Wasabi Sushi Bar West almost set to open

WICHITA — Wasabi founders Steve and Jasmine Young are, at long last, on the verge of opening their Wasabi Sushi Bar West.

“It should be here within the next week, maybe two weeks at most,” says manager Matt Polk.

The business is opening at 2404 N. Maize Road near Logan’s Roadhouse.

It was 2012 when the Youngs first told Have You Heard? they were opening on the west side, which followed their Old Town Wasabi in 2010 and one on North Rock Road after that.

Polk says several things have been holding up the west-side opening.

“There was just a lot of just minor delays,” he says.

A more major delay was that the Youngs sold their other two Wasabi restaurants in November.

“Obviously, them working out … the decision to sell North Rock and downtown was kind of a big factor,” Polk says.

He says the Youngs are interested in opening more Wasabis, including at least one more in Wichita, and they have children. He says “running so much stuff was too much stress.”

Polk says the idea is for the Youngs to “focus on giving their 110 percent on these new locations.”

He says they want to make the west-side Wasabi “the nicest and most upgraded, in their eyes.”

Look for a finalized opening date soon.

Issa brothers buy Scotch & Sirloin

Scotch & Sirloin, 5325 E. Kellogg Photo by Megan True/ TheWichita EagleWICHITA — Mike Issa now confirms what Have You Heard? reported last month.

He and his brothers, Ty and Ali, have purchased the Scotch & Sirloin.

“The Scotch is the oldest institution in Wichita,” Mike Issa says.

There actually are older restaurants, but Issa says, “We really believe this is Wichita’s tradition restaurant. We would love to be part of it.”

The Issas officially take over Jan. 16.

The brothers first approached majority owner Lindy Andeel a couple of years ago about buying the restaurant, which is on East Kellogg between Oliver and Edgemoor.

“We got busy with other venues,” Issa says of the delay.

The Issas own Larkspur Bistro & Bar in Old Town, YaYa’s EuroBistro in Bradley Fair, Hereford House at Terradyne Country Club, Heat Cigar & Hookah Lounge near Central and Rock and some IHOP restaurants in Wichita and Emporia.

Mike Issa is going to be more of a presence at the Scotch than his brothers.

“I’m going to be at the Hereford House, too,” he says of where he generally can be found already.

Issa says he and his brothers are able to do so many restaurants with “great help” and a “great management team.”

Karl Bachman is the new general manager the Issas hired to work at the Scotch. He’s already there.

Longtime general manager Sonny Glennon is still there, too.

“He’s still part of the whole package with us,” Mike Issa says.

Whether Glennon is still a co-owner in the business is unclear. Glennon referred questions to Issa, and Issa says only, “He’ll be working with our team 100 percent.”

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Pixel Time moving adult classes to Labor Party; still searching for children’s space

WICHITA — Pixel Time, which provides lessons in digital arts and Mac technology, is leaving CityArts where it’s been for several years.

Pixel Time owner Skyler Lovelace says it wasn’t her idea to move, but CityArts needed her space.

“It was so great to be downtown, especially this time of year,” she says, noting she especially enjoys the horse-drawn carriages through Old Town.

She’ll remain in Old Town, though in another area. Pixel Time is moving to the Labor Party at 216 N. Mosley where there is private and shared workspace among creative types and small companies.

“Even though it wasn’t my idea to move, I think I’m going to see some advantages,” Lovelace says.

She says CityArts “was closed a lot when I would have preferred to be open.” The Labor Party is open 24-7, she says.

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A change is in the works at Scotch & Sirloin

WICHITA — An ownership change appears to be in the works at one of Wichita’s most-storied restaurants, but no one seems to want to discuss it.

According to a filing with the state, Steaks R Us has applied for a liquor license at the Scotch & Sirloin.

Mike Issa, who is in business with his brothers Ty and Ali at several restaurants, is the applicant.

Mike Issa didn’t return a call for comment. Neither did Scotch co-owner Lindy Andeel.

Ty Issa demurs when asked about a possible purchase.

“Every time someone sees me having dinner with Lindy, they assume I’m doing something,” he says.

Scotch co-owner Sonny Glennon, who has been the face of the restaurant for years as the ever-present host, does not want to discuss a possible transaction with the Issas.

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said when initially asked about a sale last week.

This week, Glennon suggested asking the Issas what’s going on.

Doug Farha also is an owner of the Scotch. He did not return a call for comment.

The Issas own Larkspur Bistro & Bar in Old Town, YaYa’s EuroBistro in Bradley Fair, Hereford House at Terradyne Country Club, Heat Cigar & Hookah Lounge near Central and Rock and some IHOP restaurants in Wichita and Emporia.

Their deal at the Scotch is expected to close about a month into the new year. Look for more details soon.

B. Young salon to open in Elements Hair & Bodyshop space

WICHITA — There soon will be a familiar face in the Elements Hair & Bodyshop space.

That salon recently announced that it’s closing. Now Benjamin Young is opening B. Young in the almost 3,000-square-foot Old Town space at 211 N. Washington

“Ben actually worked at Elements for about eight years,” says Trace Wilson, who will manage the salon.

“A year and a half ago, he left Elements with another stylist, and we have been working out of Off the Top,” Wilson says. “For the past year or so, we’ve been looking for our own space.”

He says the Washington space makes sense for a number of reasons.

“Ben’s clients were used to it for so many years,” Wilson says.

“It’s a unique space being a two-story salon with parking in an established area like Old Town,” he says. “Sometimes you don’t find all of those elements together. It worked out well.”

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Vliet family sells Old Town property

UPDATED — Rich and Marni Vliet were a young couple in 1975 when they first started buying Old Town property.

“Rich began having this Old Town dream when we met,” Marni Vliet says of her late husband, who died of ALS two years ago.

First, they purchased the Looking Glass restaurant in the 400 block of East Douglas.

Then, in the mid 1980s, they began eyeing a dilapidated area of Old Town in the 900 block along East Douglas.

“We were beginning to get a feel for the frontage of Douglas,” Vliet says. “We used to sit at the Beacon and look at the block over our omelettes.”

The Vliets shared a dream and a dedication to the redevelopment of Old Town, and that included what Rich Vliet thought of as the entry point of Old Town.

“Rich was right,” Vliet says. “He said, ‘Old Town needs a face. … It needs a front door.’”

The Vliets purchased the property from 910 through 926 E. Douglas, which has 29,531 square feet over nine units. Friday, they sold it to a group called Old Town Ventures.

“I wouldn’t even characterize it as bittersweet,” Marni Vliet says. “It’s the end of a chapter for our family.”

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Revolution Rock Bar’s future is in flux; questions exist regarding Finns Lounge

WICHITA — Revolution Rock Bar has closed, but it’s not certain if that is permanent or not.

“We don’t know what we’re going to do with that yet,” says Jason Smith, director of operations for Melad Stephan’s Empire Restaurant Management.

Smith says the Old Town bar’s liquor license has expired.

“We don’t know if we’re going to renew it and reopen,” he says. “Business wasn’t where we wanted it to be.”

There’s more to the story, though.

Greg Finley of Finns Lounge has been running Revolution. In June, Have You Heard reported that Stephan said Finley was running the business for him until Finley could get his own liquor license and make changes, which could include a new concept.

According to state Alcoholic Beverage Control Division documents, Finley first applied for a license in May and was “denied that application due to Finley’s being disqualified by a previous revocation.” Finley applied for the license as president and sole owner of Sin, which does business as Revolution Rock Bar.

In August, according the documents, the ABC received a liquor license request from Finns Inc, doing business as Revolution Rock Bar, and Andrea Lambert was listed as president and sole owner.

The ABC conducted an investigation and found that the application showed Lambert’s address and e-mail as the same ones Finley had used. Upon interviewing Lambert, the ABC said Lambert said she never lived at that address. She said Finns was in her name, and she was signing paperwork for it, because of Finley’s inability to obtain a license. She said she was doing it for money.

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You don’t say

“Sentimentally, it just makes me feel better about it. I think it’s cool that people are wanting to put businesses down here still.”

Joni Green, who is closing her Elements Hair & Bodyshop after 14 years in Old Town but is pleased another salon (she can’t say which one yet) is taking her place at 211 N. Washington

Rage to open in former Club Liquid space

Wendy and Pat Alvarez in front of the future home of Rage in Old Town.

Wendy and Pat Alvarez in front of the future home of Rage in Old Town.

WICHITA — New Port of Wichita owner Pat Alvarez is working on a second bar, this time in Old Town.

Alvarez is opening Rage in the former Club Liquid space at 235 N. Mosley. He doesn’t want anyone to get the wrong idea with the bar’s name.

“I didn’t want to have a long, drawn-out name,” Alvarez says. “I just wanted one word that maybe screamed good time or party or fun, but not out of control.”

He says he’s going to “try to clean out that reputation (the bar) used to have.”

“I’m trying to draw an older crowd to downtown,” Alvarez says. “It’s going to be real clean cut.”

Unlike the Port where he went “with a real sexy theme” that includes an all-female, midriff-baring staff, Rage will be a little more tame.

“We’re not going to have … the girls in the risque clothes,” Alvarez says. “I just don’t think that Old Town is the place for that.”

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Club Indigo to become Indigo Lounge and shift to more of a cocktail lounge

WICHITA — After almost two decades in business as Club Indigo, the Old Town bar will be changing names and concepts soon, though only slightly.

Brothers Brad and Brent Steven are changing the name of the business to Indigo Lounge.

Brad Steven says the connotation of a club is a much bigger place than the 250-seat bar, which can accommodate 350 in warmer weather.

He says the new feel of the place will be more of a cocktail lounge and not as much of a nightclub. There will still be music, but it won’t be as loud. The plan is to attract a bit of an older clientele along with couples and also attract more people earlier in the evening.

Brian Arenson, who is known as DJ Overpour in Kansas City, is going to take over Indigo’s operations. He’s moving here to be managing partner.

“We want someone who can really put some TLC in the place,” Steven says. “Brent and I are going to be completely hands off pretty much.”

They’re going to concentrate on their new Hill Bar & Grill along with their more established Mike’s Wine Dive.

“That’s kind of more of the direction we’re wanting to do careerwise,” Brad Steven says. “We plan on opening more restaurants. … We’re not planning on opening any more nightclubs.”

He says they do plan to keep Indigo, though.

“We love Indigo, and we want to continue to own Indigo.”