Curious Kansas City diners can step away from their kitchens for the next 10 days, teased Carlos Mortera, as chefs at 200 restaurants across the city plate their latest trending tastes during the metro’s most-anticipated culinary showcase.
“It’s a big deal in Kansas City. Many of the restaurants feature items they don’t usually have on the menu, so a lot of planning goes into this,” said Mortera, the founder of Poio Mexican BBQ, describing the stakes of the 13th annual Kansas City Restaurant Week. “And right now, we’re in a pandemic and January is the slowest time for restaurants — so this really helps us bring in business.”
Restaurant Week begins Friday, running through Sunday, Jan. 23. Each participating eatery offers a $15, $35 or $45 fixed menu with multiple courses.
Click here to check out the full list of restaurants and their menus during KC Restaurant Week.
Along with supporting local restaurants, consumers can be assured that their dollars will boost community organizations like the Visit KC Foundation and Greater KC Restaurant Association. Both are annual community-first recipients. A third organization is chosen each year by event organizers.
Guadalupe Centers was selected for 2022.
“Guadalupe Centers is one of the longest-serving Hispanic nonprofits in the United States,” shared Gary Bradley-Lopez, communications and outreach director at Guadalupe Centers. “We provide a variety of services such as youth development, programming and recreation; health, and social services; education; and then social and cultural events.”
Click here to learn more about Guadalupe Centers.
Proceeds from Restaurant Week benefit Guadalupe Centers’ catering services — a department focused on providing food for Hispanic and Latinx communities across Wyandotte and Jackson counties.
“Especially with Coronavirus, we have a lot of older folks who don’t have any hot meals,” Bradley-Lopez noted. “The funds will help us expand our work within the community.”
“One of the main reasons I wanted to participate in Restaurant Week was because a percentage of the proceeds go to the Guadalupe Center,” Mortera added. “They are pro-immigrant and support the Mexican community, which I am all about.”
Click here to read more about Poio and how Carlos Mortera united his Mexican-American identity through food.
Restaurant Week features a vast array of cuisines, cultures and dietary needs.
Second-time participant Fannie Gibson — founder of Fannies African & Tropical Cuisine — noted that Restaurant Week showcases Kansas City’s true diversity.
“Kansas City has embraced my culture, and I am so grateful for this opportunity,” Gibson shared. “To see people from all walks of life coming together to enjoy West African cuisine, I think it’s amazing.
“[Restaurant Week] customers can expect to see some of the favorites on our menu, as well as new dishes that you cannot find anywhere else in Kansas City,” she continued.
“When you open a restaurant, you get a honeymoon period and that’s all you get,” Taylor noted. “It’s very difficult to get in front of new people, but Restaurant Week is that opportunity. It’s a great marketing vehicle to show people who you are and what you do.”
This story is possible thanks to support from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a private, nonpartisan foundation that works together with communities in education and entrepreneurship to create uncommon solutions and empower people to shape their futures and be successful.