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Beer and brats: The perfect spring pairing

Sizzling details on Bier Station’s gourmet sausages, Boulevard Brewing’s latest collaboration and a new sports bar where servers dress like sexy lumberjacks.

A melted Gruyere and tomato sandwich paired with a Boulevard Irish Ale beer (left) and a Fujjisan Bratwurst with the marinated cucumber salad and paired with a Bell’s Oarsman beer at the Bier Station, a bar and restaurant in Kansas City’s Waldo neighborhood.

Customers look at the large beer cooler at the Bier Station, a bar and restaurant in Kansas City’s Waldo neighborhood. Bier Station offers beer tastings and has a beer garden.

A Fujjisan Bratwurst with the marinated cucumber salad and paired with a Bell’s Oarsman beer from the Bier Station, a bar and restaurant in Kansas City’s Waldo neighborhood.

Amanda Bergman, a Bier Station “beertender,” pours a pint earlier this month at the bar and restaurant in the Waldo neighborhood.

Ink

When Bier Station opened in December, the menu was overflowing with, of course, beer — 21 on tap and hundreds more in bottles. But the food was pretty much limited to cheese and locally baked Farm to Market pretzels.

Recently, the beer tasting bar at 120 E. Gregory Blvd. in Waldo expanded its menu, adding gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches and brats made by Martin Heuser, a James Beard Award-nominated chef who owns Affare in the Crossroads Arts District.

The juicy brats are browned in pilsner beer, wedged into a chewy Farm to Market pretzel bun and topped with everything from Swiss cheese (the Alexanderplatz, $8) to cranberry, diced green apple and gooey brie (the Saint-Marcel, $8).

I tried the Fujisan, $8, spiked with a hint of wasabi mayo and loaded with crunchy, subtly citrusy red cabbage slaw. The Japanese-inspired brat would go nicely with the staff-recommended Lagunitas Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, which combines the hoppiness of an IPA with the smooth, refreshing taste of wheat beer.

The best part: You can buy and take home pretty much any beer Bier Station serves, which means fewer trips to the liquor store and less time staring blankly at rows and rows of beer, trying to remember the super-long name of that obscure Belgian beer you ordered last weekend.

More about new brats

Boulevard Brewing Co. and Farmland Foods are teaming up on a new line of beer brats.

The Kansas City-based companies have infused the brewery’s popular Unfiltered Wheat and Pale Ale into pork sausages that will soon be sold at local grocery stores, in select bars and restaurants, and at the Boulevard Grill and Farmland Grill inside Kauffman Stadium.

More about new bars

When I first heard that a bar called Twin Peaks was opening in Olathe, I thought (OK, hoped) that it would be inspired by the David Lynch series, with coffee and pie on the menu and servers dressed like the Log Lady.

I thought way wrong: Twin Peaks is actually a chain of lodge-style sports bars with tons of TVs and bartenders dressed like scantily clad lumberjacks, in plaid tie-tops and khaki short shorts. The menu features cold (29-degree) beer and hearty man meals like venison chili, towering barbecue pulled pork nachos and a Hangover Burger with fried egg and bacon.

Twin Peaks has more than 25 locations in 13 states. Soon Missouri might be in the mix: The owners of the new Olathe location at 14805 W. 119th St. are already looking at expanding in Independence and Springfield.

Joyce Smith contributed to this item

Enterprise reporter Sarah Gish writes about local restaurants and dining trends for Ink every first and third week of the month. Contact her via email at sarah@inkkc.com or tweet @sarah_gish.

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