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Restaurant Week Returns!!

I will admit, it snuck up on me this year. I sat down to what I was expecting to be a fantastic lunch at Rye on Friday — then my day got even better. I was handed Rye’s menu for Kansas City Restaurant Week. The best part is that I didn’t even have to adjust my planned ordering (the usual “close as I can get to one-of-everything without looking totally ridiculous” plan) to take advantage.IMG_0436

That’s the great part of restaurant week. You can visit one of your longtime beloved eateries and perhaps get a steal-of-a-deal on some favorites, or check out some place totally new for a sampling of their best. With $15 multi-course lunches and $33 dinners, who can resist!

And don’t forget donations raised during KCRW go to local charities. And this year, three new organizations are the beneficiaries: BoysGrow, Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired (one very close to my heart) and Cultivate Kansas City.

Tomorrow I’m grabbing lunch with some girlfriends and it’s a hard decision of just what we should try. Maybe Affare, Extra Virgin, BRGR (the selection for their lunch is extensive!), or Collection. All those menus look delicious. I think I need more than one girls lunch this week!

IMG_0442As for my experience at Rye, it was one of the most satisfyingly delectable visits I’ve had there…and I haven’t had any I didn’t like. The fried chicken is hands-down one of the best in Kansas City. If you have not tried it, you should add it to your list of new year’s resolutions!

Even the simply dressed farmer’s greens, served alongside several dishes, are addictive. If I could make a basic side salad taste this good at home, i would much thinner!

The other shining star on Rye’s menu (besides the shrimp & grits) is the tender and ultra-flavorful hanger steak. Succulent and rich, each bite of steak melts like butter in your mouth. The bright green chimichurri sauce takes superb beef and makes it absolutely quintessential. And the fries…..just perfect. While the steak is not an option for the restaurant week lunch menu, IT IS on the KCRW dinner menu!! Woohoo!!IMG_0440

So check out the complete list of participating restaurants and make your reservations. There’s a lot of good eating – and great deals – out there Kansas City!

Cascone’s: 60 Years Strong

It’s a family business unlike most. The walls of the foyer are packed with family photos. Everything from the familiar kind remembering family reunions, weddings, formal studio sessions to more personal things like a framed birth announcement. If the number and age of these pictures didn’t give it away, you will know this place has some staying power when you taste the food.IMG_7777

Celebrating 60 years in business is almost unheard of for a restaurant. Cascone’s has survived ups and downs of the economy, many bouts of road construction, a move and more importantly a few waves of competition from big-name, chain Italian restaurants.

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Mexican at Margarita’s – Northland

If you didn’t catch my write-up on Margarita’s for the recent edition of NORTH Magazine, of course, you can read it here….


Most any route you take in the Northland, you will pass a Mexican restaurant – or five of them – along the way. It seems they pop up in strip malls, former fast-food buildings, just about anywhere and everywhere. So when you find one that’s still thriving after more than 20 years in business you know there’s good reason.

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“Baby” Food

Having a baby brings many wonderful things. Most parents know the overwhelming happiness of bringing home that little bundle of joy and all the gifts and well wishes that come too. But one thing our friends did for us that I wish every new mom could receive would be the fantastic meals that just seemed to keep coming.

For about three weeks we had dinner dropped off at our door most evenings. The offerings ranged from homemade pot pies and lasagnas to gumbo and other family favorites. And if someone wasn’t skilled in the kitchen or just too busy to cook, they brought takeout from their favorite restaurant. It was truly an unexpected blessing in so many

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Tavern in the Village

If you don’t make it to the Prairie Village Shops very often, you’re missing one of Kansas City’s culinary treasure troves. Some of my favorite restaurants and bakeries are tucked inside this little development in the center of the city.

Incredible Salted Caramel Pot de Creme!

Incredible Salted Caramel Pot de Creme!

So I was thrilled when asked to preview Tavern in the Village for KC Restaurant Week. I’ve dined at both Tavern in the Village and its sister restaurant Tavern at Mission Farms a few times and always left smiling. I wish I lived closer because I would eat there much more often if I could.

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Sullivan’s Steakhouse for Restaurant Week

One my favorite times of the winter is almost here! Kansas City Restaurant Week begins Friday, when we can all put our diets on hold to take advantage of some great deals and outstanding meals.

I was honored this year to be invited to take part in KCRW’s Blogger Dine-around where I got to preview some of the tempting dishes offered at a couple local establishments.

Stone Crab Claws

Stone Crab Claws

If you’ve never experienced KC’s Restaurant Week, you’re missing out. More than 130 restaurants are offering special fixed price menus sampling some of their most popular items. With 3-course dinners priced at $33, this is your chance to go visit that old favorite or try a new spot (lunches are just $15).

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Chicken Enchilada Soup

Our recent cold weather has put me in the mood for soup. And nothing’s better on a frigid Sunday morning when you’re surfing facebook, than coming across a slow cooker soup recipe that doesn’t even require you to leave the house for ingredients!

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It’s the closest thing I can find to my grandma’s fried chicken, and that means more than a tasty drumstick. I remember warm summer evenings playing on the backyard swing set with my cousins, then hearing grandma yell from the back porch that it’s “T-iiiiiiiiiii-me for dinner!”. We would hustle inside and place our little bodies in the big wooden chairs of grandma’s dining room table. Steam rolling off the big bowl of mashed potatoes, a hot-pad sitting under the pot of dark green beans fresh out of the garden. Grandpa was always served first, then the big plate of golden-brown chicken was heading my way.Stroudsign

The chairs at Stroud’s are heavy wood and the potatoes – creamy blonde just like grandma’s – come to the table piled high and piping hot. But the reason the crowds have been visiting this landmark log cabin for 30 years is the beautiful, pan-fried chicken that arrives at your table on a big platter crisped to perfection. It’s some of the most pristine chicken I’ve seen, and among the juiciest.

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Billy Vanilly Cupcakes – Lawrence

In a darling little storefront in the heart of Lawrence, you can find some tasty treats for your sweet tooth. I happened upon this bakery one Sunday afternoon on our way back to Kansas City. We were just driving down Massachusetts Street deciding where to have lunch, when I say the sign and thought “what a fantastic bakery name!”BVpkg

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Dominic’s Casual Italian

In case you didn’t know, you can find my writing in Kansas City’s premier lifestyle magazine for the Northland. Here’s an article on one of my favorite easy-dining restaurants straight from the latest edition of North Magazine. DomMag

You know you’ve discovered a great restaurant when you find yourself in the neighborhood and automatically try to find an excuse to stop in for a bite. Or you rack your brain for a reason you should grab a to-go order for someone, anyone you might be seeing later that day. I will admit, I have a few of those places in Kansas City. Most recently, I find myself inventing reasons to keep eating at Dominic’s Casual Italian.

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