We are a small family owned Italian restaurant, drawing influence from the southern Italian region. Our dishes are spicy, flavorful, some traditional, some new, serving lunch and dinner, handtossed pizzas, sandwiches, spaghetti, spedieni, manicotti, salads and homemade soups.
Tim Griffin has come a long way from washing dishes. That first job gave set him on a path into the restaurant industry, which led to stints in almost every position including bartender, server, manager, and dish taster for visiting monarchs. He first used his experience to launch a catering company, and then kept evolving and founded his own restaurant, J.Bean's Gathering Place. Today, Tim—along with his wife Ibby and head chef Blair Johnson—welcome guests with a creative menu of dishes ranging from crab-rangoon dip to fish tacos. The two-level dining room evokes a warm, welcoming atmosphere with an abundance of hardwood furnishings and trim anchored by a stone fireplace. The establishment also often hosts special events, such as occasional live music on the patio.
JD and Sarah Gardner's vacation to Cabo San Lucas on the Baja coast changed their lives. Both the fresh-made local cuisine and the surfside lifestyle inspired the pair to re-create their experience in their restaurant, Costa Vida. Now a chain, each location showcases videos of surfers on flat-screen TVs, upbeat music, and the award-winning cuisine of certified Executive Chef David Prows. The cooks in each kitchen handcraft fresh flour and stone-ground-wheat tortillas each day and slow-cook shredded pork and beef with all-natural ingredients. To accommodate a range of customers, Chef Prows recommends options for healthier eating and avoidance of allergens, as well as a nutrition calculator for almost all his offerings.
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit has smoked beef brisket in-house nearly every night since 1941, painting each morsel with a tangy house-made sauce. Pulled pork, turkey breast, and polish sausage round out the menu with meals that are heartier than a burrito wrapped in Paul Bunyan’s plaid shirt. Boxed lunches and catered buffets brim with homestyle sides such as coleslaw, mac 'n' cheese, and jalapeño beans. Once the last pickle has been crunched and the last finger has been licked, guests can savor one of the restaurant’s most cherished traditions: a vanilla cone, on the house.
Guadalajara Cafe shies away from the Tex-Mex standards found at typical Mexican restaurants in favor of the authentic flavors and spices you’d expect to find simmering in a family cocina. Its chefs attended culinary training in Guadalajara, where they developed a special appreciation for the cuisine of Jalisco, a region that extends from central Mexico to the Pacific coast. They even spice up this Jalisciense style of cooking with exotic ingredients such as squash blossoms, nopal cactus, and shrimp wearing tiny safari hats to create dishes reminiscent of those first envisioned by the Aztecs.
The result of their dedication to tradition is a menu of central Mexican classics such as chilies rellenos drizzled in spicy tomatillo sauce, hand-rolled tamales, and tacos filled with charbroiled, citrus-marinated meats. In her blog Around the Block, Mary Bloch—the author of the Kansas City Star’s restaurant guide—lauds the eatery’s mole, calling it “as good as it gets.” Diners can wash down these authentic morsels with a selection of Mexican beers or tequilas infused with jalapeño, cilantro, and tamarind.
Michael Garozzo entered the dining business early, working as a busboy in his hometown of St. Louis. His young mind raced with dreams of opening a restaurant of his own, which came to fruition in 1989, when he opened Garozzo’s in Kansas City’s Columbus Park neighborhood. Since then, the restaurant has bloomed, and he had opened three additional locations across the greater Kansas City area.
Garozzo’s menu of Italian specialties is highlighted by the signature spiedini di pollo, a marinated chicken breast rolled in italian breadcrumbs, then skewered and grilled. The dish is served in four presentations, which include the Gabriella, with fettucine and spicy diablo sauce, and the Samantha, with fettucine, artichoke hearts, and alfredo sauce. Adding to the exclusive ambiance is the restaurant’s own branded wine, served at each location. Garozzo’s popular house tomato sauce, diablo sauce, and italian dressing are also available in grocery stores across the city, and its distinctive pastas can be purchased in many high-end local wig shops.