The past three weeks have been tough for Jardine’s founder Greg Halstead…
Halstead opened Jardine’s in 1992 as a restaurant and bar, but within months realized he’d made a mistake. The joint was losing money and Halstead called his pal Ron Schoonover – the former manager of Kansas City’s Playboy Club – to ask advice. Schoonover was running a successful jazz-themed bar and restaurant downtown called The Phoenix. He greenlighted Halstead’s idea of adding jazz to Jardine’s mix and the rest is history.
In 2003 Halstead sold Jardine’s to its longtime manager and current owner Beena Raja.
And as Jardine’s 19th year nears – as turbulant as things have been – it remains Kansas City’s leading jazz club.
What Halstead doesn’t get is why Fox 4 News in particular took such an interest in the story. He ran into Fox 4 reporter Kathy Quinn at a local restaurant recently and discussed the matter with her, he says. Halstead declined to say exactly what was discussed in that conversation.
However, Quinn’s daughter Kaitlin was one of the three servers Raja says she found partying at Jardine’s at 4 a.m. Thanksgiving morning. Raja says the servers were consuming alcohol, illegally after hours and had not paid for their drinks.
Fox 4 did not disclose this potential conflict in the reports about Jardine’s I saw that it aired.
"They just butchered the place," Halstead says of Fox 4. "Channel 4 was the one who was all over it. But like, who gives a (damn)?"
Did Fox 4 go too far?
"Let me put it this way," Halstead says. "I was upset about it. I mean, it’s just a jazz club. This isn’t Jack Dempsey’s in New York."