nights, jazz entertainers such as Meagan Birdsall, The Grand Marques, Anna Lee and the Lucky So & So’s, along with other leading Kansas City favorites perform. The Drum Room restaurant and lounge is located in Downtown Kansas City at the corner of Baltimore and 14th.

Check us out

Technomic finds dessert more popular than ever

It is no secret that the foodservice industry has suffered recently through a bleak economy; but the silver lining of the cloud could actually turn out to be icing. Technomic’s newest study finds that for the past three years, more consumers have consistently eaten more dessert. Occupying the smallest portion of most restaurant menus, dessert presents a strong growth opportunity for operators looking to increase sales.

“Dessert is unique, because it not only involves sensory appeal, but also sparks strong emotional drivers,” says Technomic EVP Darren Tristano. “If someone wants to reward themselves after a bad day, they might splurge on a dessert to feel better; but if they want to celebrate after a good day, they might do the same thing. Motivations for craving dessert run the gamut." Tristano added that only 1 percent of Technomic's survey respondents said they did not eat dessert, and 70 percent eat dessert at least once a week.

What Restaurant's Dessert do you enjoy?

Growing Market

According to Iremam (the French Institute of Research on Arab and Muslim civilisations) there are over 5 million Muslims in France and the halal market is four times more valuable than the market for organic food. Etude Solis, a market research firm specialised in ethnic marketing, are more modest in their estimations stating that it is at least twice the size of the organic market and are forecasting that by the end of 2010 it will be worth €4.5 billion, of which €1 billion will be spent in foodservice.

With eight million Muslims in the US, and the average family in the country spending around $2100 on food yearly, Chaudry estimates the US Halal market to be worth $16bn.

Quick, McDonald’s key competitor in France, announced that their sales in the eight outlets running a halal trial since November 2009 have doubled to date.

Carrefour Malaysia becomes the first hypermarket to offer full halal products within the three main sections of the supermarket chain.

The halal industry was a highly profitable sector and it had been acknowledged as an emerging economy that could not be ignored especially in Europe, deputy chairman of World Halal Forum Europe secretariat Jumaatun Azmi said.

Starbucks To Offer Beer and Wine

From One Addiction to the Next: Starbucks To Offer Beer and Wine
By: Megan Gibson (21 hours ago)
Topics: alcohol, beer, business, franchise, Seattle, starbucks, wine

Starbucks patrons could soon be riding an entirely new kind of buzz.
In an effort to attract more evening customers--reportedly, Starbucks gets 70% of its business before 2 p.m.--the coffee franchise is looking to offer regional beers and wines.

A location in Seattle is the first to offer alcohol in its newly revamped store. Kris Engskov, a region vice president for Starbucks, said, "What we've done is we've tried to create a variety of options that you might find in more of a restaurant at night."

(Check out TIME's Q&A with Starbucks founder, Howard Schultz.)

If the Seattle location does well, it likely will only be a matter of time before other locations start offering beer and wine, as well as a wider variety of food. And don't worry about feeling out of place in a traditional Starbucks with a glass of cabernet in your hand--the stores are reportedly being remodeled for a decidedly un-Starbucks look.

So could there be any new-Starbucks drawbacks (or drawbucks, as NewsFeed likes to think of them)? Definitely. It's largely thanks to Starbucks that paying $5 for a cup of coffee became normal--who knows what could happen to the cost of a pint. (via USA Today)


More than 1,000 years ago, a goatherd in Ethiopia' south-western highlands plucked a few red berries from some young green trees growing there in the forest and tasted them. He liked the flavour and the feel-good effect that followed. Today those self-same berries, dried, roasted and ground, have become the world's second most popular non-alcoholic beverage after tea. And, as David Beatty discovers in words and pictures, the Ethiopian province where they first blossomed "Kaffa " gave its name to coffee.

Ethiopians have harvested and enjoyed coffee for many centuries. Their love for coffee leads them to develop strict coffee preparation rules. Over time, this practice becomes a daily ritual in contemporary life. The coffee preparation and ceremonies are a unique cultural heritage of Ethiopian society that can’t be found anywhere else in the world.

To find and appreciate a good expresso or coffee, Revocup is providing you some of the best coffee in Town! 11030 Quivira Rd., Overland Park, KS 66210
(913) 663-3695

Nara 4th Anniversary!

Nara 4th year anniversary is coming in October. Plan to make your reservations on the 14th, 15th and 16th.
Their unique "body sushi" will be on display Saturday, October 16 at 9pm. The "Nara Sake Barrel" will be out for sake shots. $4 drink specials: Plum Pao; Sake Bombs; Nara Canes; Autumn Apple Martini will be available all three nights.

Berkshire Pork Chop served with wasabi mashed
potatoes and spring mix salad (Dinner menu)

$4 Sushi Anniversay Specials: Cajun Crawfish Roll and Baked Shichmi Spiced Green-lipped Mussels.

Always uniqueness at Nara. If you have not been to Nara - you will not be disappointed. Koji and Fumi always love to entertain and provide you the best quality sushi in town. Say hello to them at the sushi bar! More informations

Oak Room has new chef de cuisine

Oak Room has new chef de cuisine; new expanded menu to follow soon

Eric Dunn, executive chef Chris Hall’s newly appointed chef de cuisine at the Oak Room, signature restaurant of the InterContinental Kansas City at the Plaza, is already making a difference. “Chef Dunn has brought a lot of excitement, creativity and energy to the Oak Room kitchen,” said Don Breckenridge, the hotel’s general manager. “He is young, he’s on the cutting edge of food and the staff has faith in his leadership.”

Oak Room regulars have already noted Dunn’s influence through subtle refinements he has made to the current menu and his nightly specials. Oak Bar and Oak Room patrons will see his imprint on new menus set for October release. His new bar menu debuts October 4th with a selection of appetizers that includes potato and goat cheese croquettes with spicy tomato sauce and herb oil; yellow fin tuna tartare with soy marinade, sriracha and wonton chips; white wine, swiss and parmesan cheese fondue with assorted breads; and a cured meat plate with apple and peach moutarde. His expanded Oak Room menu debuts October 18th will feature heartier dishes for the fall/winter season. It pays homage to classics such as coq au vin, cassoulet and trout almondine, but with a “revived and relived” execution. “It won’t simply be Escoffier’s coq au vin,” says Dunn. “For example, I’ll braise a more tender chicken instead of the traditional rooster.” His favorite meat, pork, is also new on the menu: a braised Berkshire pork ragu with pappardelle pasta.

Dunn is a hands-on chef who is highly involved in the food he prepares. He is a devotee of a Lawrence community service garden and regularly shops area farmer’s markets where he buys fresh, local produce to incorporate in Oak Room dishes. He personally butchers the chicken used for coq au vin on the new menu. “I’m picky,” he confesses. Dunn’s cooking style is steeped in classic French fundamentals he learned at Johnson and Wales culinary school and working in French bistros, but stirred by the energy and inquisitiveness of a new generation of culinarians. He eschews trends that unnecessarily complicate cooking. “I like simple, pure flavors that nature gives us,” says Dunn. “Quality ingredients is key.”

More informations about Oak Room.

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