The fragrance of sizzling burgers and roasting pizzas floods Kanz's City Pizza and Burgerz's wood-paneled dining room. Chefs hand-toss signature pizzas with 13 different toppings such as pepperoni, sausage, and pineapple and pair 8-ounce burgers with freshly cut fries and hand-breaded onion rings. More than 45 types of imported and domestic beer moisten mouths owned by people or cyborgs ages 21 and up. The restaurant regales guests with weekly special events, such as Country Open Jam Night on Wednesdays, video bingo on Thursdays, and live bands at the Lenexa location on Fridays.
For 70 years, Winstead’s has garnered a myriad of accolades and praise for its scrumptious hamburgers and other drive-in eats. Poke through the menu to find the joint’s signature Double Winstead steakburger, grilled with U.S. Choice Steak and topped with all the sloppy-tasty fixings––mustard, ketchup, pickle, and onion ($3.35). The Fifty-Fifty puts hot and crisp french fries and crunchy onion rings side by side in the most delicious peace pact since ketchup and mustard ended their hot-dog feud ($2.19). Scarf a chili cheese dog ($2.79) or grilled-cheese sandwich ($2.05), and then focus on Winstead’s old-fashioned desserts. Creamy milk shakes and malts ($2.45–$4.55) immerse taste buds in flavors such as chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, banana, and butterscotch, and Winstead’s beloved skyscraper shake ($7.25) packs enough iced delight to quench the thirsts of four people or one André the Giant. Other desserts include a root-beer float ($2.45) and apple-dumpling à la mode ($4.60).
Family owned and operated, Carlo's Copa Room features an expansive dinner menu stocked with authentic, homemade Italian dishes rich in flavor and character. Matronly tastemaker Kathy "Nani" Fiorello's hand-rolled, olive-oil-fried meatballs are a homespun favorite, sidekicked by her savory sugo sauce ($9.99). Also beloved is her piquant balsamic vinaigrette, which arrives drizzled atop the classic house salad ($7.50). Swingin' stomachs croon for the ravioli Sinatra's tomato cream sauce, prosciutto, and mushrooms ($18.99). And tappy tongues perform a daring dairy-dance in anticipation of the fresh romano cheese and rich cream of the penne alfredo ($16.99, with veggies, chicken, or shrimp available for an additional charge). The succulent homemade cheesecake with strawberry sauce ($6.99) and traditional spumoni ($6) ably furnish any leftover stomach space, and Carlo's copious white and red wines satisfy sippers.
The people behind Gambino’s Pizza really love pizza, and they’ll make any pie in the shape of a heart to prove it. Traditional round pies are on the menu, too, in five sizes and three crust options: original, thin, or buttery pan. Specialty pizzas overflow with meats, veggies, and a blend of shredded mozzarella and provolone cheese. Some are even topped with sweet pineapple to round out the food pyramid. Diners can also order oven-baked subs and individual- or family-size pasta dishes that come with garlic bread and napkins folded into tiny togas.
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.
Cooking up Italian staples and baking pizza has been a Walker family tradition since 1969, first at a pizza franchise and now at their own Old Shawnee Pizza and Italian Kitchen. They use the skills they've perfected over the last 40 years to make everything from their Alfredo-topped ravioli stuffed with three types of seafood to their Midwest-style pizzas on homemade dough.
They first top their inventive pizzas with sauces such as the classic red, salsa, spicy peanut, or garlic olive oil. From there, they use their multitude of unique toppings to create most any pie their customers can dream up, barring ones that bear an uncanny resemblance to Burt Reynolds. They also cook up specialty pizzas such as the Caribbean Jerk, made with jerk sauce, chicken, onions, pineapple, and roasted red peppers.