The Debate is Over: Char Bar is the Best BBQ in KC

This might sound like blasphemy, but we’re throwing a new candidate into the pit for best barbecue in Kansas City: Char Bar Smoked Meats & Amusements.

We can already hear the hardcore traditionalists:

“If it ain’t Joe’s, it blows!”

“Anything but Jack Stack is whack!”

“Two, four, six, eight, you better only eat at Gates!*”

Sorry guys, but Char Bar is here to stay. Here are five reasons why it’s a front runner for the best barbecue in KC**:


Burnt End Heaven

Char Bar’s melt-in-your-mouth burnt ends are so tender, you don’t even need teeth.*** Our advice? Order the Holy Trinity (ribs, brisket and burnt ends) and chow down like no one’s watching.

burnt ends

You should get some of that awesome cheese covered gloriousness while you’re at it.


The Ambiance

Some would argue that there’s something truly romantic about the way some local BBQ restaurant employees berate you as you walk in to order your food. “Dad, is that you back there?!” But for those of us who prefer to keep our self-esteem in tact, Char Bar is the place to go. The waitstaff is courteous, and the open floor plan makes you feel instantly at home. If you’re really in the mood to get berated, just order a salad and let your friends do the rest.


Sorry Arthur Bryant’s fans, no Wonder Bread here. Womp womp.


The Beer Garden

When it comes to entertainment, no barbecue restaurant compares to Char Bar. The owners converted a portion of the old Beaumont Club into the largest outdoor beer garden in the Midwest, featuring a large patio bar, picnic tables, croquet, bocce ball, corn hole and two outdoor fire pits.


Burn off the meat sweats with a game of croquet in the beautiful beer garden.


That Brunch Tho

Char Bar’s weekend brunch is a game changer. It’s everything you love about KC barbecue combined with the greatest meal on earth. Start your day with the Liquid Breakfast before moving onto the Burnt Ends Benny, which is basically the Rollings Stones of brunch because it’ll leave your tongue hanging like a dog in heat.


The Liquid Breakfast (of Champions).


The Owners

Partners James Westphal and Mark Kelpe have quickly become the godfathers of Westport dining. The restaurateurs have spurred the area’s resurgence with great concepts like McCoy’s, the Foundry and Beer Kitchen. They brought on award-winning barbecuer Mitch Benjamin (aka “Meat Mitch”) to oversee Char Bar’s menu, which is probably why you’ll leave the restaurant feeling like a champ.

mark and james_the pitch

The Godfathers.


*Our apologies – BBQ tends to make us yell like untalented cheerleaders.
**Please don’t hate us.
***We do not recommend testing this theory if you are a baby. Also, if you are a baby, congrats on your mad reading skills.

Author: mazuma

Mazuma is a Kansas City credit union that’s dedicated to banking happy. We’ve got free online banking, low auto and mortgage rates, and of course — you-choose checking. Ready to become a Member?

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  1. Whoa there home skillet. Q39! Have you even tried this gastronomic delight? While we can all agree that KC takes all prizes for overall BBQ, I don’t think we can definitively crown anyone as the “best”. My approach will be to continue sampling all of the BBQ establishments until the cows come home. See what I did there?

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  2. Last time I went to Char Bar, it wasn’t bad. Some of the meat was dry as was the cornbread. Like the above comment, Q39 was really good. I also recently went to Slap’s BBQ. Small place and very good BBQ! Add that to the list of places to check out.

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  3. I love char bar best food in town

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  4. Hell nah are you drunk . If a BBQ spot doesn’t have beef ribs they are fraudulent! Jack stack Hands down lamb ribs , Char bar is alright Q39 is garbage this is Kansas city no word fired meats around here only smoked!!! Every body’s sauce is garbage unless it’s Gates or Lc’s shit big Ts is better than char bar

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