Posts Tagged ‘Manifesto’

MUDDLING QUITE WELL IN THE MIDDLE

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

The 5th Annual Greater Kansas City Bartending Competition
By Francine Cohen

Kansas City on the radar again this week. Suddenly we’re noticing something magical happening in this Midwestern town from killer restaurants (www.insidefandb.com/2011/08/eat-here-now-kansas-city) to a burgeoning cocktail festival that, on August 21st, marks its fifth year; behold, the 5th Annual Greater Kansas City Bartending Competition.

Set in the heartland where cattle is as important as cocktails, a whole new drinks fest is on the rise. Though the name belies a single event, don’t be fooled. This is not just some one night wonder competition that’s here and gone. The 5th Annual Greater Kansas City Bartending Competition is a week-long celebration of a lovingly crafted drinks culture that keeps pace with the rest of the country.

Ryan Maybee, the bartender/restaurateur behind Manifesto (www.theriegerkc.com) and festival co-founder, shares a bit about his brainchild for his hometown that next year will bear the name Paris of the Plains Cocktail Fest in honor of the nickname bestowed upon Kansas City during the Jazz Age by journalist Edward Morrow. He notes, “We’re branding it next year to indicate that it’s a festival and not just a competition. We think it’s great for Kansas City and for the industry. This year the competition itself will happen Sunday, August 21st; it starts at 7:00 p.m. and goes until 10:00 and throughout the evening food will be served and we’ve got live music and burlesque. But the week of that event – starting the prior Monday – there are going to be cocktail parties and tastings going on all around town. It will actually culminate with the competition.”

The competition features 13 contestants from Kansas City, and nearby cities

Read the rest of this entry »

EAT HERE NOW – KANSAS CITY

Friday, August 5th, 2011

By Seánan Forbes

Photo courtesy of the Kansas City Convention and Visitors Association

Kansas City’s not just about barbecue. There are restaurants, bars and coffee shops that would be mobbed were they in LA or New York, but the owners are happy in the Heartland. If you’re into coffee, then share in KC’s celebration of its independent roasters: The Roasterie (www.theroasterie.com) and Broadway Café and Roasting (www.broadwaycafeandroastery.com). Visit at the right hour, and you can catch one of Kansas City’s chefs fuelling up for another successful day.

Three-time Beard nominee Colby Garrelts and his wife, Megan, are an unstoppable pair: as parents, chefs (Colby handles the savory side; Megan, the sweet), and co-owners of Bluestem (www.bluestemkc.com, 900 Westport Road). They’re looking into opening a new restaurant, and are working on a cookbook – and their crew gets along so well that they hang out together when they have time off.

Photo by Bonjwing Lee

Where would they have you go in KC? In the great tradition of “eat dessert first,” let’s give Megan Garrelts the first word. “We go to Room 39 a lot,” she says. “It’s homey. It’s small . . . They have a great burger, great specials and soups . . . Ted [Ted Habinger, chef-restaurateur] is a great friend of ours.” Habinger’s worked for some of the best, including Danny Meyer. Room 39 is the ultimate in egalitarian treatment. Whether you spend hours drinking excellent cappuccinos and reading the newspaper, or order a five-course meal and a $200 bottle of wine, you’ll be shown honest grace and courtesy. Habinger wouldn’t have it any other way.

R Bar (www.rbarkc.com, 1617 Genessee Street) is another of her favorites. There’s “a great cocktail selection.” Just as important, “The ambience is just really cool. It has that old Kansas City feel. It takes you back in time.” Check the calendar for live music. R Bar’s drinks pair well with jazz.

Laughing, Colby Garrelts says, “The boys and I eat out almost every single day. We go hit the holes in the wall with the good lunches. These are the places that are the heart and soul of what we eat on a normal basis. We eat tons of pho.”   For that, they go to The Vietnam Café. (522 Campbell Street) and Kim Long Asian Market and Restaurant (511 Cherry Street) “It’s where the Vietnamese people go to eat, both of these places.” Look for “noodles, vermicelli, tripe – which isn’t really tripe – tendon, shank . . .” Garrelts’ one-word review: “Fantastic.

El Camino Real (902 N 7th Street, Kansas City KS). “They serve real gorditas – they hand-make all the gorditas – and they have those big pork shoulders with pineapple that drip and roast in the rotisserie. This is the real deal.”

El Pollo Rey (1101 Kansas Avenue, Kansas City KS) “All these people do is grill chickens.” You can buy a whole or half-chicken. You get fresh, warm tortillas, pickled vegetables, Mexican sodas – and it’s just spectacular.”

Read the rest of this entry »