After the initial question of whether an east-side business will go west or west-side one will go east, the next question often is will they open somewhere centrally?
Doc Green’s Gourmet Salads & Grill owners Tammi and Scott Kuthan are happy to finally be able to answer affirmatively because it’s a question their customers frequently ask.
“We’ve been looking,” Tammi Kuthan says of a several-years quest for a central site, “and we just could not find the right fit.”
She and her husband have signed a deal for 3,000 square feet in the same center as Freebirds World Burritos along Hillisde just south of the Walgreens at Central and Hillside.
“This is what we’ve been waiting for,” Kuthan says.
“The traffic we need is definitely there,” she says. “That intersection is just always busy.”
The Kuthans do a lot of catering through their Doc Green’s restaurants on the east and west side, so Tammi Kuthan says it makes sense to be near Wesley Medical Center, Wichita State University and residences near Central and Hillside to be able to do more catering.
“When we first came to Wichita, it was a completely new concept,” Kuthan says.
That was a decade ago when the first Wichita Doc Green’s opened at the Waterfront at 13th and Webb Road, where it still is.
At the time, the business was a franchise, but now the Kuthans own the concept independently.
“It took some time, but then it just flourished, and business has been great,” Tammi Kuthan says. “We’ve had an awesome, awesome … several years.”
Three years after opening the first restaurant, the Kuthans opened a second one at NewMarket Square at 21st and Maize Road.
Kuthan says she likes being able to provide healthy options for diners.
“It just seems to be what customers love these days.”
The restaurant’s concept is a bit like Chipotle Mexican Grill in that you walk up to a counter to order and pick your ingredients if you’re having a salad. There are a lot of make-your-own-salad selections, but there are sandwiches, wraps and entrees, too.
The newest Doc Green’s will be slightly larger than the first two, which are more like 2,800 square feet.
The layout will be similar to the NewMarket Doc Green’s but will have updated decor.
Doug Malone and his son, Michael Malone, of J.P. Weigand & Sons handled the deal for the new space.
“We really want to be open by January 1st to help everyone with their New Year’s resolutions of eating healthier,” Kuthan says.
Realistically, though, it’ll probably be more like mid-February.
Kuthan says there’s a Facebook petition someone started to get the Kuthans to open in Lawrence.
“I thought that was pretty cool,” she says. “It is on our radar. It is something we’ve always wanted to do.”
The Kuthans’ daughter, Lauren, attended the University of Kansas for a time, and their son, Alec, will be a freshman next year.
“He’s like, ‘Mom, I totally think you need to do this because then I can eat free every day.’”
A Doc Green’s food truck is another idea that’s come up.
“You never know,” Kuthan says. “Crazier things have happened.”