Arthur Bryant’s – Kansas City, Missouri

Shortly after Arthur Bryant died in 1982, the Kansas City Star published a cartoon showing St. Peter greeting Arthur at the gates of heaven and asking, “Did you bring sauce?” Perhaps not even in Heaven can such a wondrous sauce be concocted. Arthur Bryant’s is probably the most famous barbecue restaurant in the country, if not the world–an institution to which celebrity and political glitterati make pilgrimages. If Schlitz was the “beer that made Milwaukee famous,” then Arthur Bryant’s is…

Savoy Grill – Kansas City, Missouri

In a 2012 episode of the Travel Channel’s “No Reservations” television program, host Anthony Bourdain and his Russian pal Zamir Gotta visited Kansas City in search of the city’s best barbecue.  When not licking barbecue sauce off their fingers, the peckish duo detoured to Stroud’s for the best fried chicken in the known universe and to The Savoy Grill for nostalgia and memories.  The Savoy Grill, a Kansas City landmark, has been making memories since 1903 when it was added…

Gates Bar B. Q. – Independence, Missouri

The cognoscenti seem to agree that the American epicenters of barbecue excellence are Texas, Memphis, Kansas City and South Carolina. In Texas, barbeque briquettes are burnished with beef–lean beef brisket celebrating the best in king cattle. At Memphis, they go hog wild at the pits for pulled porcine perfection. In South Carolina, the self-professed “cradle of American barbecue,” swine dining means pork smothered in a mustard-based sauce. Kansas City claims to put it all together with more than 100 barbecue…

Super Smokers – Eureka, Missouri

Note: On January 6, 2006, The St. Louis Business Journal announced that Super Smokers closed unexpectedly. As it turns out, only one of the five St. Louis area restaurants remains open. This will add several miles to our trips to Chicago, but any detour that leads to outstanding barbecue is well worth it. St. Louis, Missouri isn’t widely recognized as one of America’s barbecue capitals as is cross-state barbecue bastion Kansas City, but perhaps it should be. St. Louis based…