My nominee for the best restaurant makeover of 2018 is most definitely Fredo's, the new wine and tapas bar set to open Monday at the corner of Second and Washington in Old Town.
The business, which Alfred Abdelmaseh is opening in the former Gianni Baccis space, has been transformed over the past month, and he's made the basic concrete-block building look more inviting than I would have imagined possible, adding a covered patio, a gray-and-red color scheme, lots of plants and a classy-looking red neon sign along the top. It looks great inside, too.
Abdelmaseh, whose nickname as a kid was Fredo, is serving both adult beverages and food in his new business, and he's seeing whether Wichita will go for the tapas idea. Everything on his menu is meant to be shared, and the plates are all designed and priced with that in mind. I got a look at the menu this week, which includes a charcuterie board, baked brie, a burrata plate and house fries made with three different colors of potato and served with dipping sauces.
The menu also has a lobster salad, a dip platter, seared tuna and a prime KC strip. There's also a selection of sliders and several flatbreads.
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It will offer wine by the bottle that's decanted and poured by servers, and in the evenings, customers can enjoy hookahs and cigars on the patio. Starting in July, Fredo's will offer brunch on Saturdays and Sundays.
Abdelmaseh, who also owns Shesha Bar & Lounge at 2106 N. Amidon, is the son of Latif Abdelmaseh, who was Antoine Toubia’s first chef when he opened Olive Tree in Wichita. The family later opened Abram’s Cafe.
Eventually, Abdelmaseh plans to enclose the patio so that people can enjoy it in the winter, too, sort of like at neighboring bar Mort's.
The restaurant will be open from 11 a.m. to midnight Mondays through Wednesdays, from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Thursdays through Saturdays and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays. The kitchen will close at 9 p.m.
For more information, call 316-260-9166.