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A Downtown High

Coffee Girls stays open late.



'Tis the season to stay inside (unless you have a kick-ass sled). In a downtown that has historically shut its doors to the sober after about 9 p.m., we are pleased to announce that the new Coffee Girls (310 Southwest Boulevard, 816-221-2326) stays open until midnight on Friday and Saturday, giving more relaxed winter weekenders a way to enjoy the city until the moment their carriages turn back into pumpkins.The Coffee Girls are Robin Krause and Melissa Van Goethem, who worked together at Muddy's on 51st Street; customers recognized them out and about as "the coffee girls," hence the name. They rehabbed their Southwest Boulevard storefront from top to bottom and refinished most of the furniture themselves -- all in three months.

The results are awesome. Spacious and earth-toned, with lights mellowed by Japanese paper lanterns, Coffee Girls is a good prospective hangout, adorned with big, healthy, oxygen-supplying plants -- and music on First Fridays.

You know, you outdoorsy people could always go sledding after midnight.-- Gina Kaufmann

Nobody Puts Broadway in a Corner ... Nobody


The onset of winter, with its freezing temperatures and stuffed noses, pretty much kills the sense of smell. Luckily, the Broadway Roasting Company (301 Westport Road, 816-931-9955) has arrived to revive it. With twenty different coffees from across the globe roasting daily in the Broadway Café spin-off's giant red H.G. Wells machine, the Roasting Company bathes Westport in its jittery aroma. The staff's cultish love of the coffee bean is matched only by the Pavlovian response that a fresh batch of "Horse" -- an Ethiopian blend -- is guaranteed to set off in unsuspecting passersby. Open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends, the Roasting Company is the place to get Broadway coffee without the loitering. -- Christopher Sebela

The Fever


It was all the rage among kids in the '80s, so it's no surprise that it's all the rage among twentysomethings in the zeros, or whatever you call our current decade. It's Pac-Man and his pal Ms. Pac-Man. (What a way of dealing with gender, by the way -- call your lady mail carrier "Ms. Postman," and we're sure she'll love you forever.) The old video game tables are popping up in grown-up places citywide, and we've just spotted yet another. It's at the Westport Coffee House (4010 Pennsylvania, 816-756-3222), hidden behind a fridge full of pricey juices. Look out for Blinky and Clyde.-- Kaufmann

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