Friday, November 5, 2010

Sour and Babb

It was a rare Saturday evening where I had some time to myself around dinnertime. Stella had taken the kids shopping and I was free to get some dinner on my own. I really wanted a burger but didn't have any cash for Shake Shack (every single bit of cash I've had in my pocket for the past 3 weeks has been spent at Shake Shack, they only take cash). So I plumbed the depths of my memory for someplace with a good burger that I could pick up and bring home. Then I remembered Kent Babb (Chiefs beat reporter for the Star) made a big deal a couple of weeks ago proclaiming the BBB burger (now named the Babb) from Coach's (103rd and Wornall) the best burger in town. He even had a second from my Twitter friend and poutine hound, Fancypantsbeer (he actually just proclaimed it a very good burger). So I decided I had to try it out.

This particular Saturday night was featuring the big Mizzou - OU football game. I wasn't going to sit in Coach's around all of those Mizzou fans for fear of being seen as one so I decided to get a to-go Babb. I called in the order from Royal Liquor down the street. I passed on the Shiner Holiday Cheer because I thought it was from last year and decided on the New Belgium La Folie thinking it might pair well with the Babb's bleu cheese.

I got the burger and beer home in a mere 10 minutes and quickly turned on the TV, took some pictures (the things I do for you people), got the beer poured and sat down for a dinner in front of the TV. The Babb was as good as advertised, not the best in town (Eans from Blanc can relax), but it's definitely the best you can find in a sports bar. If that's not high enough praise for you, I would put it above BRGR Kitchen but below Beer Kitchen and distantly behind Blanc. The bleu cheese was not sparse and covered the burger patty guaranteeing you a little bite of bleu cheese with each bite. The bacon was a little soggy (I'll blame that on the time it took to drive it home) but quite flavorful and really gave a nice salty taste to combat the bleu cheese. The meat was cooked to a perfect medium, was tender and flavorful. I really couldn't have asked for more.

Not only was the burger great, but I paired it perfectly with the La Folie, a sour brown. I was a little upset with the purchase because the 22 oz. bottle cost $13 and I would rather have a good number of beers for that price but in the interests of trying something new, I threw down the cash. I don't drink a lot of sour beers but I do kind of like them, Sofie being my favorite. La Folie was much more sour and drinking it felt like eating sour pop rocks. The carbonation sat on my tongue and popped and popped and popped, it was unlike any other drink I've experienced. I found it to be just a little too sour for my taste. Luckily, matched with the Babb's salty sour combo it was enjoyable but not my favorite thing. I'd much rather have a Sofie (but it has the advantage of being a sour saison instead of a sour red, maybe my style preference guides that). Your mileage may vary.

What I can recommend is the Babb and Coach's in general. I don't know of a sports bar in South KC that rivals Coach's for quality of food and number of TV's. Plus, it's the place to go to watch a Packers game and where I saw my favorite shirt of all time, "The Packers may suck but the Vikings swallow". Every time I think of that shirt, I get a warm place in my heart for Coach's and now whenever I have a bleu cheese burger I will inevitably compare it to the Babb from Coach's.


  1. If you can find it (I think it is off again on again distributed to MO), Rodenbach is like a toned down La Folie. New Belgium actually hired Rodenbach's brewer a while back and La Folie is kinda like Rodenbach Grand Cru. Regular Rodenbach is the Grand Cru blended with non-sour beer. There is also a Rodenbach Alexander which has cherries added.

  2. John, you took the words out of my mouth, lol! I love La Folie, but Rodenbach was really good, too, especially since it was, what, $7 for a 750ml? I was so pissed when it disappeared off the shelves.

    It's nowhere near as sour as La Folie or even Rodenbach, but for an inexpensive, 12-oz size tart beer (I hesitate to say "sour") I liked the Monk's Cafe Sour Flemish Ale pretty well, reviewed here: