Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Omnivore's Delight - Kansas City Butcher Shops

Categorizing myself as an omnivore feels like an understatement. The list of foods I don't eat is so small that my friends can probably recite it from memory (in case you care: blue cheese, raw celery, black licorice). And while this blog leans heavily on the eating out part of my life, you should know that I also cook and eat in quite often as well.

I cook meat all year round but there's nothing quite as exciting as the summer grilling (and smoking) season. Most of us have been grilling at least since Memorial Day but I wonder how many have been taking advantage of of Kansas City's local butchers as the source for their meat. After all, your meal is only as good as the ingredients you start with.

For a city its size Kansas City is fortunate to have quite a few quality butcher shops available. Here are the ones I frequent and some of the reasons why:

Missed Connections - Is This Seat Taken?

You are one of my Westport faves and I was so excited to walk in on a recent (busy) Thursday evening to see four barstools available. How lucky am I? I only need two. But it wasn't meant to be. You looked at me with those beautiful Mexican ojos and tried to let me down gently, "I'm sorry, those seats are taken." The look of heartbreak and bewilderment must have been obvious in my eyes and you explained, "The four people seated there are actually outside having drinks and a cigarette..." motioning to the lively and also crowded outdoor scene, "...but they are coming back in."

Oh, what to do? Wait for them to finish with their outside seats? But what if you rebuff my advances again, reminding me that those seats too are taken by four people who have moved back inside for smokeless drinking, but may wish to return to the great outdoors for a nicotine fix?

Love. Heartache. Longing.

Monday, June 24, 2013

"Celebrity" Taster Drinking Game

As noted in a previous post I was recently asked to be a "celebrity taster" for an episode of Bonnie Rabicoff's, In the Kitchen with Bonnie.

I encourage you to watch all the segments to learn more about how Stewart Lane is reviving and re-inventing pickling and preserving.

In the mean time may I suggest a drinking game based on the segment that features me? The rules are simple:
  1. Grab your favorite beverage and a shot glass.
  2. Click the Play button on the video segment below.
  3. Watch closely to the lower left portion of the video.
  4. Every time it's ridiculously obvious that I'm actually wearing shorts, take a shot. 
  5. Get a designated driver.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Preserving the Harvest - Guest Spot on In the Kitchen with Bonnie

Last week I was asked to be a "Celebrity Taster" for an episode of Bonnie Rabicoff's, In the Kitchen with Bonnie. Celebrity? Not so much. Taster. I'm down with that.

This particular episode is called Preserving the Harvest and features some pretty cool preserved foods prepared by Chef Stewart Lane of Lon Lane's Inspired Creations.

As you can see from the photo below I was joined by (real local celebrity) Elizabeth Alex of NBC Action News.

Video episodes of Bonnie's show are shown on KHEN (Time Warner Channel 17 and Comcast Channel 25) and KCOD (Time Warner Channel 411) and on the web at In the Kitchen's archive. The show is broadcast on the radio on KMBZ as well.

Here's a photo preview of the delicious treats I got to sample...

Click Photo to Enlarge (and read my pithy comments)

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Sofa King: Earthy - "Morel Dilemma" Cocktail

Morel Dilemma
A recent business trip to Sacramento found me downtown looking for a place to entertain customers. I landed at Ella Dining Room and Bar. Great food, drinks and service. Highly recommended. If you like a little theater while you eat I recommend a seat at one of the two (large) chef's tables. Good times.

This post is not about my meal, but rather it is about a single cocktail that I ordered at the end of the meal. Pictured here, it's called the "Morel Dilemma" - Candy Cap Mushroom Infused Bourbon, Morel Syrup, Artichoke Amaro, Black Truffle.

I love Bourbon. I love morel mushrooms. I've never tried loving them at the same time however. Here was my chance.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Groupon Anxiety? Here's Some Therapy...

Unless you follow the foodie press you probably missed last week's Twitterverse chatter related to former Jeopardy champ Ken Jennings' Groupon dis. His post is pictured here and is pretty self-explanatory.  Now, Ken Jennings' opinion on where he eats and why don't mean much to me but his tweet did get a lot of attention and got me thinking about Kansas City diners' attitudes about Groupon (and similar deal-of-the-day companies).

Let's start with the assumptions in Mr Jennings' tweet...