Guide to Restaurants in Columbus Park
Have you heard of Columbus Park? Many Kansas Citians are still unaware of this historic neighborhood. Don’t make that mistake — you’ll be missing out.
Columbus Park is directly east of the River Market. While the market’s development has turned it into a booming entertainment district, Columbus Park is more relaxed. It’s a neighborhood; an old-school community with homes, businesses and restaurants intertwined along the streets. The handful of Columbus Park, Kansas City restaurants in this neighborhood are local, authentic, delicious and worth your time.
(Note: Hello to those of you looking for Columbus Park in Columbus, Ohio. You are in the wrong place, but stick around! You may find Kansas City is worth the drive.)
Your Guide to Columbus Park, Kansas City Restaurants
Columbus Park has a fascinating history. The neighborhood is made up of two primary groups: Italians and Vietnamese. If that seems like an odd combination, well, it is. Each community made its way to Columbus Park after they were pushed out of another area. The Italians made the neighborhood home first, and were welcoming to their Vietnamese neighbors when the time came. Today, this cultural influence is obvious in Columbus Park, Kansas City restaurants. There are essentially only Italian and Vietnamese restaurants here.
Italian Columbus Park Restaurants
The Italians were the first ones in the neighborhood, so let’s start with Italian restaurants in Columbus Park. Even though Columbus Park is a much smaller area than the Crossroads, Westport or Power and Light, it’s packed with several of the best and most historic Italian restaurants in the entire city.
- Garozzo’s: Michael Garozzo has been running this Italian restaurant for nearly three decades. He began his career as a busboy and worked his way up in the restaurant industry until it was time to open Garozzo’s in 1989. His story and this restaurant embody some of the best things about Kansas City. If you’ve never been, try the famous chicken spiedini.
- The North End: Another of the historic Italian joints in Columbus Park, The North End is a great place for lunch or dinner. Their lunch sandwiches are some of the best in KC, and the dinner entrees will leave you completely full and satisfied.
- Caddy Shack: You can enjoy Caddy Shack during normal hours, or you could do what most people do: late-night pizza. Caddy Shack is an old-school dive bar with great pizza that is open until 3 a.m. each night of the week.
Vietnamese Restaurants in Columbus Park
The Vietnamese population began entering the Columbus Park community in the late ‘90s. During a time when these two groups could have clashed, Columbus Park was instead a symbol of acceptance and diversity. Today, you can find some of the best Vietnamese food in Kansas City right here in Columbus Park, Kansas City restaurants.
- Pho KC: We promise this isn’t an abandoned building. Pho KC could be listed in the dictionary under “hole in the wall restaurant.” You can expect to find some of the best pho you’ve ever had right here in this Columbus Park shop. If you’ve never had pho before, this is a great place to get an authentic taste.
- Vietnam Café: You know a place is good with nearly all five stars out of more than 1,000 Google reviews. Vietnam Café serves delicious, authentic Vietnamese food. If you’re unfamiliar with Vietnamese cuisine, this is a perfect introduction. It is packed with flavor you likely haven’t experienced before.
Other Columbus Park Restaurants in Kansas City
We’ve covered Italian restaurants and Vietnamese cafes, but there are two outliers to wrap up all of the Columbus Park restaurants in Kansas City.
- Happy Gillis Café: Happy Gillis is owned and operated by a family who lives in Columbus Park. It is a true neighborhood restaurant. The café is open until 3 p.m. each day, serving breakfast, brunch and lunch.
- Columbus Park Ramen Shop: If you can’t make it to Happy Gillis for lunch, you can go right next door to Columbus Park Ramen Shop for dinner. The upscale ramen trend has swept through Kansas City, and this shop serves some of the most delicious bowls you’ll find.
That’s it — those are the Columbus Park, Kansas City restaurants. It’s a small community that is full of excellent food thanks to this handful of restaurants. We hope you can try them all and maybe even find a new favorite spot in Kansas City.