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

Collection and Julian with Celina Tio

Collection and Julian with Celina Tio by Chris Becicka
For my first blog entry for Restaurant Guide of Kansas City, I thought I should write a profound introduction.  But nahhh . . . . instead, let me just mention a couple of things and we’ll fill in the gaps later.  This blog, Chris’ Corner, is going to cover eating out in Kansas City.  What a concept, right?  Yes, but I’ll also talk to chefs, talk about trends, special foods, special techniques, tidbits I learn.  It will always be short -- which, by the way, is really hard for me to do but I know about today’s attention spans.  It will appear, for now, at least every other week, so check back to this website.

Here goes.

I was interested in how a chef/owner runs more than one restaurant at a time.  So I talked to Celina Tio who has more energy than I have fat cells and who owns/chefs at Julian, her Brookside bistro and The Collection, on the edge of the Power and Light District.  Very different restaurants with a very different raison d'ĂȘtre, different vibes, different looks and of course different menus.  She’s still cooking at both places, training, expediting, and tasting everything – Collection at noon; Julian at dinner; she trades off weekend nights.  Menus have recently changed at both places for fall and winter – but this is harder than you’d think as people want their favorites back.  Her solution is to bring ’em back, but change them up a little. For instance, Julian always has some kind of smoked salmon.  She’s brought back the scallops with creamed mushrooms and mashed potatoes.  Her house made sausage on caraway cabbage is an unusual take on a dish that started out as something else. 

6227 Brookside Plaza, Brookside, MO 64113Located in the heart of Brookside
Julian on Urbanspoon

At Collection, she’s added a different kind of short rib dish,
one that her sous chef chose; there’s a frisee and arugula salad with pistachios, goat cheese, and pomegranate dressing.  Her famous carrots, however, are a signature item (roasted with cumin and harissa, the rest you’ll have to figure out).  She also does lots of catering for companies and events – where a whole altered approach is often required.

Her favorites are no surprise:  the scallops at Julian; the rigatoni with house-made sausage and mozzarella at Collection.  So how does Celina stay so petite and keep two restaurants running and personal?  Must be that energy.

1532 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64108Located in the Crossroads at 15th and Grand
(816) 471-7111

Collection on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

Marty Spencer said...

I've had the pleasure of eating at both restaurants and Chris' critique is spot on. Each is unique in its own way making it a pleasure to enjoy both. The locations are easy wherever you might live. Give them both a try. You will be glad that you did. Kudos Chris for a job well done.

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