Table Hopping – February 2013
“Places to Fall in Love with Dessert”
Hilton President Kansas City Hotel
1329 Baltimore Avenue
Kansas City, MO 64105
Pastry Chef Alejandro Diaz is the man to tempt your sweet tooth at Providence, the new restaurant inside the Hilton President. Chef Diaz hails from Mexico where he received his culinary and dessert training. Masterfully arranged, he takes a homey classic like, carrot cake, and turns it on its ear with chai pudding and mascarpone frosting with candied carrots on top. Chef Diaz favorite dessert is the S’Mores, homage to the flavors of the campfire favorite. Desserts are all $7.50 and worth a trip all by themselves. STOP: into the famous Drum Room bar for a craft cocktail made by talented bartender, Brock Schulte. Order Teddy’s Last Drop as your after-dessert drink with coffee infused ice cubes, Benedictine and bourbon.
200 E. 25th Street
Kansas City, MO 64108
Pastry Chef Nick Wesemann, at The American, is the young chef who really ushered in an entirely new approach to restaurant desserts in Kansas City. With a playful approach, he takes childhood favorite sweet treats and reinvents them in composed plates that are as beautiful to look at, as they are to eat and enjoy. Try Chef’s famous Nickers Bar with a chocolate torte, cashew caramel, bacon candy, nougat wafer, sea salt ice cream. Consider his Snickerdoodle Cake with white chocolate cream, sugar choux, milk bubbles and macadamia sherbet. GET: a taste of his talent for a steal by visiting The BAR at The American during their Happy Hour starting daily at 4 pm. Under “Sweet Bites” try the German Chocolate Sundae with Coconut Magic Shell for only $8.
101 West 22nd Street
Kansas City, MO 64108
Pastry Chef Danica Pollard, at Lidia’s, is a culinary nomad who has honed her skill and craft with stints at New York’s Nobu and Noe Restaurant in Los Angeles. She currently calls Kansas City home, and for the last 4 years, been delighting diners with her unique flavor combinations and the intense precision of her dessert creations. Her desserts change frequently, so there is always a new favorite to discover. She tends to use seasonal flavors and ingredients that perfectly compliment the rustic nature of the rest of Lidia’s menu, but she has her own take on how those flavors come together. KNOW: that in 2012, Chef won People’s Choice for Best Pastry Chef in the Central Region from Food + Wine Magazine.
10551 Mission Road
Leawood, KS 66206
Pastry Chef Megan Garrelts, co-owner of Bluestem and Rye, located in Mission Farms Shopping Center is a top-notch pastry talent in this town. At Rye, her desserts are more comforting and homey with seasonal ingredients at the forefront. These are the desserts of the region, of the grandmothers of Missouri if they used the best and freshest ingredients. Try her seasonal pie that changes frequently. When I was there, it was a bright and fragrant Meyer lemon pie. Also look for apple raisin crisps, butterscotch custard and cookies & a milk float, all for $6. DRINK: at the bar, and let talented veteran bartender, Van Zarr, show you how drinks can be dessert too. Try the “State Fair” with caramel corn infused whiskey, Carpano Antica Formula vermouth and a salted toffee rim.
3931 W. 69th Terrace
Prairie Village, KS 66208
Pastry Chef Nikki Perez flew on our radar when she opened Story with Chef Carl Thorne-Thomsen and his wife Susan. Her desserts were to the point, but looked very playful and deconstructed on the plate. It was the German Chocolate Cake and Doughnuts, all between $7-$8, that quickly made this Chef became a person of interest to watch in pastry. Personally, it is Chef’s fried pecan pie with chocolate ice cream, cocoa nibs and brown butter and bourbon sauce that I dream about at night. Story is a sleek, modern, upscale addition to the quiet Village Shopping Center and a must for anyone looking for a sweet treat. SIT: anywhere you like, there is literally not a bad seat in the house.