Rita’s Italian Ice to offer free ice desserts Monday and Tuesday

WICHITA — It’s rare that “free” and “tasty” go together, but that’s what the new Rita’s Italian Ice will offer Monday and Tuesday when it opens next to the Five Guys Burgers and Fries near 29th and Rock Road.

“We are excited to turn people onto that product,” franchisee Jeff Miller says.

So he and Rita’s corporate will be offering free ice – not custard – both days.

Miller says people here are already familiar with custard.

“They’re not familiar with Italian ice,” he says.

Miller says customers tend to think Rita’s Italian Ice might be shaved ice or slushies before trying it.

“It’s not what they think it is,” he says.

“It’s just so much more than that. … We want people to try it and have the experience.”

Rita’s Italian Ice to open next to east-side Five Guys Burgers and Fries in a month

WICHITA — The sign for Wichita’s first Rita’s Italian Ice went up Thursday next to the Five Guys Burgers and Fries near 29th and Rock Road.

“We are actually in Philadelphia right now finishing up our training on all these wonderful treats we’re bringing to town,” franchisee Jeff Miller says of himself and his brother, Jay.

“We’re on target for no later than the 27th (of March) to be open.”

As Have You Heard? reported in October, each Rita’s will be its own business but will be done in tandem with Five Guys restaurants.

“We’ve already had a lot of interest from people who have moved from this area,” Miller says of Wichitans from the Philadelphia area, where Rita’s is based.

The chain sells custard and flavored ice that almost has a creamy texture.

“We are just so excited about this product,” Miller says. “It is fantastic stuff.”

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Local Five Guys Burgers and Fries franchisees to open Rita’s Italian Ice

WICHITA — It may be hard to believe that anyone could still be hungry after a Five Guys Burgers and Fries meal, but franchisee Jeff Miller says the biggest question he and his brother, Jay, hear at their restaurants is, “Do you have dessert?”

The answer has been, “No,” until now.

“We’ve been looking for a way to satisfy that demand for a while,” Jeff Miller says.

The Millers have signed a development deal to bring Rita’s Italian Ice to Kansas.

“This product is amazing,” Miller says. Wichitans “are just going to be so thrilled.”

Each Rita’s will be its own business but done in tandem with Five Guys.

“It’s a little complicated,” Miller says.

For the first Rita’s, he says they’ll steal a small amount of space from the Five Guys restaurant in Comotara Center at 29th and Rock Road. They’ll also use space next door that they’d previously planned to keep for training.

“We just haven’t utilized it the way we like,” Miller says.

Jay Miller used to live in Philadelphia where Rita’s is based.

Jeff Miller says he can picture people in the Midwest who are unfamiliar with Italian ice saying, “Aww, it’s just a fancy slushy.”

He says the ice is “so much more than that.”

“It has a texture to it that’s almost creamy,” Miller says. “You’re going to find it hard to believe.”

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