Two bars in the Crossroads Arts District — The Rieger Hotel Grill & Exchange and Manifesto — made it into a new book about cocktails from Food & Wine magazine.
“Food & Wine Cocktails 2012” (American Express Publishing, $14.95) commends Rieger, 1924 Main St., for its “house-made sodas from old-school seltzer dispensers” and Manifesto, downstairs, for its Smokin’ Choke, $11, made with house-smoked bourbon.
Ryan Maybee, who co-owns both businesses with Howard Hanna, also contributed several mojito recipes to the book.
Both establishments were also featured in Tanqueray’s “The First Drink of the Night” video series. The video, called “Paris of the Plains,” calls Kansas City’s bar scene one of the most “innovative and diverse” in the nation. It also features interviews with bartenders from The Farmhouse, Justus Drugstore, Grunauer and Westport Cafe & Bar. You can find the video on the Tanqueray Ginstitute page on Facebook.
Westport beer festival draws 20 breweries
Heads up, craft beer nerds: Breweries from near and far are hauling kegs to Westport’s Summer Beer Festival, 5-9 p.m. June 9 on Pennsylvania Avenue between McCoy’s Public House and Kelly’s Westport Inn.
The festival connects beer lovers with local breweries (Boulevard, McCoy’s, 75th Street, Free State) and not-so-local ones, too. On tap for the festival: New Belgium Brewing Co. from Colorado, Deschutes Brewery from Oregon, Stone Brewing Co. and Green Flash Brewing Co. from California and Nebraska Brewing Co. from, well, you know. Brewers will be on hand to answer questions about the beer.
Tickets to Summer Beer Festival are $25 in advance or $30 at the door and include a commemorative tasting glass. Proceeds benefit Aids Walk Kansas City. More info is at beerkc.com.
A foodie’s guide to Festa Italiana
Food lovers will find lots to do at this weekend’s Festa Italiana in Zona Rosa.
On Saturday, chef Jasper Mirabile of Jasper’s Restaurant is host of an Italian food cook-off at 11 a.m. There’s a meatball-eating contest at 1:45 p.m.
On Sunday, Garozzo’s chef Chris Canzoneri demonstrates a few of his favorite recipes following a Catholic Mass at 10 a.m. At 3:30 p.m., the cannoli-eating contest begins. If all that doesn’t fill you up, grab a bite from Festa Italiana’s food vendors, which include Scimeca’s Italian sausage, Cascone’s, and DiCapo’s Fine Italian Cookies. For more info on the festival, turn to page 28.
Aixois’ second location to say bonjour in June
Aixois, the French restaurant and coffee bar at 251 E. 55th St. in the Crestwood Shops, is getting closer to opening a second location in the Commerce Arcade at 1000 Walnut St.. The restaurant’s owners recently announced that they’re aiming for a mid-June opening and posted photos of the new space, which has floor-to-ceiling windows and elegant chandeliers.
Spin! Neapolitan Pizza opens fifth location
Lenexa has a new pizzeria: Spin! Neapolitan Pizza, a locally owned chain that sells salads, sandwiches, gelato and wine, opened a fifth location at 9474 Renner Blvd. in the Prairie Center shopping center. The latest Spin! features a bar, a patio with seating for 48 and live music on Tuesday nights in summer.
The pizza chain is working on a sixth location in Prairie Village’s Corinth Square shopping center.