Cellar and Loft—which happens to be owned by former Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Eddie Kennison—doesn't just pour its visitors glasses of wine or beer and leave it at that. Instead, it keeps a staff of experts on hand to enlighten sippers on the nuances of their chosen drinks, such as the grapes involved in a citrus-tinged sauvignon blanc or the types of malts that flavor an imperial IPA. Age is a much-respected quality in the world of wine, and Cellar and Loft even infuses that truism into their ambience—it's housed a building that's 140 years old and has enough exposed-brick charm to attract an 18th-century masonry guild. In addition to making visitors feel welcome in the tasting rooms, the staff also invites them to travel on wine trips or join wine, beer, cheese, or scotch clubs. These groups indulge members in monthly bottles of a chosen beverage, a newsletter subscription, and weekend tastings with the California Raisins.
Within a welcoming space accented with landscape murals and Roman busts, the friendly staff of Anthony's Restaurant & Lounge serves up classic Italian cuisine. Chefs tenderize, slice, and roll steak to create Bruzzaluni, insulating each protein-rich sleeping bag with a romano-cheese stuffing ($17.95). Traditional dinner entrees, including lasagna ($14.95) and fettuccine alfredo with peas and mushrooms ($13.95), encompass noodles and an abundance of sauce.
Open late seven days a week—until 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and until midnight the rest of the week—Z Strike Bowling plies its patrons with bowling, comfortable couches, and a full sit-down restaurant. Bowlers can scatter pins on lanes reserved in advance, a practice that prevents long waits and frustrated customers rolling balls at piles of street shoes. Between games, visitors can nosh at the onsite eatery, with a menu filled with cheeseburgers, pork sandwiches, pizzas, pastas, and a full bar.
Regardless of the season, Snow & Company strives to transform its guests’ mouths into winter wonderlands. Its signature snow cocktails combine housemade syrups, freshly squeezed juices, and spirits into frozen elixirs whose flavors range from citrusy to spicy. The Purple Rain, for example, blends Chambord with blueberry-infused Midnight Moon moonshine and fresh milk, whereas the Rockefeller—a twist on the popular manhattan—stirs cherry-infused rye with Cinzano sweet vermouth, angostura bitters, and sugary syrup. To contrast these icy sips, Hot-Tails come warm and often topped with fresh whipped cream, as is the case for the Tres Irish—Tres Leche triple-cream liqueur mixed with Jameson.
Though the lounge's list of libations constantly shifts, local ingredients and onsite prep remain its overarching prerogatives. This also affects the food menu, a catalog of shareable plates and sandwiches, as well as the decor, which features work by area artists. The open, chic space resembles a gallery more than a traditional restaurant, and it readily hosts group events that range from birthday parties to rehearsals for museum field trips.
Beneath a chandelier made from wineglasses, mixologists concoct drinks with techniques that come close to alchemy. Specialty cocktails include a red-wine martini that marries pinot noir with Chambord and vodka, and edible cocktails—dubbed "drops"—are solidified through a secret molecular process akin to the one that turns cotton into cotton candy. Though spirits abound, beer drinkers aren't forgotten; the bistro imports nearly 100 types of bottled beer from all over the world, with an emphasis on microbrews. Small plates also draw visitors, especially in groups, as the chef's flatbreads and platters of dried fruits, meats, and artisan cheeses are ideal for sharing. Those who prefer individually portioned meals can enjoy entrees such as caramelized sea scallops with a cauliflower purée.
Armed with state-of-the-art sound systems and lighting, The Monaco beckons guests to let loose while shimmying on a dance floor infused with thumping beats and pulsing lights. This extravagant corner of the Martini Corner Entertainment District is jazzed up with low-profile VIP tables, glittering chandeliers, and olives speared upon toothpicks as a warning to rebellious fruits. Guests can indulge in bottle service or boogie down while chatting at the bar. No matter the night or occasion, a DJ is always on-hand to fuel the party spirit with top 40 jams.
The tobacco, the wrapper, and the roll. On the surface, a cigar may not seem overly complex, but Fidel's Cigar Shop celebrates the depths of its nuance in head-to-toe humidors that lock in and preserve earthy flavors harvested from Nicaragua, Honduras, Ecuador, and elsewhere. The shop's staff educates guests on the inventory of more than 300 varieties, with specialized flavors and finishes akin to a fine wine's bouquet or a gourmet coffee's roast. Along with rows of cocoa-colored cigars tucked into cedar boxes, Fidel's also outfits aspiring aficionados with humidors, lighters, and cutters. In lively, social settings, regular events showcase new boutique products from exclusive estates, and the onsite Graycliff smoking lounge swaddles smokers with cozy seating, WiFi, and three LCD TVs, allowing them to relax as smoke-eating air purifiers erase the one-sided games of tic-tac-toe played with smoke rings.