I’m not a fan of breakfast, but I brunch a lot.
And baby, Kansas City has no shortage of brunches. From the fantastic buffets at Lidia’s and the Bristol to the artsy atmospheres at Cafe Sebastienne and Rozzelle Court to the stylish Westport Cafe and Port Fonda to classic chic Renee Kelly’s and Classic Cup, I’ve eaten my way through the best of the meal between breakfast and lunch.
But we are Kansas City, where we have mastered the art of putting a new spin on old things. So I ventured out to try my favorite meal at the places we don’t traditionally think about when we wake up on the weekend.
Jax Fish House
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4814 Roanoke Parkway
When you think brunch you don’t immediately wonder: Where the oysters at? But you might. Jax can teach your taste buds some new things if you dare to try the buttermilk fried oysters and waffle ($14). I was nervous to try the bacon waffle topped with red hot maple butter and fried oysters. After one bite I was sold. Seriously, fried chicken can have a seat for a little while. And for those omelet lovers out there, go for the Jax ($11) — andouille sausage, shrimp, bell peppers, celery, onion and white cheddar will make you say yum.
Brunch is served 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. jaxfishhouse.com/kansas-city
11638 Ash St., Leawood
I love sushi almost as much as I love brunch, but I was nervous when I heard RA Sushi was serving up a marriage of the two. I mean, delicious dim sum at Bo Lings is one thing. But something about sushi didn’t sound right to my morning stomach. I was wrong. When I tell you the Bloody Mary Roll ($8.50) is amazing and tastes a lot like the famous hangover drink, for the love of Sriracha, I’m not lying. We’re talking shrimp, bacon, celery, asparagus, tomato and Sriracha mayonnaise in a sushi roll. We were fully prepared to go somewhere else for a “real” brunch, but we ordered a second roll and some ginger mimosas ($5), too. Why did I never think to add ginger to the orange juice and champagne classic cocktail?
Another interesting spin on the menu: Tamagoyaki ($7). Something like a Japanese omelet, it’s bacon fried rice and a soft baked cracked egg topped with soy butter sauce, green onions and more bacon. Oink. Bonus: RA Sushi is easy on the pockets. Nothing on the brunch menu is over $10.
Get your brunch roll on 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Sunday. rasushi.com/leawood
1204 W. 27th St.
Sure, coffee is a given on Sundays. But Food Truck Brunch? The Roasterie goes all out on Sundays, when the parking lot becomes a festival with live music, artsy vendors and a line of food trucks. Every Sunday is different, but not even an overcast morning kept the crowd from lining up the day I joined in the fun. Ad Astra’s brunch burrito sold out before I got in line, but I consider it a blessing. Otherwise I would have never tried the brilliant Breakfast Burger ($10). Hash browns, eggs and bacon atop a burger made of ground chuck and brisket? Please and thank you, darling. It even comes with a drink.
The food truck rotation changes every week. You can find the latest rotation on the Roasterie’s Facebook page. Another gem — free factory tours 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. every Sunday.
Food Truck Brunch is 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays until it gets cold outside. theroasterie.com
4050 Pennsylvania Ave.
I expected the brunch at Char Bar to be all about that barbecue. But they give you so much more. I’m a loyal fan of the blackberry French toast ($9). The stack comes with homemade blackberry jam, smoked bacon and whipped butter. And the biscuits? My mama would be proud of these big, buttermilk beauties. I washed it all down with a Blackberry-Basil Fizz ($7). Blackberry brandy, Grand Marnier and sparkling champagne. Hello, it’s me. I was just wondering if you would like to eat.
But this is KC, so I know better than to not mention the Burnt End Benny ($13) — poached eggs, burnt ends, hollandaise and a biscuit? Winner, winner come back for Sunday night chicken dinner. (No really, they have a special chicken supper on Sundays.)
Chow down brunch style 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday. charbarkc.com
616 Ward Parkway
Coal Vines might be the Plaza’s pizza spot, but let’s talk about brunch. The Bloody Marys and mimosas are divine. But this place is heaven for someone who savors the sweet like me. You can customize your pancakes ($8) with chocolate chips, granola and blueberries, but I don’t bother.
I go straight for the bananas Foster pancake ($9). It’s more than caramelized bananas, whipped cream and strawberries. It’s crispy like a funnel cake, and that makes me happy every single time. Another standout: Captain Crunch French toast ($9) with cinnamon whipped cream, maple syrup and raspberry puree. If I could watch cartoons while eating this delight, I might reach nirvana.
Don’t get it twisted, they have eggs Benedict, quiche, a breakfast pizza and breakfast calzone. So there are plenty of options. I just like to end my work week by starting the weekends with dessert for breakfast.
Give brunch a spin 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday. coalvineskc.com
10611 Nall Ave., Overland Park
Topgolf weekends can be so busy you want to hop in a golf cart and ride away. Don’t. Sign in and eat brunch. Tee time will come. Have some coffee while you wait. The spiked kind. Topgolf has a variety of caffeinated cocktails to wake you up, like the Espresso Martini ($9): Skyy Infusions vanilla bean vodka, RumChata and Monin True Brewed espresso get the job done.
To fill your belly: sliders. You can try the Chorizo & Egg Sliders ($7). Me? I went straight for the Chicken & Waffle Sliders ($9). I couldn’t resist crispy chicken tenders and jalapeno gravy sandwiched between two small waffles and topped with maple syrup. I want an order right now just thinking about it.
There’s also caramelized French toast infused with coconut rum. Yes. Coconut rum. Add maple syrup and strawberries and call me happy. There’s also an alcohol-free version. I’m just not currently interested.
Brunch tee time is 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. topgolf.com/us/overland-park