Hana Next Door to open Friday

WICHITA — It’s already been almost a year since Eunice and Jay Kim announced they planned to open Hana Next Door, which will be next to their Hana Cafe in Old Town Square.

Friday, it’s finally happening.

“I’m so nervous,” Eunice Kim says.

She says it’s been a long time since she started a restaurant from scratch, and even though this is a small one, it’s proven to be difficult.

The Kims are planning express-style Korean food in the space the Wichita Police Department substation previously occupied.

One of the restaurant’s highlights will be a bibimbap station where customers can select vegetables and meat to eat over rice with a flavorful chili sauce on the side, which is a traditional Korean dish.

Eunice Kim says she hopes to ease into the new restaurant with a soft opening.

Hana Next Door will open in 2013

WICHITA — Eunice and Jay Kim are still planning another expansion of their Hana Cafe in Old Town Square, but it won’t happen next month as they originally thought.

“We’re still working on it,” Eunice Kim says.

She says Hana Next Door, which is taking the space the Wichita Police Department substation previously occupied, will open sometime in early 2013.

The new Hana concept is slightly different from the traditional Korean, Japanese and sushi dishes Hana Cafe offers. It will have express-style Korean food that diners can take to go. There will be limited seating as well.

The new restaurant also will have more tofu and vegetarian offerings along with salads and what Kim calls “healthy food.”

We’ll let you know an opening date as soon as there is one.

Hana Cafe owners expand with casual Korean concept Hana Next Door

WICHITA — Two years from when Eunice and Jay Kim opened their expanded Hana Cafe in Old Town Square, the couple is expanding again.

This time, though, they’re offering a new concept.

The Kims are taking the space the Wichita Police Department is vacating in September when it moves its substation. The Kims plan to open Hana Next Door there this Christmas to sell express-style Korean food.

“This concept is a little different,” Eunice Kim says.

There will be some seating, but mainly the restaurant will be for carryout service.

“We needed (something) more casual,” Kim says. “We need that kind of restaurant inside the plaza because everywhere is fine dining.”

She says a lot of people have only 30 minutes for lunch.

“Our restaurant,” Kim says of Hana Cafe, “it takes time to have lunch.”

In addition to offering faster service, Hana Next Door will have differently spiced dishes than Hana Cafe. There will be more tofu and vegetarian offerings along with more salads and what Kim calls “healthy food.”

Like Hana Cafe, the new restaurant will offer the Korean dish bibimbap, which is vegetables and protein served over rice with a flavorful chili sauce on the side. Unlike what Hana currently offers, the new restaurant will have a bibimbap station where diners can select vegetables and meat.

Read More »