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Dining With Nancy

by Nancy Giddens

I’m not one for New Year resolutions, but, I’m off with a bang in 2013. I did something I never thought I would or could do. For the first time in 36 years, I Bardgett Wed 009called a man and asked him for a date. Okay, so he’s married (love you, Cyndi), he’s my friend, and I didn’t fear rejection — but I’m counting it anyway, because lobbyist-extraordinaire Bill Gamble and I had a lovely lunch date at J. Pfenny’s Sports Grill and Pub.

My previous experience with J. Pfenny’s centered solely on quality control testing of its many beverages. While it easily passed that test, I hadn’t eaten its fare. Bill and I decided after a hectic first week of session to settle in for a beer lunch and plan for some shared Kansas City issues. Two Boulevard Wheat beers were ordered and the day improved drastically. We perused the menu and quickly decided that, when in a sports bar, one has to order quintessential bar food. We started with fried pickles. As an import to our Capitol City, I quickly learned that fried pickles are a staple in Cole County and are to be enjoyed regularly. The pickles were delivered quickly, hot and surprisingly spicy. While I thoroughly enjoyed them, poor Bill had to opt out due to a food allergy associated with spicier foods. Bill’s cheeseburger and fries, and my pizza (donning pepperoni, onions and green olives)were delivered promptly after our appetizer and smelled delicious. My pizza was fantastic and had the right balance between toppings and cheese. Though, I can’t lie, as a cheeseburger lover I was a bit envious of Bill’s order. His burger was juicy and delicious…yes; I stole a bite, as it was my date after all!

The Place – J. Pfenny’s is located on 217 East High Street and is a quick walk from the Capitol. Ample street parking is available right outside J. Pfenney’s doors. It is exactly what you expect in a sports bar. It boasts more than a dozen televisions and shares a relaxed atmosphere with good-sized lunch crowd. If time allows, don’t forget to check out the shuffleboard table located in the back of the place.

The People – Brittany, our server and a Miley Cyrus look-a-like — was fantastic. She was friendly, attentive and didn’t balk as I continued to take pictures of food she was delivering to other tables. Thanks for great service, Brittany.

The Product – The menu is diversified and includes hot dogs, soups, sandwiches, wraps, burgers, pizza and more. After 5:00, you can order heartier items like steak, shrimp and pasta. While Bill and I were happy with our orders, I must admit, the wraps I saw delivered to other customers looked delicious.

The Price – Lunch menu items range from $5.95 – $9.95. Dinner options run from $9.95 – $14.95. Completely outside my area of expertise, J. Pfenny’s also has a kids’ menu with $3.95 – $4.95 prices.

The Pizzazz – The bathrooms! Rarely will you hear me excited about public restrooms, but this bar did it right…sorry KU fans (especially my mother). You’ll have to see why for yourselves!