Dining With Denise Neil

Wichita restaurants opening in 2016: Mediterranean, Indian, cheesesteaks and more

The return of Angelo’s should happen in February.
The return of Angelo’s should happen in February. The Wichita Eagle

Coffee, smoothies and Indian food for downtown. Cheese steaks for the west side. More Mediterranean food for the east side. An IHOP on the south side. And the long-anticipated return of Angelo’s.

All are on the long list of dining developments for 2016 in Wichita. Save this list so you know what’s coming when. Although, keep this in mind: Restaurant opening dates were made to be pushed back.


Smoothie King, Union Station, 711 E. Douglas: The drive-through board is up, and Smoothie King will be the first business to open in the new Union Station project on East Douglas. It should be ready to go sometime next week, said Chad Stafford, project developer.

Planet Sub, 10330 W. Central: The west side’s new Planet Sub, which is going into the former Metro Grill, should be open in the next week or two.

Restaurante Usuluteco, 2265 S. Seneca: This popular El Salvadoran restaurant, which has operated at 1714 E. Northern for a decade, is in the process of moving to the larger Kimmy’s Cafe building and should be open by the end of next week, owners said.

Steel, 221 N. St. Francis: This new Old Town Bar should be open by next week and will serve a limited menu of panini sandwiches, says manager Levi King. By March, a separate food truck named Steel will be open and will regularly serve food outside the bar and at other spots around town. The bar will be open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily and will offer half-priced drinks from 4 to 8 p.m.

Whiskey & Boots Bar and Grill, 4000 S. Broadway: This new business will open in the former Crow’s Nest spot at 11 a.m. on Jan. 16. It will serve items like KC strip and Rocky Mountain oysters.

Ecclesia Coffee Shop, 7130 W. Maple: Rochelle Stroh says she will have her coffee shop, which she hopes will double as a ministry to young people, will open on Jan. 22. It’s in the same strip center at Maple and Ridge that has McAlister’s Deli, and it will serve coffee drinks, tea, pastries and cupcakes.

IHOP, 47th Street South and I-135: Wichita’s newest (and fourth) IHOP is set to open during the third week of January, said Ty Issa, who, along with his brothers, owns the three other IHOPs.

Subway, 37th Street North and Maize Road: A new Subway will open in front of Menards and south of the new Arby’s in mid- to late January.

Jimmie’s Diner, 2121 N. Tyler Road: The Davidson family will open its third Jimmie’s Diner at the end of January in the space most recently vacated by Ciao Italian Kitchen. Jack Davidson, his wife, Linda, and their son Joe also have Jimmie’s at 3111 N. Rock Road, which opened in 2007, and one in the former Toc’s Coffeehouse space at 1519 George Washington Blvd., which opened in 2012.

Wow Cheesesteaks and Hoagies, 803 N. West St.: Philadelphia transplant Tyler Sanders plans to open this Philly cheesesteak restaurant in the former Yolo Grill space sometime in January.

Scooter’s Coffeehouse, Douglas and Rock Island: The new Scooter’s coffee shop, which will have indoor seating and drive-through service at the corner of Douglas and Rock Island, is now set to open at the end of January or the first of February. It’s also part of the new Union Station project.


Angelo’s, 5231 E. Central: It’s been a long wait for fans of Angelo’s Wich-Italian delights like pizza and manicotti. But Jack Fasciano, who closed the last Angelo’s restaurant in 2006, plans to have his new version of the favorite Italian restaurant ready to go in the former Papa John’s corporate offices within four weeks, putting his opening date in early February. The restaurant was made possible by the $40,000 Fasciano raised as part of a Kickstarter campaign last year. He plans to start with a “pronto lunch” with a steam table of lasagna, manicotti, pizza by-the-slice, sub sandwiches and more. He’ll then add dinner, and he’ll also serve take-and-bake items.

Mumbai Rail Indian Bistro, Union Station, 701 W. Douglas: The back two-thirds of the Union Depot building, which also holds the new Smoothie King, will hold Mumbai Rail Indian Bistro. It will be a two-story restaurant that will have a fast-casual feel with counter service on the main level and table-side service and a full bar on the upper level. It will also have a walk-up window to serve after-hours crowds, as well as an outdoor patio. Developers now say Mumbai should be open in early February.

Two Olives, 2949 N. Rock Road: Joumana and Randa Toubia have decided to call the re-invention of their Piccadilly Grill, which will be in the old Chelsea’s space, Two Olives. It should be open in February and is described as a “chef-casual” eatery that will include many of the Mediterranean dishes and deli items Piccadilly once served. It will have a full bar and patio. The duo left their longtime spot at Piccadilly, Central and Rock, in October. That building has been demolished, and a new Sprouts Farmers Market will be built on the spot.

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, 2242 N. Greenwich: The first Wichita installment of this barbecue chain opened in October 2014 at 2768 N. Maize Road. The second is set to open on the east side at the Village at Greenwich, near 21st and Greenwich, likely by the end of February.


Bubba’s 33, Kellogg and Towne East Square Drive: The big building going up next to Longhorn Steakhouse is Bubba’s 33, a chain restaurant that’s a sister concept to Texas Roadhouse and will serve pizza, burgers, salads and beer. It’s set to open in early March.

Garden of Eatin’: A Food Company, 612 E. Douglas: Food truck operators Rebecca Amos, her brother Kevin Amos and her husband, Christopher Gable, plan to open a stationary version of their 4-month-old food truck that will serve the same items available on the truck that day. They’re aiming for a March opening.

Caesars Table, 125 N. Market: Sam Kuns is moving his buffet restaurant, which has operated since September 2014 on the mezzanine level at Market Centre, to the main floor of the building next door, called 125 N. Market. The space will have entrances from Market Street and from the 125 N. Market building’s lobby, and it will feature indoor “patio” seating for about 34, a dining room with seating for 88 and a private dining room intended for receptions and events that will seat 32. It will also have a full bar. It should be open in March.

Lola’s Bistro, 21st and K-96: Michael Abay plans to open this restaurant at Soho Plaza at 21st and K-96. He said it will serve American food made with French, Italian and Filipino influences. The restaurant should open sometime in March.

Union Station vendor canopies, 701 E. Douglas: The new Union Station project also will include three glass-covered, steel structures that can be closed up at night. One of them, said Stafford, will be filled by a local food truck operator, but he couldn’t say which one yet. The spaces will have granite countertops, open-air seating and big-screen television sets, and visitors can buy food and beverages and enjoy them on the large plaza in front of Union Station. The canopies should be open by March.

The Surly Mermaid, food truck: Ad Astra Food & Drink’s former chef Amanda Hague and her husband, Ben Hayes, hope to have their new food truck on the road by late March. It will be called The Surly Mermaid, and it will operate out of a 1956 Airstream Overlander. The menu will focus on sandwiches and bowls. The truck will have regular hours at Mulready’s Pub in Emporia but also will travel to other locations, possibly including Wichita.


Lemongrass: Taste of Vietnam, 300 N. Mead: Pho Hot owner Danny Nguyen is taking over the Caffe Moderne/Allegro Cafe space in Old Town Square and turning it into a Vietnamese restaurant that also will offer fresh seafood, steaks and a few French dishes. He says the restaurant should be open by April.

Meddy’s, 21st and Greenwich: Alex Harb says he hopes to have the second Wichita location of Mediterranean eatery Meddy’s ready to go in April.

Opening dates TBA

Picasso’s Pizzeria, 5900 E. Central: Kurt Schmidt plans to open an east-side location of his popular Picasso’s Pizzeria in the former Warren Travel Inc. building. He’s aiming for a late spring/early summer opening.

Little Lion Ice Cream, location TBA: Jubilee and Ian Miller plan to open their homemade ice cream shop sometime this year, although they don’t know yet when or where.

Kimchi, 2929 N. Rock Road: Another Korean restaurant, this one called Kimchi, is going into the space recently vacated by Juni’s Cafe. No word yet on an opening date.