It’s sometimes fun for Wichitans to hop in the car and drive a town or two over to try a new restaurant.
But it’s always fun for small-towners, whose dining options tend to be limited, to get a new restaurant in their own city limits.
Lately, people are buzzing about a couple of new restaurants in near-Wichita towns. One offers Cajun food, which is hard to find anywhere in Kansas. The other offers Greek and Mediterranean fare, which while common in Wichita is harder to find in smaller towns.
Here’s a look at both.
▪ Main Street Cajun is a new-ish restaurant in downtown Winfield, which is a 40-mile drive south from Wichita. It’s owned by Brandi Grose and Bill Grose Jr., who since September of 2016 had run a doughnut shop and deli out of the space at 609 Main Street.
But the overhead was high, and making doughnuts through the night proved too difficult to sustain. So the couple closed the restaurant in May of last year.
In December, though, they came back with a new focus: Cajun food. Brandi Grose, whose father was born and raised in Louisiana, said she grew up eating and cooking Cajun fare. She and her husband, Bill Grose Jr., who also works as a sheriff’s deputy in Kay County, Okla., now are serving an all-Cajun menu from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. (Next month, they’re planning to expand their hours and add breakfast on Saturday mornings.)
The menu includes gumbo, jambalaya, red beans and rice, shrimp po boy sandwiches, andouille po boy sandwiches, shrimp baskets and more. Their crawfish etouffee might be the most popular item on the menu so far, Brandi said.
Main Street Cajun also makes its own chips, including a barbecue flavor, and is known for a dish called Crawfish Monica, a cream-based pasta dish with crawfish.
You can see the full menu here.
Main Street Cajun, which also has a drive-through, still has its previous name on its awning outside, but the couple is saving up to get to changed.
To reach the restaurant, call 620-402-5100.
▪ Greek Stone Grill is a restaurant that opened in November at 2401 W. Central in El Dorado. It’s owned by Ahmed Al-Malaky, whose father also is a chef. It’s operating out of the space that formerly was home to Yo Tango Burrito.
Despite its name, Greek Stone Grill is not the authentic Greek restaurant Wichita diners say they crave. Its menu is populated with Greek and Mediterranean fare that’s already familiar to Wichita diners, including fattoush salad, gyro, falafel, shish kabob, tabouli and hummus. It also has more American fare, like steaks, burgers, chicken fried steaks and grilled fish. (You can see the full menu here.)
Al-Malaky said that El Dorado didn’t have much to offer when it came to Mediterranean food, and customers are happy to have it.
“There really just aren’t many restaurants out here,” he said. “There’s just a lot of fast-food restaurants. We wanted to bring something different to the city.”
Greek Stone Grill’s hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. For more information, call 316-435-5060.