While watching Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, I was entranced by Guy Fieri’s showcase of The Brick, a dive in downtown Kansas City, MO. I don’t normally like Guy Fieri’s cooking, but he has such a big personality that its hard not to get excited at places he raves about. Since I was in Kansas City anyways, we decided that The Brick would make an excellent stop for lunch the next day.
When I first pulled up, I wasn’t entirely sure The Brick was open. There was nothing else around the restaurant except for industrial style buildings. There were very few cars parked in the area, and a whole row of “back in only” parking spots were abandoned. The Brick isn’t campy enough to have a neon OPEN sign, but they did place a chalkboard outside their door indicating todays specials. Given the location, I got the impression that this place survives on its reputation, word of mouth, and nightly entertainment scene.
The inside of the brick is classic Dive – but really cute. Much of the accent lighting is accomplished by twinkling Christmas lights. The artwork on the walls is changed monthly to allow for local artists and photographers to showcase their stuff. Some of the ceiling tiles have been painted to celebrate the Boulevard brewing company (a Kansas City staple). I noticed a bunch of signatures and initials carved onto the walls from years of patrons.
And then there is the stage.
The stage is quite impressive and looks almost out of place. The sound equipment is top notch and I felt that at night, this place is really the place to be. The Brick hosts live entertainment at night from jazz to blues to rock. With its small-ish capacity, The Brick is a prime location for live entertainment in an intimate setting.
We couldn’t help but order the Fried Ravioli to begin our meal. I was pretty disappointed at the quantity of fried ravioli delivered to our table. I felt there was enough for one person, maybe enough for an amuse buche for two people, but for the price, there just simply wasn’t enough cheese filled ravioli.
Meet the Oklahoma. The Oklahoma is a hot dog, wrapped in bacon, and then deep fried in a beer batter. It is happily dressed with yellow mustard, scallions, and raw red onion for a little bite. I ordered mine with tater tots because let’s face it, in the world of fried potato products, we all have some kind of fond school cafeteria memories of tater tots. Even though I figured my stomach would react with mighty anger, this is the entire reason I came here and I couldn’t pass up this opportunity (my stomach was fine afterwards).
My wife ordered the Apple-Brie grilled cheese sandwich (also with tots). It came served on a beautiful marble rye grilled to perfection. The Brick has a trick up it’s sleeve to amplify the flavor by coating the inside of the sandwich with apple butter. The result is a creamy, buttery apple flavored sandwich – more like dessert than lunch food. But really, who hasn’t ever considered eating dessert for lunch?
Our eating companion ordered the Grilled Cheese with sweet potato fries. She did admit to us that the Apple Brie was better, but she was still happy with her choice of fried potato product. I think sweet potato fries are heavily under rated. they are more full of flavor, pair better with mild seasoning, and have a vivid orange color that is pleasing to the eye.
This place is a diet buster and then some. There is nothing redeeming on the menu except for a few salads, but why would you come to The Brick and order just a salad. I did order a Greek Salad just to get some kind of greens for my lunch, but this can best be described as a dive salad. I won’t fault The Brick for it because again, why would a place like this serve amazing salads? This place is definitely worth checking out. If you have a night free, I have a feeling this place is a blast. Reasonably priced and good, quality bar food make The Brick a win in my book.