Here are 10 restaurant recommendations if you’re ever in Kansas City. Are they the absolute best spots in town? Maybe, maybe not. It’s hard to say, but I can personally vouch for every place on this list.
I’m guessing Bluestem has more James Beard nominations than every restaurant in Arkansas, combined. The restaurant is small, so reservations are recommended. The food, which is set up in 3, 5, or 7-course options, is very sophisticated, and although it’s been years since my last visit, I’m guessing Bluestem is still the perfect place for a classy night out.
This is my favorite bbq joint in the country, and, yes, I do have a sentimental attachment to the place, but the pork ribs really are some of the very best you’ll ever eat. Go to the original location located inside a very nice gas station. If the place opens at 11am, it’s best to get there by 10:30. FYI, the fries are very underrated, so don’t forget to order them as well.
This is just a big badass German restaurant. Period. Even if you aren’t the biggest fan of German food–which I am not–I bet you’ll still love this place. It’s really pointless to give you a specific dish to order because it’s all good. BTW…the salads are also fantastic.
I can only vouch for the brunch at The Farmhouse, but whether it’s biscuits and gravy, corned beef hash, or eggs Benedict, it’s all pretty good. Make sure you make reservations, as the restaurant fills up quickly for brunch.
Get the dumplings, end of story. I’m a dumpling whore, and I can tell you for a fact that these are great dumplings. They are hand-made and come with a delightfully spicy soy sauce and a ton of cilantro and green onions.
Got a sweet tooth? Head to Doughnut Lounge and get a variety of artisan doughnuts. I honestly can’t remember what flavors I had from my last trip, but we did end up going twice, so that should tell you Doughnut Lounge is legit.
Keeping with the sweets theme, Andre’s is such a cool spot to check out. Whether it’s chocolate, coffee, designer pastries, or a fancy bottle of soda, Andre’s is just an awesome café to hangout and relax for an hour.
If I lived in KC, I’d go to Meshuggah Bagels just about every Saturday morning. How does smoked salmon on a fresh-baked poppy seed bagel sound? The place is small, so expect cramped seating, at best.
It’s no Joe’s, but if you’re looking for a great second bbq spot, Q39 is a nice option. It’s a slightly more upscale atmosphere than your typical bbq restaurant.
Not a restaurant, but no visit to Kansas City is complete without a stop at Elbow Chocolates. Each piece will run you a few bucks, but the price is well worth it. These are about as tasty and beautiful as chocolate gets. Super artistic.