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  1. Wednesday, July 1, 2020

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Top 5 Restaurants in Kansas City from a Local Influencer

Kasim Hardaway is a Kansas City Local who took his passion for food, entrepreneurship, and storytelling to create his online platform. He now has over 40,000 followers and has co-founded a boutique marketing agency. If you are a local or just visiting for the weekend be sure to check out his Instagram and website– with articles from “10 spots for the perfect pie in Kansas City” to “10 things to do on a rainy day in Kansas City” he has curated a list for just about everything in Kansas City! Check out his Top 5 Restaurants in Kansas City, warning mouth-watering dishes to lie ahead!

Kasim’s Top 5 Restaurants in Kansas City

Exploring Kansas City’s diverse and ever-growing culinary scene, in its entirety, is an insurmountable task. While most view Kansas City as the bbq capital of the world, I see it as a melting pot of cooking-styles, cultural influences, and distinctive cuisines. 

Whether you are having a staycation at 21c or visiting from out of town for the weekend, here are my personal recommendations for 5 restaurants to visit:


The Savoy

If you are staying at 21c, it is a must that you enjoy a meal at The Savoy. Upon your first bite (or sip), you’ll understand that food can be an experience and with great attention to detail, it can be transcendent — and I don’t use that word lightly.

My recommendation: dinner at the Lil Savoy, a private, multi-course dining experience with exclusive surprises from head chef Joe West.


Waldo Thai

Waldo Thai delivers authentic Thai flavors in new and exciting ways.

They were the 2019 Feast Magazine runner-up for the new restaurant of the year, but they were always winners in my heart.  Waldo Thai never ceases to amaze me with its constantly rotating menu: it’s culinary and mixology talent is always concocting new items to excite its loyal fanbase.

My recommendation: any of the curries, especially if they have brisket — it’s a Thai-Kansas City food mashup that deserves applause.

I Am Frozen Dessert Cafe

If you have a sweet tooth, prepare to satisfy it to the nth degree. I Am Frozen Dessert Cafe is in a class by itself: serving up shaved ice instead of ice cream and a one-of-a-kind confection — warm, pillowy honey toast topped with cold ice cream, a match made in heaven. The cherry on top? The location is extremely photogenic and instagrammable so be sure to have your phone charged.

My recommendation: any of the honey toast offerings with ice cream; if ‘I Am Worth It’ is available, order it — I can assure you that it is worth it.

Chef J BBQ

This is probably my most contentious recommendation, as there are a plethora of amazing BBQ spots in Kansas City from the classics to new-comers like Chef J BBQ.  Located in The Beast, a haunted house in the West Bottoms, Chef J BBQ is relatively new to the scene but one of Kansas City’s most talked-about barbecue joints. 

My recommendation: any of the house-made sausages and brisket. P.S.  All of their meat is hickory smoked using real wood in a half a century old smoker. 

Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar

Who says you can’t get fresh, sustainable seafood in the landlocked Midwest? Named one of the best seafood restaurants by Travel and Leisure Magazine, Jax brings the coasts to the coastless. The brand even has its own oyster, the Emersum, which was developed in partnership with Rappahannock River Oysters in Virginia.

Get a bib and prepare yourself for some shucking, cracking and slurping. 

My recommendation: the shrimp and grits aren’t your typical, featuring a rich smoked tomato gravy and charbroiled Emersum oyster.