Clifton Square’s French restaurant not happening after all

A new French restaurant is opening in the old John Brown’s space this summer.

Au Paris-Bruxelles, a French and Belgian restaurant planned for Clifton Square, isn’t going to happen after all.

Owner Jo Zakas said she recently heard from Florence and Didier Fraikin, who had been in the process of moving to Wichita from Belgium to open the restaurant.

On their way to Wichita from California, their car broke down, and they ran out of money, they told Zakas. Despite having paid on their lease at Clifton Square, the couple decided they had to scrap their plans.

It’s the second deal to fall through for the space that last held John Browns. Previously, Kevin Brown and Tracy Fahrbach had announced they’d open Mortimer’s Piano Bar there then changed their minds.

Clifton Square is on a dining upswing, though. Both Ziggy’s Pizza (one of my favorite places to eat in Wichita) and College Hill Creamery drew big crowds throughout the summer.