A few restaurant updates

I have a few updates on some local restaurants that have opened, are about to open or are opening later than they originally had planned.

The Jimmy’s Egg in front of the Office This complex at 4031 E. Harry is almost complete and will open this coming Monday, Dec. 19. The breakfast chain has four other Wichita locations, including one several blocks east at 7906 E. Harry as well as at 8728 W. Central, 7777 E. 21st St. and 220 S. West St.

Chosen Wok, the Great Bend-based fast Chinese restaurant going in the old Starbucks location near Central and Tyler, was originally scheduled to open this month. But it’s taking owners Michelle Chin and William Tsao a little longer than they expected to get the restaurant up and going. Chin now says the restaurant should be ready by the third week of January.

Another restaurant whose opening date is moving to January is Joe’s Old Town Bar and Grill, which was originally set to open at Second and Washington in September. Owner Charlie Badeen anticipates he’ll start work on the space soon and predicts an early January opening.

Finally, attentive and hungry Christmas shoppers no doubt have noticed that Towne East Square’s Cinnabon, which specializes in cinnamon rolls that can be smelled for miles, opened on the lower level near Sear’s several weeks ago.

What’s for dinner at Gaslamp

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Wichita must have been very good this year because in the first two weeks of December, it’s received the gift of not one but TWO fancy new restaurants.

The first was Newport Grill, which opened more than a week ago in Bradley Fair. And now, Gaslamp Grille & Lounge is open at 550 N. Rock Road, in the former Shadow/The Grape space.

Gaslamp is owned by Whitney VinZant’s restaurant group, which also has Mike’s Wine Dive and Jimmy’s Egg restaurants locally. It serves high-end fare such as escargot, fresh-shucked oysters, duck, seafood and dry-aged steaks. The restaurant has been completely and lavishly remodeled, with mahogany stained wood, u-shaped booths, a marble staircase and a balcony. (See what the interior looks like by clicking through a photo gallery on the restaurant’s Facebook page.)

You can peruse the whole menu here, and you’ll see that entrees range from $18 for a chicken dish to $38 for a 24-oz. bone-in ribeye.

Gaslamp serves food from 4 to 10 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and from 4 to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, though its lounge is open later every night.

Reservations are available by calling 316-260-1432.

Gaslamp Grille & Lounge

gaslampassembly.jpg 001I’ve been curious about what Whitney VinZant and his partner, former Yia Yia’s man Patrick Shibley, were up to at the former Shadow space at 550 N. Rock Road. As you can see at left, some pretty serious construction is going on.

I met with the duo at the construction site yesterday, where they let me climb a ladder and didn’t even make me mess up my hair with a hard hat. The restaurant they’re planning — Gaslamp Grille & Lounge — is going to be pretty spectacular, I think.

They’ve totally gutted the old Shadow space and are adding touches like mahogany stained wood, u-shaped booths, a marble staircase and a balcony. The restaurant will have a raw bar featuring all sorts of oysters, shrimp and other seafood, and another specialty will be dry-aged steaks. The two describe the menu as “classical with a French flair,” and their design concept was inspired by the high-end Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego.

It’ll have a lot of other un-Wichita-like touches, including complimentary valet service, an absinthe fountain, dramatic chandeliers, a grand piano, and a bunch of high-end, hard-to-find liquors and an all-season patio that’s a bit more casual.

Shibley and VinZant, who also owns Mike’s Wine Dive and local Jimmy’s Egg restaurants, plan to open Gaslamp  in the first week of December and initially will offer dinner only, though they may add lunch after the first of the year.  The menu should include several $20 to $30 entrees as well as some more expensive steak options, they said.

“It’s going to be surprising to a lot of people,” VinZant said. “When we open, they’re going to see a side of dining they haven’t seen in Wichita.”

Can’t wait.

Free food Tuesday

pancakesI’m back from my dreamy but way-too-short jaunt to Arizona, where I amazingly ate in very few restaurants. Instead, I did a whole lot of cooking and made some of my favorite recipes, including guacamole, Harvarti lavash, and this amazing steak.

But I digress.

I’m back and ready to blog, starting with a report about two ways to eat for free tomorrow.

The first is at local Jimmy’s Egg restaurants, which celebrates two years in Wichita on Tuesday. As a thank you to customers, the restaurants will offer a free short stack of pancakes, either buttermilk or whole wheat, all day on Tuesday. Wichita has five Jimmy’s Eggs.

Also, Cold Stone Creamery at 3000 N. Rock Road and 2441 N. Maize Road, is offering free samples of its eight-layer cakes from 5 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday. Quilted coffee caramel and cake batter layers are among the flavors offered. To see pictures of these tempting towers of ice creamy goodness, visit the website — or the store.

Jimmy’s Eggs keep multiplying

IMG_20100916_195633Wichita’s fifth Jimmy’s Egg is set to open on Wednesday in the spot at 2315 W. 21st St N. (near 21st and Amidon) that most recently housed Clear Lakes Cafe.

Jimmy’s Egg is a breakfast and lunch spot that already has restaurants at 8728 W. Central, 220 S. West St. 7777 E. 21st St. N. and 7906 E. Harry.

One of its specialties is a big ole pile of food called Jimmy’s Garbage Breakfast — a plate of hash browns topped with grilled onions, peppers, sausage, two eggs and a side of toast or biscuits and gravy.