Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Kim's Cafe III

DeSoto, MO

We’re back! We sincerely hope everyone had festive, merry, happy times the last couple of weeks.

One gift we received was a gift certificate for Kim’s Café in DeSoto. This made choosing a place really, really easy. I know we’ve been before, but there’s new information that could help you make a more informed dining decision should you ever be in such a terrible quandary.

Before Christmas I attended a birthday party for a friend/co-worker. At the party were a few friends from the company we both used to work for, I hadn’t seen them for a few months. One of these former co-workers, who I’ll call ‘Chad’ was eager to talk to me.

“So I hear you write a blog about places to eat?”

“I’m pretty sure you knew that.” I responded.

“No, I didn’t! Send me a link!”

“Okay sure.” (I haven’t yet.)

“Hey!” he added, “Have you heard of a place called Kim’s Café in Desoto?”

“Well yes, I’ve reviewed it before, maybe twice even.” I went all thumbs up.

Then his face wrinkled up. “Ewww, really?”

“Well yeah, it’s one of my favorite places.”

“Oh, well okay then.” He walked away, shaking his head.

This didn’t bother me at all. Chad has lots of opinions; I’ve rarely found any that I agreed with other than pure work stuff. He was born and raised in DeSoto which means he’s somewhat socially and culturally disadvantaged. (Many DeSoto residents can and do overcome this malady by getting out into the real world and observing other cultures. Chad simply has not.) Chad was brought up on Hot Pockets, Fruit Loops and lime Kool-aid, cartoon-watching food. His tastes and food preferences are quite stunted and inherently dubious. The fact that HE doesn’t like Kim’s should not cause any alarm or concern. If anything, Chad should be pitied and his behaviors not duplicated.*

The Place:

On our way to DeSoto, the three of us discussed/debated the notion of ‘truth’. Yeah, we discuss these things from time to time. Having come to complete agreement during the fifteen minute drive, we took our philosophically satisfied selves into the joint. A small boy of about three or four…. or maybe more or less, was standing in one of the booth seats. He had short cropped hair and was covered in the shiny, sticky goo that one finds on a young child after they are allowed to feed themselves. He looked friendly and was not in possession of a weapon, so I smiled at him. He mistakenly took this as an indication that I liked children. He stuck out his sticky claw and offered me the last bite of a heavily moistened sandwich of some sort. I politely refused by making a shrieking, puking sound and running toward my own table. He was a cute kid as far as those things go and probably meant no offense. I blame myself partially, for having tried to be friendly in the first place.

Kim seated and menu-ed us. She seemed apprehensive at first.
“You know who I am right?” I asked her.

“Yes, I do, this time.” She smiled.

Kim got hold of my first review and we subsequently friend-ed on Facebook. The second time we went I still didn’t introduce us, she was disappointed. I wasn’t going to extend the charade, so this time I wanted her to know that it was us, and we would be writing about her establishment yet again. I understand if she was distressed. A highly-critical and sometimes scathing reviewer that reaches an audience of tens of people weekly, a powerbroker, a star-maker such as myself can be intimidating to have as a customer.

She said: “I suppose you want unsweetened tea even though you don’t think it’s very good.”

Angel answered her. “Don’t worry he doesn’t like anyone’s tea.”

I chimed in. “I only said it was unremarkable. It’s not personal, and Angel’s right. I’ve yet to find tasty, refreshing, satisfying tea anywhere.”

The Food:

So we got our tea (it was unremarkable) and perused the menus. Kim told us the daily special was Spaghetti, which was fine, I just wasn’t in the mood.

Angel ordered the Chicken Fried Steak, with corn and mashed potatoes. Adam asked for a breakfast combo to include French toast, bacon and an egg. Kim offered him the choice between grilled and fried French toast. He asked for an explanation and eventually chose a mix of both.

I’d decided that since I’d had the slammer once before (and LOVED it) that I needed to try something else. I went for a Cheeseburger with bacon, lettuce and tomato, extra cheese and grilled onions. And of course, crinkly fries.

We sat and waited, watching the sticky little boy and the young parents, apparently somehow related to Kim. The music was contemporary and tasteful, but a little loud. Adam asked if it could be turned down and it immediately was. I don’t think it was so much the volume for him as it was the bands/groups. He’s really picky about the crap he listens to. I couldn’t tell for sure since pretty much all music tends to be of-putting to me.

We discussed another deep and favorite topic, what the cast members of the tragically and prematurely cancelled TV show ‘Firefly’ were doing now.**

The food arrived. Adam’s French Toast was nicely arranged on a platter, a combination of grilled (as you normally find it) and deep fried. The toast was sprinkled with a generous dusting of powdered sugar. The fried, he tried and declared that it tasted like a donut. Angel agreed. I took them at their word since he had applied maple syrup to it and therefore rendered it inedible in my eyes.

My burger was sizable and grilled nicely. The tomato and lettuce were fresh, the thick bacon was crispy the fries were brown, crispy and plentiful.

Angel’s CF Steak and potatoes were covered in white gravy. I didn’t even have to ask. The fastest and most sure way to Angel’s heart is with a gravy boat.

It was all clanking of forks, chewing noises and occasional mmm’s and ahh’s.

Kim came by and offered dessert, but we were just too full. She laid down the check which carried her trademark ‘Thank you!’ written in neat cursive with the ‘u’ connecting seamlessly to an exclamation point.


The bill came in at twenty eight dollars and change. Sweet. The gift certificate was for thirty. I realized that the remainder, less than two bucks was not sufficient for a tip, so I polled the family for cash. I was the only one that admitted to having any, two paltry one-dollar bills. So Kim, it wasn’t as if we were deliberately shorting your tip, we would have given more if any of us actually had more cash on us.

The experience was great. We’re at home in places like this. Everything I’ve ever had there is good, solid good, and Kim and staff are always friendly and approachable. She even pointed to a small boy (same one or not I don’t recall, they all look alike) and introduced him as the future owner of the place.

Despite what Chad might think, I like this place and will go back, again and again. Whether I blog about it or not, it’s just a good, down-home style diner that has never disappointed.


* Chad. I kid Chad a lot. He’s actually a smart, capable and quite charming young man in spite of his many, many faults. Some would say he’s fiendishly handsome, and quite witty. Despite his inability to correctly identify quality food, he is a good guy and I believe ladies, still unattached. You can find him at almost any DeSoto gas station in the evening, slurping a two quart, blue Slushie as he salivates at the rotating fine-dining options, torn between the three-day-old dried-up pizza slices and the wrinkled, shriveled hot dogs of questionable constitution.

** Firefly. Undoubtedly the best TV series ever made. A Sci-Fi story of a future where Star Trek meets Gunsmoke. New outlying planets are the new frontier, the often hapless crew of the space ship ‘Serenity’ smuggles, steals and evades the authorities through the outer planets, the newest frontier. Nathan Fillion (Castle) was the captain, Ron Glass (Barney Miller) a priest, Summer Glau (The Cape) played a crazy smart girl, and Adam Baldwin (Chuck) played a muscled, short tempered and slightly stupid hired gun. Check it out on Netflix or where ever you go to find older TV shows.

1 comment:

  1. As brother of this so called 'Chad' I am more than disappointed at his assessment of Kim's Cafe. The slammer has graced my belly many times and seems to get better and better. I have also stopped by on my way home from a rough work day to treat myself with a double cheese burger with bacon... Everything is better with bacon.

    The Andrew