A slight chill has blown into Kansas City these past few days. After our five year endless summer, this hint of fall has Jess and I really thrilled. While it might be a bit premature to break out those sweaters, it is never too early to scout out a few choice taverns that we can hole up in while leaves or [gasp] snow blow by outside.
Barrel 31 at Union Hill is the kind of place I could wile the hours away with a glass of bourbon and good company. Jess and I found ourselves a corner table next to the big windows looking out onto the nice view of Martini Corner. The inside is comfortable with a large bar expanding deep into the main room decorated with exposed brick and vintage touches fitting to the building’s past. There is a nice sense of place.
The menu is new American bar food elevated and tended to with great care. Delicious. While there are intriguing burgers and supper on offer, we stuck to appetizers.
The ‘Gouda and Ale Fondue’ was the perfect balance of cheesy, creamy and savory without being too heavy. I loved the house-made kettle chips and everything bagel crostini that came with it.
The ‘Deviled Oysters’ had a wonderful salty, briny umami.
The ‘Chicken and Waffles’ had an artful balance of sweet, savory and hot thanks to crunchy chicken fried steak covered in fresno pepper caramel accompanied by an herb and jack cheese waffle. The addition of crispy chicken skin pieces was wonderful.
We were having such a nice time that we ordered a second round of appetizers… and drinks.
The ‘Fried Green Tomatoes’ had a nice cornmeal crunch and were covered in green goddess dressing and mustard caviar. Though not technically an appetizer, we ordered the ‘Caramelized Brussel Sprouts’ side at the behest of our waitress, Tessie. She recommended their general crispy, how shall we say, ‘amazingness.’
Barrel 31 is a great place to spend an evening. I am planning our return trip now. Maybe we can catch the leaves falling?
Barrel 31- Kansas City Whiskey Bar
Martini Corner at Union Hill
400 E. 31 Street
Kansas City, Missouri
Molly and Clara sat out Barrel 31. They needed their rest after the excitement of discovering their cousins’ fish pond.