Some barbecue places are just restaurants. Others are joints. I much prefer to walk in and find barbecue in a "barbecue joint". Somehow I know I'm going to get something real. Something worth sinking my teeth into. Something I'm going to enjoy and be able to say "now THAT is barbecue like it should be done!"
LC's Bar-B-Q (5800 Blue Parkway, Kansas City, Missouri) is just that kind of place. There's nothing fancy about this famous barbecue joint. The dining area is small with only a handful of tables, each adorned with rolls of paper towels, catsup and a warmed squeeze bottle of LC's famous barbecue sauce. The television in the corner reports the local news and weather during the lunch hour and one wall is decorated with stuffed wildlife. The floor is a little greasy. Like any good barbecue joint, you place your order at the counter and the food is delivered to your table. As you place your order, you are afforded a great view of LC's smoker, complete with the initials "LC" welded onto each door. As it's opened, you see it is full of all sorts of incredibly good smelling barbecue. Founded in the mid 1980's by L.C. Henderson, LC's has quickly become a Kansas City classic.
Today, we ordered smoked beef sandwiches. The doors of the smoker flew open and the gentleman working the line pulled out a large brisket, dripping juices as he placed it into the slicer and began cutting thinly sliced pieces of incredible smelling barbecue. Sandwiches here are served on plain white bread, also just as they should be in any great barbecue joint. To go along with our lunch, we added fries and beans.
The brisket in the beef sandwiches was juicy and tender and had an excellent smoke flavor, which was not over-done. It was piled high on white bread with a generous amount of sauce added. The large sandwich was very filling, especially considering the fact we added fries and beans.
LC's fries, the thick "steak fries" style, are cut right there from whole potatoes and fried to a perfect golden brown. Unlike many chain type restaurants, they are not heavy on the salt, which was appreciated. The serving size is more than most people can eat by themselves.
The beans were a little disappointing. Being a barbecue bean fanatic, I was looking forward to a great product. The beans, while having a nice, sweet flavor, were overcooked and fairly mushy. I also had a small piece of bone in the container.
Even though I was more than full, I decided to try the homemade smoked sausage and I'm glad I did. LC's makes their own sausage, forms it into sort of a football shape and smokes them. When they're ordered, the staff cuts into several pieces length-wise, puts on white bread and covers in barbecue sauce. What a treat! Most was saved for later but we could not help sampling the sausage before leaving. This sausage is very flavorful, moist and tastes like smoked sausage should taste. I believe I might have found my new favorite at LC's.
I had not been to LC's in several years and I found it the same as I'd remembered, a fantastic Kansas City barbecue experience. Overall, LC's rates very high on my list of outstanding barbecue joints in a city loaded with legendary barbecue.
LC's is open from 11 AM to 9 PM Monday through Saturday and closed on Sunday. The phone number is (816) 923-4484. Prices are very reasonable, especially given the amount and quality of food you'll get.