March 2, 2013
K is for KOBE Japanese Steak and Seafood, 1303 Baltimore Ave, Kansas City, Missouri.
Located in the downtown Kansas City Power and Light district, Kobe Japanese Steak and Seafood is a national chain with 5 locations throughout the U.S. The menu offers approximately 20 different entrees with multiple combinations of steak, chicken, shrimp and scallops. Each entree is served with soup, salad, appetizer shrimp, hibachi vegetables, noodles, steamed or fried rice, hibachi ginger sauce, and white sauce. A full sushi bar is also available.
Our group was unanimous in thinking this is a tired recipe for a restaurant venue. We saw the ordinary egg breaking on the edge of the spatula and the familiar flaming volcano with onion slices.
We participated in the obligatory catching of the shrimp in our mouths tossed from the grill.
Same old, same old. “Been there, done that” was a common description. The food was not bad, although for the price, not worth it. The cost per couple was approximately $75 and that did not include drinks. Add to that parking costs of up to $10 and you have a total thumbs down from the ABC Dinner Club.
Bottom Line: We will not return.
January 12, 2013
J is for Jasper’s, 1201 W. 103rd Street, Kansas City, MO
After a long hiatus, the ABC dinner club reconvened at Jasper’s Restaurant, a Kansas City tradition for almost sixty years. Many in our group have eaten there before but it had been several years since any of us visited. Jasper’s Restaurant along with Marco Polo’s Italian Market are located in the Watts Mill Shopping Center at 103rd and State Line. The restaurant is decorated in “contemporary rustic Italian” incorporating many items from the original location on 75th street.
The menu offers a good selection of authentic northern Italian cuisine including the items we ordered listed below. Dinner entrees start at about $15.95.
Penne Alla Marie – pasta in a tomato cream sauce with mushrooms and scallops.
Scampi Alla Livornese – shrimp and wild rice in a wine laced cream sauce
Vitello Alla Milanese – breaded veal cutlet
Lasagna – layeres of Italian sausage and cheese
Pollo Alla Saltimbocca – chicken breast layered with parmesan and mozzarella
Cuscinetto Di Rocotta – ricotta cheese filled “pasta cushions” with meatballs
Invoktini Di Pollo Alla Siciliana – Jasper’s version of spedini
Throughout the evening, Jasper Mirabile walked through the restaurant stopping to talk to diners and for one group prepared a table-side caprese salad. We dined in a window-lined room that overlooked Indian Creek and were able to easily carry on conversation.
All ten of us thought the food was fantastic!
BOTTOM LINE: We will definitely return.
July 26, 2012
I is for Ixtapa Mexican Restaurant, 7103 NW Barry Road, Kansas City, Mo
We did not have a large selection of venues in the “I” category but settled on Ixtapa after a recommendation. The word on the street is that this is a sister restaurant to the Guadalajara Café’s in South Kansas City and Lee’s Summit although I was unable to verify this.
This very small restaurant sits in a strip mall adjacent to a very busy Quick Trip but we had no issues finding a parking place for our 7:30 reservation.
A few of us were in the mood to try their frozen margarita’s but were disappointed that they were out of strawberry. The peach and regular flavors were good, but the raspberry was a little too sweet. The complimentary chips and salsa were typically of any other Mexican restaurant although the salsa was watery and not as thick as most of us prefer.
The menu was fairly extensive based on the size of the restaurant and they pride themselves on authentic Mexican cuisine. Similar to Guadalajara, they serve several entrees that include cactus and mushrooms, something not found in many Mexican restaurants.
The general consensus of our group was that the food was typical of most Mexican restaurants and nothing extraordinary. Several thought it was rather expensive for Mexican fare. We probably will not return since it was a 40 mile drive from our town and we have Mexican restaurants that are just as good if not better close by.
Bottom Line: We will not return.
May 21, 2012
This River Market casual eating establishment is of the Willie Nelson, Toby Keith kind of “country club” versus the exclusive, private and expensive “country club” variety. Our group visited on a Monday night which from my understanding is much more quiet and reserved than the average Thursday, Friday or Saturday night that starts with an energetic happy hour including live entertainment.
The weather was perfect for sitting in the outside patio area.
Harry’s has a massive selection of both beer and liquor with a good selection of menu items considering this is essentially a bar. We started with a couple of appetizers, including Baked Brie served alongside fruit and Italian bread plus homemade potato chips and French onion dip.
The Brie was a little undercooked, but the homemade chips and French onion dip were very good. For our main dishes we selected the following:
Knife and Fork Chili Dog made with Hebrew National All-Beef Franks. The two diners who selected these thought they were great.
Double smoked bacon BLT served with Baked Potato salad.
And finally, the Chorizo Encrusted Chicken served with a chili relleno over corn relish which was good but the chili relleno was cold.
Prior to visiting Harry’s, I had read several on-line reviews that mentioned the service was terrible so I was a little concerned about what to expect. We were in no hurry to eat our meal so the service seemed fine to us as we visited and enjoyed the perfect weather on the patio.
Some of us were a little more agreeable to get our pictures taken than others. One last interesting fact about Harry’s Country Club, there is a unique “artwork” display in the ladies restroom which consisted of two large photo collages of men’s backsides, both clothed and unclothed. As a student of photography I felt compelled to study the pictures, for the image composition and quality of course!
Bottom Line: (No pun intended to the preceding paragraph) This is a nice place to go for a casual evening, especially when the weather allows for sitting on the patio. We would return.
February 18, 2012
G is for Gaslight Grill, 5020 West 137th Street, Leawood, Ks.
It has been a while since the ABC Dinner Club convened, but we finally were able to coordinate our schedules long enough to get to the Gaslight Grill to celebrate birthdays for three members of our group.
This restaurant specializes in hand cut Angus steaks and fresh seafood. The menu is on the high side with entrees ranging from $20-$38. The atmosphere is defined as “casual elegance” and is very comfortable for holding dinnertime conversations. There is an additional back room with tables where live jazz music is played. I apologize in advance for the following pictures, my camera was having technical difficulties and Dave stepped in with his IPhone.
Our table ordered the following entrees:
- 6 oz petit tenderloin filet with sour cream and chive mashed potatoes and asparagus – the filet was very tender and cooked exactly as requested.
- Tuscan Rosemary Chicken served with herb roasted potatoes and a carrot, zucchini and corn mix – good but the diner was expecting a breast not a chicken quarter.
- Small Plate Trio which consisted of a small piece of beef, one scallop and one jumbo shrimp – the beef was almost rare when medium was ordered. It was a very small amount of food for a large price, $23.
- Filet & Prawn, which consisted of a 6 oz tenderloin steak with 3 giant prawns. Served alongside were lobster mashed potatoes and asparagus – two members of our group ordered this and thought it was great.
- Atlantic Salmon filet with mashed potatoes and grilled zucchini with squash – again the diner thought this was very good.
We also tasted the pumpkin cheesecake and apple tart. I think everyone in the group thought the food was very good but a little pricey for our normal dining experience. Most of us agreed that this restaurant falls into the special occasion category and is probably not a place we would frequent very often.
November 12, 2011
F is for Farmhouse, 300 Delaware Street, Kansas City, Missouri
The “F” selection for our ABC Dinner Club outing was chosen by the birthday boy in our group whose co-workers had recommended the restaurant. Located on the corner of Third and Delaware in the River Market area, this two year old “Farm to Table” restaurant promotes healthy and locally produced goods, even listing the farm and bakery vendors on the back of the menu. The dining room with it’s high ceilings, stringed lights and polished wood floors was comfortable, relaxing and conducive to good conversation.
Our dinner started with a delicious sampler of local cheeses from Green Dirt and Heartland Farms served alongside homemade crackers. Former wine bottles filled with water were placed on the table for immediate self service. Each menu selection included a recommended pairing of wine and beer. I had a taste of this unfamiliar brand of organic Hard Cider and might have just found my new drink of choice.
The entrée selections our table chose were:
365-Day aged Hanger Steak with Salsa Verde, Blue cheese butter and house fries
Chicken Breast Cast-Iron Roasted with risotto and an eggplant side
Ground Pedmontese Beef Burger with house fries
Butternut Squash Ravioli with toasted pumpkin seeds and greens (one of the day’s specials)
Pork Confit with fried potato puck and green beans
There were raves about the chicken and steak. The ravioli was also very good but a side vegetable entrée would have been nice since the portion consisted of only three ravioli. The burger was good, but the homemade ketchup was not a hit with one particular diner. The pork entrée was tough and overpriced according to another diner.
As would be expected in a restaurant advocating healthy choices, a few of the entrees were on the smaller side, even though the prices tended to the higher side. The presentation of the food was gourmet quality and somewhat surprising for a self proclaimed “homestyle” restaurant. In my unsophisticated culinary world, homestyle and gourmet are mutually exclusive. I am glad Farmhouse was able to educate me on this topic.
Bottom Line: All but one in our group of eight would definitely return to this restaurant, maybe for the brunch or lunch menu. A sping/summer visit would also be nice to sit on the outside patio and see how the menu changed with the season.
E is for Em Chamas
Em Chamas, located in the Tulleries Plaza at 6101 NE 63rd Street, is modeled after the Brazilian Steakhouse Concept.
Each meal is one price, $36, which gives you unlimited trips to the food bar for your first course. I typically am not a fan of buffet style eating in a restaurant. Not only does it offer the opportunity to eat way more than you should, but there is something about dipping into the same bowl as a million other strangers that mildly disturbs me. However, this food bar was well-tended and did offer a large assortment of choices. The salad selections included mixed greens and romaine lettuce, marinated asparagus, coleslaw, chick pea salad, pasta with peas salad, marinated mushrooms and olives just to name a few. There was a bread selection as well as oysters on the half shell. Hot choices included mashed potatoes, pasta with marinara, rice and black beans.
The second course is served in the traditional Brazilian rodizio style with waiters continuously roving the dining room with large knives and skewers of thirteen different meat selections including:
Bacon wrapped chicken
Beef stuffed with provolone
Bacon wrapped filet mignon
For those like my husband, who believe a good meal is a slab of meat, this was heaven. The servers were constantly at the table slicing and serving as many portions as desired. It was a fast paced atmosphere and if you are looking for a quiet relaxing dinner then this is probably not a good choice. However, no one, including this infrequent meat eater, could walk away from this restaurant hungry.
Comments from our group of diners after the meal included, “I loved it,” and “It was great.”
Bottom line: All agreed we would return to this restaurant.
June 11, 2011
D is for Domo Sushi and Grill by Julie
Domo Sushi & Grill is located at 6322 Brookside Plaza. This was a real step outside of the comfort zone for several in our group.
Some of us were adventurous, trying new things while others remained cautious. This Japanese restaurant is tastefully decorated, having a sushi bar with seating for those wishing to watch the preparation,
as well as tables and booths or patio dining for those wishing to enjoy the nice weather. Street side parking is available. We were able to call ahead for reservations, which is helpful when dining with eight members in the party although it was not necessary on this particular Saturday night.
Our server, Kathy, was extremely accommodating as she helped us navigate the menu and understand the items. The meal began with some sushi appetizers such as edamame, eel, sweet shrimp, California roll and a vegetable sampler.
The edamame was enjoyed by several in the party. The California roll was very tasty as were the eel and sweet shrimp. The vegetable sampler was less appealing to those ordering. Sapporo beer was also enjoyed by some at the table. The entrees were excellent and those we sampled included shrimp or chicken teriyaki, house salmon, shrimp salad and tonkatsu (pork cutlet). Entrees ranged in price from $15-$25. The presentation of appetizers and meals was beautifully done. The meal ended with a few ordering saki.
Bottom line: 7 out of the 8 dining would go back to Domo again.
May 14, 2011
B is for Beer Kitchen by Julie
When I first heard the name of this restaurant, I thought I would not enjoy eating at a bar, but it is much more than a bar. The Beer Kitchen is located in the heart of Westport, at 435 Westport Road to be exact.
Reservations were easily made by phone and it was a good thing because the night we chose to eat there was also the day of the KC Pub Crawl for Cancer. There is a small parking lot across the street, on street parking and a big parking lot a block west.
There are many choices for seating; booths, tables and chairs, communal seating at long tables, high top tables and of course, at the bar. There are too many beer choices to mention, hence the name beer kitchen. Two in our party sampled the pear cider and recommended it highly.
We began our meal with the Cheese Ancho Corn Dip served with blue corn chips and salsa verde. The dip was superb. The entrees ranged in price from $7.50 for the BK Classic burger to the $18.00 Flat Iron Rib Eye. Most in our party ate some form of a burger such as the Brick House, BK Classic, American Colby or Brat Burger with the exceptions being a Turkey Turkey (2nd turkey referring to bacon) sandwich, Big Fish sandwich and 3 Cheese on Sourdough.
There are many options for someone wanting vegetarian or vegan choices. Fries were the side order for the majority in our party. They were artfully presented in a metal measuring cup. Another side that was ordered was the Roasted Garlic Sautéed Spinach.
For spinach lovers, it never tasted so good! Another side sampled was the Cole slaw, again another hit.
The restaurant staff was pleasant and attentive even though extremely busy on this evening.
Bottom Line: The Beer Kitchen proved to be a big hit. We all agreed that we would try it again. Our only advice would be to make the trip to Westport on a day other than the KC Pub Crawl!
April 9, 2011
C is for Cafe Trio, a stylish and upscale restaurant on Main, just north of the plaza. I know we are out-of-order here, B usually comes before C, but Joy chose this restaurant for her birthday dinner and we could not pass up commenting on this great place.
Valet parking is available at a cost of $5 but can be credited against your meal ticket, otherwise there is ample parking behind the building.
Reservations were extremely easy to make on-line…I entered the date, the number in our party and the approximate time we wanted to eat. The available times were presented back and I was able to choose which I preferred.
When we entered the restaurant they lead us to our table in an upstairs room. The staff apologized at least 5 times that I had to walk up the steps with my cane. They said to tell them the next time we come and we could have a table on the first floor.
We shared a humus trio appetizer with pita bread wedges and sampled a few of their very creatively named cocktails. Subsequently they brought baskets of artisan bread and sweet cream butter. House salads were served next along with several unique dressings to choose from including “Bacon-Apple Cider” and “Herb Parmesan.”
Our entrees consisted of Pistachio Encrusted Tilapia, Seafood Lasagna, Filet Mignon, Mac Daddy(a grown-up version of mac-n-cheese) and Swordfish which was one of the specials for the night.
The average cost of the entrees was $26, a little pricier than our usual fare, however they did offer a very interesting assortment of ”Small Plates” along with pizza, soups and salads.
Bottom Line: The wait staff was very attentive and the food was outstanding. Can’t wait to return!
March 19, 2011
A is for Anthony’s Restaurant and Lounge, a fixture at 701 Grand in downtown Kansas City for 31 years. Thanks to a Muncharoo.com coupon we all had at least $10 off our individual checks for the evening which always starts dinner on a high note.
We all started with salads and ate several baskets of the Italian bread that was brought to the table.
Our entrees included: Salmon with Fettuccini, Lasagna with Italian Sausage, Seafood Tortellini, Chicken Scaloppini, Chicken Spedini,
Cavatelli con Broccoli, Chicken Lemonada, and Chicken Fettiuccini.
The portions were large and the sauces were heavy, not a place if you are trying to watch your calories.
Bottom line….we will definitely come back here.