Dining With Denise Neil

Two Wichita-area restaurants close, and their owners are frustrated

Burnt ends were born in Kansas City but Wichita has them, too

(FILE VIDEO -- 2017) Not all Wichita barbecue restaurants serve burnt ends but the ones that do have developed a loyal following.
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(FILE VIDEO -- 2017) Not all Wichita barbecue restaurants serve burnt ends but the ones that do have developed a loyal following.

Two restaurants in the Wichita area are closed, and both owners said they just didn’t have enough business to keep going.

One is Sugar Rush Donut and Bakery, which opened this summer at 3835 S. Seneca, in the former Estalita’s spot.

Michael Whitener, who works at Spirit, said that every time a festival would happen in town, business would dry up.

“Sorry to say, great apple fritters and donuts didn't keep the customers coming in,” he said.

His last day was Saturday.

“It's a crushing feeling,” Whitener said. “Hopefully we can try again later.”

Another restaurant that recently closed: No Mercy BBQ in Augusta, which billed itself as the only mesquite barbecue in Kansas.

No Mercy operated at 104 E. Sixth in downtown Augusta since 2013. It closed for good late last month.

“The town gave up on us,” said owner Robby Mercer.

No Mercy served mesquite-smoked barbecue meats, steaks and more. Dining Panelist Brad Seehawer gave it a good review last year.

Mercer, a former goalie for the Wichita Thunder, said that very few people came to downtown Augusta and he didn’t get much support from the city. In the end, he said, Augusta is not a barbecue town.

A look at ten of the Wichita restaurants that closed in 2016. (video by Jaime Green)

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