Three restaurants that feed the Shockers
Three local restaurants are frequently tapped to bring the Shockers players and coaches catered spreads four hours before tipoff on home game days. Among them:
Doo-Dah Diner, 206 E. Kellogg : Doo-Dah Diner gets the job when the Shockers play early and want breakfast. Owners Patrick and Timirie Shibley have done three games already and have more on the books. They take the team scrambled eggs, sausages, maple pepper bacon, oatmeal, cinnamon rolls and quiche. Though team managers told the Shibleys to keep it basic, they experimented with some crispy morning potatoes made with peppers and onions. They were such a hit with the players that the Shibleys have added the potatoes to the breakfast menu at the restaurant, too, Timirie said.
Bella Luna Cafe, three locations: This popular Wichita Mediterranean restaurant usually caters Saturday Shockers games. The restaurant, said a manager, serves the team a spread of beef kabobs, pasta diablo, corn on the cob, roasted potatoes and salad.
Sweet Basil, 2424 N. Woodlawn: One of the most seasoned Shockers caterers is Sweet Basil, an Italian restaurant at owned by Charli Singh. Sweet Basil has been catering game days since 1986 – before Singh even owned the restaurant. The team’s dietitian asks for foods that have a good mix of starches, fats, proteins and sugars, Singh said. A usual spread includes lasagna, chicken satay, grilled chicken breast, steaks, cheesecake and brownies. Singh, who said he has amassed a nice collection of autographed Shocker’s posters over the years, said he happily entertains requests from the players – and occasionally likes to surprise them. “For Christmas, they got prime rib,” he said. “They really liked that.”
Cheezies Pizza arrives downtown
Downtown has a new to-go pizza place. The second Wichita location of Cheezies Pizza, a chain based out of Oklahoma, opened two weeks ago at 601 E. First St., just down the street from Bite Me BBQ. The first Wichita Cheeziesopened in early 2011 at 3804 W. Maple. The franchisee of both is Mike Ryno, who also owns Wichita’s Tracy’s Automotivestores. In fact, the new Cheezies has an adjoining door to the Tracy’s at 525 E. First St.
So far, the restaurant has no permanent sign and is easy to miss if you’re not looking. Graffiti spray paint and some “now open” signs are the only identifiers. Cheezies serves $4.99 large pepperoni or cheese pizzas and other one-topping larges for $5.99. It also offers a list of $8.99 large specialties such as deluxe, taco pizza or chicken bacon ranch, plus stromboli, sandwiches, breadsticks, calzones and chicken wings.
Ryno said he hopes to add a patio to the downtown Cheezies this summer, but for now, it’s to-go only. Hours are 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 3 to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Fridays; 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturdays; and noon to 9 p.m. Sundays. For more information on the new restaurant, call 316-267-2439.
A new Taste & See for McConnell
Chef Jason Febres, who just opened his second Taste & See at 255 N. Washington in Old Town, has made a deal to open Taste & See 3. But not just anyone can go. The new restaurant will be at McConnell Air Force Base. Febres said base officials approached him about the idea of opening there because people from the base had become a big fans of his original Taste & See, which is nearby at 3825 E. Harry. The McConnell Taste & See should open on Feb. 3 in the Dole Center on the base, said Stefan Bocchino, a McConnell spokesman. It will start off serving just breakfast and lunch. The restaurant will be open only to those authorized to be on the base, Bocchino said.
Chop Shop will make Anchor more delicious
Schane Gross’ Douglas Avenue Chop Shop, a high-end butcher shop she’s opening next to her popular bar/restaurant the Anchor, is close to finished. She’s aiming for a soft-opening on Feb. 11 and 12 that will include an artisan cheese and wine tasting. (The grand opening won’t be until late March.) In the meantime, she’s talking about how the new meat shop will benefit diners at the Anchor. Gross has plans to add steak specials to the menu next door. The Anchor has lots of good bar food at the moment, but steak isn’t on the menu.
The Douglas Avenue Chop Shop, 1113 E. Douglas, also will be able to produce its own sausages, which will be added to the menu next door. Gross is working on signing up local restaurant/bars to purchase their own signature sausages from the shop. She envisions future “sausage fests” where diners could travel from restaurant to restaurant, sampling sausages and tasting beer. Other additions to the Anchor menu that the Chop Shop will make possible include meatballs and samples of high-end cheeses.