Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Before there was Stroud's, there was the Green Parrot Inn

Posted By on Wed, Mar 23, 2011 at 12:18 PM

The Green Parrot was, from 1929 to 1955, one of Kansas City's premier fried-chicken restaurants.
  • The Green Parrot was, from 1929 to 1955, one of Kansas City's premier fried-chicken restaurants.

The flurry of comments inspired by Jonathan Bender's recent post about the Kansas City restaurants that, perhaps, shouldn't be institutions provided a few lumps -- and I don't mean in the cream gravy -- to the 78-year-old Stroud's, Kansas City's best-known fried-chicken restaurant. No matter what you think of the dishes served at this beloved restaurant -- which moved from its original roadhouse location to a building on Shawnee Mission Parkway in 2008 -- you have to give it credit for outlasting all of its competition.

There were several more popular fried-chicken spots than Stroud's over the last seven decades, including the Green Parrot Inn. (The famous Wishbone Restaurant came later -- in 1948.)

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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Oscar Wilde ate here! (Really, he did)

Posted By on Wed, Mar 9, 2011 at 3:00 PM

In 1882, the long-forgotten Vienna Model Bakery, Cafe and Restaurant stood here.

Jonathan Bender's new Fat City profile on chef Michael Foust -- the young entrepreneur operating the Farmhouse restaurant at 300 Delaware in the River Market -- reminded the Fat City historians that back in the late 19th century, when this neighborhood was still an important spot for theaters and saloons (the brothels came along a few years later), the street had some nice places to eat -- even then.

Nice enough for visiting celebrities, like the flamboyant Oscar Wilde.

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What happened to Pusateri's?

Posted By on Tue, Jul 27, 2010 at 2:12 PM

"Society" met at Pusateri's back in the 1930s
Alan Scherstuhl, Pitch "Studies in Crap" archivist, found a fabulous vintage advertisement for a long-forgotten Italian restaurant, Pusateri's, in the program for the 1934 edition of the Junior League Follies. At that time, the restaurant was located at 1213 Baltimore in the very heart of what was then Kansas City's theater district. It didn't remain in that location, however.

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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Late night joints we wish were still around

Posted By on Thu, Jul 15, 2010 at 3:28 PM





 It's not easy finding a place to dine after most traditional restaurants close, although we do have our favorites.

In its wilder past, Kansas City was loaded with great spots to eat after midnight.

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Friday, July 2, 2010

Remembering Clearly Nature's Own

Posted By on Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 2:00 PM

​Before the little corner store at 4301 Main Street was the Whole Foods Market -- which closed this week -- it was the Wild Oats Market. Before that, it was a quaint, unique grocery called Clearly Nature's Own for most of the 1980s and early 1990s. Before that, of course, the space had housed other businesses, including Dahoney's Drug Store in the 1930s and '40s -- famous for its soda fountain and ice cream sundaes.

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Monday, June 21, 2010

Remembering Putsch's 210

Posted By on Mon, Jun 21, 2010 at 1:30 PM

Putsch's 210 in its heyday
Not quite a month ago, we found a historical document for the Fat City archives: a full-color postcard of the long-forgotten Salzberg Haus from the 1970s, proving that Kansas City did have a Viennese restaurant long before the Grunauer family opened its namesake restaurant in the Freighthouse District.

In that same Fat City post, another postcard, pictured here, from the Fat City archives was displayed.


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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

In praise of old menus

Posted By on Wed, Jun 9, 2010 at 2:07 PM

Where was this place?
In yesterday's Fat City post about restaurant collectibles, local antique dealer Carol Barta dismissed old menus as not having the same value as old flatware and china because people can't use them at home on a daily basis. But commenters Colby and Judy disagreed, saying they love to look at old menus.

Well so do I, although sometimes the prices make me cry. The menu pictured here, from an Overland Park burger joint that was popular in the mid-1980s, lists a pork tenderloin dinner with salad, green beans or corn, mashed potatoes and gravy and bread and butter for $3.95. This restaurant had two locations (the other was in Raytown) and the Johnson County site reportedly has a not-too-distant date with the wrecking ball.

Who can remember the name of this long-gone restaurant? The first commenter to guess correctly will be named "Fat City Historian of the Week." That's all you'll get, I'm afraid, since our gift certificate for a free plate of corn bread and beans became worthless when this restaurant went out of business.

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Restaurant collectors' items

Posted By on Tue, Jun 8, 2010 at 2:15 PM

Forren's is gone, but the postcard is worth two bucks
My friend Linda, knowing how much I love vintage postcards with scenes from restaurants, gave me this card -- I'm thinking it's from the early 1960s -- from Forren's Restaurant in Emporia, Kansas. The former Forren's Restaurant, I should say, because its location at 706 Commercial Street is now occupied by the Second Love Gift Shop.

Forren's must have been a very big deal in Emporia. The postcard boasts that it had five private dining rooms seating more than 500 people. The restaurant served "hot dishes, cool sparkling salads, and fine foods ... without extravagance."

You can find collectibles from the old Forren's on ebay (including this postcard, which averages about two bucks). That got me thinking about the relics from other restaurants closer to home. What's valuable and what isn't?


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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Before Grunauer, there was the Salzberg Haus

Posted By on Tue, May 25, 2010 at 1:07 PM

Hearty drinking on the 30th floor

Now that Grunauer -- the Viennese restaurant owned and operated by chef Peter Grunauer and his two children, Nicholas and Elizabeth -- is officially open in the old City Tavern location in the Crossroads, it's a good time to look back at another venue serving Viennese cuisine in the metro. Yes, there was one.

But until last weekend, I sure didn't know that. I attended the annual Postcard Show & Sale at the Lenexa Community Center a couple of days ago and found some great vintage stuff, including the color postcard from the 1970s, pictured above, of the Salzberg Haus. I wonder whether any Fat City readers recall eating there.

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Friday, February 19, 2010

KC chefs and their Easy-Bake Ovens

Posted By on Fri, Feb 19, 2010 at 10:53 AM

Great chefs started out cooking with a light bulb

James Beard Award-winning chef Debbie Gold recently told me that she started out cooking on the Easy-Bake Oven she got when she was six years old: "Everyone had one! You have to learn to cook on a light bulb sometime!"

Lots of future boy chefs started cooking on Easy Bake ovens too, even though the toy's Web site proclaims "the classic light bulb oven still delights with a girl's first baking experience."

That didn't stop Mark Wingard, the co-owner and chef at You Say Tomato from asking for one and getting it: "I cooked pies, cakes, brownies on it," he says. "You bet I had one."

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