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KC- Dining Up North of the River


Zeemanb
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I took vacation time last week and used some of it to visit restaurants near or semi-near my home in Parkville. In all, I'm pretty happy with what we've found thus far. I'll still be venturing out of the 'hood from time to time, but it's nice to know there are some good locally owned places very close to home. I think I'll keep adding to this thread as time and diet-dodging allows. There are just a ton of intriguing little places in the immediate area.

Sorrento's Italian Café (2502 NW Vivion Rd, Riverside, MO 64150)

Not exactly across the street from me, but I'm down at Red X and Al's Junk (my ideas of shopping paradise) all the time, and it's in the same strip mall as Al's. Sorrento's is truly run by an Italian grandmother and her kids, with the kind of personable service and cheer that reminded me of Tienda Casa Paloma out on Metcalf. You order and pick up your food at the cash register, and the menu is varied with nothing over ten dollars as far as I recall. This is not fast food, almost everything is cooked to order. Lots of sandwiches…. Italian beef, chicken parm, spiedini, a giant tenderloin, and a decent selection of Italian deli meats (including mortadella, which I don't see on too many deli menus around here) and cheeses so you can create-your-own sandwich. Dinners include standards like lasagna, fettucine alfredo, ravioli, and a few different noodles, sauces and meats to choose from. There are a few different desserts….cheesecake and cannoli for sure. One cool thing is that you can order Italian wedding cookies, (which I'm sure have a proper name but that's all I've ever known them as) like the ones I always remember on display at Mario's in Westport. A good attitude and love of the business goes a long, long way with me, so that alone warrants Sorrento's as a "find" in my opinion, but the Italian beef sandwich I had also warrants a trip back there pretty soon. Good chewy bread, thinly sliced beef, peppers…totally soaked and messy. Good stuff. The chicken spiedini sandwich looked good too. A nice little Italian café down in Riverside, between Al's Junk and East Coast Al's tattoo parlor….who woulda thunk? Do check it out when you have time, they are some nice people.

LC's Hamburgers (7612 NW Prairie View Rd, Kansas City, MO 64151)

Coming back from doing some errands I thought I should visit someplace on Prairie View Road that WASN'T McDonald's, Hardee's, Long John's, Papa John's, etc. The first choice would usually be In-A-Tub, because their deep fried tacos are glorious. I think they put the tacos into the cold oil and bring the whole thing up to temperature to cook them, and for that I commend them. Anyway, I took a chance and stopped by LC's (not to be confused w/LC's BBQ). Really, really good burgers. The buns are of the braided top variety, and the meat patties are similar to Fritz's or Winstead's but larger. By that I mean they are relatively thin with the crisp edges. Grilled onions automatically come with the burger, and they cook it all so the cheese melts thoroughly and is incorporated into the onions and meat. If they put hashbrowns onto the burger a la Fritz's Kitchen Sink, it would rank right up near the top of my favorite burger list. Very dangerous place. Need to stay away.

Café de Amis (112 Main St, Parkville, MO 64152)

For some reason, in the months since we moved to the area, my girlfriend and I hadn't spent an evening in downtown Parkville until last Wednesday. Oh wait, I know the reason....new home owner poverty. It was her birthday and we got late start and wanted to stay close to home, so Café de Amis seemed like a good choice. It's a very nice space up on the second floor, the service was great, and I guess people either eat early or it's pretty slow on a weeknight. We started with the tapenade noir, and the salad of goat cheese over croutons and mixed greens. For our entrees she had the jumbo shrimp in olive oil, diced tomatoes and white wine sauce. I had the duck breast in a fig port reduction. No complaints about any of the food. In fact, the jumbo shrimp may have been the most perfectly done we've had, because even though she loves her seafood cooked to death and I don't we both thought they were spectacular. Any dish that brings the extremes of our palates together in harmony HAS to be perfect. The only word of warning I'd give to anyone is that portions may prompt debate amongst diners. Most entrees are in the $25 range, and while I think they are a decent value because of the quality, romantic setting, and obvious high rent for a downtown Parkville space, others may disagree. Since there are so many options available in that price range, I'll admit that if I was up for a drive I'd try someplace new instead of running right back there, but I'd definitely go back. Another thing worth mentioning is the coffee. It is fantastic. I roast my own coffee and I drink it strong, so if I can actually discern a coffee flavor in what I'm served in a restaurant I'm usually pretty impressed. Theirs has flavor and then some, a deep bittersweet back end to it. The Roasterie does their blend, and they did say it was available at the downtown shop. We skipped dessert and headed down to the Sweet Guy before they closed to pick up a few truffles. The dark chocolate and pistachio truffles are a winner.

Rancho Grande Cantina (11015 NW Highway 45, Parkville, MO 64152)

This place is in the strip mall right next to Parker's BBQ, a half mile or so west of the entrance to The National. I went there for a family get together yesterday, and I don't have any extensive notes but will say it is some pretty good standard American Tex-Mex style Mexican food. It is apparently very popular with the local crowd, they were near full capacity a little after noon. Spinach queso dip, Chimichangas, huge Burritos, flautas, you already know the menu by heart and whether you'd like it from what I'm mentioning. Their rice and beans are very good, with the rice being of the fluffy, dry variety. The cheese and onion enchiladas are good, portions are big, and I think most dinners are under ten dollars. It's another family friendly spot run by a friendly family. For a good, safe Mexican meal I definitely recommend it. Especially if you've got people hankering for Abuelo's, or god forbid……On The Border. Rancho Grande is a great locally owned option for Tex-Mex, and now that I think of it….hangover remedy shangri-la. On a different note, I have been meaning to try Ixtapa up on Barry Road. Someone told me they have some good authentic dishes to try.

Also wanted to mention………..Even though I haven't eaten there myself, my parents did go to the brand new "Ray's Inn Shrimp and Crab Shack" right up the road from me in the Parkville Commons. I totally trust their opinion when it comes to seafood, and according to them the fried oysters, shrimp, etc. were "fair to bad" being overcooked with way too much breading. The boiled selections….shrimp and crab legs were much better, but everything is on the pricey side for being a pretty casual restaurant. Entrees are all in the $20+ range, inconsistent with the quality and quantity of food. Thanks mom and dad for taking the bullet on that one!!

I'll follow up with more stuff as time and calories allow……...

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

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My eG Food Blog- 2011

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Forgot one!

(Cafe Cedar at) The Skillet- (Approx. 1st St. and 9 Hwy, next to the Post Office)

I've driven by The Skillet at least once a day since December, and have always wondered what it was like. They seem to do a decent amount of business, and people generally have good things to say about it. We went to lunch last week and had their daily buffet ($7.99). I can't remember if it was the Pitch or Star that mentioned it in recent weeks, but Cafe Cedar and The Skillet were both owned by the same family and are now under the same roof (Cafe Cedar used to be farther down the street). The new dinner menu is something to behold....middle eastern food and fried chicken. For one thing, from the outside I didn't picture the restaurant being so nice and comfy, but it's good and homey inside. For $7.99 the lunch buffet is a great deal. Standard salad bar that is kept very fresh, a couple of different sauteed vegetables more in the style of middle eastern than southern food, with the exception of the green beans. Real mashed potatoes, thick cream gravy, and of course fried chicken. There was also a chicken and pasta offering but I didn't try it. The fried chicken is cooked very well, no complaints as far as the meat goes but I'm not a big fan of the way it is breaded. The breading is very soft and crumbly, and there is a lot of it. Not terrible, just not my favorite preparation. We'll definitely be back for dinner, the thought of a hummus appetizer followed by chicken fried steak is too good to pass up.

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

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My eG Food Blog- 2011

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Great work Jerry!

Thanks, I too am a Northlander, and now that I'm coming back to that area, it's great to get a fellow eGulleter's update! I look forward to trying some of these places when I get back!

u.e.

“Watermelon - it’s a good fruit. You eat, you drink, you wash your face.”

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I took vacation time last week and used some of it to visit restaurants near or semi-near my home in Parkville.   In all, I'm pretty happy with what we've found thus far.  I'll still be venturing out of the 'hood from time to time, but it's nice to know there are some good locally owned places very close to home.  I think I'll keep adding to this thread as time and diet-dodging allows.  There are just a ton of intriguing little places in the immediate area. 

Sorrento's Italian Café (2502 NW Vivion Rd, Riverside, MO 64150)

Not exactly across the street from me, but I'm down at Red X and Al's Junk (my ideas of shopping paradise) all the time, and it's in the same strip mall as Al's.  Sorrento's is truly run by an Italian grandmother and her kids, with the kind of personable service and cheer that reminded me of Tienda Casa Paloma out on Metcalf.  You order and pick up your food at the cash register, and the menu is varied with nothing over ten dollars as far as I recall.  This is not fast food, almost everything is cooked to order.  Lots of sandwiches…. Italian beef, chicken parm, spiedini, a giant tenderloin, and a decent selection of Italian deli meats (including mortadella, which I don't see on too many deli menus around here) and cheeses so you can create-your-own sandwich.  Dinners include standards like lasagna, fettucine alfredo, ravioli, and a few different noodles, sauces and meats to choose from.  There are a few different desserts….cheesecake and cannoli for sure. One cool thing is that you can order Italian wedding cookies, (which I'm sure have a proper name but that's all I've ever known them as) like the ones I always remember on display at Mario's in Westport.  A good attitude and love of the business goes a long, long way with me, so that alone warrants Sorrento's as a "find" in my opinion, but the Italian beef sandwich I had also warrants a trip back there pretty soon.  Good chewy bread, thinly sliced beef, peppers…totally soaked and messy.  Good stuff.  The chicken spiedini sandwich looked good too.  A nice little Italian café down in Riverside, between Al's Junk and East Coast Al's tattoo parlor….who woulda thunk?  Do check it out when you have time, they are some nice people. 

LC's Hamburgers (7612 NW Prairie View Rd, Kansas City, MO 64151)

Coming back from doing some errands I thought I should visit someplace on Prairie View Road that WASN'T McDonald's, Hardee's, Long John's, Papa John's, etc.  The first choice would usually be In-A-Tub, because their deep fried tacos are glorious.  I think they put the tacos into the cold oil and bring the whole thing up to temperature to cook them, and for that I commend them.  Anyway, I took a chance and stopped by LC's (not to be confused w/LC's BBQ).  Really, really good burgers.  The buns are of the braided top variety, and the meat patties are similar to Fritz's or Winstead's but larger.  By that I mean they are relatively thin with the crisp edges.  Grilled onions automatically come with the burger, and they cook it all so the cheese melts thoroughly and is incorporated into the onions and meat.  If they put hashbrowns onto the burger a la Fritz's Kitchen Sink, it would rank right up near the top of my favorite burger list.  Very dangerous place.  Need to stay away.

Café de Amis (112 Main St, Parkville, MO 64152)

For some reason, in the months since we moved to the area, my girlfriend and I hadn't spent an evening in downtown Parkville until last Wednesday.  Oh wait, I know the reason....new home owner poverty.  It was her birthday and we got late start and wanted to stay close to home, so Café de Amis seemed like a good choice.  It's a very nice space up on the second floor, the service was great, and I guess people either eat early or it's pretty slow on a weeknight.  We started with the tapenade noir, and the salad of goat cheese over croutons and mixed greens.  For our entrees she had the jumbo shrimp in olive oil, diced tomatoes and white wine sauce.  I had the duck breast in a fig port reduction.  No complaints about any of the food.  In fact, the jumbo shrimp may have been the most perfectly done we've had, because even though she loves her seafood cooked to death and I don't we both thought they were spectacular.  Any dish that brings the extremes of our palates together in harmony HAS to be perfect.  The only word of warning I'd give to anyone is that portions may prompt debate amongst diners.  Most entrees are in the $25 range, and while I think they are a decent value because of the quality, romantic setting, and obvious high rent for a downtown Parkville space, others may disagree.  Since there are so many options available in that price range, I'll admit that if I was up for a drive I'd try someplace new instead of running right back there, but I'd definitely go back.  Another thing worth mentioning is the coffee.  It is fantastic.  I roast my own coffee and I drink it strong, so if I can actually discern a coffee flavor in what I'm served in a restaurant I'm usually pretty impressed.  Theirs has flavor and then some, a deep bittersweet back end to it.  The Roasterie does their blend, and they did say it was available at the downtown shop.  We skipped dessert and headed down to the Sweet Guy before they closed to pick up a few truffles.  The dark chocolate and pistachio truffles are a winner.

Rancho Grande Cantina (11015 NW Highway 45, Parkville, MO 64152)

This place is in the strip mall right next to Parker's BBQ, a half mile or so west of the entrance to The National.   I went there for a family get together yesterday, and I don't have any extensive notes but will say it is some pretty good standard American Tex-Mex style Mexican food.   It is apparently very popular with the local crowd, they were near full capacity a little after noon.  Spinach queso dip, Chimichangas, huge Burritos, flautas, you already know the menu by heart and whether you'd like it from what I'm mentioning.  Their rice and beans are very good, with the rice being of the fluffy, dry variety.  The cheese and onion enchiladas are good, portions are big, and I think most dinners are under ten dollars.  It's another family friendly spot run by a friendly family.  For a good, safe Mexican meal I definitely recommend it.  Especially if you've got people hankering for Abuelo's, or god forbid……On The Border.  Rancho Grande is a great locally owned option for Tex-Mex, and now that I think of it….hangover remedy shangri-la.  On a different note, I have been meaning to try Ixtapa up on Barry Road.  Someone told me they have some good authentic dishes to try. 

Also wanted to mention………..Even though I haven't eaten there myself, my parents did go to the brand new "Ray's Inn Shrimp and Crab Shack" right up the road from me in the Parkville Commons.  I totally trust their opinion when it comes to seafood, and according to them the fried oysters, shrimp, etc. were "fair to bad" being overcooked with way too much breading.  The boiled selections….shrimp and crab legs were much better, but everything is on the pricey side for being a pretty casual restaurant.  Entrees are all in the $20+ range, inconsistent with the quality and quantity of food.   Thanks mom and dad for taking the bullet on that one!!

I'll follow up with more stuff as time and calories allow……...

Anyone been to pacfic grill yet? I've heard alot of mixed reviews I hope I make there before there are changes.

Edited by monkfish_103 (log)
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I haven't been to Pacific Grill yet, and again can't remember if it was the Pitch or Star where I read one review. The place looks crowded whenever I go by, but I think I'll get my parents to take the bullet again and check that one out. They are good sports that way.

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

Unsaved Loved Ones

My eG Food Blog- 2011

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LC's Hamburgers (7612 NW Prairie View Rd, Kansas City, MO 64151)

Coming back from doing some errands I thought I should visit someplace on Prairie View Road that WASN'T McDonald's, Hardee's, Long John's, Papa John's, etc.  The first choice would usually be In-A-Tub, because their deep fried tacos are glorious.  I think they put the tacos into the cold oil and bring the whole thing up to temperature to cook them, and for that I commend them.  Anyway, I took a chance and stopped by LC's (not to be confused w/LC's BBQ).  Really, really good burgers.  The buns are of the braided top variety, and the meat patties are similar to Fritz's or Winstead's but larger.  By that I mean they are relatively thin with the crisp edges.  Grilled onions automatically come with the burger, and they cook it all so the cheese melts thoroughly and is incorporated into the onions and meat.  If they put hashbrowns onto the burger a la Fritz's Kitchen Sink, it would rank right up near the top of my favorite burger list.  Very dangerous place.  Need to stay away.

See my vote for best hamburger on our "Best of" thread... L.C.'s is definitely dangerous! What we found to be sad though is that Sonic next door will be packed and L.C.'s will have two people in line at the drive-thru! That's okay, we'll keep driving the 30 minutes to eat there!

"Many people believe the names of In 'n Out and Steak 'n Shake perfectly describe the contrast in bedroom techniques between the coast and the heartland." ~Roger Ebert

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Are there Italian Steak Sandwiches at Sorrento's, by chance?

Definitely Italian Steak Sandwiches on the menu at Sorrento's. That was the next thing I was planning to tackle.

Katie, those burgers at LC's are too great. Your Sonic comment reminds me of where I just moved from in Waldo.....a Sonic opened right across the street from Max's Autodiner and it was easy to tell pretty quickly they put a big dent in Max's business. The cool thing was there are plenty of defiant locals in Waldo that would be damned before they'd cross the street to Sonic. Plus, Big Lots is right in the same parking lot with Max's....so it's a no-brainer.

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

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My eG Food Blog- 2011

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  • 1 month later...

Quick North KC question.................... anyone know of a good butcher? Even one of the larger grocery stores is okay as long as the service is better than the Price Chopper up the street from me.......

"Can you cut me some pork steaks that are thicker than these pre-packaged ones?"

"How thick do you want them"

"About 3/4 inch"

"That's about how thick the ones in the package are supposed to be."

"These really aren't nearly that thick."

"That's how thick they're supposed to be cut."

"But they're not........can you just cut me a few?"

"Well they're supposed to be."

"These aren't even close. Can't you just take this pork butt and slice it?"

.......... followed by ten seconds of him just staring at me, and finally walking over to the meat case to pick up each of the packages of pork steaks to eyeball them and see how thick they were, handing me one and saying "you oughta try these out".

"These are about half as thick as I'm asking for, never mind."

I really need to get back up there tonight if I have time and tell the manager about my experience. Sure, it's a huge, high volume grocery store but with the exception of this guy people are super nice and usually extremely helpful up there. Or am I from another planet on this one? Is pork too cheap for a butcher to worry about "special orders".....I know they've got a ton of equipment in the back, so I'm just assuming they have a giant friggin' saw they could use for about five seconds to slice down some steaks. Anyway, happened to mention it to my neighbor last night and I guess since a recent change in management it takes extreme persistence to get any level of service at the meat counter. This is a big-time pork grilling and BBQ'ing town......what a strange, strange guy he was.

I looked on Yahoo Maps and don't see any real butcher shops in the area, but if the local Hy-Vee, Hen-House, etc. has reliable service it will be worth driving an extra few miles.

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

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My eG Food Blog- 2011

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Quick North KC question....................  anyone know of a good butcher?  Even one of the larger grocery stores is okay as long as the service is better than the Price Chopper up the street from me.......

"Can you cut me some pork steaks that are thicker than these pre-packaged ones?"

"How thick do you want them"

"About 3/4 inch"

"That's about how thick the ones in the package are supposed to be."

"These really aren't nearly that thick."

"That's how thick they're supposed to be cut."

"But they're not........can you just cut me a few?"

"Well they're supposed to be."

"These aren't even close.  Can't you just take this pork butt and slice it?"

.......... followed by ten seconds of him just staring at me, and finally walking over to the meat case to pick up each of the packages of pork steaks to eyeball them and see how thick they were, handing me one and saying "you oughta try these out". 

"These are about half as thick as I'm asking for, never mind."

I really need to get back up there tonight if I have time and tell the manager about my experience.  Sure, it's a huge, high volume grocery store but with the exception of this guy people are super nice and usually extremely helpful up there.  Or am I from another planet on this one?  Is pork too cheap for a butcher to worry about "special orders".....I know they've got a ton of equipment in the back, so I'm just assuming they have a giant friggin' saw they could use for about five seconds to slice down some steaks.  Anyway, happened to mention it to my neighbor last night and I guess since a recent change in management it takes extreme persistence to get any level of service at the meat counter.  This is a big-time pork grilling and BBQ'ing town......what a strange, strange guy he was.

I looked on Yahoo Maps and don't see any real butcher shops in the area, but if the local Hy-Vee, Hen-House, etc. has reliable service it will be worth driving an extra few miles.

I've had better luck with the Hen House on 64th (not PVille, but northerly), plus they have the "buy fresh, buy local" stuff. They actually employ people who understand cuts and can think outside the cryovac. I had a similarly frustrating experience seeking a standing rib roast and, although they didn't have one sitting around, there was someone there who understood that he had the essential meat and equipment to 'engineer' one.

You're also not that far from Trimble, MO, where the Berkshire stuff is processed and sold. Not something for a week night but perhaps a weekend trip when you're feeling flush enough to fill your freezer.

Judy Jones aka "moosnsqrl"

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Quick North KC question....................   anyone know of a good butcher?  Even one of the larger grocery stores is okay as long as the service is better than the Price Chopper up the street from me.......

"Can you cut me some pork steaks that are thicker than these pre-packaged ones?"

"How thick do you want them"

"About 3/4 inch"

"That's about how thick the ones in the package are supposed to be."

"These really aren't nearly that thick."

"That's how thick they're supposed to be cut."

"But they're not........can you just cut me a few?"

"Well they're supposed to be."

"These aren't even close.  Can't you just take this pork butt and slice it?"

.......... followed by ten seconds of him just staring at me, and finally walking over to the meat case to pick up each of the packages of pork steaks to eyeball them and see how thick they were, handing me one and saying "you oughta try these out". 

"These are about half as thick as I'm asking for, never mind."

I really need to get back up there tonight if I have time and tell the manager about my experience.  Sure, it's a huge, high volume grocery store but with the exception of this guy people are super nice and usually extremely helpful up there.  Or am I from another planet on this one?  Is pork too cheap for a butcher to worry about "special orders".....I know they've got a ton of equipment in the back, so I'm just assuming they have a giant friggin' saw they could use for about five seconds to slice down some steaks.  Anyway, happened to mention it to my neighbor last night and I guess since a recent change in management it takes extreme persistence to get any level of service at the meat counter.  This is a big-time pork grilling and BBQ'ing town......what a strange, strange guy he was.

I looked on Yahoo Maps and don't see any real butcher shops in the area, but if the local Hy-Vee, Hen-House, etc. has reliable service it will be worth driving an extra few miles.

I've had better luck with the Hen House on 64th (not PVille, but northerly), plus they have the "buy fresh, buy local" stuff. They actually employ people who understand cuts and can think outside the cryovac. I had a similarly frustrating experience seeking a standing rib roast and, although they didn't have one sitting around, there was someone there who understood that he had the essential meat and equipment to 'engineer' one.

You're also not that far from Trimble, MO, where the Berkshire stuff is processed and sold. Not something for a week night but perhaps a weekend trip when you're feeling flush enough to fill your freezer.

I used to have my beef products killed and hung in east jackson county, then I switch to paradise in Trimble, I believe I was their first restaurant customer a few years back. I had to stop using them because of the trim loss on the product, they might have gotten better. I know there is a small place on north oak around 60th or so that will hand cut it they are on the eat side behind baskin robinson's I belive. if I remember right there's another place in claycomo.

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  • 9 months later...

After living in Parkville for about 1 ½ years, I finally made it to Nick & Jake’s, right up the street in the ever-expanding Parkville Commons…..the strip mall to end all strip malls. Price Chopper, Gomer’s Liquor, hardware, a library, bad Chinese food and an upscale boutique for pets…….what need is there to ever leave the neighborhood?

We had just gotten out of the 10am screening of Grindhouse at Barrywoods, so we were pretty drunk and just wanted some bar food and a place to chill out over some beers and talk about how much we loved Kurt Russell. The best thing I can say about Nick & Jake’s really has nothing to do with the food. The menu is large, the food is okay…..between us we got chicken fingers, a tenderloin and a chicken Caesar salad…..decent portions, room temperature fries and ICE COLD Guinness (yikes). Anyway, the thing that will make Nick & Jake’s destination dining for me in the future is their point of sale software/customer service. The waitstaff is okay in that TGIFriday’s “I’m super friendly and in a super hurry” kind of way, but the GREAT thing is that once you are done with your meal they actually ask you “how many checks do you need?”. AND after you get your separate checks you can still have them add additional food/drinks if the need arises, and get your new check back within sixty seconds. This may not sound revolutionary to most people, and maybe I’ve spent too much time living in a cave, but even through the bourbon/Guinness haze I thought “this is really different from most bars…..and very handy”. Maybe I’ve had bad luck in the various KC bar and grills…P.Ott’s, Fox and Hound, Johnny’s, Tanner’s, Bulldog, etc……I know I’ve been in many groups where requests for separate checks or additions to the check were met with mild hostility and disbelief. But not at Nick & Jake’s!

Again, this isn’t rocket science from a customer service perspective, but it made me realize how much I loathe dividing up a check at the end of a meal (hoo-boy the story my girlfriend has from the Cheesecake Factory out on 119th from a couple of weeks ago…..). I’m guessing that software makes the difference, so from the owner’s perspective it’s a win-win……they either turn the table over faster or it’s just that much easier to keep selling drinks to those who linger. I'm someone who doesn't like to be a PITA by insisting on separate checks (because I work with so many of those people), so it's nice for them to offer.

I think the same guys from lunch are keen on going to Em Chamas in the next couple of weeks, so more on that later…….

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

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  • 4 weeks later...

And here it is a few weeks later and we DID make it to Em Chamas.....

I went there tonight with a good friend of mine for some good old fashioned male bonding, heightened by the enjoyment of thick slabs of hot meat. Normally a story that begins like that would end up smack dab in the letters section of "Honcho", however in this case we're just talking about rodizio service in the northland.

The dining room was almost empty at 7pm, but on a Tuesday night I'm not sure anyplace around here is going to be packed. Everybody is probably very familiar with this concept, so I won't go into too much detail. There's a salad bar area with cold and hot food which is kept pretty pristine as far as I could tell. The prosciutto wrapped asparagus was good, decent couscous, a disappointing seafood salad with mussels shrimp and calamari.......definitely better than your average salad/appetizer bar, not much to add here. The little cheese rolls they bring to the table that I've heard people raving about are really good as long as you eat them while they are hot. We had fun looking at all of the different salad/hot bar items, breads, etc. and saying...."See? THAT'S how they f&%k you! Just like Jumpin' Catfish! Load me up on all that starch so I can't eat none of them fancy skewered meats!". Well the joke was on them......we're real pigs. I mean it.

Then there is the meat. In short, if the thought of all the roasted meat you care to eat appeals to you.....you will like it. Tonight it sounded like just the thing for us, and we both liked it. I don't remember all of the different cuts of meat they had tonight...sausage, chicken, garlic steak (plus a few more cuts I can't remember), filet wrapped in bacon, pork loin, turkey wrapped in bacon, boneless pieces of beef ribs, chicken spiedini, and of course MY personal favorite.....gouda stuffed prime rib (come on, it's prime rib stuffed with cheese...you're already at an all you can eat restaurant, so don't try splitting hairs on this one, it's fantastic). That one kind of took me by surprise. The bad (or GOOD, depending on how you look at it) thing is that for some reason they didn't offer us any until we were about ready to leave. The best thing about that prime rib, which was also the high point of any of the meats, is the nice roasted, fatty crispy caramelized texture the spit roasting gave to the cheese and the meat at the same time. I don't know if I just got lucky with my servings, or they re-roast stuff like a giant gyro loaf, but it was nice. For some reason I don't like the interactive element of using the little tongs you have to use on some of the meats. Basically, on some of the cuts you grab ahold of your slice as the server is cutting it so that you are assured the least messy and most sanitary way of getting the food on your plate. "Here he comes with that top sirloin! Where did I put my pinchers!?!?!" I don't know, some little thing always weirds me out for no real reason wherever I go, and this was it tonight.

Anyway, you probably know in advance if this sort of thing is for you or not. For a Tuesday boy's night out to gorge on roasted meats, we definitely thought it was worth the thirty five dollars. The service was totally friendly, but if you are as quick to shove fistfuls of meat into your gaping maw as we were, I can see the whole tableside carving element being kind of a damper on conversation. Would I go back? Sure, there are some really tasty offerings, they've done a good job with the space, and it's a nice, low key, meat-centric change from the usual boy's night at Morton's or Capital Grille. I didn't think to get good look at the wine selection, it was a Knob Creek Manhattan sort of affair.

So there you go.....Jumpin' Catfish for the Riss Lake crowd.

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

Unsaved Loved Ones

My eG Food Blog- 2011

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So there you go.....Jumpin' Catfish for the Riss Lake crowd.

Thanks for the readers' digest version. 'Nuff said. :wink:

Judy Jones aka "moosnsqrl"

Sharing food with another human being is an intimate act that should not be indulged in lightly.

M.F.K. Fisher

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