When people heard we were stuck in Kansas City last October, they always told us to be sure we got some BBQ. Obviously, BBQ and Kansas City are synonymous in many minds. We tried Kansas City BBQ before and were not impressed, but we were certainly willing to give it another try. So, after our day at the Truman National Historic Site, we ate at Gates BarBQ.
Gates BarBQ is a Kansas City staple with six locations throughout the area. We ate at the Highway 40 location in Independence. George Gates opened the first restaurant in 1946 at 19th and Vine. Gates BarBQ is known for its tenderness, distinctive sauces, and fast service. Today the sauces and spice mixes are distributed nationally. Lots of famous people have eaten at Gates BarBQ including George W Bush, Bill Clinton, and the entire Kansas City Chiefs football team.
When we first entered the restaurant we took a moment before we got in line to look around. Always good to look at the menu before you have the pressure to order. The trademark of the Gates BarBQ is “Hi, May I help you?” as soon as you come through the door. We got in line and when we got to the front the server asked us something. Because of the blank look on my face, she slowed down and explained the menu a little bit to us. We were obviously first-timers.
I ordered a single with beef and a side of macaroni salad. Tom ordered the bun with pork, fries, and a side of coleslaw. The single came on toasted white bread. I tried the sweet and mild sauce and Tom tried the hot. Both sandwiches were excellent. The meat was flavorful and tender. The fries were also delicious but the coleslaw and macaroni salad tasted like any deli salads. Every sandwich comes with pickles.
The restaurant was spotlessly clean and a server was constantly wiping tables down and refilling condiments. I mentioned that the ketchup was getting low and the server immediately went to fill it.
We did not try any of the dessert. Although the Yammer Pie looked interesting, I am not a big fan of sweet potatoes. We decided we would indulge our sweet tooth elsewhere.
Gates BarBQ is definitely worth a try if you are in Kansas City. The meats were excellent and the service was great. We would certainly eat there again.