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Wichita – Bite Me BBQ

Bite Me BBQ, located at 132 N. St. Francis in downtown Wichita, was the location of a recent noontime meal prior to two days of business meetings. My good friend Keith and I checked out the place early on a weekday. The first thing we noticed was how big the place was, and how quickly it filled up. The lunch crowd obviously likes the place!

The expansive restaurant features a sports bar like atmosphere and a menu equally as expansive as the location. Obviously, I was there for the pork! I had the three meat combo with ribs, hotlink and pulled pork.

According to their website, “In a 2008 Quest for the best BBQ ribs in the state, Kansas Magazine named Bite Me BBQ as one of the best BBQ restaurants in the state of Kansas.”  That being said, there are a lot of new, and really great, BBQ restaurants in business since that time. I had to find out for myself if they could still compete.

I thoroughly enjoyed the hotlink, and the seasoning and smoke of the ribs was spot on.  Their website claims that they have “… the biggest spare ribs you will ever see fall off the bone. Our ribs cook for 16 hours.”

Now, I will certainly agree to the size claim, however my ribs did not fall off the bone.  As they say in the barbecue cooking shows, the ribs had a “tough chew”… this is unfortunate, because they were some of the most flavorful ribs I’ve had in a long while!  If Bite Me BBQ can work on the tenderness aspect  of their ribs, I’d say they would have a fair shot of competing for their 2008 title again. It was certainly tasty enough that I will give them another try.

Until next time,

Chris

Kansas City – El Camino Real

El Camino Real (Spanish for The Royal Road), is an authentic Mexican experience! I’m not talking about those Americanized Mexican restaurants that claim to be authentic but cover everything in cheese sauce. I mean the real deal….the kind of place where you either order in Spanish, or else you point to what you want on the menu. These places are different, but in a good way. You might consider them to be a cultural experience.  When it comes to menu items, usually, you will get smaller portions served with corn tortillas rather than  big flour tortillas, and you can get however many of a particular food item that you want.

El Camino Real is located on Seventh Street in Kansas City, Kansas. You will find it just up the street from the 7th Street Casino and right next to the Historic Huron Indian Cemetery.  During my recent visit, I ordered Tacos Al Pastor (pork). This is what we Americans typically call “Street Tacos.” They are small soft corn tortillas filled with flavorful pork. Cilantro, lime and onions come on the side. What makes these different than other similar tacos (see the blog on Dodge City Taco Trucks), is that El Camino serves theirs with slices of pineapple. The lime, cilantro and pineapple combine to create a pleasant citrus kick that you won’t find in an Americanized version.

If you are looking for real Mexican Food with a taste of old Mexico rather than an American imitation, check out El Camino Real!

Until next time,

Chris

Shawnee – Old Shawnee Pizza

Old Shawnee Pizza in downtown Shawnee (near 60th and Nieman) has been a staple in the area since 1969 when a struggling insurance salesman hoped to make a better living and started a pizza place. Only 48 years later, I managed to get around to trying it for the first time, and I can certainly see why it’s stuck around so long.

When you’re looking for interesting ways to eat pork and you’re at a pizza place and that place has on the menu a pizza called the “Pig and Pepper,” it certainly piques your interest. The “Pig and Pepper” pizza at OSP isn’t an ordinary pizza by any means. The description is “Chipotle pesto, pulled pork, smoked bacon, ghost pepper cheese & topped with bacon aioli sauce.” Yes, you read that right. Pulled pork and bacon with ghost pepper cheese on a pizza!

Now that I really have your attention I’ll tell you that this pizza was beyond excellent! The crust was thin and crispy and the toppings tasted exactly like you think they should. The ghost pepper cheese might scare a few people, but it really was only slightly hotter than regular old pepperjack cheese. The pulled pork was tender and smoky and the bacon was light and crisp, which is just how it should be on a pizza. I absolutely cannot wait to get back to this place and try some of the other pizzas!

Until next time,

Mike

El Dorado – Dilly Deli

Dilly Deli, located in the District 142 shopping building at 142 North Main El Dorado, KS, offers a unique dining experience. The building itself is a historic downtown building that has been sectioned off into a variety of stores and businesses.

Dilly Deli, shares its space with Brewco. Coffeehouse, which of course makes it a great place for both food and drink. I met my mother there for a late lunch as I passed through the area on my way home from a business trip. We were looking for someplace unique, local and tasty, and Dilly Deli fit the bill!

I ordered a delicious cup of house drip coffee and a tasty PoBoy Baguette featuring locally produced Yoder Meats including Pepperoni, Salami, Sweet Lebanon Bologna, and Amish Butter Cheese, Spread with Red Pepper Mayo Topped with Spring Mix, Black Olives, Cucumber, Red Onion, Tomatoes, all Drizzled with a Feta Vinaigrette.

Served on crusty, pressed bread, this sandwich closely reminded me of another favorite sandwich found at the North End KC.

If you’re looking for a good cup of coffee or a great sandwich, check out the Dilly Deli!

Until next time,

Chris