Less than two years after opening a lunch-only, limited-menu operation in downtown Kansas City, Plowboys Barbeque has switched corners and expanded in the Town Pavilion.
It opened Thursday in a 5,700-square-foot space at 1111 Main St., Suite 120, moving from a 2,200-square-foot space in Suite 115.
Partners Todd Johns and Todd Johnson said they want to make their barbecue a feature in downtown for visitors, as well as area workers and residents, so they “can get a real taste of Kansas City.”
Plowboys’ barbecue nachos have been a popular lunch item, as well as its brisket. Its new larger kitchen allows room for fryers for french fries and sweet potato fries. It also can now serve burnt ends and ribs daily (they were each featured two days a week before), and can now offer combo platters.
Johns said he has been in 225 barbecue competitions since 2001, and his team has earned more than 500 awards. He started catering in 2005, and started selling his rubs and sauces in 2007. In mid-2013, Johns and Johnson opened a freestanding restaurant at 3111 S.W. Missouri 7 in Blue Springs.
For now the new downtown location will be open only for lunch. In November — after the American Royal — it will be open for dinner Thursday through Saturday and during some larger downtown events.
Its barbecue nachos have been a popular lunch item. But overall its pulled pork (made with a secret process, Johns said), and its burnt ends (cooked separately from the flat of the brisket) are the best-sellers. It also sells baby back ribs instead of spare ribs.
“It’s what we were doing in competition so we wanted to stay with what we knew,” Johns said.
The new location has a bar serving local craft beers, including Boulevard Brewing Co., Cinder Block Brewery, Crane Brewing and Kansas City Bier Co.
The decor features some of its many awards and ribbons, black-and-white photos of famed Kansas City barbecue restaurants and the Kansas City Stockyards, and mini bios on Kansas City barbecue experts such as Ardie Davis and Paul Kirk.
“We wanted to make it about Kansas City and Kansas City barbecue and not just Plowboys,” Johns said.