Annual catfish fry Saturday at the Artichoke

Patrick Audley, center, on a long ago catfishin’ trip

It’s the end of September, that time of year with Artichoke owner and fisherman Patrick Audley starts thinking about frying catfish.

Starting at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Audley is putting on his 30th annual catfish fry, which he always does as a customer appreciation event. It’ll be at the Artichoke, 811 N. Broadway.

Usually, he fishes the main course himself. But this year, Audley said, he’s “on a catch and release program,” so the catfish he’s serving will be farm-raised. Patrons can enjoy catfish, red beans and rice, hush puppies and other fixings for free until the food runs out.

Also on Saturday, the bar will host an open mike night  in association with the Kansas Acoustic Arts Association and Stage 5 Sound. The music starts at 6 p.m.

For more information, call 316-263-9164.

Metro To Go will bring you food, medicine, etc.

The Metro To Go-mobile.

Scrolling through Facebook, I recently noticed that The Artichoke had just signed on to partner with a business called Metro To Go.

As it turns out, The Artichoke isn’t the 3-year-old businesses’ only dining partner. Owned by George Odom, Metro To Go will deliver just about anything to anyone who is within the borders of 119th west to Greenwich east and 27th Street north to 47th Street south.

Metro To Go’s main business is restaurant delivery, which comes in handy in Wichita — a town that pretty much delivers only pizza. Those who place an order with one of the service’s “partner” restaurants, listed on its website, pay $6.49 for deliveries up to $30 and $1 more for every $10 above that. Partner restaurants include The Artichoke, Fusa, Le Monde, Saigon and more. Patrons also can order from a non-patron restaurant, but then the delivery fee is $10.

People use Metro to Go for other things, too, such as having medicine or other items delivered. Many of their customers are home-bound people or those who don’t want to fight the weather or their schedules to get out.

To use Metro To Go, visit the website or call  316-448-0308.

Corned beef and cabbage are on this weekend’s menu

The Shamrock will have Irish food and drink all weekend.

St. Patrick’s Day is Sunday, which means that all over Wichita, cooks are preparing to simmer up pots of the traditional corned beef and cabbage.

Each year, I try to gather a list of who’s offering Irish food specialties. Let me know if you are aware of other bars or restaurants offering Irish fare.

The Artichoke, 811 N. Broadway: The Irish restaurant’s annual party, which spills out into a tent in the parking lot, is from 1 to 10 p.m. Saturday. Admission: $10 for adults, $15 for couples and free for ages 16 and under for activities in the outdoor tent, including live Irish and acoustic music, live Irish dancing and contests. They’ll also serve corned beef and cabbage. For more information, call 316-393-9037

Shamrock Lounge, 1724 W. Douglas: Wichita’s other Irish bar is calling St. Patrick’s Day this year “a holiday so nice, we have to do it twice.” Saturday activities include a 9 a.m. Irish breakfast, Irish and beef stew for lunch, bagpipers at 4 and 8 p.m. and green beer and other drink specials through the day. On Sunday, the bar will open at 11 a.m. with a corned beef and cabbage dinner, which will be served again at 6 p.m., plus bagpipers throughout the day and a 10:30 p.m. performance by The Sluggos. See the Shamrock’s Facebook page for a complete schedule.

Pumphouse, 825 E. Second St.: The bar’s second annual Kegs & Eggs starts Saturday morning with an all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet, offered from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.. It’s $5. The bar also will serve green beer all day and will feature the band Whisky Militia at 2 p.m. On Sunday, the Pumphouse will serve corned beef and cabbage from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.

Larry Bud’s Sports Bar, 2120 N. Woodlawn and 6200 W. 21st St.: In addition to kegs of green beer, Larry Bud’s will be serving corned beef and cabbage on Sunday with appearances by bagpipers scheduled for 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the east side restaurant. The west side also will have corned beef and cabbage plus bagpipers at 5 p.m.

Piccadilly, 7728 E. Central: The restaurant will have corned beef and cabbage dinners through Saturday and also will add the dish to the Sunday brunch buffet.

Heroes Sports Bar, 117 N. Mosley: Heroes is featuring corned beef and cabbage Friday through Sunday, bagpipers Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 5 p.m. The bar will also have green beer and Guinness specials all weekend.

Toni D’s, 650 N. Carriage Parkway: The restaurant is offering several St. Patrick’s day specials, including a corned beef and cabbage dinner with new potatoes and bread, Reuben sandwiches and decorated cookies. The specials are available 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday and are available for eat-in or carry-out.

Walt’s Great American Sports Bar & Grill, 7732 E. Central: Walt’s is serving its traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner for $10.99 a person from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday. Call 316-691-8800 for more information.

Question of the week: What’s Wichita’s best sandwich?

Pho Hot's banh mi, a Vietnamese sandwich made with grilled pork, herbs and veggies on a homemade French roll.

Thursday is National Sandwich Day, and I’m not making that up.

In honor of November’s second-most-important holiday, let’s talk sandwiches.

Which local sandwich is your favorite? I have a few, including Metro Grill’s Cuban sandwich, Tanya’s Soup Kitchen’s Milano and the Nancy’s No. 8, famously made by The Artichoke. I’m also a big fan of almost any locally produced banh mi — which are amazingly delicious Vietnamese sandwiches.

What are your favorite Wichita sandwiches?

Let me know in the comments section below.

Free catfish fry at the Artichoke

Artichoke owner Pat Audley appreciates his customers so much, he fishes for them.

Accomplished bar owner and fisherman Pat Audley is putting on his 28th annual fish fry from 6 to 11 p.m.-ish on Saturday at the Artichoke, 811 N. Broadway.

Every year, Audley fries up the fish he wrangles out of the Arkansas River (with the appropriate license, he is quick to point out) and serves it as part of a customer appreciation party. On Saturday, patrons can enjoy catfish, red beans and rice, hush puppies and coleslaw. The meals are free until the food runs out.

Also on Saturday, the bar will host an open mike night  in association with the Kansas Acoustic Arts Association and Stage 5 Sound. The music starts at 6 p.m., but performers should arrive to sign up at 5 p.m.

For more information, call 316-263-9164.

Irish eatin’

It’s St. Patrick’s Day week, which means that soon the green beef will be flowing and the cabbage will be simmering.

Several restaurants and bars in town are offering Irish-flavored specials this week in honor of the greenest of holidays. Among the specials you might consider checking out:

Bierocks, Brats n BBQ at 1225 W. Douglas is offering corned beer and cabbage, shepherds pie and Irish creme cheesecake today through Thursday.

Toni D’s, 650 N. Carriage Parkway is offering several St. Patrick’s day specials, including a corned beef and cabbage dinner with new potatoes and bread, Reuben sandwiches and decorated cookies. The specials are available 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday.

The Artichoke at 811 N. Douglas will serve mulligan stew as a special all day on Thursday and will feature the music of my harmonizing pals Erin and Alan Craddock in the evening. She’s very Irish, FYI.

Old Chicago’s St. Pat’s Mini Tour: The restaurant known for its beer selection is offering its annual tour of Irish beers, including Guinness Irish Stout, Killian’s Irish Red Lager and Odell Myrcenary Double IPA. The tour started last month and is available through Thursday.

The annual Blarney Breakfast, a fundraiser for Rainbows United, is scheduled for 6 to 9:30 a.m. Thursday at Old Chicago, 7626 E. Kellogg. Tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for children under 12 and can be purchased at Old Chicago east or at the door the morning of the event.

Know of anything I’m missing?

Fish fry!!!!

friedcatfishThe Artichoke, the bluegrassy bar with a killer sandwich menu at 811 N. Broadway, is showing its customers appreciation this weekend with a good ole fashioned fish fry.

This is the 27th annual customer appreciation fish fry, and the bar will be serving up free catfish, hushpuppies, red beans and rice and fixings starting at 6 p.m. on Saturday.

The event lasts from 4 to midnight and also will feature a benefit auction for the Kansas Acoustic Arts Association and an open mic from 4 to 11 p.m. For more information, call 316-269-2784.