If you’re just joining now thanks for stopping by :) Make sure to check out part one of my Missouri saga since I’m about to dive into Kansas City eats. We left the St. Louis area and aimed to be on the other side of the state for lunch. The three of us agreed that barbecue would be a wise option given our surroundings. We passed the state line and went right on into Kansas because, honestly, when else would we ever go to Kansas? The gospel according to Yelp landed us at Oklahoma Joe’s. We drove across Missouri, into Kansas, for lunch at Oklahoma Joe’s. Still following? What the internet failed to mention is that the original Oklahoma Joe’s (there are 4) is located in a gas station. Yep, a gas station.
The line was wrapped around the building at 11:45am. A long line is a good indicator but a hungry New York gal like myself does not do well unless there is a bar where I can wait. The line moved continuously but only one person takes orders at the counter. Forty minutes later we ordered and received our food; it’s not the most efficient system but the system works. I cautiously placed my rib order because, well, I don’t eat ribs. Ever. Ask my father. I refuse to even try his recipe so he was pretty miffed to see my picture of a full plate of ribs that I dubbed as "some truly succulent meat". While waiting in line I read one of the many articles posted on the wall that said Anthony Bourdain claimed Oklahoma Joe’s is one of the top places to eat before you die. Sure, but make note you may die at the hands of a hangry customer after forty minutes in line.
Dinner was when we finally reunited with our fourth member, the bride! We were SO excited to see each other and you wouldn't have believed 6 years had passed. We were graciously invited to the rehearsal dinner at Fogo de Chao, the Brazilian churrascaria. Barbecue for lunch and a steakhouse for dinner meant that this night was only going to end one way: meat sweats. The wine was plentiful and food was abundant but my stomach was *gasp* maxing out. Soaked in good spirits, we left the rehearsal dinner to grab another round on the roof of O’Dowd’s across the street. A clearly popular spot, we stayed for a drink and some shots then headed toward a champagne bar, Ca Va, in the Westport neighborhood that my hair stylist recommended. We arrived at 12:15am only to be told by the manager he was closing up even though the rest of the establishments in the area were bustling. It looked quite nice so it was too bad we were turned away. If anyone else checks it out please report back! We sulked on the way out and went across the street to Harry’s; your typical bar with a large outdoor space facing the street. When we saw how close it was to our hotel we decided to spend the rest of the evening there chatting with a local rugby team. The walk home isn’t clear to any of us; the only thing we remember (because I took a selfie) was brushing our teeth at 2:45am. Saturday morning required a large bottle of water and four ibuprofen to be able to leave the hotel room. Thank goodness I'd planned out breakfast the day before at Chez Elle Creperie. Best hangover food ever. Seriously, where was this place when I was in college? The Parisian café had both sweet and savory crepes each sounding more delicious than the last, including the gluten free and vegan options. Even though I was on meat overload I ordered the potato and chorizo crepe with gravy. I’m not sure what was in that gravy but I’m going to go ahead and say it was crack. I may or may not have resorted to dipping my fork in the gravy and licking it like a 5 year old child. Well done, Chez Elle, well done.
We stayed full until the wedding and what a gorgeous wedding it was! The bride and groom were absolutely radiant. We enjoyed more meat for dinner (#canigetasaladplease) and drinks and dancing at the hotel rooftop ballroom. To cap the night off we wandered back to the Westport area to a swanky bar called Julep. I wish we’d discovered it earlier since their drinks (and bartenders) were enticing but I managed to make room for one Oaxacan Sunrise. It was a long overdue reunion in the least likely of places but lesson learned: you can have the best of meals in the most unexpected places. Until the next dish, ciao!