Best Chain Restaurants in Kansas City
These chain restaurants are popular for all the right reasons.
$$$$ | 700 W., 47th St., Kansas City, MO | eddiev.com
Expensive and sumptuous, Eddie V’s can be found in 11 states from coast to coast. Known for its premium steaks and seafood that ranges from caviar to steamed Chilean sea bass, this restaurant has expense account written all over it. From the lux decor to the food, Eddie V’s is impressive and designed to make you feel fancy. For sheer indulgence, get the bacon-wrapped filets with Alaskan king crab.
Best bet: The Teasers are spectacular; try Lamp Lollipops, featuring a fig glaze, or the mini fillet sandwiches with blue cheese and onion jam. You can’t go wrong sharing a bevy of appetizers, and hopefully your order will also include the citrus pearl oysters.
The Capital Grille
$$$$ | 4740 Jefferson St., Kansas City, MO | thecapitalgrille.com
With 50 locations around the country, The Capital Grille is a standard bearer for luscious steaks and seafood and killer sides such as lobster mac and cheese and soy-glazed Brussels sprouts with bacon. Located on the Country Club Plaza, this restaurant is cloaked in an atmosphere of old-world charm that is elegant without being overly stuffy. Pro tip: Let the staff know ahead of time you’re there for a special occasion, and they will make you feel very special indeed.
Best bet: The porcini-rubbed bone-in ribeye with 15 year-aged balsamic is sublime. You don’t eat this; you reverently savor it.
Jax Fish House and Oyster Bar
$$$$ | 4814 Roanoke Parkway, Kansas City, MO | jaxfishhouse.com
No oceanfront living, no problem because Jax’s mission is bringing fresh seafood to the “coast-less communities.” The menu is wide-ranging and features sustainable seafood from caviar to Ahi tuna to mussels. Pro tip: Jax has one of the best brunches in Kansas City. Start with the New Orleans-inspired “bennies,” and then stuff yourself with shrimp and grits for a winning weekend.
Best bet: It’s a toss-up between the oysters (you can get them Cajun style, grilled or charbroiled) and the crab legs. Just go ahead and treat yourself by ordering both.
$$$$ | Locations in Leawood and the Power & Light District. | 801chophouse.com
Based in Iowa, this chain is all about the beef. With appetizers such as Carpaccio, which features thinly-sliced tenderloin with fried capers, arugula and dusted Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, and entrees starring a 24-ounce Porterhouse steak, 801 Chophouse is a red meat lover’s nirvana. Add in a one-pound baked potato, and you’ll be gastronomically content for days. Pro tip: Go on Sunday to take advantage of the three-course, $36 price fixe meal.
Best bet: The 12-ounce filet mignon with Maytag blue cheese potatoes will give the term meat and potatoes a whole new meaning.
$$$$ | 8901 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park, KS | jgilberts.com
This restaurant has been around for almost 100 years. It started out as a 12-seat diner in Kansas City and grew into a chain of almost 50 restaurants. Today, J. Gilbert’s is run by the same folks who own the Bristol, but the menu holds fast to its surf-and-turf roots. The diverse offerings include crab cakes, lobster cobb salad, a rack of lamb, pork chops, grilled ribs and a steak that you might be inspired to write an ode to. Pro tip: Be sure to order an appetizer. The blue cheese potato chips and pretzel-crusted onion rings are also prose-worthy.
Best bet: Order a filet combo that includes your choice of bourbon maple shrimp, scallops or crab cake. Then finish your meal with the Seven Layer Coconut Cake, which features coconut cream, sweetened cream cheese, toasted coconut and macadamia nuts sandwiched between luscious layers of white cake.