Food Critics: The Best Fries In Kansas City

Apr 7, 2017

Credit stu_spivack / Flickr -- CC

It’s hard to go wrong with fries.

They come in all sorts of shapes and textures, and they’re a great vehicle for dipping sauces, seasonings or even gravy.

Whether you prefer thin and crispy, thick and pillowy-soft inside — or waffle-shaped, crinkle-cut or curly — on Friday's Central Standard, KCUR’s Food Critics searched out the best fries in and around Kansas City.

Here are their recommendations:

Bonjwing Lee, The Ulterior Epicure:

  • LC’s Bar-B-Q — big wedge fries. Hot out of the fryer, they’re crunchy on the outside, hot and fluffy on the inside. My favorite are the small pieces that are virtually all-crust.
  • Stock Hill — steak fries. Half-inch cut potatoes, blanched in salted water, frozen for an hour, blanched in oil, frozen again then fried to order. Exceptional crust. Made in-house from beginning to end.
  • Genessee Royale — medium-cut fries. Extra starched for extra crust. Nicely seasoned and served with Heinz Ketchup. Simple, classic, perfect.

Jill Silva, The Kansas City Star:

The Star just finished up a March Madness-inspired French fry bracket, which racked up more than 8600 votes.

My personal faves not on The Star's bracket:

  • Leeway Franks in Lawrence. The fries are fat and starchy; I love that potato-y fluffiness.
  • Leeway Franks – Tater tots. Also wonderful. Exceptionally crispy Tater tots fried a rusty brown.
  • The Burger Stand at the Casbah and Dempsey’s Burger Pub, both in Lawrence. Extraordinary thin fries with seasonings. I especially like the truffle fries (truffle butter and Parmesan cheese). They also have duck-fat fries (duck fat butter, orange zest and herbs). Both places have lots of sauces: ketchup, aioli, spicy mustard and more.
  • The Burger Stand — poutine fries. A Canadian specialty: regular French fries with cheese curds and brown gravy.
  • Monk’s Roast Beef — poutine fries.

Charles Ferruzza, The Independent and Shawnee Mission Post:

  • Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que. The best barbecue fries. Plump and thick enough to sop up the barbecue sauce. They’re perfectly greasy.
  • Hawg Jaw Que & Brew. They do some really good fries.
  • Avenues Bistro. Very golden, crispy, addictive. Served with dipping sauces: pesto aioli, BBQ mayo, remoulade, sweet Thai chili aioli, house aioli.
  • Westport Café & Bar. The closest thing to real French pommes frites in the city. The sexiest local fries, if there is such a thing.
  • Le Fou Frog — pomme frites.
  • Aixois — pomme frites.
  • The Humdinger. It’s an old 1960s drive-in that serves beautiful crinkle-cut fries.
  • The White Grill in Nevada, Missouri. It’s supposedly where Susie-Q fries were invented. They were delicious.

Listener recommendations:

Jen Chen is associate producer for KCUR's Central Standard. Reach out to her at jen@kcur.org.