Dining With Denise Neil

Will they ever open? An update on two in-the-works Wichita restaurants

Lola’s Bistro’s owner says he hopes to opens sometime in December.
Lola’s Bistro’s owner says he hopes to opens sometime in December. The Wichita Eagle

Several people have been asking me for updates on a couple of restaurants that are in the works and whose owners had originally hoped to have them open by now.

One is Delano Diner, the breakfast and lunch place going into the old Braum’s building at 1220 W. Douglas, which has been vacant for seven years.

Back in April, I told you that Kassem Yassine was working on the restaurant and that he hoped for a late summer or early fall opening.

Since then, not much has visibly changed on the outside of the building. But Yassine, whose restaurant resume includes Marbella Cafe, LeMonde Cafe, Old Town Martini and College Hill Deli and Catering, said he’s still working away. He’s always said he’s in no big hurry and wants to make sure he does things right, so he’s taking his time.

He now said the restaurant will likely open at the beginning of 2017.

Diners also are eagerly anticipating Lola’s Bistro, which is in the works at Soho Plaza within the Collective at East 21st and K-96. Owner Michael Abay said the restaurant is coming along “slowly but surely” and that he just now had his coffee system installed. He said he hopes to start interviewing staff in a week or so and may be open in late December.

Abay, whose restaurant serve new American cuisine with French, Italian, Asian and Filipino flavors, first announced his plans in December 2015.

As always, I’ll keep you updated on opening dates.