For months and months I’ve had these photos ready to be posted and dishes to recount. Days have gone by without documentation or words because there is no way I can be unbiased in this article. Why? I want you to love EBT.
In an ideal restaurant world, all diners are treated like critic royalty Pete Wells and each plate is executed with a God-like consistency (the same yesterday, today and tomorrow). But naturally places come and go like migrating birds, service is carried out by imperfect people and taste is subjective. This is why every restaurant story I write and publish is my personal opinion of the experience I have at that time.
I’m still going to be honest but need to confess that I have a personal interest in EBT. My younger brother is the General Manager and I want to see it thrive.
EBT has been a classy establishment in Kansas City for a long time, offering table-side preparation and souffles for dessert. It’s also a namesake of a downtown department store, Emery Bird Thayer, hailing from a previous era.
I grew up in the Kansas City area and lived there until I was 23-years-old, but I had never eaten at EBT until last November. Of course I had heard of it but it seemed like an upscale lunching lady type establishment. Hidden on the backside in a bank building, it’s located directly off of State Line and I-435. Preconceived notions and an obscure location were not doing it any favors.
When we traveled to the Midwest for Thanksgiving, EBT was our first stop. We were welcomed by the sight of rows of orchids and a surprisingly large dining room. The art deco interior is decorated in warm tones and the lights were low during our relaxed late night dinner.
To begin the evening we sampled an array of appetizers such as the tender Thai Glazed Beef Skewers and Bacon Wrapped Tiger Shrimp with Thai chili sauce, but I couldn’t keep my hands from the buttery toasts. I have a bread and butter weakness. And although they are easy constructed at home, I do enjoy a salad with ingredients I don’t usually have on hand like the Apple, Gorgonzola and Red Leaf Salad or Iceberg Wedge. Both were equally delicious especially because I didn’t have to make the sherry vinaigrette or creamy bleu cheese dressing myself.
For our entrees my husband chose the Beef Ribeye and I picked Seared Scallops and Risotto from the appetizer menu, diligently trying to save room for dessert. His enormous steak came with mashed potatoes and almondine mixed vegetables, bleu cheese sauce on the side. I was slipped an extra perfectly seared scallop atop the slightly over seasoned risotto.
Finally the moment had come that I had been waiting for and he rolled out the table-side cart for Bananas Foster. He steadily melted butter, whisked in brown sugar and then with a few quick movements ignited the liquors shooting up a glowing flame. Nothing is more dramatic than a burst of fire in a dark dining room. Being fully gluttonous, I also ordered a chocolate souffle and mopped up every bit of cream anglaise from a tiny, adorable pitcher. The chocolate flavor wasn’t as intense as I anticipated but it was tall, light and airy.
We ate, drank and thoroughly enjoyed celebrating in my brother’s newest professional adventure. He’s good at what he does and reveres a fine meal just as much as I do. And as I said at his wedding, he got his driven work ethic from our father, his ability to make friends with anyone from our mother and I’m so very proud to call him my brother.
Read more about EBT restaurant below and browse my other Restaurant Stories.
The Young and the Restless: The Pitch
EBT restaurant targets fresh new image without abandoning longtime roots: Kansas City Business Journal
1310 Carondelet Drive
Kansas City, MO 64114
Friend them on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/EBTKansasCity
Follow them on Twitter: http://twitter.com/EBTKansasCity
The only thing unpalatable at Succotash is the art.
For Christmas we stayed in Mississippi, which means I went home to Kansas City for Thanksgiving. While in the Midwest, I had the rare luxury of spending one whole day with my little brother. We had a complete Joey and Janice-esque day of fun, except we actually like each other and neither of us have that annoying accent.
Having a shared passion for both eating and cooking, brunch was the natural choice to start the day. Moving beyond our usual First Watch family obsession, we decided to go somewhere new and ended up at Succotash.
Succotash is an eccentrically decorated diner, kitschy objects are strewn about and the chairs are painted a combination of Smurf and royal blue. You won’t be able to avoid an odd painting of a woman eating blood red soup dribbling from her mouth. The image is creepy, I was glad it was out of sight and hung upside down.
Now, this post might not be helpful because a over a month has passed. When reviewing their menu online, I noticed the dishes are different from what we ordered in the restaurant.
Succotash serves Cafe du Monde coffee but I chose to sip on a cappuccino while reading the three page menu.
I had a vegetarian version of the Kitchen Sink, but requested sausage gravy instead of mushroom gravy. My brother ordered a version of Eggs Benedict with crab meat; the only version online includes smoked salmon. To round out the meal we split a single blueberry pancake on the side.
Our eyes were bigger than our stomachs and the pancake was bigger than our heads.
I was presented a platter of home fries layered with spinach, vegetables, eggs, cheese and smothered with gravy. All of those vegetables felt deceptively healthy despite the gravy blanket. The Eggs Benedict featured a rich Hollandaise sauce covering a fresh mound of crab meat. Surprisingly, the spinach was raw in both dishes, simply an interesting decision. The blueberry pancake almost exceeded the edges of the plate, was perfectly sweet and golden brown.
While stuffing ourselves we caught up on life, marriage, culinary aspirations and talked a lot about nothing. We ate leisurely and I don’t know what was more delightful, brunch or spending time with my brother. The painting is another story.
2601 Holmes Street
Kansas City, MO 64108
My mom and I have a tradition of going on a mother-daughter lunch at André’s Confiserie Suisse. We’ve been doing this for so long I can’t remember when we started (middle school maybe?).
Originally hailing from Switzerland, André and Elsbeth Bollier immigrated to Kansas City in 1955 bringing a European influence to the Midwest. Luckily for us sweet tooth-laden food lovers, they established a trifecta of culinary delights. André’s is a chocolatier, pastry shop and tea room wrapped into one magical package.
Located near the Plaza (down the street from Glace), Andrés occupies a red brick building with a white awning. Stepping into the front door, long cases of gorgeous pastries, cakes and chocolates are there to greet you, beckoning from their trays. Resisting the initial temptations we forged onward to the dining room.
The main dining room is like walking into a Swiss ice chalet due to its heavy angled beams, lodge decor and large flag collection. At least it’s what I imagine a Swiss ice chalet looks like, since I’ve never been to Switzerland or an ice chalet.
André’s only serves lunch and the meal is light. You can choose from two daily specials or two standard quiche options. It comes with bread, tea and dessert (for $14.90 per person); dessert being the best part, of course. It’s the quintessential place for ladies who lunch, but over time we’ve seen an increase in male patrons.
On this particular day my mom and I both chose the Chicken Breast Annabelle special with mushrooms, tomatoes, spatzle and salad. The salad dressing was thin and tangy, the chicken was moist but the highlight was the tender spatzle. It was similar in texture to gnocchi and soaked up the flavors of the sauce. I ended up cleaning both of our plates.
Over the years we’ve eaten many different dishes and naturally some are better than others. If the daily specials don’t pique your interest, the quiches are always a sure bet.
Ever since we began this tradition, my most anticipated moment is when the waitress brings over the tray of desserts. As she describes the pastries I studiously examine each option to make a wise selection. (You only get one!) This time I picked the Matterhorn filled with butter cream and my mom selected their take on Tiramisu, which she generously shared with me.
These desserts taste as wonderful as they look. They are lavished with great attention to detail, rich and garnished with real whipped cream. It’s harder for me to chose a dessert than it was a college.
And if lunch wasn’t enough, on the way out my mom graciously lets me chose another chocolate or cookie to take home. It’s a sweet dilemma and guaranteed trouble for a indecisive dessert-aholic like me.
I adore André’s and our lunching tradition, almost as much as I adore my mom.
André’s Confiserie Suisse
5018 Main Street
Kansas City, MO 64112
At some point during every trip back home, my brother animatedly insists I head to Glace as soon as possible.
The man behind Glace, Christopher Elbow, initially lured Kansas Citians with his famous artisan chocolates and has now expanded to ice cream. As quoted from the website, his ice cream boasts of “intensely pure, all-natural ingredients and deliciously surprising flavor pairings…” naturally, I went to taste for myself.
Situated fairly close to the Plaza area, Glace is nestled among a string of restaurants and shops on Main street. The featured flavors are listed high on a wall and thankfully the employees graciously allow you to sample as many as you want.
Although my mom was standing next to me, I felt it necessary to excitedly repeat the flavor names out loud. Salted Pretzel! Strawberry Balsamic! Peanut Butter and Jelly!
Each flavor tasted exactly how it sounds. So much so that I couldn’t handle more than the sample spoonful of Salted Pretzel. There is nothing ordinary about this ice cream.
After much deliberation, the final two winners were Cream Cheese & Cherries and Black Berry Chocolate Chip. Sweet, dense and vibrant this ice cream is very similar to gelato.
A small cup with two flavors will set you back nearly $4. It’s not cheap, but those tiny scoops pack in a big punch.
Glace Artisan Ice Cream
4960 Main St.
Kansas City, MO
During trips home to Kansas City, a meal at Brio on the Plaza is a frequent guarantee because my brother is part of their management team.
Writing about Brio breaks a couple personal blog rules; a family member is an employee and it’s a chain restaurant.
With that being said, although we are taken care of quite well we are not the exception. Their large establishment wouldn’t be consistently busy if they didn’t deliver excellence customer service, and if something does go awry, they fix it. And although I am extremely conscious of supporting local establishments, there are occasions when you had to make due (airports, large groups, few available food options and extenuating circumstances).
Besides, they really do have good food and I documented our meal.
To start our Christmas vacation we headed directly to Brio after my mom picked us up at the airport. Due to our flights we arrived at a strange time of day (around 3 p.m.) famished, tired and ready to eat.
For starters everyone at the table inhaled an order of Margherita Flatbread and Roasted Red Pepper & Fresh Mozzarella Bruschetta, in addition to polishing off a basket of warm sourdough bread and seasoned crackers. The fresh mozzarella they use is creamy and delicious which elevates these standard appetizers. We ate so fast I nearly didn’t get any photos.
Needing a revival from traveling, Ben and I each ordered a side Brio Chopped Salad which consists of lettuce greens, tomatoes, olives, onions, cucumber, feta cheese and red wine vinaigrette. The dressing is light and flavorful without weighing down all those ingredients. It was cold, crisp and refreshing.
For our entrees we split two dishes which included a special for the night and a standard menu item. The special was a pasta dish with some generic name. It was good, but the Chicken Milanese was incredible. The Chicken Milanese is basically a version of chicken parmesan; a golden brown chicken breast on herb pasta, fresh mozzarella cheese and house made tomato sauce. It was satisfying, crispy, salty, and slightly sweet (due to the luscious sauce). The bed of hot spaghetti was mixed with cheese and herb butter, an intoxicating combination.
Unable to resist temptation, for dessert I chose a Dolchino cup of Tiramisu and Ben picked Caramel Bread Pudding topped with vanilla gelato. No matter how appealing the dessert tray looks I nearly always cave to Tiramisu. It’s unavoidable because it’s so good, I could eat a whole tray. Likewise, Ben cannot pass up a bread pudding (so I’ve tasted many). This version was stellar because of the caramelized edges and rich nuts.
The first floor of Brio is filled with tables and booths, a small bar, a wood burning oven and the kitchen. The second floor has a balcony, another bar, comfortable seating areas and private dining rooms. The interior of the main dining area was quite pretty when we last visited, covered in festive decorations for the holidays season.
We’ve eaten there many times and have been thoroughly happy with our food. I promise, if that wasn’t the case my brother would hear about it.
(Note: my mom and future sister-in-law were present, but both ordered undocumented salads.)
Brio Tuscan Grille
Country Club Plaza
502 Nichols Drive
Kansas City, MO 64112