EveryThings Up To Date In KansasCity....

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EveryThings Up To Date In KansasCity....

Postby TomHill » Mon Sep 18, 2006 11:28 am

They've gone about as fur as they can go...well...probably not!!
Took a long weekend trip back to Kansas City to visit family. Of course...couldn't stay away from doing wine.
1. First stop was Gomer's (99'th&Holmes). Didn't find anything I couldn't live without, but love the smell outside of the Gomer's Fried Chicken. Alas...have never been brave enough to try it...haven't had fried chicken in years.
2. Next stop was Gomer's (39'th&Broadway). As I always do, found a few things I couldn't live without. A couple of very expensive Teroldegos that I couldn't resist trying. Also picked up a couple of K-Vintners wines, new to try. For some reason, there seems to be more K-Vintners on the shelves in KC than anyplace else I run into them. I like Charles' wines quite a lot (even the Cab blends), except for the current HouseRed...waaaaay too bretty/unclean for me. Alas, Jim Coley was not in yet, so didn't get a chance to visit with him.
3. At the reco from Rich Zellich, I stopped at The Avenues Bistro (63'rd&Wornall). Only been open a couple of weeks. The food was pretty good/foursquare European bistro food, very reasonably priced. The wine list was extremely well-done, with lots of interesting things at very/very attractive prices. Got to chat a lot w/ the very knowledgeable wine guy, Tim O'Neil. Impressed with his knowledge and excited about what he's doing w/ their wine program. Definitely worth checking out again on my next visit.
4. Finally, hit up The Cellar Rat (17th&Baltimore in the CrossRoads district). This is a recently opened wine shop by Ryan Sciara. I've known Ryan for a number of yrs from his 40Sard days and have been very impressed with both his wine knowledge and passion. When I found out last yr he was opening a new wine shop, I was pretty excited and knew it would be one of KC's best.
I was not disappointed. Not quite some of the unusual stuff Jim has at Gomer's, but it is a very impressive shop w/ lots of interesting things. It has a very contemporary look & feel to it, a bit hip but not that edgy feel to it that I get in some of those shops that makes me a bit..well...edgy. A beautiful space.
Probably over half the wines are in a section that are <$20. A lot of good drinking wines in there that I thought were very intelligently selected. Found some 8-9 btls that I couldn't live without.
Better yet, Ryan has a small but terrific cheese and charcuterie section. Saw a few cheeses that I'd never done see'd in KC. But the cold cuts....OscarMeyer they ain't. Quite a selection of cuts from Salumiere Beliesse in NYC. I've never been able to try them (you have to buy a 3-4 # salami when you buy on-line...that's a big honkin' chunk of pig parts. Ryan tasted us thru most of them....some of the best pig parts I've ever had. Bought a bunch for trying with friends.
Took along the San Sakana BrokenLeg/AndersonVlly Viognier '05 and the Harlequin WashState/MilbrandtVnyd Viognier '05 to share w/ Ryan.....two of my particular favorites. The Harlequin is showing a lot of minerality and one of the best around. The SanSakana has terrific floral aromatics to it and didn't disappoint.
Ryan's staff (Scott and Theresa) are also very knowledgeable and passionate about what they're doing. Definitely CellarRat is a shop worth checking out in KC.
5. Alas...ran out of time and didn't make it by RedX this trip.
6. But the highlight of the trip (other than seeing my grandson) was the off-line we had Sunday afternoon with Bill and Laura Rosich (blil) and Alex and Laurie Webb (EtudeDude). First time to meet in RealSpace a few that I had known in CyberSpace for a number of yrs.
Bill made up several dips, a delish lamb/pepper grilled skewers, and a pizza....all pretty much casual fare. I brought a bunch of the Beliesse charcuterie, some Fiscalini SanJoaquin Gold, and the Mouco ColoRouge.
Oh...yeah...there were a few wines as well. The Soter OR PinotNoir '98, a wine I'd never had before. Liked it quite a lot...a serious Pinot that's tasting well now and will go a number of yrs yet. The Optima DryCreekVlly Zin. An older Etude Cab that was pretty terrific. The Ridge LyttonEstate Syrah '03. Liked it quite a lot but (as expected) it speaks more of Ridge than it does of Syrah. Then there was the EmilioBulfon Forgiarin '03..quite an interesting wine. And then the Malviva Birbet (Piedmonte Brachetto) and the Verdi Sangue di Guida. Both of these are 5% Partially Fermented off-dry fizzy light Italian reds. Like GOOD Lambrusco, they are the ideal accompainment to charcuterie and went very/very well with the Beleisse cold cuts.
There were more really cute kids running around than anyone could keep track of. It was a great afternoon and a genuine please to meet the Rosichs and the Webbs and their kit-and-caboddle (Kansas colloquialism for a BUNCH) of kids.
TomHill
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Re: EveryThings Up To Date In KansasCity....

Postby Dave Moritz » Mon Sep 18, 2006 2:38 pm

Tom:

Many thanks for the notes on Kansas City. I've got non-wine-geek family in town, so we get down there every once in a while. Have always wanted some sense of good wine shops and eateries, and you have provided it in spades.

A question: I realize that this is land-locked Kansas City, but have you any idea where an unabashed Euro-phile might go to find a nice selection?

Finally, I had to laugh at the "whole kit and caboodle" phase; hadn't heard it in years!

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Not A Whole Lot Of Info....

Postby TomHill » Mon Sep 18, 2006 2:50 pm

Dave,
If you're looking for European wines at retail, both the Gomers are pretty good, as is Ryan's Cellar Rat.
If you're talking restaurant-wise...I'm not as much help there. My favorite restaurant, easily, is 40 Sardines. The European selection is nicely done, but more interesting Calif-wise to me. Down near Ryan's is Zin, which has some nice Italians. Also nearby is Lidia's, as in Lidia Bastanich. Decent Italian selection, but just that.
I think there are probably some high-end restaurants in the Plaza area that have extensive European wine selections, but I don't eat there.
Perhaps you might try the Wine Spectator issue Restaurant edition for suggestions.
I really like the restaurant reviews that Chuck Ferrarra (sp?) does for the freebie Pitch newspaper. He's actually quite a good writer.
Tom
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Re: Not A Whole Lot Of Info....

Postby JC (NC) » Mon Sep 18, 2006 3:29 pm

There are some newer restaurants in Kansas City area that are getting a lot of buzz but I have not dined in them. On my last visit to KC for a conference I liked JJ's so well (near the plaza but in a residential neighborhood a few blocks away) that I returned there for a second dinner (great artichoke appetizers). A very good wine list with a special emphasis on Port. More Port choices than I remember seeing on a restaurant list before except maybe some place like Veritas in New York City. Said to have the best wine list in the Midwest or one of the best 93 wine lists in the world.
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Re: Not A Whole Lot Of Info....

Postby Dave Moritz » Thu Sep 21, 2006 1:58 am

Tom and JC:
Many thanks for the information - I'll put it to good use during my next trip to KC.

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