A Refreshing Reinvention

Renée Kelly’s at Caenen Castle, a farm-to-table restaurant located in Shawnee, Kan., has been renamed Renée Kelly’s Harvest.
Chef Renée Kelly creates her menus using vegetables, fruits, breads, meats, cheese and more from local and regional purveyors, farmers, growers and artisans. This is one of only a few restaurants in Kansas City to offer homegrown fare, but it’s a trend that’s increasing in popularity.
The restaurant is open for dinner Wednesday through Saturday nights and serves a scrumptious brunch on Sundays.
For special events, Kelly offers a “concierge” catering service — she will create any menu from start to finish using the freshest ingredients.
“I use only locally grown, farm-fresh foods, organic if possible,” Kelly says. “I never buy in bulk. Each ingredient is purchased for immediate use. And, I cook to please my guests’ palates, not my own.”

In addition to starting her own restaurant from the ground up, Kelly has cooked for famous musicians; cooked with superstar chefs; been invited to be a guest chef on a cruise honoring Auguste Escoffier, the father of modern cooking; and is writing her first cookbook.
As far as the creative process, Kelly says for her, cooking is an extraordinarily sensory experience.
“Seeing the colors and breathing in the aromas of fresh ingredients are all the inspiration I need,” says Kelly. “From there, I begin to visualize the combinations and construct the recipes.”

Step inside to be surrounded by the magic of old-world charm.
Renée Kelly’s Harvest is housed in Caenen Castle, a bona fide, restored, turn-of-the-century castle that comes with a classically-trained chef, wine cellar fit for a king and a staff ready to fulfill diners’ most savory wishes.
A grand staircase begs a dramatic entrance; tapestries drape 22-foot-tall limestone walls; three hand-carved European fireplaces flank a 100-seat main hall; and old English trestle tables and high-back tapestry chairs complete the castle feel.
But, aside from its enchanting majestic qualities, the castle provides guests at a wedding, rehearsal dinner, reception, anniversary or birthday party, corporate retreat — or any other special event — a feeling of intimacy.
When the weather’s nice, a vast patio and beautifully manicured grounds set the perfect stage for cocktail hour.