I’m happy to have Tio Wally (long-time Me So Hungry reader) aboard to send in his eating adventures from across America. Here he is in Kansas City, Missouri.
Greetings from Kansas City, Missouri
N 39.211456 W -94.641591’ Elev. 968 ft.
Although it was exactly two weeks ago to the day, I remember it like it was yesterday. I stopped at this Hy-Vee to see what good things they have to eat. And once again I wasn’t disappointed even though some of it was garbage — literally!
I’m hesitant to stop at this particular Hy-Vee because yacht parking is non-existent. I have to circle the building and, if I’m lucky, I can park out of the way on the south side of the building. Weekends, especially Sundays, are better because there are no deliveries and I can dock and block one of the loading docks while I run inside. I have circled the place in the past and, due to lack of space, left hungry and frustrated. Those things happen (too often) when your vehicle is, um, slightly larger than a Smart car.
Hy-Vee has an all-you-can-eat brunch thing on the weekends. It’s not too bad for the price because they make omelets to order. They also have these breakfast sausages, big fat things, that are really good.
I’ve procured a lot of really great meals, usually specials, from Hy-Vee, like a giant stuffed pork chop with two sides for $5; Huevos Rancheros for $5; both Beef and Pork Loin for $5.95; Turkey dinners (they actually roast whole turkeys) for $5.95; Salisbury steak for $5.95, among many other things.
They have a meal special every day that varies a bit by location. The Sunday special at this Hy-Vee was Chicken Fried Steak, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans and a roll for $5.95. You can substitute any of the sides, choosing from either the hot and cold cases. Hy-Vee is very flexible. They also have real butter to enhance your roll, veggies, or what have you. I went with the special “as written” even though they have the most awesome baked beans.
Needless to say, it was great. Hy-Vee usually has chicken or turkey gravy but they didn’t have it that day. They had the de rigueur Country Gravy for the Chicken Fried Steak, which is not bad, but I got the Brown Gravy instead. Go ahead, ask me why? (I don’t know. I really don’t know. I just did. I should’ve gotten half and half.) They have very good Brown Gravy.
I also got a piece of New York style cheesecake ($3.49). It was a very healthy portion, with chocolate-rum(?) syrup drizzled over it and crowned with a dollop of whipped cream.
After absconding with my booty I took a moment to jettison some trash that had been accumulating. As I walked to the trash can I saw a garbage can marked “Food Waste Only.” I’d seen it on the way in but figured it was filled to nearly overflowing with rotting, unmarketable fruit. Au contraire, mon ami.
On closer inspection I discovered that the fruit in the garbage can was, in fact, leftovers from the brunch. Because the fruit had been washed there was nothing else they could do but toss it. And they did — a lot of it!
I ended up cherry-picking the equivalent of well over two full baskets of ripe strawberries. (I could’ve gotten three times as much but seriously, How many strawberries can a guy eat?) I also gleaned about a pound of grapes, three tangerines and a super-sweet seedless navel orange that was de-li-cious!
Because I am a shamelessly thankless cur, I was sort of pissed. Amidst the “garbage” were many watermelon and cantaloupe rinds. But no melon! Where’s the freakin’ melon? There I was, picking through the garbage can, doing my best Kyle Broflovski impersonation: “You bastards!” I screamed.
And so we roll.
Hy-Vee, 5330 NW 64th St., Kansas City, Missouri
and 234 other locations in Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
Tio Wally pilots the 75-foot, 40-ton(max) land yacht SS Me So Hungry. He reports on road food from around the country whenever parking and InterTube connections permit.