1. Slaps BBQ
This restaurant was featured on “Burgers, Brews, & ‘Que” and that’s why you thought he would love it. You wish he could be here, you know what he would order – the brisket, as featured on the Food Network. You can’t bring yourself to try it without him, and can hardly stand to be in this line alone. The fluorescent lighting is harsh and everyone can see the tears welling up. Order your gallon of cheesy corn for $33.95 and Uber back to the Sheraton honeymoon suite by yourself.
2. Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que
Known for its ribs and being a gas station, Joe’s is one of the quintessential barbeque places in Kansas City. Foodies and tourists consistently name it as a favorite. It was the perfect place to bring him. You’re here to experience the food on your own now, you don’t need company to enjoy things. The plate of burnt ends, while reasonably priced, is a bit much for you. Usually he would finish what you couldn’t, and you dump your half eaten food away in shame.
3. Arthur Bryant’s
You heard the sausage was one of the best things on the menu, and you’re looking forward to it. That cheesy corn didn’t sit right last night and you really need something solid on your stomach. As soon you receive your food, you lose your appetite. There he is all over again, between two buns that aren’t yours. Pull out your phone, send a “wave” emoji, turn it off. Leave the sausage on the table. Walk away like he did at the altar.
Be honest, you don’t even like BBQ that much, but you had all the hotel reservations and nothing else to do but explain to your family why you got a refund on the catering and venue. Order 5 roast beef sandwiches for $10 and douse them in Arby’s sauce. The staff understands better than your bridesmaids. Kansas City was the last place you thought you would spend this special weekend but you were doing it for him. Now only Arby is here, and maybe that’s for the best, unless… Just text him and ask how he’s holding up?
5. Gates Bar-B-Q
The line is long, the meat is tough, and the sauce is ketchup, but it was the last stop on his list of Kansas City BBQ restaurants he always dreamed of visiting. Why couldn’t it be LA taco trucks? Why couldn’t everything be different? Send him a picture of the burnt ends sandwich, so loaded with sauce it’s almost a high school cafeteria sloppy joe, say “Wish you were here!” and then turn your phone off. There should be at least a pint of cheesy corn left in the mini fridge at the hotel. You’re weeping softly again, but no one sees, no one asks.