WICHITA — A former Rock Island Cafe manager is bringing back the restaurant, this time on the east side.
“Just bringing back the Rock, that’s what I’ve been saying,”says Kirsten Teague.
The restaurant, which was open from 1985 until the mid-1990s, was next to Union Station in the former Rock Island Railroad baggage terminal. That’s the building that became home to the original Tanya’s Soup Kitchen.
Teague has been working on leasing space on North Rock Road.
“It’s kind of like a divorce to me,” Teague says of negotiations. “Here’s what I want, here’s what you want, now can we meet in the middle?”
It’s looking like she can’t meet in the middle on the place where she’s been negotiating, but Teague says, “I’ve got Plan B.”
Teague says she ran Rock Island Cafe after Sabrina Parker bought it from founders Chris Farha and Janet Cohlmia.
Parker, who owns Merle’s Place and the Walt’s All American Bar and Grill on West Central, isn’t involved in the new restaurant.
“She’s just my moral support,” Teague says.
She describes the new Rock Island as a gourmet sandwich shop with “weird combinations that are not normal.”
For instance, she’ll serve chicken salad with almonds and pineapple in pita bread.
“It’s not like all the sandwich shops in town,” Teague says. “I have people who still remember what we did.”