Friday, February 08, 2008

Thank you sir, may I have another?

Bull & Wes over at the KCBeerBlog are the best little KC PR bloggers around. They pick up every downtown related story and post, post, post away. Which I appreciate. Because I sadly do not keep myself as well-informed. Oddly enough, a steady diet of the local FOX news morning show does not make for an educated person. Who knew?

The Big 12 tourney hits the new Sprint area on March13th, so everyone is in a race to get drinking holes ready for the crush. I am concerned that this is SO last minute. I can't imagine some of these places only being open for a few days before the hordes descend. Out of all the new stuff going in down at the new Power & Light District, the ones I am most excited about are below:

ChefBurger - Opens first week of March! Created by the same awesome dude (Rob Dalzell) who brought you 1924 Main, Pizza Bella and Souperman, so you know it'll be good. A locally owned build your own burger joint should do extremely well. Not to mention that you'll get to choose from 4 arty breads, different meat/veggie patties, 10 cheeses, 24 toppings, and 10 sauces!

Gordon Biersch Brewery - Opens March 10. Yes, another corporate brewery/restaurant, but variety is the slice of life, and I like options. This will be a full-scale brewery with a big outdoor beer garden.

Raglan Road Irish Pub - Opens first week of March! Another corporate, faux irish pub. Guess where this one comes to you from? Pleasure Island, Disney, Orlando, FL! Which fits, really, the whole feeling of the P&L district. Disneyland, KC. But lend credibility, KC chefs are being trained at the company's 5 star restuarant, Dunbrody House, in County Wexford, Ireland.

Flying Saucer Draught Emporium
- Opening in early May. Lee posted a PR piece on the company before they opened in Austin. This is COOL. They will have 225 beers from more than 15 countries. They seek to "elevate beer."

Maker’s Mark Bourbon House & Lounge - No idea when this will open. Likely some time well after May. There will be an "upscale restaurant and swanky lounge subtly emphasizing the Maker's Mark Bourbon brand." End quote. All I know is that when I visited their main website, John Denver's Country Boy started playing thru my speakers. SWANKY!

The Living Room - No date yet. This will be seating area and prominent bar inside the LIVE! area, featuring plush cushions, ottomans, chairs and tables surrounding a flowing waterfall with a center flame. There will be space heaters and fire pits to keep everyone warm in the winter. When the KC smoking ban finally hits, I wonder if this will be a popular spot with people taking a break from the many bars & nightclubs.

I plan on spending a bit more time downtown to check it all out. Yes, it'll be tourist trap themed. There will be more nightclub concepts and Lucky Strike bowling lanes, and other silly things to compliment the other places. I don't care if any of those places attract, "douches," as some call them. I am pleased that the downtown bars are gaining traction. I am happy that there are young people living and working in our downtown, and I am glad that there will be more stores and services moving in to support them, like more regular restaurants, dry cleaners, and grocery stores. I hope that the area doesn't feel the pinch too badly AFTER the Big 12 tourney ends, and people go home. I'm just very excited to see it all roll out, and hopeful it is sustainable.