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Table For Two: Nancy and Michael Smith

For these culinary couples, dining out is all about feeding creativity – and the occasional burger from a greasy spoon. Here’s where Nancy and Chef Michael Smith go in KC to indulge their mutual love of food.

When the energetic husband-and-wife team of Michael and Nancy Smith take a night off from running their popular Crossroads restaurants, they pull up a chair at one of their favorite local restaurants.

“Story—the food is always amazing,” Michael says. “Carl’s $10 Sunday entrée special is one of the best values in town for that level of food.”

The Smiths also like to perch on barstools at Rye, where bar manager and lead mixologist Van Zarr whips up cocktails, or partake in Steak Night on Mondays. And they enjoy the Garrelt’s culinary ballet at Bluestem, where Michael says Megan’s desserts are “the best in town.”

Also on the Smiths’ date night dance card are The American, where Michael once worked, and Port Fonda, for Mexican food and cocktails.

“Nancy and I like to go to restaurants that don’t do food like ours,” Michael says. “We always seek out ethnic options, like Café Vie in Overland Park.

Like most of their chef-owner friends, the Smiths usually have some facet of business on their minds.

“We are always looking at décor, and details like votive candles and silverware,” Michael says. “I lift up plates to read the bottom and find out where it came from.”

Pizza night. SPIN! The Smiths love to visit the acclaimed pizzeria, where Michael is a consultant and collaborated on recipes.

Tradition. ABC Café. “On Monday nights we regularly gather up a large group of friends to go here. We end up overeating, it’s so good.”