Kansas City Connection: Grinders Pizza and Celebration at the Station
There are thousands of places outside New York that claim to serve authentic New York-style Pizza, but a truly delicious slice of appropriately soft-yet-crispy pizza isn’t as easy to find as you’d think.
Grinders Pizza, at 417 E. 18th St. in the heart of the Crossroads, is the real thing. The slices are big enough you think you’ll only want one or two, and then you wind up disappointed when there isn’t a fourth or fifth (or at least that’s how I felt last weekend, admittedly while drinking a similar number of beers).
Among the specialty pizzas are the “Bengal Tiger,” which was inspired by the flavors of northwest India and includes green sauce with Tandori chicken, real crab meat, hearts of palm and cilantro — a creation so unique it was featured on the Food Network. The “Crossroads” pizza satisfies all parties, with a red-sauce-coated pie divided into quadrants of cheese, pineapple, pepperoni and spinach.
Grinders is also famous for its “death wings,” which are served with sauces ranging from wimpy to molten (and beyond). Grinders also serves an expansive sandwich and salad menu.
Summer hours are 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday through Thursday, and from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday. During the summer, however, the outdoor Crossroads KC stage frequently hosts concerts, making eating here during those times an unlikely proposal unless you’re attending the show. On the plus side, upcoming acts include Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals (June 5, $35), Lucinda Williams (June 11, $28) and Wilco (July 15, $40), so plan a combined pizza/concert outing for a real summer treat.
Celebration at the Station
One of the biggest celebrations of the year takes place Sunday, May 24, at Union Station. The aptly named Celebration at the Station includes a free performance of patriotic music by the Kansas City Symphony at 8 p.m. and a massive fireworks display at 9:45 p.m.
The grounds open at 1 p.m., with food and drinks served by popular local food trucks. Activities include the Celebration Family Zone, a new kid-free area in front of the station, and a traveling Vietnam memorial that is an 80-percent-scale replica of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. Throughout the weekend, the Military Vehicle Preservation Association will be displaying nearly 30 military vehicles from World War I, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam War and Operation Desert Storm.
The celebration is free to the public and will also be televised at 8 p.m. on KCPT. Parking is available at lots and garages in the area, with most garages charging $10.
If you haven’t had the chance to catch Sporting Kansas City in action yet this season, Wednesday night’s game against the New England Revolution could be your chance.
Midweek games in the first half of the season tend to have a more relaxed atmosphere than the weekend battles closer to playoff time. Sporting KC is holding its own in the Western Conference despite a few injuries and roster changes.
Wednesday’s game starts at 7 p.m. and tickets are for sale at sportingkc.com.
Notable concerts this week include Detroit MC Big Sean, a Kanye West protege who has became famous in his own right over the past several years. Big Sean will be rocking Arvest Bank Theatre at Midland at 8 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are $30 at midlandkc.com.
The following night, Nashville country music artist Josh Turner will perform a 7:30 p.m. show at the Kauffman Center. Tickets are $39 and up at kauffmancenter.org.
Amigoni Urban Winery
Any wine enthusiasts who haven’t yet visited Amigoni Urban Winery should drop by to celebrate the winery’s third year in the Daily Drovers Telegram Building, 1505 Genessee St. in the West Bottoms.
The birthday celebration runs from 1 to 7 p.m. and includes door prizes, live music from Shay Estes and Mark Lowrey and food trucks in the north lot, as well as plenty of wine. Visit winery.amigoni.com for more details.
— Lucas Wetzel is a writer and editor from Kansas City, Mo. Know of an upcoming event in Kansas City you’d like to see featured in Kansas City Connection? Email us about it at firstname.lastname@example.org.