Mexican restaurant La Islas gets a new address in Wichita

The Old New Market at 21st and Broadway will house several businesses, including a new location for La Islas restaurant.

The Old New Market at 21st and Broadway will house several businesses, including a new location for La Islas restaurant.

The Wichita Eagle

There’s a new mall on the corner of 21st and Broadway in Wichita, and one of the spaces in the L-shaped development will be occupied by a familiar Mexican restaurant that’s moving and expanding.

Jose Gandara, who along with his wife, Yuliana, owns La Isla at 1935 N. Broadway, plans to move the business to the Old New Market Place, which is on the southwest corner of 21st and Broadway , directly across from NoMar International. Marlet.

But the new development, which was built by Romaldo Lopez of Oakridge Remodeling, isn’t quite finished. Significant construction delays have slowed the opening, which Romaldo originally hoped would take place last spring. The main problem: The shipment of the electrical supplies needed to complete the center keeps falling behind schedule.

Gandara, whose restaurant specializes in Mexican seafood dishes like ceviche, aguachiles, oysters on the half shell and shrimp cocktail, has previously displayed its sign at 21st and Broadway, but said that he now hears that it may take mars before he can move into space. , which will give the restaurant double the seating capacity it currently has. He plans to keep the original restaurant at 1935 N. Broadway in operation until it’s time to move, he said.

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La Isla specializes in ceviche and other seafood dishes. Denise Neil The Wichita Eagle

So far, the Old New Market Place rental agent said, La Isla is the only restaurant to move in, although some wonder if there will be two. Another sign posted in the center of the Strip reads El Vaquero, which is the name of a restaurant that operated at 1320 E. Central from 2018 to 2020, when new owners took over and changed the name to El Mariachi. (That restaurant has also since closed, and now a used furniture store called Sumthing for Everybody Furniture operates out of space on East Central.)

But El Vaquero’s opening at Old New Marketplace won’t be a restaurant: it will be the new location of a men’s clothing store that currently operates at 808 W. 25th. (El Vaquero translates to “The Cowboy.”)

The center also has several other tenants, including RG Fashion Closet, which sells men’s and women’s clothing, and Head Gear, which will be an embroidery and print shop. The center is anchored by a Metro by T-Mobile store.

Gandara and his wife opened at 1935 N. Broadway in April 2015, and the restaurant has grown in popularity ever since. They opened a second location in 2016 at 784 N. West St., taking over when Emilia’s Family Restaurant and Pie Shop closed after 30 years. But it closed after about a year.

The original location, however, is still just as busy, he said, and a group of friends that still numbers 10 to 20 people dine there up to twice a week in the summer. The current space, which only seats 30 people, just isn’t big enough, Gandara said. It will be able to accommodate 50 to 60 people in the new premises.

“The other place will be more spacious,” he said. “It’s a nicer place, a bigger place… I’m sure we’ll do just fine.”

Gandara said he would let me know when he had a date for the move.

Denise Neil has been covering restaurants and entertainment since 1997. Her Dining with Denise Facebook page is where diners can get local restaurant information. She is a regular judge at local cooking competitions and speaks to groups all over Wichita about the restaurant business.

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