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
Much like how my family and friends expect belated birthday cards, I’m expressing my Thanksgiving wishes five days late.
Throughout November the internet was inundated with Thanksgiving count downs, hoards of traditional recipe posts and countless new side dishes to add to the table. Articles about gravy, turkeys, pies, and an All-Pie Thanksgiving Fantasy overflowed my RSS reader like water in a clogged-up sink.
So, I took a ten day blogging break during, quite possibly, the biggest foodie holiday of the year.
I went home to Kansas City for a whole week and ate copious amounts of sweets. For our Thanksgiving meal I was responsible for making a banana cream pie and squash casserole, both disappeared faster than $1.88 towels at Wal*Mart on Black Friday. (I used Paula Dean’s easy squash casserole recipe.)
One night I wrote a post on Flip Burger, but my mom’s computer battery died taking the post and my motivation down with it.
Thoughts of writing a Thanksgiving list crossed my mind, but I couldn’t think of a fresh angle besides posting what I’m thankful for, last minute holiday tips or people who we don’t thank enough. Frankly, I read so many of those lists that I didn’t want to add to the pool.
Nevertheless, I hope everyone was well fed and had a wonderful Thanksgiving, even that TSA agent who confiscated my Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Butter who probably just wanted it for himself.
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
Warning: This is not a food-related post. Since I took an ample amount of time carefully crafting this letter, I’m sharing it.
To Whom it May Concern,
My name is Gidget, I am Southwest Rapid Rewards member #XXX. Ordinarily I am very pleased with the service Southwest airline provides but after a recent trip I feel compelled to write.
On Thursday, June 9 I was traveling home to Kansas City from Jackson, MS for my brother’s wedding. This was my original itinerary:
Flight #XXX: Depart Jackson at 6:10 a.m., arrive in Chicago (Midway) at 8:05 a.m.
Flight #XXX: Depart Chicago (Midway) at 9:20 a.m., arrive in Kansas City at 10:45 a.m.
The actual events of the day were a travel nightmare and transpired as followed:
Flight #XXX left Jackson on time at 6:10 a.m. heading to Chicago. Around 8:30 a.m. the pilot informed us that due to the weather we had flown an extra 350 miles north, Midway airport had closed, low fuel prevented us from entering the holding pattern and we were forced to land at General Mitchell International airport in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
The airplane landed in Milwaukee around 9 a.m. and we sat on the tarmac for at least 50 minutes waiting for one of the two gates. One of those planes was bound for Kansas City but they would not hold the flight; I watched as that airplane took off at 9:50 a.m.
We taxied into the gate, parked and then a Milwaukee Southwest employee entered the plane to announce Flight #XXX was cancelled, they didn’t have another airplane and we would have to take a bus back to Chicago (Midway). (There was no reason communicated to us why we couldn’t take our original airplane back to Midway. Milwaukee wasn’t expecting us and therefore had no previously scheduled flights departing for another city. Why couldn’t we simply re-fuel and fly to Midway as planned?)
Passengers rushed the Southwest service desk to inquire about flights departing from Milwaukee or re-book connecting flights out of Midway. Southwest agents told us they could not re-book our missed connecting flights and we would have an agent to help us when we arrived at Midway.
I had an agent check the flights departing Midway for Kansas City; the 1:05 p.m. plane was full but there were other flights departing throughout the day. There was a flight leaving Milwaukee for Kansas City at 4:30 p.m. but at that time it would have been at least a five hour wait. They stated that Midway was a much larger flight hub and recommended I take the bus to Chicago.
I reluctantly boarded the bus for a two hour ride back to Chicago; we left Milwaukee at 10:45 a.m. During the bus ride I called the main Southwest contact phone number to try to re-book my connecting flight. The agent told me she could not help me, all of the afternoon flights to Kansas City from Midway were booked, and the next open flight was at 6:25 p.m. (This was extremely frustrating because if so, then I simply would have stayed put in Milwaukee.)
We arrived at Midway at 12:45 p.m., stepped off the bus and there was not a single Southwest agent who had been informed of the situation or was designated to help us.
Eventually we were directed to a counter with only two agents helping all 70 passengers from the two buses. We waited in line for nearly thirty minutes, only two passengers had been helped and by this time I had missed the 1:05 p.m. flight.
I found an agent at the check-in kiosks who was able to book me on flight #XXX departing at 2:55 p.m., scheduled to arrive in Kansas City at 4:20 p.m.
Around 3 p.m. we boarded for Flight #XXX and then the plane was held until 4:15 p.m. while we waited for other passengers. (However this courtesy was not extended for me while I was in Milwaukee wanting to get on the 9:50 a.m. flight to Kansas City.)
At 5:45 p.m. we landed in Kansas City, seven hours behind my originally scheduled itinerary.
Although inconvenient, I do understand that no one has control over the weather. And luckily my return flights back to Jackson, MS went smoothly.
However, the failure of Southwest employees to communicate and inform each other about the situation, the lack of communication between Southwest employees and Flight #152 passengers, and how we were disregarded on this particular day is completely unacceptable for a company who prides itself on customer service.
At one point a Southwest employee brazenly told another passenger that we were lucky to have gotten the bus, because they didn’t need to do that for us. I find that to be ironic considering I had purchased a flight with a Kansas City as my final destination and had a contract with your company to get me there.
This negative experience traveling with Southwest significantly impacted my trip. I lost a precious vacation day from work and a significant amount of time with family and friends in town for the wedding.