All About Succotash, the Kansas City Brunch Spot with French Toast That Travis Kelce Describes as ‘Magical’

"He does not ever want special treatment," Beth Barden tells PEOPLE exclusively

Todd Owyoung/NBC via Getty Images; Skyler Caruso
Todd Owyoung/NBC via Getty Images; Skyler Caruso

This Kansas City brunch spot's French toast is Travis Kelce-approved!

Succotash is a beloved breakfast and lunch joint that's been open since 2001, but has recently drawn a slew of new clientele thanks to the Kansas City Chief tight end and Taylor Swift.

Though Swift and Kelce only sparked dating rumors in September, both have drawn crowds to Succotash well before then — Swift with her Eras Tour stop in July, and Kelce with his team's Super Bowl win in February.

"I think when people come in for the games, it absolutely has a positive impact," Succotash owner Beth Barden tells PEOPLE exclusively. "The Chiefs themselves are so positive and community-minded... I'm really happy to be in the community that they're in and I think [they're] happy to contribute to the community."

Related: An Inside Look at Golden Ox — and Its Coveted 'Chef's Table' — Where Travis Kelce Had His 34th Birthday (Exclusive)

<p>Skyler Caruso</p> The Succotash counter in Kansas City, Missouri

Skyler Caruso

The Succotash counter in Kansas City, Missouri

The weekend Swift performed at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City was the "busiest two days" in the "history of the restaurant by a landslide," says Barden.

"I walked in and truthfully, I still almost can't—," she says, tearing up. "It was so lovely."

"I walked up and it was like walking into a movie set," Barden continues, "People out the door — the most happy, sequined, full makeup, darling outfits, groups of people all together... down the block at eight o'clock in the morning. It was like three or four days of just beautiful mayhem."

Related: Inside the Kansas City Barbecue Spot Where Travis and Donna Kelce 'Wait in Line Like Everybody Else'

<p>Skyler Caruso</p> Beth Bardem, owner of Succotash in Kasnas City

Skyler Caruso

Beth Bardem, owner of Succotash in Kasnas City

Business hasn't always been that way for Barden, who moved to Kansas City from the Detroit area in 1998, lost her job and "took a chance" when opening her first restaurant "for the price of a used car" just over two decades ago.

"I had a $25 electric plugin home stove and two little Walmart Presto tabletop griddles. I had nothing. Didn't have a walk-in, didn't have anything. Everything was mismatched," says Barden. "Literally the first day I opened, I served 21 people the entire day and thought it was going to kill me."

Since then, Barden says she's taken a "different approach" compared to other businesses. "I've just been happy to go very, very slowly and just build very, very slowly over time," she says, adding that she's also resisted opening other locations. (The only Succotash is in the Longfellow Heights neighborhood in Missouri.)

"I just want it to be a community-based neighborhood staple where our primary thing is that everybody that comes in here feels appreciated and welcome," she adds. "It encourages people to come to an area of the city that perhaps they wouldn't travel to."

Related: Chiefs Coach Andy Reid Says Taylor Swift 'Can Stay Around All She Wants' as Travis Kelce's Game Improves

<p>Skyler Caruso</p> The artsy walls of Succotash in Kansas City

Skyler Caruso

The artsy walls of Succotash in Kansas City

Succotash has been featured on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives twice and Man Versus Food. It's catered for the cast of Queer Eye and a Bud Light spot that starred Kelce. And the restaurant has a loyal local fanbase, with the tight end being among the many.

"I love having him here, and I love the idea that he can come in here and not be bothered," Barden says of Kelce. "He just comes in and if the line is back there, he is in line with people. He does not ever want special treatment."

Barden recalls a time when her server Claudia dropped off his food during a visit to the shop. "She's like, 'How is everything?'" Kelce replied, 'It's magical,'" Barden recalls.

Related: Travis Kelce and Chiefs Win Fourth Game with Taylor Swift Cheering Him on amid Their New Romance

<p>Cooper Neill/Getty; Norm Hall/Getty</p> Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce

Cooper Neill/Getty; Norm Hall/Getty

Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce

"You have to be just a kind, appreciative person for that to be your response over a plate of French toast and eggs," she says. "They're good, I'll tell you that. But it's not like somebody was bringing him some sort of five star situation!"

Kelce famously eats French toast as his "pregame meal" before every Chiefs game.

While Barden says Swift has yet to visit Succotash, she hopes the best for the couple: "He's a good egg and she seems lovely and I'm incredibly happy for both of them."

"I hope that whatever it is turns out exactly the way they want it to," she adds. "That's it."

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