Hearne: Bono Was right, KC Frozen Out of Top 101 Restaurants

1334862096b56d0ba4852586nMaybe former Chiefs quarterback Steve Bono was right after all…

There are so many goofy surveys out there and year-after-year we fall for ’em. Best city to party, retire, bike or find romance in. The fittest, fattest, funnest – there’s no shortage of topics. And usually it’s a magazine or website hardly anybody really reads that puts these local media magnets out in an effort to garner attention and try and remain relevant.

Long ago pretty much everybody figured out one of the best ways to make a splash is to put out a list that purports to bestow awards (however dubious) on as many different cities and towns as they can. Knowing that the local media will pounce on said surveys and act like they actually matter. You know, that we really are the best, worst or fattest.

Which leads to “water cooler talk” – whatever that actually is – with the zine or website the beneficiary.

11167512_800Think of it as a variation on those ubiquitous “Best Of” awards handed out by the Pitch and about everybody else still in the print game. The difference being that passing out hundreds of blow jobs to local businesses who then post certificates evidencing said blow jobs for all to see, is a longer lasting schmooze.

The latest of these wondrous rankings by The Daily Meal – a website who’s slogan is “all things food and drink” – illustrates how unimportant and lame these things can be.

The Daily Meal’s questionable contribution: the “101 Best Restaurants in America”

None of which by the way are even located within 400 miles of Kansas City.

That’s right, on a website who’s Wikipedia page describes it as producing  “original content and videos from editors, industry insiders, and the user community” and features “nine channels – Cook, Eat/Dine, Drink, Travel, Entertain, Best Recipes, Holidays, Lists and Community – and 24 city pages, including one for Kansas City, the Cowtown didn’t make the cut.

We’re nowhere to be found.

If it’s any comfort, neither did St. Louis, Omaha, Wichita or DesMoines, but still.

The Daily Meal’s message to cities like KC that didn’t measure up: hang in there”

“We realize that there are some 71 urban areas in the U.S. with populations of 500,000 and above, and though they’re full of restaurants, does every one of them have one or two places that can really be compared with America’s best? Maybe. But even today, probably not.”


Ollie Gates
Next time?


Maybe we can slip in the back door next month in TDM’s list of America’s 50 Best Casual Restaurants, “the most amazing spots in the United States serving the ribs, red hots, pizzas, burgers, tacos, and other less expensive – but no less important or mouthwatering – dishes.”

Yeah, sounds like us – BBQ and tacos – Bono said it best, remember?

“The worst restaurant in San Francisco is better than the best restaurant in Kansas City.”


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11 Responses to Hearne: Bono Was right, KC Frozen Out of Top 101 Restaurants

  1. hot harley says:

    Oklahoma joes is #3 in entire nationaccording to yelp!!!!!

    • admin says:

      Perfect example of yet another semi meaningless stat.

      Is Oklahoma Joe’s top notch? of course it is. Do they like and seek out recognition of this sort? Totally.

      Is it actually very meaningful? Not really.

  2. hot harley says:

    dear hearne…
    looked at top 100 for daily meal. Looked at a glance like 90% of the top 101 restaurants were in the top 101 on the list.
    As I have provedin the past I am very good at analyzing polls and stats.
    Probably this list reflects the few place outside of ny/Chicago etc. that
    these people eat at….reflects the fact that probably most of their
    viewers are from largest markets (never heard of daily meal) and that
    few people in smaller towns where the best found can be found are even
    aware of daily meal. I’m extrapolating tht few people in kc read this
    high end restaruatnt blog. Maybe people into the food biz know it…
    but food is an individual taste. Theres no rpi…or bcs based on some
    Again…if you talk to people who come into town…get a chance to experience
    some of our restaurants in this town…people from out of town…are
    very very surprised at the quality of food served in this town.
    People who come here are amazed at okalhoma joes….jaspers/marco polos
    sit down/plaza 3/on top of many of the other top restaurants we have.
    I’m willing to bet that based on the article written by daily meal…they’ve
    not been here and sampled much of what we have to offer.
    We have some great chefs…smith and others…who produce a great
    You need to get out of Lawrence and come see whats being servced
    in kc…it will surprise you….plus when out of town people come to kc
    I take them to cascones and they are amazed at how incredible
    that is…and these are people from the hill in stl ous…little Italy in
    new York…..kc has some incredible eateries…they just don’t get the
    publicity that big market top 10 cities get…..
    don’t bash this town again…..it gets old…

  3. hot harley says:

    sorry…correction….90% of the restaurants they lauded were in the top
    10 largest cities in the country (ny/dc/san fran)….that in itself shows how
    biased this little list is…
    there are thousands of great place in the rest of America…..but they’re only
    exposed to the few cities they get suggestions from….

    • admin says:

      That may be true – everybody wants to follow the money and there’s a lot more of it in bigger cities – but it’s such a subjective, loosely run game that it really doesn’t matter.

      I’m sure the food in the restaurant winners is fine – maybe excellent – but this isn’t like the Olympics. There is no true competition and/or comparison being made. Somebody decides to make a play for recognition and rattles off a bunch of out of context names and away they go.

      Look, Joe’s Stone Crabs in Miami is on the 101 List and that’s an excellent restaurant. I just happen to have eaten there like the small group of individuals who compiled this list have. But it didn’t nose out a field of other great eateries in an actual competition to claim its position on the list.

  4. the dude says:

    I guess this website I never heard of could not milk any money out of the local restaurants to get on this list I never heard of. Not a big deal, KC has plenty of good places to eat.

  5. kansas karl says:

    El Pollo Rey rules

    • the dude says:

      I haven’t tried the Rey yet but when I do I will get the fresh tortillas at San Antonio and wander over to the Rey for mah chicken.

  6. CG says:

    I think we have some good ones, but like most cities now most are corp. chains…still we have great BBQ like Oklahoma Joes, Arthur Bryant, Gates…Jaspers is up there, got many more some good Mexican…no not like the old days in KC…for sure, but solid.

  7. PB says:

    And we were right about Bono being a sh!tty quarterback.

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