Finally I have found what has been missing from the Wichita dining scene, a good Gastro Pub. For some reason the combination of a good environment, beer selection, and well executed food has eluded diners until now. Located in the subterranean abyss of the Brickyard Bar in Old Town, the newly opened Public is fairly impressive.
The basement that houses Public is deceivingly roomy and nicely decorated. It feels like you have walked into someone’s upscale man cave. There is a good sized bar, shuffle board table, and an area that has plush chairs and a large television.
The menu at Public is small, but packed full of unique offerings that utilize local food sources. Yoder Meats, Delano Bakery, and La Tradicion Tortilleria are a few of their suppliers. The appetizers include their house made pickles and black bean hummus, there are also several salads, upscale sandwiches, pizzas, and ribs. We tried to order the pickle plate, but unfortunately they were still brining, so we must wait until next time to taste the famous pickles. For our lunch Steph went with the ultimate blue collar fusion food: brisket tacos. I decided to try the Prairie Sliders with a side of garlic and rosemary fries.
Two decent sized sliders greeted me when my plate was brought out along with an ample serving of fries. I was impressed with how delightfully juicy my burger was and upon further inspection
noticed something that I have not seen in a restaurant burger for quite some time: a nice pink center. Yes these particular burgers were perfectly cooked, something that is hard to find in this age of food borne illness hysteria. The patties had a nice supporting cast of cheese, onion, and bun that left me not wanting to add any other condiments. These were easily some of the best burgers I have had in a while. The crispy fries were good paired with the rosemary and garlic, although some the clumps of garlic were hard to stomach. The brisket
tacos were fairly impressive in their own respect. Tender and moist brisket was piled onto two corn tortillas with cheese and cilantro on top. A nice smoky salsa was served on the side. The accompanying side of black beans was a nice change from the obligatory taco accompaniment, refried beans.
If you are in need of a cold beverage on your visit, Public has you covered. There are several signature cocktails as well as a small, but impressive list of craft beer choices.
Public has the perfect combination of atmosphere, food, and beverages that makes me wish I could live there or at least remodel my basement to resemble it. Whether you are looking for a happening place to get some dinner before hitting the town, a place to watch sporting events, or just taking the family out to lunch, this is your place. I hear they also have a very good brunch on the weekends that features unique specials.