Dining With Denise Neil

Wichita man opening a burger joint in the same spot his father-in-law once had one

Burgers Central will open soon in the spot at Central and Zoo that was most recently occupied by Los Compadres.
Burgers Central will open soon in the spot at Central and Zoo that was most recently occupied by Los Compadres. The Wichita Eagle

Back in 2010, Bill Powell opened a little burger restaurant in a little restaurant spot at 3302 W. Central. He called it The Burger Barn.

He put it up for sale about a year later, and then in 2013, its new owner closed it for good. Since then, the building has been home to three different Mexican restaurants, mostly recently Los Compadres, which took the space over in 2015.

But the spot became vacant again in December when Los Compadres moved to a bigger spot at 3827 W. 13th St.

Now, it's about to return to its Burger Barn roots. Within the next two weeks, Bill Powell's son-in-law, Pavan Pandiri, plans to open his own burger restaurant in the space. He'll call it Burgers Central.

Pandiri also owns a restaurant called Dairy King in Mulvane. He said his menu at Burger Central will be similar to that one but will focus mostly on burgers with various toppings plus fresh-cut fries, crinkle-cut fries and ice cream.

"I always wanted to bring something in to Wichita, but I just wanted something smaller that we could run by ourselves," Pandiri said.

Her father-in-law, meanwhile, is "elated" that the old Burger Barn space is back in the family, Pandiri said.

He said the burgers will be made-to-order, and he'll also have a few salads on the menu, including a taco salad.

The restaurant will be open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays. There's a spot for a drive-through, and Pandiri said he may eventually add one. At first, though, customers can use the window for pick-up orders.

I'll let you know when Burgers Central is open.


Dempsey's Burger Pub opens this week at 550 N. Rock Rd.



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