Somebody Help This Poor Boy: Kansas City

Help! My little brother is going to Kansas City this weekend to meet the girlfriend’s parents. He’s nervous and wants to make a good impression. Where should he take them to dinner?


  • Bethany

    Starkers, on the Plaza.

  • Donna K

    Weed. High quality stuff.

  • Harry Angstrom

    Il Centro is a nice, quaint Italian joint. Bluestem is easily the best restaurant in KC.

  • Meredith

    On the plaza I would suggest the Capitol Grill for delicious steaks, for seafood, McCormick and Schmidts. Price per person will be $50+. Both steak and seafood are also good at the M&S Grill – and a bit less expensive. If it’s KC BBQ you want, I would suggest Jack Stacks located behind the historic Union Station in the Arts district -delicious BBQ with an upscale atmosphere. Be sure and make reservations ahead of time – you’ll do fine with any of these choices. Good Luck!

  • runDMC

    Whatever he does make sure he clearly states to the parents that KC bbq is the only real bbq. It isn’t, but KC’ers violently think so. Texas bbq is a real no no topic up there.

  • Sarah Eveans

    OOOO this one is all me Krista (I grew up in KC). Michael Smith’s downtown is fantastic. He is James Beard award winner and the food is amazing, atmosphere a little formal but nice for a meet-the-parents kind of thing. He has opened up a place called Extra Virgin right next door. I’ve walked through it but haven’t eaten there yet. Tapas. More casual and a younger, louder crowd.
    Starkers is a good rec but very quiet a bit stuffy IMO. Bluestem is small and fabulous ( and I second the Jack’s Stack rec for sure.
    Another option is the Bristol. There is one in the new Power and Light district and one in Leawood if he’s going to be out south. Very good seafood and the biscuits…OMG.
    You could also have him check out this website, It’s a group of independent restaurateurs and chefs in KC and most of them are doing really great food (and obviously none are chains).
    Your bro can also email me with other questions: [email protected]. Hope this helps!

  • Finn

    Would second the Bristol recommendation, if he’s going to be in OP or Leawood, and BBQ, he would have to go to Jack’s Stack. There’s one in OP at 95th and Metcalf, or if his gf’s parents live out south, he could go to the original in Martin City. Plaza III is old school down on the Plaza, good steakhouse, great steak soup. If the parents want the down home cooking, he can’t beat Stroud’s on 75th (their slogan–“We choke our own Chickens”). Don’t bother trying to find good Mexican food–grew up in KC and that’s one thing that is not done very well. Finally, if he really wants to go old school, the Savoy Grill has been around since 1903, has a great atmosphere, and throws down some pretty good seafood.

  • AE

    The best bbq in Kansas City is Oklahoma Joe’s- don’t miss it. For a nice meal, I agree with Bristol but also like Piropos if you are going to be near the airport. It’s Argentinian and has a great menu and wine selection. You can’t miss walking around the Plaza and trying out a local place like the Classic Cup for lunch.

  • justafoodie

    My vote would be Lidia’s (
    Fantastic Italian food in a beautiful and lively space (a former railhouse) decorated by David Rockwell. It’s unfortunate that Dallas has nothing with which to compare.

  • Thanks, everyone, for your recommendations! (Well, everyone except Donna K.)

  • alyb

    Also grew up in KCMO and went back last summer for HS reunion. Had some great meals there. Extra Virgin is fantastic for tapas, as is Bodega. Had an amazing meal at BlueStem. Also Julian in Brookside (the chef, Celina Tio, is currently on The Next Iron Chef). On the Plaza, ReVerse is a fun lunch or brunch place. The Eggs Benedict Flight is the ultimate hangover cure, as I learned apres reunion (1 traditional, 1 rare beef, 1 crab cake).

  • Sarah Eveans

    Good one justafoodie: LOVE Lidia’s!