After Bremser said adieu to the oddball restaurant space (tucked into a corner of the High Cotton Home Furnishings store as almost an afterthought), he sort of vanished from the local restaurant scene. I heard about him only whenever I bumped into his father, Jeff Bremser, the executive vice president and chief creative officer at Bernstein-Rein Advertising. Jeff was once a restaurant reviewer himself for Kansas City Magazine. I loved the fact that he didn't care if anyone thought he was a food snob. When he was a member of the original restaurant-critics panel on KCUR 89.3's Walt Bodine Show, he happily told the truth to any caller who asked the name of his favorite restaurant: some stylish boîte in Paris.
Because both Jeff and J.B. are unabashed Francophiles, I wasn't surprised to hear that they'd taken over the location of the former Café Maison space at 408 East 63rd Street, which has been closed for many months. This popular Brookside French bistro had been opened by Jeff Fitzpatrick in 2001 and taken over by the chef, Ryan Kelly, five years later. For reasons I still don't understand, Kelly wasn't able to keep the doors open, and when J.B. Bremser signed a lease on the space, there wasn't much left in the storefront venue, including kitchen equipment.
"I think the bank might have taken over the equipment that was still there," Jeff Bremser told me. "But we still had some equipment left from Chez B."
The new restaurant, which will be a French bistro, doesn't have a name yet, but it definitely won't be called Café Maison or Chez B. It will serve lunch and dinner and, yes, those famous pommes frites. I only hope that Bremser also brings back his cocoa-dusted chocolate cake topped with a scoop of Foo's Frozen Custard (another Bremser family business). It may not be French, but baby, it's heavenly.