CITYSCAPE

Burrito Bros. expanding in City Market, which also is to gain another restaurant and retail shop

Updated: 2014-01-07T23:52:19Z

By JOYCE SMITH

The Kansas City Star

The City Market’s Burrito Bros. is doubling in size.

Six years after the quick-serve restaurant opened at 407 Main St., owners Scott and Christine Jones are taking over a space to the north. They will take out a temporary wall between the two spots and remove an iron staircase.

The front part of the new addition will be for dining, the back part for the restaurant’s growing catering operation.

“It has been a big challenge to do the catering at the same time the line is forming in the restaurant,” Jones said. “We will now be able to do catering during the lunch rush.”

Burrito Bros. opened in October 2008, building a following with an emphasis on fresh food and its own recipes. It picks its produce from City Market vendors daily and makes items to order — burritos and quesadillas with a choice of such items as chicken, steak, carnitas, chorizo, rice, slow-cooked black or pinto beans, fresh steamed spinach, portabello mushrooms, blackened shrimp, and cheeses, and a side of fresh tortilla chips. It also sells tacos and taco salads.

It will remain open during the expansion, which is to be completed in early February.

Burrito Bros. is open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. It plans to expand its hours in the spring, staying open until 8 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and until 5 p.m. Sundays. It also plans to start bottling its medium fire-roasted salsa and its ghost pepper hot salsa.

“The perception has always been that the City Market is a lunch place,” Scott Jones said. “But the awareness is there for us now — people living down here and looking for an evening spot to eat at, or people living in the suburbs who want to pick up a bite on the way home from work.”

Two other new City Market tenants plan to open in the coming weeks, bringing occupancy to 95 percent.

• A new sandwich shop called the Bite is scheduled to open in late February at 23 E. Third St.

Bryan Merker, owner of the City Market’s Beignet restaurant, will serve as a consultant. It will specialize in hot sandwiches with smoked meats and cheeses, a line of gluten-free tamales (meat, vegetarian and dessert), and gourmet ice cream sandwiches.

Sandwiches will include the Boss Hog (smoked pulled pork and Korean barbecue sauce), the Fungus (wild mushrooms and spinach), the Presley (peanut butter, Nutella, banana and hickory bacon), and the Saigon (marinated steak, candied jalapenos, blue cheese, Asian slaw and Sriracha mayonnaise).

Its ice cream sandwich flavors are Hendrick’s cucumber gin and strawberries, triple chocolate English toffee, caramel and candied walnut, and blackberry and white chocolate.

It also will offer a daily soup special.

• A new shop, Yoki, will offer housewares, gifts and novelties, specializing in “Japanese-inspired” items.

Owner Donny Lo said the shop’s name is a spin on the Japanese word for “cheer” or “encouragement,” something he hopes the store will bring to his customers’ lives.

“We definitely feel like these items have been popular in other parts of the country, and it will fit in with the growing residential downtown,” Lo said.

Lo also liked the variety of international offerings in the City Market.

“The Brazilian market, the Middle Eastern restaurant, the Chinese restaurant, an Italian grocer,” he said. “So we thought we would be a nice complement to that.”

Yoki plans a spring opening at 400 Grand Blvd., Suite 426.

Cityscape runs Tuesdays and Fridays. To reach Joyce Smith, call 816-234-4692 or send email to jsmith@kcstar.com. Follow her at Twitter.com/joycekc.

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