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Thursday, August 28, 2014

The French Market in Prairie Village will be serving crepes on Saturdays

Posted By on Thu, Aug 28, 2014 at 3:27 PM

Members of chef Patrick Quillec's family -- including his sister, his niece, and his daughter -- will be manning the crepe grill on Saturdays, beginning next week. - KEVIN MARSH
  • Kevin Marsh
  • Members of chef Patrick Quillec's family -- including his sister, his niece, and his daughter -- will be manning the crepe grill on Saturdays, beginning next week.

Until Chez Elle opened at 1713 Summit in 2009, there hadn't been a restaurant devoted exclusively to crepes in the Kansas City metro since the Quaker Oats-owned chain, the Magic Pan, operated in Seville Square. That chain closed its local location in 1983. 

But several restaurants in the city — not necessarily exclusively creperie venues like Chez Elle — offer both savory and dessert crepes as part of their regular menus (even that iconic Mission diner the Village Inn!). For crepe lovers who want something completely different, the combination retail-and-food shop in Prairie Village, the French Market at 6947 Tomahawk in the Prairie Village Shopping Center, will be serving three kinds of crepes, Quillec-style, on Saturdays beginning next week, Saturday,  September 6.

It was chef Patrick Quillec's idea: The founder of the popular Cafe Provence restaurant only serves dessert crepes at that Prairie Village bistro, but he gets so many requests for the traditional crepes sold in shops and from food trucks in Paris, he decided it was time to return to a family tradition.

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Monday, August 18, 2014

Why does Jack White look so annoyed in Kansas City?

Posted By on Mon, Aug 18, 2014 at 1:44 PM

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The only thing that remains constant among Jack White's visits to various different baseball venues this summer is his scowl. 

Late in July, the guitar virtuoso was spotted at Wrigley Field in Chicago wearing an expression of contempt. He hardly flinched from a surly gaze as he threw out the first pitch at a Detroit Tigers game three days later.

And Monday, White took on a churlish look as he stood before the mural outside the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum near 18th Street and the Paseo in advance of his evening show at the Midland.

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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Novel nominated for Bon Appetit award

Posted By on Wed, Aug 13, 2014 at 2:13 PM

Chef-owner Ryan Brazeal's innovative entrees and desserts influenced the judges at Bon Appetit to choose Novel among Kansas City's new restaurants as a nominee for "America's Best New Restaurants." - ANGELA C. BOND
  • Angela C. Bond
  • Chef-owner Ryan Brazeal's innovative entrees and desserts influenced the judges at Bon Appetit to choose Novel among Kansas City's new restaurants as a nominee for "America's Best New Restaurants."

Until early this morning, chef and restaurant owner Ryan Brazeal was almost the last person to know that his 13-month-old restaurant, Novel, had been nominated by Bon Appetit as one of "America's Best New Restaurants." Fifty new restaurants from across the United States were nominated; the list will be winnowed down to 10 (and that list will be posted August 19).

"I hadn't even gotten an e-mail from Bon Appetit about the nomination," Brazeal says. "It wasn't until I began receiving text messages from chef pals like Patrick Ryan and Michael Corvino this morning — and Facebook messages of congratulations — that I knew that something was going on."


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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Bleu Burgers' Tony Olson is seriously changing things at Chubby's, Longbranch

Posted By on Wed, Jun 25, 2014 at 6:15 AM

Chef Nathan Buckley, left, and restaurateur Tony Olson recently opened Bleu Burger in Lee's Summit, but Olson wants Buckley to reinvent the food at Chubby's and the Longbranch Saloon in Lenexa.
  • Chef Nathan Buckley, left, and restaurateur Tony Olson recently opened Bleu Burger in Lee's Summit, but Olson wants Buckley to reinvent the food at Chubby's and the Longbranch Saloon in Lenexa.





There are a lot of things you could say - good and scathing - about Chubby's, the 24-hour diner at 3756 Broadway, but I had never considered using the words gracious service before. This is, after all, no place for the genteel, particularly after 1 a.m. 

While a friend and I were waiting for cheeseburgers last Friday night, our server stopped by our table - without a word and totally inexplicably - and dropped off a plate of two coaster-sized iced cinnamon rolls. We eyed the rolls warily. "Did you order those?" asked my friend.

No, since I don't crave breakfast pastries with my burgers (chocolate cream pie is another story entirely). We decided that the waitress had dropped the rolls off by mistake. But when, after five or six minutes, she didn't return for them, we ate them. Nothing was said. They weren't on the bill.

But I couldn't resist calling Tony Olson, the 33-year-old restaurateur who took over the operation of the midtown diner in 2012. "What's the story with the cinnamon rolls?" I asked Olson.

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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

KC's Pride Fest isn't such a gay time for some

Posted By on Wed, Jun 18, 2014 at 11:00 AM

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OK, let's get the jokes out of the way. As one bartender I talked to last week put it, this year's Kansas City Pride Fest - slated for the city's historic West Bottoms neighborhood June 20, 21 and 22 - is "an all-Bottoms party, tops not allowed."

It's easy to kid about it now, but in 1978, when KC saw its first gay-pride event, being out and proud in this town wasn't easy. Gay bars were still routinely raided by the cops, and Westport's Redhead Lounge maintained a back-door entrance that could be used by schoolteachers, who could be fired if they were seen entering a venue that catered to homosexuals.

By 1984, the festival had become a half-hearted carnival in the parking lot behind the since-razed Dover Fox saloon, at 43rd Street and Main. There might have been 100 people there, and the event lasted just three hours.

Last year's event in Westport, the first to be presented by the nonprofit Kansas City Diversity Coalition, attracted about 1,000 people over two days, according to estimates by several participants.

Or maybe 10 times that many people showed up?

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Pho Hoa to close briefly, will reopen as second iPho Tower

Posted By on Tue, Apr 29, 2014 at 11:28 AM

Restaurateur Spike Nguyen got into the restaurant business as a franchisee of the Sacramento-based Pho Hoa fast-casual chain. Now he's creating his own chain. - CHRIS MULLLINS
  • Chris Mulllins
  • Restaurateur Spike Nguyen got into the restaurant business as a franchisee of the Sacramento-based Pho Hoa fast-casual chain. Now he's creating his own chain.


Nearly three years after local restaurateur Spike Nguyen ignored naysayers (they criticized his choice of a debut location) and opened the first Kansas City franchise of the California-based Pho Hoa Noodle Soup chain, at 1447 Independence Avenue, he has officially severed ties with the Vietnamese-cuisine national chain.

Nguyen says he will shut down the popular fast-casual Pho Hoa (it's pronounced fuh wa) tomorrow - Wednesday, April 30 - and spend the next three weeks remodeling the interior of the building; Nguyen leases the back half of the former Scimeca's Market.

When the restaurant reopens in May, Nguyen says, it will be the second location of iPho Tower, the more upscale French-Vietnamese bistro he opened earlier this month with his wife, Jessie.

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Friday, April 18, 2014

Where do you take your lunch hour?

Posted By on Fri, Apr 18, 2014 at 6:00 AM

A healthy salad makes a nice, nourishing lunch -- but on a stressful workday, a stiff drink and a grilled cheese might be in order. - ANGELA C. BOND
  • Angela C. Bond
  • A healthy salad makes a nice, nourishing lunch -- but on a stressful workday, a stiff drink and a grilled cheese might be in order.


The concepts of breakfast and dinner are older, apparently, than the idea of the midday meal that we now know as lunch. Culinary historians pinpoint the mid-19th century as the time when lunch, which had been treated as little more than a snack prior to that (Samuel Johnson's 1755 definition of the word was "as much food as the hand can hold"), became less of a novelty, more of a meal with a fixed timetable.

The subject of today's Central Standard program at 11 a.m. on KCUR 89.3 will be lunch in all of its possible incarnations, from a quick jaunt through the company cafeteria to the two-martini variety of the Mad Men era to the cozy romantic getaway in a dimly lit French bistro.

You can join the conversation to discuss your own favorite places to dine in that noon-2 p.m. slot  in the Kansas City metro by calling 816-235-2888.


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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Home Skillet in Raytown and the case of the missing pies

Posted By on Tue, Apr 15, 2014 at 3:05 PM


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The two-month-old Home Skillet, a family-owned diner at 6225 Blue Ridge Boulevard, makes a lot of the dishes on its menu from scratch: the dinner rolls, the hand-cut french fries (fried to order), the cole slaw, the mashed potatoes. And then there are 27-year-old co-owner Josh Bennett's pies.

Bennett, who owns the venue with his father, Mike, and his aunt Kelly Dull, makes his own pie crust. ("Of course, I use lard," says Josh Bennett. "Both of my parents are from Arkansas. It's lard or nothing.") And he tries to bake enough of them to have for a whole week, but that hasn't been the case so far. A couple of weeks ago, after I'd finished a pretty decent dinner of fish and chips, my chatty server, Holly, raved about the restaurant's pies.

"They're wonderful! Our customers just love them. Tonight we have cherry and blueberry," she said.

My friend and I each ordered a piece of cherry pie. Ten minutes later, Holly returned. "I regret to inform you," she said, with all the solemnity of a funeral director, "that we are out of cherry pie. We only have apple and blueberry."

You know where this is going, don't you? We ordered apple pie. Ten minutes later, looking even more crestfallen, Holly returned. "I regret to inform you that we are out of apple pie. We only have blueberry."

Ten minutes later and another sheepish "I regret to inform you" speech, Holly returned with a piece of peach pie. It was pretty good, but sort of an anticlimax.

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Friday, March 21, 2014

It's all about using your noodle this morning on KCUR's Central Standard

Posted By on Fri, Mar 21, 2014 at 7:07 AM

ANGELA C. BOND
  • Angela C. Bond


The subject will be noodles - everything from phad thai to linguini carbonara - on the Central Standard program KCUR 89.3 with me and fellow panelists Emily Farris, Christine Becicka of Restaurant Guide of Kansas City, and Gloria Gale of 435 Magazine

You can join the conversation to discuss your own favorite place to twirl the noodles in the Kansas City metro by calling 816-235-2888.

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Monday, March 10, 2014

Fox News stung by bee

Posted By on Mon, Mar 10, 2014 at 3:31 PM

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Jackson County Spelling Bee winner Kush Sharma and runner-up Sophia Hoffman brought the drama Saturday morning. Fox News took care of the comedy. (h/t Media Matters). 

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