Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Where is it? It's here!

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 11:48 AM

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​We had a few guesses and one correct answer to this week's "Where Is it?" question. Only commenter Rob Torfulson correctly guessed -- on his second try -- that this creative patio ornament was on the patio behind the Cook's Shack Cafe at 8950 Wornall Road.

 

 

 

 

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The invasion of the foodiots

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 11:15 AM

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It was bound to happen. With the opportunity to post pictures and text from nearly any location instantly, we were going to turn into foodiots.

The phrase has been making the rounds of the Interwebs this week as snarky writers attempt to encapsulate our new-found love of food minutiae. The New York Observer laments the insipid way that an ingredient-by-ingredient account of our meals has taken over the workplace:

New Yorkers' water-cooler chitchat has changed. They used to talk about sex and politics and TV shows. Now they can't stop yapping about what they're shoving down their pie holes.
Foodiots are generally considered to be those of us obsessed with a given style of cuisine or just in documenting everything that goes into our face, in an online version of a food diary. New York's Grub Street tries to determine the exact moment when foodies became foodiots and contends that it was when we elevated regular old street food to something served on white linen:

As the food blogosphere and food television expand, food becomes more and more about sensationalism and gimmickry, and it has become more and more acceptable to praise something just because it's wacky or indulgent (or because it got kicked out of its parking space), not because it's artful.
But, in a way, this just feels like the Internet catching up with the food world -- ie., in order to find the nuggets of gold, you've got to sift through a lot of dirt. As with everything else, we've got choices in who we follow or what we read. The food diary can stay closed and hidden under someone's bed or blog.

If the price of finding the perfect recipe for an omelette is sorting through a few foodiots, that doesn't seem particularly steep.

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Chef of the Year: New Theatre's Mark Webster

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 11:14 AM

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​Mark Webster, the executive chef at the New Theatre Restaurant, was honored as "Chef of the Year" by the Greater Kansas City Chefs Association on Sunday; Webster received the award at the 34th Annual Chefs Benefit at the Muehlebach Hotel.

"The benefit raises money for scholarships," said Webster -- who was also a nominee last year, but didn't win -- "and Operation Breakthrough."

The rules were changed for the voting process this year, Webster said, "so that it wasn't a popularity contest." Nominees were selected based on community involvement as well as their culinary expertise. Webster helps promote the Greater Kansas City Chefs Association -- which has over 400 members -- by writing for local Tastebud magazine and he served as chair for last year's regional convention of the American Culinary Federation in Kansas City.

 

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Q&A: David Cross

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 10:55 AM

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David Cross hasn't been to Kansas City since suffering the drunken mindfuck he describes at length on his Grammy-nominated first album, 2003's Shut Up, You Fucking Baby. Launching into his tale of how he came to be undone by booze and the medium-lousy band Harlow, he says he started the night alone because he had no friends in Kansas City. "And good for my friends," he says.

That cheap shot hasn't stopped Cross fans here from quoting lines from that bit most of this decade. If you're reading this, you probably know someone who has affected a low, nasal voice and told you to "answer your telephone" -- or you've done it yourself.

Still, knowing that all the liquor in Westport wasn't enough to endear KC to the comedy hero of Mr. Show, Arrested Development and the upcoming Channel 4 show The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret -- well, that's disappointing. Cross is showing a segment of that new show, which he has co-written, to some audiences on his new tour, which stops tonight at the Midland downtown. (The show's at 8; Todd Glass opens.) He won't run into any acts from VH1's Bands on the Run, so the way seems clear for him to like us this time.

The occasion for Cross' tour is I Drink for a Reason, his new book of short essays, lists and tangents. It's his first book, and at this writing, it's holding at No. 32 on the New York Times hardcover best-seller list.

I talked to Cross for a few minutes last week as his tour got under way. I blame the flop-sweat inferiority complex induced by a quick refresher with the Harlow-Kansas City track from Shut Up for some weak questions. So if Cross still thinks KC is lame, it's probably all my fault.

So, uh, you're coming back to Kansas City ...

I'm sorry. I can only apologize so many times. No, seriously, I just remembered that the airline lost my luggage coming into Kansas City for that show, so I had to wing around 20 minutes that I normally would have had stuff.

Continue reading »

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Q&A: David Cross

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 10:55 AM

IDrinkforaReason_opt.jpg

David Cross hasn't been to Kansas City since suffering the drunken mindfuck he describes at length on his Grammy-nominated first album, 2003's Shut Up, You Fucking Baby. Launching into his tale of how he came to be undone by booze and the medium-lousy band Harlow, he says he started the night alone because he had no friends in Kansas City. "And good for my friends," he says.

That cheap shot hasn't stopped Cross fans here from quoting lines from that bit most of this decade. If you're reading this, you probably know someone who has affected a low, nasal voice and told you to "answer your telephone" -- or you've done it yourself.

Still, knowing that all the liquor in Westport wasn't enough to endear KC to the comedy hero of Mr. Show, Arrested Development and the upcoming Channel 4 show The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret -- well, that's disappointing. Cross is showing a segment of that new show, which he has co-written, to some audiences on his new tour, which stops tonight at the Midland downtown. (The show's at 8; Todd Glass opens.) He won't run into any acts from VH1's Bands on the Run, so the way seems clear for him to like us this time.

The occasion for Cross' tour is I Drink for a Reason, his new book of short essays, lists and tangents. It's his first book, and at this writing, it's holding at No. 32 on the New York Times hardcover best-seller list.

I talked to Cross for a few minutes last week as his tour got under way. I blame the flop-sweat inferiority complex induced by a quick refresher with the Harlow-Kansas City track from Shut Up for some weak questions. So if Cross still thinks KC is lame, it's probably all my fault.

So, uh, you're coming back to Kansas City ...

I'm sorry. I can only apologize so many times. No, seriously, I just remembered that the airline lost my luggage coming into Kansas City for that show, so I had to wing around 20 minutes that I normally would have had stuff.

Continue reading »

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The Best of Kansas City: That's a lot of eatin'!

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 10:30 AM


The Pitch's annual Best Of Kansas City issue is here once again. Over the past year, we've searched the metro area to find the very best that Kansas City has to offer. We continue to be surprised, inspired and overjoyed by what we find.

The section on food heralds the best grilled cheese, best ice cream, and four best barbecue joints at each point of the compass, among many other entries. There's a section for drinks, covering the best place you can still smoke and highlighting the best bar game in town. And as always, there's the readers' choice section, where our loyal readers have crowned the best server, the best bartender, the best new restaurant and the best diner, as well as other favorites.

So crank up "You're The Best Around," stumble around the links, and then come back and agree or disagree in the comments. But seeing as it's the one week of the year we devote entirely to loving our town, we'll impose the same rules as the dojo: all are welcome, but no hits below the belt.   

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Killa City: Murder trials for Warren E. Frazier and Markus D. Lee scheduled

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 10:00 AM

Two men accused of murder in Jackson County will go on trial in October.

Warren E. Frazier
  • Warren E. Frazier
The first-degree murder trial of Warren E. Frazier is scheduled to begin on October 19.

Frazier, 56, is accused of killing Danielle Gray at an apartment in the 2100 block of East Linwood in February. Prosecutors allege that Frazier shot Gray in head during an argument over drugs.

Also scheduled to go on trial in October is Markus D. Lee, who is accused of first-degree murder and several counts of armed criminal action and assault.

Lee's trial is scheduled for October 5 at 9 a.m.

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Starbucks goes back to the '80s with Via

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 9:45 AM

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​Starbucks is hoping that a product from the past can bring the coffee chain into the future. Yesterday, the Seattle-based company rolled out a new instant coffee product -- Starbucks Via -- that it's been test-marketing for nearly eight months. 

If this were 1989 instead of 2009, I'd be excited about the prospects for Starbucks. But in reality, the age of instant coffee -- at least in the United States -- is likely well in the past. In addition, the cost -- nearly $1 per packet ($2.95 for a package of three) -- suggests that there is such a thing as premium instant coffee. That feels like a tough sell.

Initial reviews indicate that the flavor is somewhere between instant coffee and a cup of brewed coffee:

"I tried the medium and bold blends first black and then with milk, which is how I usually take my coffee. I found them both to have a decent normal coffee taste mixed with a funny taste that is not pleasant on the finish. The funny taste was worse with milk than black."

Continue reading »

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Best Of Extra: Video of Sharon Sanders Brooks' underwear

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 9:29 AM

When the discussion about a dress code at Power & Light stopped being polite and started getting real, Councilwoman Sharon Sanders Brooks mentioned the unmentionables.

Her political theater of airing out the undies (pink, no less) at a Planning and Zoning Committee meeting on March 4 earned our approval as 2009's Best Use of Underwear in our Best of Kansas City 2009 edition.

Here's the Channel 2 footage from that day:

Best Use of Underwear from casey lyons on Vimeo.

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Sexystakes: Choosing this year's Best Sexy Musician

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 9:10 AM

Another year of Best Ofs, another hot KC mofo crowned Best Sexy Musician.

This year, our staff didn't have to deliberate too hard to choose the charming, handsome and genuinely sweet Enrique Chi of the magnificent Making Movies.

Making Movies (Enrique front and center)
  • Making Movies (Enrique front and center)

A few of us (well, me) wanted to see a lady get it this year, but Chi's chi was just too hot 'n strawng.

Our Best Of profiler (whose identity shall remain anonymous lest any significant others and/or current flirtations be offended) wrote:

Enrique Javier Chi must inspire butterflies and perspiration in the kids he mentors at the Mattie Rhodes Center, 'cause the soft-spoken, dreadlocked, Panamanian-born musician sure sparkles with charm. It doesn't matter if his lush lips are issuing coffee-shop talk about social issues -- in the faintest accent -- or he's singing onstage in Spanish (or English). Sweet Chi fronts the band Making Movies, which blends rock and roll with Latin-music traditions. And when he starts tossing his dready head and unconsciously foot shuffling to his band's rock-embedded salsa rhythms, it's hard not to throw a bra and roses.

Congrats, Enrique. I'd say you earned that one.

Ah, but there's more sexy to be had yet. For one thing, who was this year's Readers' Choice? Glad you asked...

Continue reading »

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