Dining With Denise Neil

The man bringing Jersey Mike’s Subs to Wichita comes from a pioneering restaurant family

Dining With Denise meets her match

Denise Neil sits down with aspiring food critic Weston Gough, age 7, at Reverie Coffee Roasters.
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Denise Neil sits down with aspiring food critic Weston Gough, age 7, at Reverie Coffee Roasters.

After years of waiting, Wichita is finally about to get its first Jersey Mike’s, a fast-casual sub shop that has legions of devoted followers — many of them in Wichita, judging by how often people e-mail me demanding to know when the restaurant will open here.

Now, a spokesperson for the chain confirms that the first Wichita Jersey Mike’s should open at 2564 N. Greenwich, Suite 550, by the end of the year. It’ll go into one of the vacant spots in the Wichita Crossing strip center that also contains Eat Fit Go and faces south. Texas Roadhouse and Academy Sports are in the same complex.

Though construction doesn’t appear to have started inside the space, the Jersey Mike’s website now lists the address under “Coming Soon” on its “Find A Location” page.

Wichita’s first Jersey Mike’s should open by the end of the year at Greenwich and K-96. Denise Neil The Wichita Eagle

Jersey Mike’s, a New-Jersey based chain, has been teasing Wichita for nearly three years. It was early 2017 when a group of franchisees first announced that they’d be bringing several Jersey Mike’s to the market. But they soon got tied up opening Jersey Mike’s restaurants in Lincoln, Nebraska, so their Wichita plans were delayed.

In the meantime, they lost the rights to be the exclusive franchisee for the Wichita area. This Jersey Mike’s will be owned by Chris Stong, whose family owns the NuWay chain.

Stong, who still works in operations for NuWay and will continue to do so, said that he wanted to do his own thing and he started looking for businesses he could bring to Wichita. He loved the Jersey Mike’s concept, he said, and when he traveled to Kansas City to try the food, he loved that too.

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He signed a three-unit deal with the company, he said, and he’ll start looking for his next location once the first one is up and running.

Stong said that people who have heard what he’s up to are excited. The Jersey Mike’s sandwich has quite a reputation, he’s learned.

“It’s the best sandwich in the category,” he said. “Nobody does it better.”

Jersey Mike’s has more than 2,000 restaurants open and under development across the United States. The restaurants specialize in hot subs, cold subs and wraps served on freshly baked bread. The chain is known for a topping called “the juice,” which is a zingy mixture of olive oil and red wine vinegar. You can see the menu below.

I’ll keep you updated as construction progresses.

Jersey Mike’s menu

Beloved Wichita restaurants that closed their doors in 2018.

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.