Dining With Denise Neil

Augustino Brewing Company is adding food back, expanding to Wichita’s east side

Fetch Bistro owners survive the airing of Gordon Ramsay’s ’24 Hours to Hell and Back’

(FILE VIDEO) Fetch Bistro owners Greg and Pamela Buss had a watch party for chef Gordon Ramsay's TV show, "24 Hours to Hell and Back," at their northeast restaurant Wednesday. (July 25, 2018)
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(FILE VIDEO) Fetch Bistro owners Greg and Pamela Buss had a watch party for chef Gordon Ramsay's TV show, "24 Hours to Hell and Back," at their northeast restaurant Wednesday. (July 25, 2018)

The restaurant management group that in the past few months has taken over Margarita’s Cantina and Sweet Basil is now running yet another Wichita restaurant — with plans to expand.

Velocity Hospitality Group is now managing Augustino Brewing Company at Central and Tyler, the restaurant and brewery that closed in September but reopened a month later serving beer but not food.

The new management group is bringing back the restaurant side of the business, which Augustine and Bianca Iacopelli originally opened in late 2017.

And there’s more.

The group’s partners also plan to turn the east side Fetch Bar & Grill spot at 7718 E. 37th St. North, which they closed late last month, into an east-side version of Augustino Brewing Company. They hope to have it ready to go in June.

First, an update on the west side: The new managers already have brought back a limited menu of food, including the famous brisket nachos from the original menu, and are serving patrons in the tap room.

In the meantime, they’re remodeling the restaurant side, which has been closed since September, and they hope to begin serving a full menu in the next couple of weeks. The menu will include things like burgers, wings, salads and deli sandwiches. They’ll also add barbecue.

Iacopelli will remain in charge of the beer production. He said he likes the new setup.

Augustino Brewing Company has brought back food on the west side and will soon expand to the east side. Courtesy photo

“We’re really happy with what the direction is,” he said. “One of the things that’s been holding me back over the past several months is trying to manage everything on my own. I can make great beer — my beer speaks for itself — but I need somebody to really manage the people side and manage the front of the house so I can make great beer.”

In the meantime, the Velocity partners are starting a remodel of the east-side Fetch space, which celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay and his crew famously remodeled in late 2017 as part of the reality show “24 Hours to Hell and Back.”

The restaurant will get a new look and likely lose its Ramsay decor. It’ll also lose the outdoor dog park Ramsay’s crew added. It will be redone for human customers to enjoy. The east-side restaurant will offer the same menu as the west side.

Eventually, the partners hope to add some brewing equipment to the east-side Augustino. In the meantime, the west side will brew beer that will be served in all of the restaurants Velocity is running in Wichita, which also includes a new Fetch in Moundridge.

As I reported last week, Velocity also took over the Sweet Basil spot at 2424 N. Woodlawn. That restaurant just closed after 28 years in business, and the group hopes to have a new Italian restaurant open there by June 1. Initially, they said they’d call it Bello Italian Grill. But they’ve decided instead to call it Buono’s Italian Grill.

Stay tuned for updates on all the changes.

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Denise Neil has covered restaurants and entertainment since 1997. Her Dining with Denise Facebook page is the go-to place for diners to get information about local restaurants. She’s a regular judge at local food competitions and speaks to groups all over Wichita about dining.