Brints Diner, a Valentine diner, is back in business — again

unnamed-16You just can’t keep Brints Diner down.

The restaurant, which operates out of a tiny Valentine diner at 4834 E. Lincoln, closed late last month, the third time the restaurant has closed since longtime owner Jessie Medina shuttered it in October of 2012.

New owner Larry Harmon, the founder of Larry Bud’s Sports Bar & Grill, gave the place a thorough cleaning and quietly reopened the doors a couple of weeks ago, he said.  His menu is similar to what regular Brints customers had come to expect and focuses on “country breakfast” items plus diner lunches ranging from burgers to salads.

Brints hours are 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays. It’s closed on Sundays.

The restaurant is famous not only for its 2007 inclusion on Guy Fieri’s show “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” back in 2007 but also for operating inside a Valentine diner. About 2,000 of the buildings were made by Wichita’s Valentine Manufacturing between 1938 and 1971, and architecture buffs are still passionate about them.

For more information, call 316-440-8338.

Famous Valentine diner Brints closed again

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Brints Diner is closed again. But it could reopen soon, said the building’s landlord, Homer Morgan.

The restaurant, which has operated in a Valentine Diner at 4834 E. Lincoln for more than 50 years, has been through several owners over the past year.

Longtime owner Jessie Medina closed it in October of 2012. Shortly after, Neighbors Bar & Grill owner Chuck Giles took it over and ran it until this summer before deciding he was more of a one-restaurant man.

Morgan found new operators, but they recently fell behind on the rent, he said. He served them with an eviction notice a week ago, and by Friday, they were gone. The diner has been closed since.

Morgan says he has another restaurateur interested in running Brints under the same name, but he speculates the diner will be closed for at least a month.

Brints is famous not only for its 2007 inclusion on Guy Fieri’s show “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” but also for operating inside a Valentine diner. About 2,000 of the buildings were made by Wichita’s Valentine Manufacturing between 1938 and 1971, and architecture buffs are still passionate about them.

Former Brint's Diner owner Jessie Medina with Guy Fieri back in ???, when the diner appeared on

Former Brints Diner owner Jessie Medina with Guy Fieri back in 2007 when the diner appeared on “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.”

Other Valentine diners in Wichita include Grinder Man at 510 E. Pawnee, Sport Burger at 134 N. Hillside, and the now-closed Dyne-Quik/El Maya at 1202 N. Broadway.

Brints first opened in 1960 but was called Hunt’s Diner. Its next owners changed the name to Brints, which has stuck through present day.

I’ll keep you updated on the new owner.

Opening next week: new bar, old diner

A couple of businesses plan to open their doors next week, and one is right down the block from me.

Jon’s Ale House should open on Tuesday in the former Kelly’s Irish Pub spot at 917 E. Douglas, next door to The Beacon. Its focus will be craft beers from labels such as New Belgium, Free State, Tallgrass and more. The bar also will serve breakfast and lunch and is planning a menu filled with cold cut sandwiches, salads and soups such as a Guinness beef and vegetable soup. They’ll also have a few franks, including a quarter pounder topped with bacon and blue cheese.

Hours will be 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Tuesdays through Sundays. Owner Anthony Lynch has all but gutted the place, adding new furniture, new restrooms and a new bar top attractively decorated with craft beer labels.

Across town, Chuck Giles, the owner of Neighbors Restaurant & Bar at 2150 N. Amidon, says he’s almost ready to reopen Brint’s Diner at 4834 E. Lincoln. The restaurant, set up in a classic Valentine Diner building, was closed by former owner Jessie Medina back in October. Giles hopes to be ready to go by Thursday.

Baxter Springs’ Cafe on the Route closes

Guy Fieri with Cafe on the Route owners Amy and Richard Sanell.

My colleague Jerry Siebenmark alerted me to a sad Kansas restaurant event. Cafe on the Route, a well-regarded restaurant in Baxter Springs owned by Amy and Richard Sanell and once featured by Guy Fieri’s Food Network show “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” has closed. The couple had operated the restaurant for 14 years in a building that was built in 1865.

I’ve never visited this place, despite the fact that my parents live in nearby Carthage, and now it looks like I never will. Too bad, because I like the sound of fried potato salad, which was one of their specialties.

I’m starting to wonder if a visit from the recently vilified Mr. Fieri is a blessing or a curse. Another Kansas restaurant featured on the show, Brint’s Diner, closed in October. We just reported today that Neighbor’s Restaurant & Bar owner Chuck Giles is going to reopen it, though.

In the next couple of weeks, I’m going to partner with Kansas expert Beccy Tanner to create a guide to tiny Kansas cafes that must be sampled before it’s too late. Know of one? Nominate it in the comments section below.

Brint’s Diner is closing on Sunday

Guy Fieri, host of the Food Network's show, "Diners, Drive-ins and Dives," left, talks with Brint's Diner owner Jessie Medina back in 2007.

Brint’s Diner, famous not only for its 2007 inclusion on Guy Fieri’s show “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” but also for operating inside a Valentine diner, is closing on Sunday after eight years in business.

Jessie Medina bought the business at 4834 E. Lincoln and opened it in June of 2004  inside a metal, mass produced Valentine Diner. About 2,000 of the buildings were made by Wichita’s  Valentine Manufacturing between 1938 and 1971, and architecture buffs are still passionate about them. Brint’s first opened in 1960.

In 2007, the Diner was featured on Fieri’s Food Network show. At the time, the show was just about to debut.

Attention from that episode kept the diner alive, Medina said, but recent construction around the area has devastated it. His entryway has been blocked by construction crews, he said, and the down economy hasn’t helped. He hopes to reopen Brint’s somewhere in the area, preferably in a less tucked-away location with better street visibility.

Brint’s Diner will be open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday and will close at the end of business on Sunday. For more information, call 316-684-0290.

Keep reading for the article we published after Fieri’s visit in 2007.

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