Back in the 1970s and '80s, when Jasper Mirabile Sr. was running the fanciest Italian restaurant in town (the waiters wore tailored tuxedos and prepared many of the dishes tableside), the old Midtown Jasper's attracted all the big show-business names passing through town: Bob Hope, Mitzi Gaynor, Dean Martin and Danny Thomas. After Jasper pere
's death, his sons moved the restaurant south and made the new place much less formal. But the stylish amenities continue, and Jasper Jr.'s international reputation as a talented young chef has ensured the place has lost none of its celebrity cachet. On any weekend night, it's a magnet for local TV talking heads (KMBC Channel 9's Bev Chapman, KCTV Channel 5's Anne Peterson) and the pro-athlete crowd (Tom Watson, George Brett). "We had comedian David Brenner in over the summer," says Jasper Jr. "To call him thin is an understatement. But he ate." A few nights later, songbird Oleta Adams was spotted dining with Hollywood's superstar photographer Greg Gorman. "Greg called last week to say he was coming in soon with a surprise guest," Mirabile says. "But he won't tell me who it is."