Normally, I don't leave the basement but Saturday was a very special Dave Stephens exception. Seriously, it was one of the best times I've had in my adult life. At least with my baseball cap still on.
Anyhoo . . . I was lucky enough to share a quick drink with Matt Jones who owns The Phoenix and he was talking about how the Kansas City Jazz destination continues to evolve.
Here's what I learned:
They moved the bar. There's a bit more space and my drinks were easier to get versus the last time I visited the place years ago. What remains a drawback is that the stage is still incredibly small.
The menu is a bit more accessible. A lady friend purchased the crab cakes and I ate most of what was on her plate (as usual) in order to keep her skinny and sample the fare. It was pretty good. The food is probably the most affordable at any local Jazz joint. Again, my lady friend paid for me but I figure you d-bags probably aren't as smooth as TKC and actually have to buy your dinner. Also, I'm completely convinced that cheap (affordable) beer is the key to success for any local establishment which is part of the reason why The P&L District loses $12 mil for Kansas City every year.
The Legendary Lonnie McFadden is there every Friday Night. I've heard the guy is amazing, one of these days I'm gonna have to see him perform.
One Saturday out of the month they do a charity Jazz brunch. For June the jazz place donated some of the profits to Wayside Waifs.
ANOTHER EXCLUSIVE DETAIL: COMING UP IN SEPTEMBER THEY'RE GOING TO CLOSE DOWN A BIT OF 8TH STREET FOR A KANSAS CITY STREET JAZZ FESTIVAL!!!
And that sounds like a pretty good time.
Full Disclosure: TKC doesn't take/look for ad money and THIS POST WAS NOT SPONSORED. The reason behind a bit of promo is that I was impressed with another local venue committed to showcasing Kansas City talent.