Category Archives: Burgers

Dempsey’s Burger Pub coming to Clifton Square

A burger from Dempsey's Burger Pub.

A burger from Dempsey’s Burger Pub.

The man who got his start in the restaurant business with one of my favorite college haunts is opening a burger place in Clifton Square.

Steven Gaudreau, a Wichita native, is opening Dempsey’s Burger Pub in the old John Browns Space in Clifton Square, 3700 E. Douglas. He’s started work on the remodel of the space but won’t know for several more weeks when he’ll be able to open.

Gaudreau got his start in 1991 with Quinton’s Bar & Deli, a delicious soup and sandwich place on Massachusetts Street in Lawrence. I ingested many calories there in the early 1990s.

He also owns a Quinton’s in Topeka, and there are Quinton’s franchises in Missouri and Iowa, too. He’s a  partner in Bison Witches Bar & Deli, too, which has locations in Norman, Okla., Lincoln, Neb., Tuscon and Tempe, Ariz.

Six years ago, he opened an Irish pub at 623 Vermont St. in Lawrence. Three years ago, he added gourmet burgers to the menu there. A year ago, he opened a Dempsey’s in Lincoln.

Wichita’s Dempsey’s will have all the menu items Lawrence’s does, but because he’ll have more space in Wichita, Gaudreau plans to expand the menu and add more heavy appetizers and sandwiches. The burgers are made with hormone-free beef and also offers Kobe burgers.

The dining room will take up both the upper level and lower level of the space, and Dempsey’s will serve alcohol as well.

It will not, however, have my beloved college staple: Wisconsin cheese soup in a bread bowl. (I plan to visit anyway.)

This is Clifton Square’s third attempt in recent years to get a restaurant in the space, which has been vacant since 2011. French restaurant Au Paris-Bruxelles was slated to open but never did. Mortimer’s Piano Bar was slated to go in before, that but also never happened.

Gaudreau grew up in Wichita, attending Blessed Sacrament and Kapaun Mt. Carmel high school. He remembers frequenting a candy store in Clifton Square as a child.

“This is a homecoming,” he said.

Stay tuned for more details.

Yo-B a good fit for Old Town Square

yo b interiorFor this week’s Go! section, I reviewed Yo-B Yogurt & Burgers, which is Old Town Square’s newest restaurant.

When I first heard what Nabil Bacha, owner of Cafe Bel Ami, was planning to do with the space that had previously held upscale restaurants Uptown Bistro and Luca Italian Kitchen, I wasn’t sure it would work.

yo b burgers

Check out the cheesy “skirt” on that burger on the left. Yummmmmm.

But when I visited Yo-B, which specializes in self-serve yogurt and inexpensive, tasty burgers, I found a bright, clean space catering to post-movie date nighters, fountain-frolicking families and downtown residents.

My favorite thing about the menu: A baked disc of cheese that Yo-B calls a “skirt” and puts on its skirt burgers. Yum.

Check out my review.

Oh, and by the way, kids love Yo-B.

A big bowl of pink goodness

A big bowl of pink goodness

Mooyah adds pick-up window

moo yah drive thruMooyah, the burger restaurant at 352 S. West St., has just added a drive-through pick-up window.

It’s not a typical drive through where customers order on the spot. It’s intended for people who call ahead or place online orders and want to drive up to pick up their food rather than park, go in the restaurant and stand in line.

Anthony Powell, who opened the restaurant in November of 2012, said he was impressed by the volume of business neighbor Cinnamon’s Deli did with its pick up window and decided it was something that would make sense at Mooyah, too.

“I’ve already had a lot of people say, ‘This is great,’ especially moms with kids,” Powell said.

To place a Mooyah order in advance, either call the restaurant at 316-558-5600, visit the Mooyah website or download the Mooyah app.

Green chile burgers for solidarity at Old Mill

The green chile burger from Santa Fe Bite, formerly Bobcat Bite.

The green chile burger from Santa Fe Bite, formerly Bobcat Bite.

Old Mill Tasty Shop owner Mary Wright knows green chiles. She has the most legendary green chile in town on the menu at her restaurant, 604 E. Douglas.

Earlier this week, some customers stopped in and were distraught. They told Wright that Bobcat Bite, a Santa Fe, N.M., restaurant legendary for its simple menu featuring green chili burgers, home fries and little else, had closed.

The group of diners, along with Mary and her son, Don, got themselves depressed, then outraged. Soon after, they learned that the restaurant had moved, not closed. It also changed its name to Sante Fe Bite.

Still, the incident got green chile burgers on Wright’s mind. So this weekend, she’s making some.

The green chile-topped burgers will be available with a side of home fries for $8.95 from 4 to 8 p.m. on Saturday. They feature 6-oz. patties topped with chopped green chiles.

Old Mill is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturdays. For more information, call 316-264-6500.

Spangles surprised by sales of ‘The Beast’

Spangles customers MIkey, 8, and Cole, 10, tackle The Beast.

Spangles customers MIkey, 8, and Cole, 10, tackle The Beast.

Local hamburger chain Spangles introduced an item I’d put in the category of “stunt food” on Christmas Eve. And customers are playing along with surprising enthusiasm, the restaurant’s marketing director says.

It’s a burger named “The Beast,” and it features six 1/3-pound steak burger patties layered with 12 slices of American cheese and topped with mustard, ketchup, onion and pickle.

The burger, a 3,000-calorie monster, is too big for the average mouth to even bite.  But that’s not stopping Spangles customers.

Um..... No.

Me?….. No.

On New Year’s Day, said marketing director Stephanie Huckins, 12 people ordered the burger, including a pair of brothers who challenged each other to a burger-eating contest.

The burger, which costs $21.99, was the brainchild of Dale Steven, the chain’s co-owner.

“It’s something fun for people to talk about,” Huckins said. “We don’t expect people to eat it alone by any means.”

The Beast is a limited-time offering but will be around as long as customers keep ordering it, Huckins said.

By the way, if the sixer isn’t enough, you can also get  The Beast in a value pack for $24.99.

Mooyah celebrating birthday with deals

Tuesday is the one-year anniversary of the opening of business for Mooyah, a burger restaurant at 352 S. West St., and it’s celebrating by offering food deals to customers.

All day on Tuesday, customers who buy one burger can get one free. Also, the first 111 customers in the door will each get a coupon for a free 12 oz. shake with purchase of burger and fries, valid on their next visit.

And those who visit the restaurant can enter a contest in which they write, in one sentence, the reason they are Mooyah’s No. 1 fan. The winner gets a $111 gift card.

For more information, contact Mooyah at 316-558-5600.

The burgers battled… and Fizz won

The Fizz burger fixers, hard at work.

Saturday night’s Battle of the Burgers, a first-time fundraiser put on by KETCH at Old Cowtown, was fun. I know I’ve never eaten so many burgers in one sitting.

I joined a panel of three other judges, and we blind tasted at least 14 different burgers and ranked them, looking for winners in three categories: Traditional, contemporary and gourmet.

Judges. Can’t. Move. Too. Full.

The participants were Fizz Burgers & Bottles, Mooyah, The Anchor, Public at the Brickyard, the Hyatt’s Harvest Kitchen/Bar and Heroes Sports Bar & Grill, and they topped their burgers with sauces, pickles, onions, pickled onions, onion strings, bacon and more.

The evening’s big winner was Fizz Burgers & Bottles, which is at 7718 E. 37th St. N. Their burger, which was topped with chopped lettuce and a nice sauce, was not only the judges’ choice for “best traditional” burger, but it also earned the People’s Choice trophy.

A bit of the burger submitted by Public at the Brickard.

The Anchor, which grilled up a very big, beefy burger on an onion bun, won the best gourmet category.

And Mooyah, the new burger restaurant that opened last fall at 352 S. West St,  had the best contemporary burger.

KETCH employees say they hope to make the event an annual happening. It’d be fun to see even more burger cookers there next year.

Old Cowtown overflowing with food, drink

Old Cowtown Museum will be full of food and drink lovers this weekend. The venue at 1865 W. Museum Blvd. has two big food events scheduled.

Local restaurants will be competing for these beautiful burger trophies this weekend.

On Saturday, a new fundraiser called Battle of the Burger will fill the grounds.  The event, a fundraiser for KETCH, starts at 6 p.m. Saturday and will have six local restaurants serving samples of their burgers, trying to claim the title of best burger maker.

The participating restaurants all have good burgers, so competition should be fierce: Fizz Burgers & Bottles, Mooyah, The Anchor, Public at the Brickyard, the Hyatt’s Harvest Kitchen/Bar and Heroes Sports Bar & Grill.

In addition to sampling the burgers, attendees also get a beer, dessert, chips and access to  car show, wagon rides and live music by the band Turnback Creek. I’m a judge at the event, so I’ll see you there.

Tickets are $35, available at the door or by visiting ictburgerbattle.com or by calling 316-383-8889.

Just look at these folks, moseying with their wine.

Then, on Sunday, the fifth annual Wine Mosey will move in.  It’s scheduled for 4 to 8 p.m. and will feature hors d’oeuvres provided by the Double Tree by Hilton Airport and a barbecue dinner by Wichita Wagonmasters. It also will feature stagecoach rides, saloon girls, antique bowling and gunfights plus a live auction and music by the Diamond Wranglers. Admission is $40 a person at www.wichitatix.com or by calling 316-350-3323.

Opening soon on West Street: YOLO Grill

Another restaurateur is giving it a go in the old Sonic at 803 N. West St. that in recent years has housed La Reyna 2, Sloppy Joe’s, Si Senor, Takhoma Burger and more.

The sign went up this weekend for YOLO Grill, a restaurant that also has a Facebook page that says it will open very soon. It’s owned by Aaron and Cindy Cline and will specialize in made-from-scratch food such as burgers, hand-cut fries, pork sliders, Reuben sandwiches, salads and more.

YOLO stands for “You Only Live Once,” according to the page. The restaurant will have carry-out service and outdoor seating. There’s not much space inside the actual building, which recently got a new coat of bright green paint.

Once open, the restaurant’s hours will be 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays.

I’ll let you know when there’s a firm opening date.

Battle of the Burger scheduled for September

There’s a new food fundraiser in the works that will pit local burger cookers against each other in a Battle of the Burger.

The event, being planned by KETCH, will be Sept. 14 at the Old Cowtown Museum and asks restauratuers to bring their burgers to battle it out, both for a judges’ award and for a people’s choice title. At the moment, the organization is recruting restauratns to participate.

Those who are interested should must fill out a form, found here. They also can call Ashley at 316-38-8889.

They’ve asked me to be a judge. Hmmmm. Let me think for a minute yes.