Category Archives: Bars

You don’t say

“They are not screwing around with this 48-hour thing. They’ve got it down to the minute.”

Jeremy Horn of Wichita Brewing Co. & Pizzeria, which can resume selling its own beer at 1:50 p.m. Thursday following a 48-hour suspension of its microbrewery license due to a clerical error the business made

Finns Lounge grand reopening is Saturday

WICHITA — Like most bar and restaurant openings, the new version of Finns Lounge in Old Town has taken longer than expected to get ready.

It’s ready now, though.

Amy Stepien, who used to work at Finns when Greg Finley owned it, and her husband, Jason, are having a grand reopening on Saturday.

While staff is in training this week, Amy Stepien says Finns will accept walk-in business as well.

The bar, which no longer has any affiliation with Finley, is at 131 N. Rock Island.

As Amy Stepien told Have You Heard? in March, “It is still going to be Finns Lounge because Finns has been known in Old Town.”

Hopping Gnome brewery to open on East Douglas near the Donut Whole

WICHITA — Lots of people dream of turning a hobby into a business, but Torrey Lattin – with his wife’s blessing – is doing it.

“My wife and I are starting a small craft beer brewing company here in Wichita,” Lattin says.

“It has been a hobby of mine that turned into an obsession, and now I’m hoping I can make some money at it and share my excitement for craft beer with Wichita.”

Lattin hopes to open the Hopping Gnome at 1710 E. Douglas, which is a few doors west of the Donut Whole, by November.

“In folklore, gnomes are known for their drinking,” he says.

“Hopping” is for the hops he’ll use in brewing.

Lattin is a 3D drafter and designer for MKEC Engineering. His wife, Stacy Ward Lattin, works for the Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland. She won’t be part of the day-to-day business, but Lattin says his wife encouraged him to open it.

“She said, ‘Let’s do it,’” he says. “She’s been very supportive.”

Read More »

Rage to convert to Boots & Buckles

WICHITA — He’s gone country, back to his roots.

Well, Pat Alvarez isn’t actually living out an Alan Jackson song, but he is converting his Old Town club Rage into a country bar.

“I decided to completely change the format,” says Alvarez, who also owns the Port of Wichita. “There’s no country in Old Town.”

Boots & Buckles will open May 30. Alvarez is calling it “Wichita’s premier saloon.”

“It’s not that Rage wasn’t working,” he says. “It’s just that we’re all doing the same music.”

Rage, which opened early this year, is closed as Alvarez gets ready for the conversion.

“We’re going to kind of country-nize it, I guess,” he says. “Beat it up a little bit.”

Alvarez says the space, which is at the former Club Liquid site at 235 N. Mosley, won’t change dramatically. The music will, though.

“The format is definitely going to be 100 percent country.”

Central Standard Brewing conditional use permit denied, but business will still open

WICHITA — Andy Boyd of Walter Morris Cos. has been in the real estate business for a decade, but he’s been learning a new side of it lately.

Boyd and Ian Crane have home brewed beer together for a decade. Now, they’re opening Central Standard Brewing in 4,000 square feet in a building they purchased across from Hyde Park not far from the southwest corner of Douglas and Hydraulic, but they’ve faced opposition from some in the neighborhood.

“Dealing with the government and neighbors is tough,” Boyd says. “It’s tough when you’re dealing with emotions.”

When Boyd first told Have You Heard? about his plans in March, he says he didn’t realize the park would trigger a need for a conditional use permit to allow live music at the business along with more alcohol sales than food sales.

“The park is kind of why we bought the building in the first place, kind of bringing nature into our setting,” he says.

The planning commission had a tied vote over the permit on Thursday, which means it’s denied.

Read More »

You don’t say

“These walls hold lots of secrets what is just one more?”

– The Candle Club’s Julie Fitzthum joking in a weekly e-mail to members about stopping in for a three-martini lunch

Quincy’s Bar & Grill owner to open second restaurant and bar in Moundridge

WICHITA — Kyle Estep wasn’t looking to open a bar and restaurant in his wife Nancy’s hometown of Moundridge, but that’s what he’s now doing.

“We’re just opening Quincy’s No. 2 out there,” says Estep, whose first Quincy’s Bar & Grill is near 21st and West streets.

Estep is opening in the 6,000-square-foot brick building that formerly was home to Block 32 Eatery & Pub in Moundridge.

He says the building was built in 2007 as something of a gift to the community.

“A couple of individuals felt that it was time to get a full-service restaurant in town,” Estep says.

“They spared no expense on stuff. It’s a beautiful facility.”

There’s a main level, a second floor meeting space that can hold 60 and “a bunkerlike basement.”

“They just shut it down about a year ago,” Estep says. “It’s been kind of mothballed is the best way to describe it.”

Read More »

Raven’s Room to open at Pour Haus space

UPDATED — A new restaurant and bar is opening in the former Pour Haus Restaurant and Tavern space at the southeast corner of Maple and Seneca in early May.

Jeravicious Raven is opening Raven’s Room as “a restaurant and rock bar.”

Raven says he’ll have live music Thursdays through Saturdays and occasionally other days as well.

The business will be open every day but Sunday for lunch and dinner, which will mostly be burgers, sandwiches and steaks.

He previously owned Lexi’s Restaurant and Bar at 3008 W. Central.

“It didn’t go very well,” Raven says.

“I really didn’t have enough money to do it,” he says. “There were so many things I didn’t know.”

Read More »

Loft 150 likely will transform into new venue

WICHITA — Loft 150 above River City Brewing Co. in Old Town is a teenager now, and that means it’s time for a change.

“We’ve got to reinvest in our business if we’re going to keep people coming in here,” says operating partner Chris Arnold.

The 21-year-old River City Brewing created Loft 150 during a remodeling in 2001 to give it “a little more bar feel … to get that late night crowd to come in here,” Arnold says.

He says there was more of a dimly lit lounge feel with leather couches than the rustic look of River City.

“It worked great for a lot of years,” Arnold says. “That trend is just kind of over.”

While downstairs business “is really, really great right now,” he says upstairs “got stagnant, just slowed down a little bit.”

He has bids out to remodel the upstairs and create a feel more similar to the downstairs with hardwood floors, exposed beams, a lighter look and new garage doors onto its balcony.

Read More »

Ernie Biggs may reopen this weekend

WICHITA — Ernie Biggs, the dueling piano bar near Central and Rock Road, is temporarily closed.

“We closed this past weekend and the previous weekend,” says Jay Hickman, an Arkansas-based partner in the business.

Hickman and Daniel Bryant along with two silent partners have bought out their Wichtia-based partners, including Whitney VinZant.

That meant a change in names on the liquor license, which means the business is temporarily without one.

“We decided to not risk it and closed it up,” Hickman says. “It’s tough. … It’s just out of our control right now.”

VinZant previously had the Gaslamp Grille & Lounge in that space.

He “got us in that spot, which has turned out to be an incredible spot,” Hickman says. “Business is excellent in Wichita.”

He says it was the goal from the beginning to eventually buy out the Wichita group.

Hickman says he hopes to reopen the business this weekend.

“We’re looking forward to getting back open, I can tell you that much.”