As of Sunday the 18th of September one of Wichita’s landmark Asian restaurants has closed. Kwan Court had a 20+ year run as having arguably the best Chinese buffet in town as well as some darn good sushi. Kwan Court was one of the first places to get in on the sushi craze before it had really caught on in Wichita. Their extensive Chinese and Japanese menu appealed to just about everyone’s tastes, but unfortunately they fell on hard times.
I had been to Kwan Court a number of times growing up, but it wasn’t until I started dating my wife that I started eating there regularly. After years of having a disdain for sushi, Kwan Court was the first place I broke down and tried it. That experience was the springboard for my adventures in sushi as well as my overall exploration of new and exotic food. Besides the sushi one of my all time favorite dishes was served at Kwan Court. I’m talking about the Crispy Walnut Shrimp. If you ever had this dish then you know what I am talking about. It is hard to think that I may never get to have this dish again.
Last week we had a family birthday bash at Kwan Court and even though they were closing in two days their food was as good as always. It was a great way to say good bye to a beloved restaurant. And although the owner would not give us his Walnut Shrimp recipe he did present me with a gallon of the sauce as a parting gift.
The restaurant business is tough, especially in the current economy. With the many dining choices out there, it is important that people continue to support our local places. The more unique places we lose, the more homogenized and bland out restaurant scene becomes.