On the heels of a huge debut on the west side, Bricktown Brewery Group has closed on a deal for a second Bricktown Brewery in the former Applebee’s near 21st and North Rock Road.
“I don’t normally double down in a market this quick,” says Buck Warfield, president of the Oklahoma-based company.
He says he’s confident for a couple of reasons.
One is customer response so far.
“We’re hearing wonderful feedback from the guests,” Warfield says.
He says the first month of business at 21st and Tyler in the former Chapada Chophouse & Churrascaria space has been “absolutely fantastic.”
“Execution has been very solid for a brand-new business.”
Also, Warfield knows the market well from being head of development for Old Chicago for a decade.
“The history in Wichita gave me a great deal of confidence.”
He says customers responded well to Old Chicago, “which gave me a lot of comfort in looking at the Wichita market.”
The new Bricktown Brewery will be across from Bradley Fair, which Warfield calls “sort of ground zero for the east side.”
He says most other restaurants in the area are either significantly pricier than Bricktown Brewery or more casual, so he expects it to fill a niche.
“We think we’re going to get the same sort of response from the customer,” Warfield says.
He says the west side has less competition, though, so he’s not sure if the new Bricktown Brewery will see as much traffic.
Applebee’s franchisee Jim Stevens moved his restaurant to the Plazzio development at 13th and Greenwich last year. Since then, he’s gutted his former Applebee’s space, which will allow Bricktown Brewery to remodel and open in September.
“I’ve eaten there twice,” Stevens says of the one on the west side. “Their food is the best in town other than Applebee’s and Pie Five Pizza.”
Stevens also owns Pie Five. He says the owners of Bricktown Brewery are good operators.
“They know a lot about the business, and I’m sure they’re going to do very well there.”
Next, Warfield wants to find a downtown space for a third Bricktown Brewery, but he says he probably won’t move as quickly on that one.
“We’ll let the smoke clear a little bit.”