Saturday, December 9, 2023

Power & Light has an Irish pub again: KC Hooley House opens in time for St. Pat’s Day

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KC Hooley House is now open in the Power & Light District.

KC Hooley House is now open in the Power & Light District.

KC Hooley House

KC Hooley House in the Power & Light District softly opened a week ago, in time for the Big 12 Conference tournament. Now the Irish pub is gearing up for St. Patrick’s Day.

“We are super excited. But I feel like I can finally breathe,” said partner Ryan Haverty. “I think the place looks beautiful, maybe the best it has ever looked even when it opened as Raglan Road. And we are really looking forward to St. Patrick’s Day.”

He said KC Hooley House “reimagines a traditional Irish pub.” It has a limited menu for now, including pastrami burnt end sandwiches, beef sliders with sauerkraut, Irish potato leek soup, double burgers, shepherd’s pie, handcrafted cocktails and craft beers. It will roll out its full menu in the next few weeks and focus on seasonal ingredients.

The pub has a large dining area where local and regional acts will perform on stage. It plans to have Irish dancers and an Irish band as part of its St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. It also has a small patio.

A smaller bar and lounge is currently for overflow traffic. But it will turn into a high-end craft cocktail lounge with a small plate menu — oysters, Kobe beef sliders, steak — this summer. It will operate under a different name.

Raglan Road was the original tenant for the 9,774-square-foot space at 170 E. 14th St. in 2008. Celebrity Irish chef Kevin Dundon designed the menu. Irish dancers and musicians performed there. The owners estimated that they spent about $5 million on the build-out. They constructed pieces in Ireland for authenticity and then had them shipped to Kansas City and reconstructed.

But three years later it filed for bankruptcy. The landlord also filed a lawsuit seeking possession of the restaurant.

After Raglan Road closed, The Dubliner opened in the space in 2012. It closed a year ago when its lease was up. Haverty was a partner and said at the time, “There’s just no way someone would spend that kind of money on the craftsmanship today. It’s unbelievable.”

“I’m really happy to be back. I was looking at other places around the city and reconnected with the (Power & Light) landlord,” he said Wednesday morning. “Just to be back in the heart of the city. People can be proud that they have a place like this in Kansas City.”

Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays; 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Thursdays through Saturdays; and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sundays. It plans to add Monday hours in late spring.

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Joyce Smith has covered restaurant and retail news for The Star since 1989 under the brand Cityscape. She appreciates news tips.

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