The Lent season is well underway, and most of Kansas City's Catholic churches are hosting traditional fish frys (a great local list for 2016 can be found here). But if you're looking to dine out during Lent, you've got options all over town. Restaurants all over Kansas City are offering unique fish dishes and vegetarian specials that we all can – and should – indulge in.
Here are five fish and vegetable dishes that are too good to miss this Lent.
Bristol Seafood Grill
Unsurprisingly, there's plenty of great seafood on the menu at Bristol Seafood Grill. But if you're craving the crunch and flavor of a good traditional fish fry at lunch, look no further than Bristol’s “Fish Fry-Day” lunch special. Every Friday through March 25, you can enjoy their fish and chips lunch entrée for $14, featuring Boulevard Pale Ale-battered cod, French fries, apple-celery root slaw, mango tartar sauce and malt vinegar. It will take you right back to your favorite church parking lot fish fry.
Bristol Seafood Grill, multiple locations including 51 E. 14th St., Kansas City Power & Light District, Kansas City, Missouri, 816.448.6007, bristolseafoodgrill.com
Krokstrom Klubb & Market
The Scandinavian-inspired menu at Krokstrom Klubb & Market is loaded with delicious fish, seafood and vegetable dishes for you to enjoy for dinner on any Friday night during Lent and beyond. To start, enjoy the gravlax, featuring the restaurant's beet-cured salmon or toast skagen, topped with pickled shrimp salad with lemon and dill. These Smørrebrød are open-faced sandwiches served on a thick slice of rye bread. Next, order the creamy carrot sallad or lavender beets for your salad course. Follow that up with an entrée of grilled honey-glazed salmon served with a charred leek and dill soured cream sauce. Fish and vegetables have never been so satisfying.
Krokstrom Klubb & Market, 3601 Broadway Blvd., Midtown, Kansas City, Missouri, 816.599.7531, klubbkrokstrom.com
Joe’s Kansas City Bar-b-Que
There's usually a line out the door for the great beefy barbecue found at Joe’s Kansas City Bar-b-Que, but during Lent the people are lining up to try a seafood seasonal favorite: soft shell crab po’ boys for $9.99. The deep-fried soft shell crab is served on a hoagie bun with BBQ remoulade, shredded cabbage and tomato jam. For vegetarians, the restaurant is also featuring a riff on the famous Z Man sandwich that replaces the beef with portobello mushroom slices. Served on a Kaiser roll, it comes topped with smoked provolone cheese, BBQ sauce and the signature onion ring. The specials will run through Fri., March 25.
Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que, multiple locations including 3002 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, Kansas, 913.722.3366, joeskc.com
Jarocho Pescados y Mariscos
Jarocho Pescados y Mariscos is a colorful yet unassuming restaurant that sits right on Kansas Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas. Here, chef-owner Carlos Falcon, who hails from Veracruz, Mexico, is quietly expanding horizons with his deft hand at cooking and preparing remarkably fresh fish and shellfish. He built a reputation for having excellent oysters on the shell, offering them for $1 a piece on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but now he's also known for his omakase tasting. Diners can simply tell the chef the number of courses they would like and he will cook what he likes. Every tasting is different based on the number of courses and what Falcon has on hand, but he certainly has a way with fish. Call to make a reservation for an omakase tasting and see if you ever look at seafood the same way again.
Jarocho Pescados y Mariscos, 719 Kansas Ave., Kansas City, Kansas, 913.281.7757, jarochokc.com
Westport Cafe & Bar
Westport Cafe & Bar is a good place to land if you are looking for meatless menu options. Start with the charred corn and tomato soup, and then sample fresh oysters on the half shell, mussels or peel-and-eat shrimp. Pasta courses include pea ravioli with lemon and Parmesan or the amazing black truffle pasta. For your entrée, don't miss the rainbow trout topped with a bright green sauce vierge with pine nuts that sits on a bed of tender couscous. There are plenty of Lenten options in this casually upscale Westport restaurant.
Westport Cafe and Bar, 419 Westport Rd., Westport, Kansas City, Missouri. 816. 931.4740, westportcafeandbar.com