Arthur Bryant’s original spot makes for great BBQ


It’s amazing how a change in location can change a person’s opinion about a restaurant.

That was the case with our recent visit to Arthur Bryant’s Barbeque in Kansas City.

We had eaten at the location at Legends mall in Kansas City, Kansas. Neither Lisa nor I cared for the food or the BBQ sauce. It just seemed like another BBQ joint.

However, flash forward a few years and we stop at the original location near the 18th and Vine District.

Some co-workers suggested I give Arthur Bryant’s another chance, but visit the original location.

Since we had finished our tour of the 18th and Vine District area, we decided to grab lunch at Arthur Bryant’s.

What a difference!

The original location is in an older building (obviously). Arthur Bryant moved the restaurant to 18th and Brooklyn in the 1920s, after his brother Charlie passed away. Charlie was the founder of the restaurant.

IMG_3860As you walk in, you notice the worn tile floor. It just speaks of an aged eatery.

You stand in line to order. The menu is posted above head, so that adds to the ambiance.

IMG_3808The staff is behind a counter with a framed glass divider separating them from you. But, there are openings where you can see the meat being sliced, and the sides being dished up.

IMG_3831We ordered a combination plate to share. It consisted of 1.5 lbs. of three meats – turkey, pulled pork and burnt ends. We added a side. Man, that was a lot of food. We couldn’t finish it. I told Lisa we need to start bringing a small cooler on trips to put leftovers.

IMG_3857The food is delicious. The burnt ends were awesome. They probably are the best burnt ends I’ve had. The pulled pork was delicious. The turkey was smoked and didn’t need any sauce to enhance its taste.

The sides are great. We had coleslaw. Lisa isn’t a coleslaw fan, but she liked it.

The clientele was diverse – families coming from church, folks in sports attire, couples. There was a group celebrating a sailor’s return or departure. We couldn’t really tell.

Arthur Bryant’s has been popular with celebrities throughout the years. Framed photos of well-known diners hang on the wall. Former President and First Lady Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter autographed a picture displayed.

IMG_3870Actor Danny Glover has visited the location. Larry the Cable Guy has a picture hanging on the wall. It’s a pretty cool feeling that famous people have eaten at the same place like you.

I was impressed with a Kansas City Star newspaper cartoon acknowledging Arthur’s death. Even heaven likes its BBQ.

IMG_3884Arthur Bryant’s has its own line of sauces, too. They offer the original sauce, rich and sassy, and sweet heat. They also have rubs available.

IMG_3882In addition, you can buy a T-shirt to remember your visit.

You can check out their website for their 3 locations in the Kansas City area –

If you are interested in trying Arthur Bryant’s, I suggest you eat at the original location. The food, ambaence and history make the trip worthwhile.



  1. Glad you enjoyed your meal and rediscovered a place. Dropping by from UBC.

  2. That’s a wholesome review of the eatery. Looks like a nice place. Kansas city? Nice!

  3. Sounds like a delightful visit full of DELICIOUS food! Glad you gave it a second chance.

  4. Awh man my husband would LOVE this!!!!!!!! We just love BBQ food like this! Thanks!

  5. Bar-b-que is my weakness i wish i lived in a city known for barbque i drive myself crazy watching this on food network all the time.

  6. I use to live in Missouri and was always told I needed to go to Kansas City for the barbeque. Sometimes people that work in a restaurant can make a difference. Thank you for sharing and making me regret not visiting Kansas City while I lived closer to it! LOL

    Have a great day,
    Kim This Ole Mom

  7. Agree with you sometime location matters not just for a food joint but for any business. Climate and other natural factors help to attract and make a success story like you mentioned above. BBQ need more of love in preparations than ambiance of sitting area to keep loyal customers.

  8. That looks like a fun place to eat. I ate at some BBQ place in KC when I visited there years ago, but can’t remember the name of it.

  9. I soooo want to try this place!

  10. I love good BBQ, but sadly I’ve never had the chance to go to Missouri! If I ever make it that way I will have to check this place out for sure.
    The idea of “burnt ends” has me curious on what they’re like! But at the very least, I do want to try the pulled pork!!

  11. I know KC is the BBQ Capital of the US…but I never know where to go to eat there. Sound’s like Aurther Bryant’s would be an excellent choice. Thanks!

    • Arthur Bryant’s is one of the best locations. There is so much good BBQ – Oklahoma Joe’s, Gates, etc. We really enjoy eating at Wabash, which is about 45 minutes out of town at Excelsior Springs, MO. We are looking forward to trying Jack Stack next time we’re in KC.

  12. How I wish I lived in Kansas! The food sounds delicious. I’m not really a pulled pork person but the turkey sounds yum!

  13. Looks like a fun place to visit and yummy too!

  14. I have been to Arthur Bryant’s (the original, and one other location) and although we liked the suburban one, the original is definitely better. I think the building may add to the ambiance, but I also think their best cooks/pitmasters work at the original, which does make a difference! We like all three sauces, but rich and sassy is the family fave. Did you try all 3?

  15. Oh, man, I’ve been there! I couldn’t remember the name of the BBQ place I visited in KC, but from the photos I know that’s it. Cool! Thanks for jogging my memory.

  16. It always amazes me how some small chains are different from one another.You have a great meal at one so you go in with certain expectations & total let down 🙁

  17. Interesting place. It looks like an old fashion burger joint! I love the charm

  18. It’s amazing – watching your meal being prepared. I love restaurants with that transparency. It encourages cleanliness and accountability!

  19. Well, I come from TX, so I’m a little biased, but that looks YUMMY!

  20. This restaurant looks good !!! Looks like it’s a very busy restaurant
    Thanks for sharing

  21. Now I’m craving pulled pork! This looks like a great place to eat 🙂
    ~ Kimberly
    Our Family World

  22. Sounds like a really delicious place! Hope I get a chance to visit it sometime.

  23. That sounds like a great place to eat.

  24. My husband and I felt this way about even some of our favorite restaurants. I’d be willing to give restaurants a second chance if needed.

  25. MY husband and boys might just travel to get amazing barbecue like this. I will have to ask my husband if he has been there before on his travels and mention it to him so he can stop in sometime.

  26. OMG my family loves good BBQ. This place looks incredible…your making me salivate!

  27. I love Kansas City Barbecue so much, and there is so much variety! I have to say I am pretty partial.

  28. Reading this just made me very, very hungry and I don’t even eat pork. Must try the BBQ some day. 🙂

  29. See there sometimes change is good! I’m glad you are liking the new location and food.

  30. We love BBQ and have a few little hole in the wall restaurants here in NC we love to visit. The two most popular here are the vinegar and red pepper flavored and a mustard sauce.

  31. Jennifer Brown says:

    I love BBQ. I’m from Oklahoma and moved to Colorado 25 years ago, still miss good smoke.

  32. I love BBQ and so I’m sure I would love this. Great to know in case I’m ever there!

  33. Sounds like an amazing place! I love BBQ and if I ever go to Kansas City I’ll look for this place. Thanks for the tip 🙂

    • Thanks. You HAVE to try BBQ if in KC. I recommend Arthur Bryant’s, Oklahoma Joes, or even Gates. We have not tried jack Stack yet, but that gets a lot of good PR too from diners.

  34. Oh my gosh this sounds delightful! I’m from the mid-west and one of the things I miss living on the west coast is good, down home BBQ. If I ever get back to KC, I’m definitely checking out Arthur Bryant’s!

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