By Kevin Collison
The Fox and Pearl is about to open its new home in a former Swedish social hall at 2143 Summit and from the looks of it, there’s plenty of new socializing ahead for the old building.
Owners Vaughn Good and his wife Kristine have created a new space that offers patrons lots of options including a main floor with cozy bar and lounge-style dining, a mezzanine with tables and kitchen view, basement pub and a spacious outdoor patio.
“It definitely turned out better than I thought,” Good said. “It’s taken us quite a bit of time, but that gave us time to fine tune it.
“The whole space is really cool and special. The different rooms and spaces each has its own personality. It should lead to people coming back.”
And of course there’s the food.
Good, the executive chef, started his culinary career running a butcher shop in Lawrence that became Hank’s Charcuterie restaurant.
After several years, they moved to the Westside last year, taking over the little bungalow formerly occupied by Novel at 815 W. 17th St.
The opportunity to relocate to bigger digs down the hill and closer to the Crossroads came up with the help of local landlord and entrepreneur Adam Jones.
The three-story building, which opened in 1907, morphed from its Swedish social hall days to include stints as a Masonic Hall, Mexican restaurant, a Cuban place called Latin Quarters, artist studios and a social hall for the nearby Latino community.
The centerpiece of the new Fox and Pearl is a big masonry hearth where Good and his staff can fire-roast meat to their hearts content. It also adds a down-home aesthetic vibe to the dining area. The chef estimated at least half the cooking will use the hearth.
Menu items include such appetizers as potted cheese and roasted garlic crackers, smoked chicken wings in garlic buttermilk and foie gras with heritage pork sausage.
Large plates feature Cavatelli, a dish with smoked pork jowl, Chermoula rubbed quail, smoked and grilled duck breast and braised rabbit leg.
Fox and Pearl, its named after the couple’s two daughters’ middle names, also has family-style menu offerings: ribeye with grilled spring onions, smoked chili harissa and roasted marrow, and friend chicken with fermented hot sauce and pickles.
The restaurant is scheduled to open July 12.
In the beginning, it will serve dinners only Tuesdays through Saturdays. Hours will be 4- to 10 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and 4- to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.
Fox and Pearl does plan to offer brunch on Saturdays and Sundays about a month after it opens.
Don’t miss any downtown news, sign up for our weekly CityScene KC email review here.