Avenues Bistro's chefs modernize traditional European bistro fare by creatively incorporating Latin flavors, helping earn KC Magazine's award for Restaurant Innovator of the Year in 2009. In addition to frying orders of Belgian-style pommes frites and braising beef short ribs in marsala and veal stock, the chefs also marinate pork tenderloin in chimichurri for guests to enjoy in a newly renovated dining room. This interplay between Old- and New-World flavors extends to the wine list, which features bottles from domestic, international, and trans-dimensional producers, and won the restaurant Wine Enthusiast Magazine's Award of Unique Distinction in 2007.
Under the watchful eyes and green thumbs of owners Jim and Ami Zumalt, the fertile, chemical-free soils at Red Ridge Farms sprout up to 60 varieties of vegetables and more than 475 varieties of fruits, herbs, and flowers each season. The Zumalts share the wealth of their harvest?which can include chard, heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, and blackberries? through locally distributed CSAs, or Community Supported Agriculture crop-shares. Each week, Red Ridge's freshest bounty travels to local farmers' markets, where CSA members pick up their prepacked bags or customize market-style baskets to take home. Staffers can also provide tips and recipes relevant to that week's harvest or attempt to prognosticate next week's crop by reading lines on a rutabaga.
Culling inspiration from the original Michael Forbes Grill—a popular dining destination open from 1985 to 1999—the new Michael Forbes Bar & Grille makes guests feel at home with its cozy and casual vibe. Owner Forbes Cross and his son Matt Cross, who helms the kitchen, have forged an accessible menu of gourmet American fare, from fried catfish that's deboned tableside to baby-back ribs that are smoked in-house but away from the smoke alarms. At the granite-top bar, barkeepers pour an impressive selection of red, white, and sparkling wines, while servers saunter to cozy booths decorated by black-and-white framed photos of double rainbows over Kansas City.
Authentic techniques are the key to French recipes. Understanding this, Chef Emmanuel Langlade honed his cooking skills in Marseille, France, before opening Aixois Bistro with his wife more than a decade ago.
Amid suspended orb lights and rustic, wrought-iron chandeliers, French flavors prepared by chef Miguel Sanchez delight palates at all hours. As morning light spills through enormous windows, the staff brews fresh coffee to pair with piping-hot croissants for early-bird visitors. Lunchtime guests sample favorite French sandwiches, from the classic croque-monsieurs to the egg-crowned croque madames. For dinner diners, the kitchen dishes up an elegant menu that includes two varieties of moules frites (mussels with pommes frites), as well as seafood, steak, and oven-roasted chicken. Afterward, traditional desserts such as cr?me br?l?e topped with fresh berries cap off meals and keep sweet teeth from rebelliously biting tongues.
A family-owned eatery passed down through several generations, The Beacon Tavern fits right in with the historic neighborhood it resides in. The tavern's owners and proprietors, all of whom still live nearby, emphasize that close-knit atmosphere as they serve recipes made from scratch and meats hand cut on site.
Aromas from double-cut pork chops, north-atlantic salmon, and pale-ale-battered cod fill the air as 16 draft beers and a lengthy selection of reds and whites dazzles palates. A kids' menu keeps energetic youngsters occupied with built-in games and helpful tips for convincing parents why they should be emancipated.
The tavern's main dining room accents steaming plates of food with exposed brick walls and tall wooden booths. In warm weather, The Alley seating area features alfresco dining with sights of the South Plaza neighborhood and mischievous birds dropping gum into the hair of passersby. Meanwhile, parties and meetings convene in the upstairs Monk’s Loft area.
Though André and Elsbeth Bollier left Basel, Switzerland for Kansas City in 1955, they didn't really leave the Old World behind. Finding his adopted home bereft of fine pastries, André set out to "bring something new and exciting" to the city, as his son Marcel told the Wednesday Sun in 2011. A master pastry chef, he began selling his handcrafted swiss confections at his eponymous store, André's Confiserie Suisse. Intent on re-creating the feel of an authentic Swiss confiserie, he relied on natural ingredients and pure butter to produce his treats' signature rich flavor. Soon, André expanded his business to two tearooms festooned with the flags of several Swiss cantons.
Now joined by third-generation members of the Bollier family, André's Confiserie Suisse remains faithful to that original vision while creating new lines of seasonal and signature bites. In addition to hand-decorated caramels, fruit tortes, and freshly shelled circus peanuts, the display cases feature grand cru truffles made from single-sourced cocoa beans whose flavors reflect the soil and climate of their exotic original locales, including Madagascar and Bolivia.