I know what you are thinking, “Two travel blogs back to back…” Here’s the thing: I’ve noticed that all of my travel blogs are about international travels, but a lot of the traveling I do is within the U.S. I want to do better about documenting all the trips I take throughout the year. Traveling can become a bit of a double-edged sword; I visit these amazing, foreign places, eating their food, drinking their drinks, and meeting new people, so I tend to forget there is plenty of my own country to explore and celebrate.
This past weekend I took a trip to Kansas City (the Missouri side of course), a place I haven’t visited since I was 9-years-old. I had a few different things on my agenda for this 3 day, 2-night trip.
Events and Tours
Kansas City has a great event the first Friday of every month (when it’s not freezing cold/winter). It is aptly called “First Friday.” This event is one huge block party with food trucks, beer, music, vendors, and more. It features art galleries, DJs, acoustic guitar players, all of the city’s best food trucks, and so much more. It’s a great place to grab some quick food, stop into a gallery or two, and explore the breweries downtown.
First Friday highlights a lot of small art galleries and studios. They feature everything from large canvas work to more reasonably priced prints, hand-sewn clothing, handcrafted jewelry, artisan bakeries, and the like. It’s a good time to window shop or find some cool new pieces for your home.
I know this is a bit basic and cliché, but I found it worthwhile. Only $5 to get in, there are tours every day of the week, lasting only 45 minutes, and you get a total of three 5 ounce beers (aka a quick buzz for me). If you want to keep the party going, they have a beer hall inside their tours and event building as well!
Causal Animal Brewing Co.
This was the first brewery we stopped into after going to First Friday. They have an awesome tap room featuring punny beer names, shuffleboard, board games, and a love of succulent plant centerpieces.
Border Brewing Co.
In the same area where First Friday was held, you’ll find Border Brewing Co. They have a smaller taproom but a large outdoor deck/patio where you can play bags and people watch. Try their Strawberry Blonde Sour!
Double Shift Brewing Co.
Double Shift is literally next door to Border, making it an easy one-two punch for good beer. It has a larger taproom, board games, and 24 hours of Hell with Gordon Ramsay always playing on the TVs. Their Guava Lamp beer was great and the high alcohol percentage doesn’t hurt either.
Food and Drink
The Mixing Bowl Noshery
This was probably my favorite meal of the weekend, and not just because I have a love for breakfast that rivals Leslie Knope’s. We hit up the Noshery before going to the Boulevard Tour, it being only 6 minutes away. They have classic breakfast offerings, some with a twist. I fell deeply in love with my sausage and egg biscuit sandwich and gravy. Yeah, that’s right, it is a sausage and egg biscuit sandwich doused in homemade gravy and served with a side of crispy hash browns.
Some friends mentioned that trying a flapjack is a must, and it did not disappoint. It tasted like literal birthday cake, combining two of my favorite things: breakfast and dessert.
Taste of Brazil
On Sunday we headed to the River Market and walked around all the cute shops, checked out the fresh produce, and then made our way to the stalls. It’s a nice of mix farmer’s market meets flea market, with a huge variety of food. You can find authentic Italian, Cajun, African, and Brazilian, which is where we ended up eating. The food was amazing, filling, and deep-fried. Can’t go wrong!
Before heading out of town, we hit up Quay Coffee right next to River Market. They have a coffee menu that is more limited than Starbucks, but I think they have something that everyone can enjoy. I tried their vanilla iced latte, wanting to try their housemade syrups. The difference between homemade syrups and store bought had never been more clear to me then at that moment. Hands down the best vanilla latte I’ve had to date.
Obviously, this is not a comprehensive guide to Kansas City, nor a fraction of what the city has to offer. But if you are looking to travel to a cool city in the Midwest, give Kansas City a try! Use this blog as a jumping off point for your planning, or do what I did and just go with the flow. Comment below if there are places I should check out next time I’m in the KC area!