Dining With Denise Neil

East Wichita restaurant lowers prices, increases business

Greystone’s new banquet room was recently completed and takes up part of the former patio space.
Greystone’s new banquet room was recently completed and takes up part of the former patio space. The Wichita Eagle

Greystone Steak & Seafood opened in August 2015 at 21st and Webb, and local diners were wowed by its luxurious interior, upscale menu and posh private dining rooms.

But by March, business had slowed, and owner John Arnold thought he knew why. His prices were higher than many other local restaurants, largely because of the meats and seafood he was sourcing from top purveyors, he said. But the average ticket, it seemed, was more than most Wichita diners wanted to spend for anything other than a special occasion meal. Steaks were $32 to $54. Salads and sides were $6 to $21.

So Arnold, who said he prides himself on listening to his customers, made some changes – and they’ve paid off. In September, he changed some of his suppliers, had the restaurant start cutting its own meats and lowered prices across the board, making Greystone’s price range more Redrock Canyon Grill than Chester’s Chophouse.

Just a few examples: Some steaks are now a few dollars less expensive, and some saw prices drop $10 or more. The chicken Marsala is $4 less, from $20 to $16 and the pork chops went down from $22 to $19. In addition, all of the side dishes – which are large enough to be sharable – went from $8-$10 to $4-$6.

Business has increased steadily since, he said.

“It has really generated some repeat guests,” Arnold said.

Arnold also has made a few other changes.

He recently enclosed part of his patio, turning it into a giant private banquet room that can accommodate groups of 50 or be used for overflow seating on busy nights. And he replaced the high-top tables by the bar with cozy, tall-backed half-circle booths.

He also added a Sunday brunch, which is served starting at 10:30 a.m. on Sundays.

Greystone has several private dining rooms that can seat anywhere from 6 people to 50, and Arnold is planning a few more changes to his main dining room that will give it a more casual feel.

For reservations, call 316-295-2636.