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There have been a number of weeks recently during which I haven’t had much time to get off the beaten path, leaving me unable to make any recommendations in this space.

This week, I have an almost embarrassment of riches.

First of all, the food …

During past trips to Kansas City, I’ve done my best to find time to visit Arthur Bryant’s, which features some of the best barbecue available anywhere. But while there this week, because of time constraints, proximity and several recommendations, I instead found myself at Q39, which is a lot newer to the market but, by my reckoning, no less accomplished.

Because it was my first time, I decided to splurge on the Judge’s Plate: spare ribs, sliced brisket, and sausage, all of which was melt-in-your-mouth delicious, accompanied by a tangy sauce that, had there been any left, I would’ve been happy to inhale with a straw. And, they served it all with an apple cole slaw that was maybe the best cole slaw I’ve ever eaten.

It was so good that the next day, I went back for lunch, because I wanted to have some slice burnt ends … which were equally delicious.

In both cases, I washed down the food with a fantastic Brew 39 amber, which is an exclusive collaboration between the restaurant and the local Martin City Brewing Company.

Hate to say it, but I may have found a new KC favorite.

Last weekend, while in Los Angeles, I had an entirely different culinary experience - a friend an I decided to enjoy a late lunch at Coni’Seafood, which is a Mexican restaurant in Inglewood that serves seafood almost exclusively.

It was a simple meal - we split a plate of smoked marlin tacos w/ onion & tomato, (marlin, which I’ve never had before, tasted and looked like pulled pork - it was amazing) and a plate of Tacos de Pescado Empanizado, which consisted of lightly buttered fried fish served with cabbage, tomato, onion, dressing & chile. All washed down with an icy cold Modelo … and it all left us completely understanding while the late legendary food critic Jonathan Gold gave it an unreserved rave.

What can I tell you. Life is good.

One other note from the culinary front … I went to the Lock City Tap Room in Stamford, Connecticut, last night to meet some friends, and I had the most extraordinary beer - the Subliminal Verses Volume 1 - Breakfast Stout, which is, if I understand correctly, brewed with Pancakes, Cocoa Nibs, Sumatra Coffee, and Maple Syrup. I have no idea if they were pulling my leg on the ingredients, but the stout was so delicious that I was in no mood to argue.

The only problem - I was drinking the last of it, and they’re apparently not making any more for the foreseeable future. However, there is potential good news 0- they say their next stout will be made with Oreos.

Be still my heart.

I also have a movie to recommend to you this week - Triple Frontier, which is on Netflix, is directed and co-written by JC Chandor of Margin Call and All is Lost, co-written by Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty), and starring a great cast - Ben Affleck, Oscar Isaac, Charlie Hunnam, Garrett Hedlund, and Pedro Pascal.

The plot is simple. Five former members of the US Special Forces, finding themselves frustrated and unhappy after leaving the service, decide to steal millions of dollars from a South American drug lord. Needless to say, it doesn’t go as planned … and I found Triple Frontier to be a taut and exciting piece of work. It isn’t particularly ambitious, but the work of an A-list group gives the movie a kind of Wages of Fear vibe that I really liked.

That’s it for this week. Have a great weekend, and I’ll see you Monday.


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