The food world is small, and that means food stories and word-of-mouth recommendations travel far and wide.
It is from such a recommendation that I found Kurzweil’s Country Meats and am grateful I did.
Years ago, at a food conference in Phoenix, an individual mentioned she had traveled through Kansas City and had discovered the best brats in the country. She liked them so much she had them shipped to her for Super Bowl parties each year.
Roxanne Wyss, my business partner, and I had never heard of it. We are locals! How could this be? The hunt was on and we had to find them.
Enter the door of Kurzweil’s Country Meats, a meat market and smoke house and you may think you have entered a time machine, packed with smoky goodness, rural friendliness and old-fashioned charm. It fronts Missouri 7 between Harrisonville and Clinton so you might have passed it on the way to the lake.
The shelves are stacked with sauces, teas, condiments, jellies, and pickles and the meat counter is full of fresh meat, smoked pork chops and bacon.
The tables are crowded with hungry diners devouring sandwiches. Those are all great, but I recommend making a beeline by all of the goodies, straight to the freezers along the wall and there you will find over 30 kinds of sausages and brats.
Sure, there are the everyday favorites, but you will find fun flavors, such as Smoked Philly Cheese Steak Brats, Pepper Jack Polish Sausage, Habanero Peach Bratwurst, Norton Portobello Mushroom Brats and so many others it will be hard to choose.
Chris Kurzweil said that two of their current best sellers are Caramelized Pear and Gorgonzola Smoked Sausage and Black Pepper and Blue Cheese Brats. They rotate some of their flavors, so look all the way down the case each time you come so you don’t miss any.
All you need to do is heat the smoked brats on the grill just until they are warm through. For the fresh sausages, you can braise, grill or pan-fry them until they are fully cooked. All summer long they were good, but now they sizzle as fall suggests it is time for tailgate parties and Oktoberfest celebrations.
We have even been known to stock up on the frozen brats and take them with us to food and appliance shows across the country.
As is, straight from the grill, on a bun, as an appetizer morsel on a toothpick or fresh sausages braised in beer, they are so good people stop and ask where we got them. And so, the word-of-mouth food story continues.
Don’t despair if a rural highway south of Kansas City is far from you, for they still ship. Visit the store if you can, at 28612 S. State Route T, Garden City, MO 64747 or visit on line atwww.kurzweilscountrymeats.com
Kathy Moore is one of two cookbook authors and food consultants that make up The Electrified Cooks. Her most recent cookbook is Triple Slow Cooker Entertaining. She develops the recipes for the “Eating for Life” column for The Kansas City Star and is a member of Les Dames d'Escoffier. She blogs at pluggedintocooking.com.