Former Brews Brothers Ice House Bar and Grill owner buys west-side Emerson Biggins

WICHITA — Former Brews Brothers Ice House Bar and Grill partner Luis Lopez has purchased the west-side Emerson Biggins near 21st and Maize Road.

The Old Town Emerson Biggins is a separately owned business.

By May 9, Lopez hopes to have most of the old Brews Brothers menu in place.

“We’re going to have the same fun food and the same great times that we had at the Brews Brothers bar and grill.”

That includes dishes such as his pork chili, fried flour tacos, sweet pepper pastrami sandwich and signature Reuben.

“I thought I was going to change the name, but we decided to keep it Emerson Biggins,” Lopez says.

He says he gave up his two Brews Brothers restaurants, which were near 13th and Tyler and South Seneca and I-235, to concentrate on nine Burger King restaurants.

“I didn’t have the flexibility to run all of them.”

At the time, similar restaurants such as Old Chicago were expanding to more Wichita locations.

“I had a better opportunity with the Burger Kings.”

Now, he thinks his opportunity is with Emerson Biggins. Lopez would like to open one on the east side in 2013 followed by one in Hutchinson.

Lil Joe’s Dyne Quik closes after less than a year in business

WICHITA — Lil Joe’s Dyne Quik owner Richard Jack has given up.

Tuesday was the last day of business for the restaurant at 1202 N. Broadway.

Jack and his family did extensive work on the building before opening it nine months ago.

Dyne Quik is one of the city’s few remaining Valentine restaurants — metal, mobile diners that Wichita’s Valentine Manufacturing built between 1938 and 1971.

Jack says the location wasn’t right, though.

“I got tired of the prostitutes and the homeless people and the vagrants bugging customers,” he says.

Then, when the police would come to deal with those individuals, Jack says, they blocked his driveway.

There were other issues as well, he says.

“People are too used to going to McDonald’s and Burger King. They can drive through. Here, they have to pull up and actually walk in the building.”

Jack says he had a number of loyal customers — whom he says he especially appreciates – but not enough of them.

Moving the restaurant to another location is a possibility.

“Anywhere but here,” Jack says. “I loved cooking.”

Remaining open where he was is not an option.

“Sooner or later you get tired of hitting your head against the wall.”


Wheat State Pizza to open in Derby

WICHITA — Former Red Bean’s Bayou Grill & Bar co-owner Rick Jeffrey is opening a new restaurant.

He and Lawrence business partner Brad Remington are opening Wheat State Pizza in Derby on Feb. 7.

Remington already operates the franchise in Lawrence, Emporia and Baldwin.

“This is a quintessentially Kansas business,” says Jeffrey’s wife, Angie.

The interior of the 70-seat restaurant, which will be in a former Burger King at 236 W. Greenway in Derby Towne Center, will have a Kansas flair instead of looking like an Italian pizzeria.

There will be a mural of a wheat field on a wall celebrating the wheat in the restaurant’s crust. More traditional white crust will be available, too, along with 35 toppings.

There will be delivery and a pick-up window as well.

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Burger King space has activity, but that’s it

WICHITA — The long-vacant building at 2020 E. 21st near Wichita State University has seen some activity this week, but it’s not from a new tenant.

The windows at the former Burger King space have been boarded due to vandalism.

But Grant Glasgow, a broker with Grubb & Ellis/Martens Commercial Group, says there could be some news at the property coming soon.

“We have had some interest lately.”