The Filling Station
Location: 2980 McGee Trafficway, KC, MO
Food: Some breakfast, but mostly coffee shop fair and full lunch menu
Service: Quick and quite friendly. Love that there were lots of fast-paced workers there, not just a couple lethargic teens. Almost felt like the restaurant was their co-op.
Atmosphere: Laid back coffee shop meets bustling deli
Price: Competitive coffeehouse and deli sandwich prices
Rating: Yet to be determined
Rating: Yet to be determined
I'd describe The Filling Station as more coffee shop than breakfast spot, and more lunch spot than coffee shop.
We went last weekend at about 11:30, not sure, ourselves, whether we wanted breakfast or lunch. Figured I'd take a look at the menu and let something tasty-sounding make my mind up for me. Lunch won out, but I got a coffee just because I saw they use Broadway beans and I wanted the caffeine.
I don't have any idea how anyone could have a negative thing to say about the digs at The Filling Station. It's a retro-themed gas station garage set in the southeast point of a funny, triangular strip of land just east of Gillham. The exterior still feels like an actual filling station, only lacking its gas pumps which are now replaced with a relaxing and pleasant-looking patio filled with comfy chairs and tables under umbrellas. Separating the patio and interior of the building are garage door style windows which can be raised and lowered for maximum outdoor exposure. Both fitting for the type of building and for their intended purpose.
On their website, The Filling Station describes itself as "KC's only coffee garage - where we pride ourselves in the art & knowledge of coffee, and our rockin' menu!" Their emphasis on coffee definitely shows. I'm a big supporter of Broadway Roastery, who I think serves up some of the richest, smoothest tasting brew in the city, so I took Filling Station's use of Broadway beans to be a sign of promising like-mindedness. I ordered up a cup of their drip, which came served in a wide-mouthed mug and tasted every bit as good as promised. And when the torrential downpour let loose on us shortly after sitting down with my steaming cup of joe, it sipped doubly pleasing. On a subsequent trip, I also had a double macchiato which was sublime, though verged on the thin side.
My sandwich selection was the grilled salami - a panini pressed pile of soft, herby foccocia*, salami, tomato, red onion slices, plenty of tender green spinach leaves, horseradish pepper mayo and pepperjack cheese. It's a salty, extremely flavorful mouthful. The salami is piled high, as is the spinach. I was almost concerned with the amount of foliage layered into this sandwich, but it was so pleasantly tender, I found it quite delicious. [*Foccocia lives on the same list with croissants, naan and my mom's Pumpkin bread, of breads I'd eat until causing myself bodily harm if given an infinite supply.] Overall, an extremely flavorful and enjoyable sandwich.
I asked about the ingredients of the Blue Koi dressing, intrigued by its name. Turns out it's made especially for The Filling Station by Blue Koi on 39th street (my review). It's a soy-based dressing with basil and ginger for sure. The employee (or should I call her an attendant?) said customers tend to either love it or hate it, but no one is lukewarm about it. I was hot for it. Very tasty.
A final, but not unimportant, aspect of the lunch were the chips that came on the side - one of my favorite brands, Miss Vicker's - which are always nicely crunchy and heavily seasoned. My place of work stocks these at the coffee bar for $1 and I have a daily mental battle at 3:00 about whether or not I deserve them as a treat. A quality product, adding that much sought-after crunch to our lunch.
Start to finish, this was quite the tasty occasion. All the gals behind the counter and cleaning up the dining room were remarkably friendly, which adds to the entire vibe of the bright, sunny restaurant.