Ridge’s Stitches Guide to Kansas City
A trip to Kansas City always brings me back home. I grew up there until I was 10. It’s where I learned about seeds, gardens and the importance of keeping in touch with your roots. My mother would take us down to the River Market to this awesome shop called Planter’s Seed. While she gathered seeds for her garden, herbs for the heart of the home (the kitchen), my two little sisters and I wandered through this gigantic spice and seed shop. We would be seduced by the smells wafting through the air. Even if you were blindfolded, you could determine exactly where you were headed just by taking a deep breath. I remember it being the most humongous store but after my last visit, I realized I was just a small kid.
If you don’t know this, there is a Kansas City, Kansas and a Kansas City, Missouri. They are right next to each other and the only thing separating the two is a street called State Line. People kind of argue about what side they’re from but “Kansas City” means one thing to me: home. My family moved to Chicago from Kansas City when I was 10 years old. My dad and mom bought my grandfather’s Dairy Queen. When my sisters and I were old enough to decide where we wanted to move next. We decided on the homeland and landed at the University of Missouri. The next move brought Grace and I back to Chicago. Beth currently lives in Kansas City.
Grace and I decided to take a little road trip down south because “there is no place like home.” Right Dorothy? My grandmother and some of my other family members also live in Kansas City. If you still have a grandparent, give them the biggest hug next time you see them. If you aren’t going to see them for a while, pick up the phone and see how they’re doing. You will probably strike a pretty big smile across their face. Yours too. I hadn’t seen my grandmother in over a year and a half and was long overdue for a visit!
This was a fun trip for my sisters and me. It was one of the first in which the three of us were not with our parents in Kansas City. This gave us access to a car and the freedom to really explore. I did some research on places I wanted to try and gathered some recommendations from friends. Thank you to everyone who gave me suggestions. I loved all of them! If you’re driving from Chicago to Kansas City, stop in Columbia, Missouri for some great lunch at Nourish Cafe and Market. Read my blog on it here. It’s pretty close to the highway! There is also this adorable rock shop on the side of the road called Rocks and More. If you drive down Highway 54, you can pull over for some cool crystals and geodes. There isn’t anyone working so they trust you to leave your money in the box for the crystals you take. It’s the cutest. Stay tuned for a Guide to Columbia, Missouri soon! Check out my recommendations below. Let me know what you think!
Sage Center for Yoga and Healing Arts: This yoga studio is located in the Crossroads District. It’s absolutely darling. I took two classes with Laura Williamson and she was fantastic. Her cues were outstanding and her sequences were very creative. Her playlist was great too! They have a variety of yoga classes for students of multiple levels.
Sage is like a sanctuary. You could spend an entire day here with all the services they have to offer. Some of these included ayurveda, chiropractic, massage, and skincare treatments. There is a little juice bar and an apothecary in the back. They have literally everything I love! Including Moon Juice adaptogens. Read more on adaptogens here. They use cute cloths instead of paper towels and there are plants all over the wellness center. You can even get herbs and skincare products at Sage! Follow Sage Center on Instagram.
Located at 1907 Wyandotte St, Kansas City, MO 64108
Yoga Patch: Yoga Patch was another yoga studio that really made me feel right at home. It’s located in the Waldo neighborhood of Kansas City. I took a class with Kelly Cirone. She was so intelligent when it came to anatomy. Her sequence was also creative and perfect for a holiday weekend class. She was so welcoming and warm-hearted. I could tell she finds it valuable to make personal connections with her students and her passion for teaching is evident. She’s very into plants and knows quite a bit on how to care for them. She’s been my go-to ever since for succulent questions. Follow her on Instagram to see more!
Yoga Patch is located in Arbor Vitae Health and Wellness Center. Some of their other services include: tai chi, nia, massage therapy, essential oils, nutritionists, esthetics, zero gravity float rooms, cafe and shopping. The cafe and shop was not open when I went but I will have to go back again to check this out. Hit up a yoga class, go for a float and finish up at the cafe. Remember to enjoy the small things like the birds chirping. You’ll hear them inside as you walk by the cafe!
Located at 7235 Central St. Kansas City, MO 64114
Coffee shops and Juice Bars:
Unbakery Juicery and Coffee: If you’re driving down 63rd street, you’d become quite intrigued by the structure on the north side of the street. Unbakery and Juicery is located in the East Brookside neighborhood of Kansas City, Missouri. The green ivy coupled with the circles on the facade of the building draw up a sense of curiosity before you even walk through the door.
As you got closer, you’d notice that there is a drive through. It was originally built as a bank. The old teller’s window is now a drive through window and the safe on the inside is used as the coffee bar. If you have some time to stop inside, it’ll be worth it.
They have beautiful hanging planters filled with succulents galore. The aztec pillows and awesome selection of juices make this shop one you just cannot miss. Unbakery and Juicery is designed as a healthy grab-and-go style restaurant. They have mylks, interesting supercharged mineral waters, and quick bites.
I got a rose chocolate bar, smoothie bowl and blue majik mylk. They have outdoor seating where you can eat your rose chocolate bar mindfully and look at the “Damn Fine” mural! Follow Unbakery and Juicery on Instagram here.
Located at 634 East 63rd Street, Kansas City, MO 64110
Mud Pie Vegan Bakery and Coffeehouse: This charming yellow coffee shop used to be an old home. They serve coffee and fresh vegan baked goods daily. I went with my friend Kia a few years ago and it was just the most homey atmosphere inside. Literally! There is also a patio if it’s a nice day outside. I can’t remember what I got and I honestly don’t like the taste of coffee but I remember it being good. Follow them on Instagram here.
Located at 1615 W 39th St, Kansas City, MO 64111
t. Loft: t.Loft has locations all over Kansas City and Lawrence. My sister Grace and I went to the one on the Plaza. The inside reminded me of a Cape Cod home. I really loved the picture of the dock on the lake. It just rippled with peace. They have nourishing bowls, salads, juices, smoothies and energy balls. They rotate their energy ball flavors every day so you’re in for a treat when you arrive. t. Loft is a one hundred percent gluten-free menu. I got an energy ball they had as a daily special and the berry fresh smoothie. Delish! Follow them on Instagram here.
Located at –
The Plaza: 200 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, MO 64112
Prairie Village: 3924 W 69th Ter, Prairie Village, Ks 66208
Lawrence: 4801 Bauer Farm Drive, Lawrence, KS 66049
Park Place: 5225 W. 116th Place, Leawood, KS 66211
Stateline: 8025 Stateline Road, Kansas City, MO 64114
Meal Time: Restaurants!
West Side Local: This place was so darling. I went with my two sisters and Beth’s boyfriend, Alex. They have an outdoor patio with hanging baskets filled with colorful flowers and vibrant green vines climbing on the posts.The interior finds a perfect way to bring the outdoors inside with its birch bark wallpaper and rustic wood benches at each table. All of their food is farm-to-table and absolutely delightful.
We got the shrimp ceviche as an appetizer. I got the Thai salmon with spaghetti squash, Thai basil pesto, coconut curry slaw and subbed the peanuts for toasted almonds since I’m allergic to peanuts. It was unbelievable. Check them out on Instagram here.
Located at 1663 Summit Street, Kansas City, MO 64108
Cafe Gratitude: I was given multiple recommendations to this restaurant. My sisters and I took my cousins and my aunt. They are big carnivores and this was a vegan, solar powered, sustainable restaurant. My family members were a bit skeptical on this one and couldn’t stop laughing the entire lunch. Hey, what can you say? I like the earth.
Everything is organic and one hundred percent plant based. They had fresh pressed juices, vegan mac and cheese, and gluten-free doughnuts. All of their menu selections are framed in an affirmation such as “I am…thriving,” or “I am…zesty.” I was debating between the Whole bowl and the Terrific bowl. Both had been recommended to me and I decided to go with the “I am Terrific” kelp noodle bowl since I had never had kelp noodles before. Thanks for the recommendation, Chickpea! I also got the “I am Rich” juice. I highly recommend this. My cousin got the “I am Eternally Sweet” shake and it was one of the best chocolate shakes I’ve ever had. Sorry Dad and Grandpa, it might have topped the DQ. The mac and cheese was also extremely tasty.
Most of their bowls and plates have “what are you grateful for?” printed on them. It’s a good reminder to express gratitude for the food you are about to eat and the people with whom you’re sharing a meal. Thank you Aunt Betsy, Sam, Henry, Beth and Grace for trying out a wild health restaurant with me. I will always cherish the memory of taking you guys to this spot. Follow Cafe Gratitude here.
Located at 333 Southwest Blvd, Kansas City, MO 64108
Succotash: Of course I had to get the picture of the wood carving with Succotash whittled into it. What can I say? The Ridges like wood. If you know, you know. This is a delicious brunch stop! I got the gluten-free blueberry pancakes and the Ninja Sunrise juice. They have a wide variety of juices and tons of gluten-free options. I am usually more of an egg person when it comes to breakfast but the blueberry pancakes totally hit the spot. It’s a very unique restaurant with a diner-like feel. They will give you good recommendations if you’re unsure what to get! Instagram profile here.
Located at 2601 Holmes St, Kansas City, MO 64108
Joe’s Kansas City (aka Oklahoma Joe’s): I couldn’t forget about BBQ! This is my all-time favorite BBQ joint in KC. I have been to many over the years but this one continues to make my mouth water when I think about it. It started right out of a gas station. Although it’s probably not the “healthiest” option, what would life be without a little indulgence? There are multiple locations now but you’ve got to go to the OG gas station on the corner of 47th Avenue and Mission Road in Kansas City, Kansas. Their story actually brought tears to my eyes: “In Kansas City, where barbecue is a way of life, it is understood that smoke has mystical properties. Smoke has the power to transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. It can transform the least desirable cuts of meat into the most delectable. It can even transform a neighborhood corner gas station into one of the most popular restaurants on the planet.” Swoop through for the smoked meats and your mouth will continue to water every time you think of Oklahoma Joe’s too.
Located at –
Joe’s Kansas City Original ‘Gas Station’ Location
3002 West 47th Avenue
Kansas City, Kansas 66103
Olathe (Joe’s #2)
11950 South Strang Line Road
Olathe, Kansas 66062
Leawood (Joe’s #3)
11723 Roe Avenue
Leawood, Kansas 66211
SOT: This cocktail lounge was so fascinating. It reminded me of a secret garden with the way the bartenders weaved edible flowers into each drink. I went with a couple girlfriends and one of my sisters. My cocktail arrived in a clay pot and it could not have been more perfect. There was a little mint sprig and edible flower popping out of there too. Can’t forget about the herbs!
My sister loves chocolate and had a matcha chocolate cocktail with a purple edible flower. The presentation was truly a work of art. Follow them to check out their intricate and creative cocktails.
Located at 1521 Grand Blvd Kansas City, MO 64108
Planters Seed: I used to go here all the time with my mom as a kid. It’s in the Crossroads District. They have tons of bulk seeds and spices you can grab. You can also get plants such as tomatoes and different varieties of flowers.
Located at 513 Walnut Street, Kansas City, MO 64106
City Market Farmers Market: The City Market farmers market is outdoors April-October and inside November-March. They had some good selections of fresh fruit and bulk spices as well. The market is Saturdays and Sundays and they have a mini-market on Wednesdays.
Located at Fifth Street and Walnut
I can’t wait to go back to Kansas City to take more yoga classes, try new dishes and most of all, see my grandmother! Thank you KC for welcoming me back home.