Old Town loses Whiskey Creek Wood Fire Grill and Imbiss Grille, gains Todd Brians Brick Street Cafe & Tavern

UPDATED — There are a few restaurant changes in Old Town, including the departure of a longtime Wichita restaurant.

After more than a decade in business, Whiskey Creek Wood Fire Grill has closed.

“It was a difficult decision,” says Heidi Johnson, franchise administrator for the Nebraska-based company.

The restaurant’s lease was up at 233 N. Mosley.

“After four years of economic woes in this country, we just didn’t think it was the right time to renew our lease in that location,” Johnson says.

An entertainment district such as Old Town isn’t a typical development where the chain prefers to locate, she says.

“We kind of build on the interstate.”

That’s an option for down the road, though probably not anytime soon, Johnson says.

Old Town developer Dave Burk is working on a possible new tenant.

“I think I’m close,” he says.

Imbiss Grille, a German restaurant that was on the west side of Old Town Square, also has closed.

The owner didn’t return numerous calls in November and December regarding the possible closure.

A new restaurant, Todd Brians Brick Street Cafe & Tavern, is opening in its place.

“It’s something I’ve been working on my whole career,” says owner Chris Tincher.

He’s so far spent his career working for others. Tincher spent the bulk of his time with Amarillo Grill but also worked for P.F. Chang’s, Piztros and Ted’s Montana Grill.

He’s naming his restaurant after his brother, who died three years ago.

“It’s just in his memory,” Tincher says. “There will be some featured dishes that were some of his favorite.”

Tincher calls his restaurant an American cafe, which will have dishes such as crawfish etouffee, taco plates and cheeseburgers.

He thinks Old Town Square is an ideal location.

“The downtown business district has really grown nicely over the last five years,” Tincher says. “I personally enjoy going down there and seeing movies and having dinner.”

He plans to open in early February. Tincher isn’t nervous about finally doing his own venture.

“I’m on a high about it right now. I really am.”



Menards deal is back on at K-96 and Webb Road, and a second Menards isn’t far behind

UPDATED — The Menards deal at K-96 and Webb Road, which stalled when the economy tanked, is back on.

The Wisconsin-based home improvement store has purchased 17 acres just northwest of Johnny Carino’s and will break ground on a 200,000-square-foot building in the next 30 days.

“It’s big news, because how many 200,000-square-foot buildings are under . . . construction right now?” says Christian Ablah of Classic Real Estate, who handled the deal.

The Menards building permit will be for more like 240,000 square feet including overhangs.

Menards will employ 130 people, about half of whom will be full-time workers.

Ablah says that although Wichita is definitely seeing more commercial activity, it still takes a lot to get deals done right now, especially one of this size.

“Everything is so scrutinized to make sure everything absolutely is done perfect.”

He says that even nationally, these kinds of deals aren’t happening every day like they used to.

“There’s not a lot of big boxes doing new deals right now all across the country, so for Wichita to get this, it’s a coup,” Ablah says. “It’s awesome for Wichita.”

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