Bars in Independence

Select Local Merchants

As Tommy, one of Howl at the Moon’s piano players, explains on the club’s website, “Every night…we try and throw a party, regardless of whether it’s a Tuesday night or a Saturday night.” The bar’s trademark dueling pianos serve as the epicenter of these nightly celebrations; patrons submit their favorite songs on slips of paper for the pianists and backing musicians to recreate. If the website’s playlist is any indication, the bands can handle popular songs from all genres and eras, from Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer” to Kanye West’s “All of the Lights.” The performances are spirited: colorful lights splash upon a stage where servers, guests, and chairs that have somehow developed mobility all dance along to the music.

Fueling the celebration is the bar’s indulgent selection of drinks. Servers stand over patrons to plunge jello injectors into their mouths, and revelers grab colorful straws to help drain 86-ounce booze buckets filled with sangria or other fruity libations. Pomegranate liqueur and honey-infused whiskey sweeten specialty cocktails, and local beers add depth to coolers stocked with Stella Artois and Dos Equis.

1334 Grand Blvd
Kansas City,
MO
US

Each of the wines on the shelf in Cellar Rat has been vetted by the staff—nothing is sold to the public unless the staff would drink it or use it as a substitute for milk in cereal. The resulting more than 800 wines, 70% of which are less than $20, make for tasty everyday and special-occasion beverages, as do the number of premium spirits and handcrafted brews stocked alongside the wine.

Cellar Rat’s vino experts do more than just discern the difference between good and bad wine; they also teach others how to do so during wine classes that delve into the intricacies of tasting. They even make pairing suggestions for the artisan cheeses, gourmet cured meats, and pate also sold in the boutique shop.

1701 Baltimore Ave
Kansas City,
MO
US

Born of a union between Sports Radio 810 WHB and the restaurateurs at KC Hopps, Ltd., 810 Zone marries sports spectatorship with scrumptious sandwiches, burgers, and Kansas City barbecue. Gamblers can down a grilled salmon club at the Harrah's casino location or enjoy pizza at the Lee's Summit Zone, before a trip to the tables or before trying to pass off burgers as poker chips.

1 Riverboat Dr.
North Kansas City,
MO
US

Nestled in the Crossroads Arts District, Tannin Wine Bar & Kitchen sates sophisticated palates with seasonal, contemporary-American cuisine and an eclectic selection of voluptuous vinos from around the world. Midday grape guzzlers can indulge taste buds with a lunch menu boasting a savory selection of gourmet portobello, pork, and strip-steak sandwiches ($8–$11). For dinner, indulge in a selection of pre-meal cheeses that include drunken goat, port-salut, and jokes told by the waiter's uncle on Christmas ($6/individual, $15/choice of three). Diners can savor the aromatics rising from a piping plate of seared ahi tuna served with wasabi mashed potatoes and tempura asparagus ($26), or sink knives into a grilled pork chop served with a three-veggie succotash and golden-potato hash ($23). A stalwart array of cutlery helps guests plot the epic four-course tasting menu that can be paired with a selection of wines or a tiny pair of wind-up chattering teeth ($38/person).

1526 Walnut St
Kansas City,
Missouri
US

Amidst dazzling décor imported from Egypt, Sahara Sheesha Lounge's handmade Egyptian hookahs billow out wafts of premium flavored tobacco from Al Fakher, Star Buzz, and the lounge's own hand-crafted blends. Amid handmade rugs and bamboo chairs, spacious couches cushion customers as they pair their puffs of flavored smoke with sips of tea, fresh fruit juices, and smoothies. The lounge also boasts a large projection-screen television for communal entertainment and eschews the greatest yodeling hits in favor of authentic midwestern music.

1714 W 39th St
Kansas City,
MO
US