Garden Grill Cafe | Wichita, Kansas

Last week, I took two days off work to travel with my husband to Wichita, Kansas.  He was in the area for business and I tagged along.  In the interest of simplifying and packing as little as possible for an overnight trip, I decided to leave my camera at home.  Bad idea, because once there, I discovered that we were mere minutes from what is, I believe, the only 100% vegan restaurant in all of Kansas — the Garden Grill Cafe!

Warning:  lots of iPhone photos (some even taken after dark) ahead.

While Erik was working, I ventured out of the hotel to grab a little take-out for lunch.  The Garden Grill Cafe is a casual restaurant located inside the Historic Occidental Hotel building.  If you didn’t know the restaurant was tucked inside, it would be easy to miss.

Garden Grill Cafe - Wichita, Kansas |

The standard menu is comprised largely of tempting comfort foods — sandwiches, pizzas, pastas (the menu currently posted on their website is a tiny portion of the full menu).

I decided on the Chipotle Bean Burrito, which comes stuffed with pinto beans, salsa, a chipotle chili, pieces of their veggie burger, and their own sour cream.  And it came with fries.  Those fries!

Garden Grill Cafe - Wichita, Kansas - Chipotle Bean Burrito |

For dinner that night, Erik was excited to try the restaurant as well, so we ordered a smorgasbord of items to take back to the hotel.  It was some serious takeout, and we had plenty leftover for the next day.  Clockwise, from top left:  Haystacks (basically nachos with all the fixings), the Beef & Onion Pizza (vegan beef, olives, onions, basil, herbes de Provence and a house tofu cheese sauce), and the Grilled Basil Végétalien (grilled tofu, eggplant, onion, tomato, scallion dressing and basil sauce served on focaccia).

Garden Grill Cafe - Wichita, Kansas - Haystacks, Grilled Basil Vegetalien and Beef & Onion Pizza |

And, of course, we had to top it off with something sweet…a brownie.

Garden Grill Cafe - Wichita, Kansas - Brownie |

What did we think?  Color us impressed!  The chef, who is classically trained, really knows how to combine and work with ingredients so that the flavors in each bite are delightfully complex and satisfying.  Everything was cooked and prepared well, but the dressings and the sauces really took it all over the top.  And the brownie was three layers of perfection — a little crunchy/crinkly on top, super moist in the middle and a tad gooey on the inside.

One other thing that stood out?  The people!  They were so nice and friendly, chatting us up while we waited on our order.  Everyone we spoke with was super enthusiastic about the restaurant and the food.  Not only did they seem excited to be there themselves, but they seemed genuinely excited that we were there, too.

Next time we’re in Wichita, I know where we’ll be eating.

The Garden Grill Cafe is open for lunch Monday through Friday, dinner Wednesday and Thursday and brunch on Sundays.  It is located at 300 North Main Street, Wichita, Kansas.


  1. says

    Wow, what a feast! That all looks so good! I’m glad to hear that Kansas has a vegan restaurant and that it’s such a good one. Wichita used to have a Thai vegetarian restaurant where I ate several years ago. However, they closed. It’s good that plant-based fare is still getting represented, and Garden Grill sounds even better anyway!

    • says

      I may have driven through it on my way somewhere else a time or two, but this was my first time visiting Wichita. I didn’t do any research before we left (my going was a last-minute decision), so I was pleasantly surprised when I checked into the hotel and googled nearby restaurants. I was just looking for an inexpensive veg-friendly place to pickup lunch — that wasn’t Subway! — and the GGC popped up. Score! I’m always glad to see plant-based fare represented, especially when it is as good as this. :)

  2. says

    Having lived in Wichita before moving to Florida we ate at the Garden Grill many times. I have never had anything there that I didn’t like. We used to go to the buffet on Sundays. Chef and his wife are the nicest people and would take time to visit with us unless they were super busy. I wish I could find a place half as good here in Florida, I truly miss eating at the Garden Grill.

    • says

      Hi Jerry. Their passion is evident, and everyone is incredibly nice. I had a hard time deciding what I wanted because everything sounded so tempting. I guess I’ll have to find an excuse to go back (I’m especially interested in the Sunday brunch)!

  3. says

    I have ordered (or tried) at least 15 items from the GGC and have loved everything! My non-vegan friends love it as well! I was told they have the best pasta and macNcheese ever from my NVF! I would order takeout every day if the location was a little more accessible and the hours were different. This restaurant should be booming with business! Such a talented and nice chef!

    • says

      My husband and I have heard lots of good things about this restaurant, from both vegans and non-vegans alike. I’m looking forward to the next time I make it out that way and can stop in for a bite. I’ll have to remember that about the mac ‘n cheese!

  4. Tina says

    Just went there last month when I was taking some classes at Friends. I went there for lunch as that was all my schedule would allow. They had a Mexican buffet that afternoon. It was delicious. Enchiladas, nachos cold watermelon soup, etc. It was worth the price. Nice that I didn’t have to worry about what they put in everything as iT was all vegan. Thank goodness for the Internet! Not easy to find or park though.

    • says

      I agree that it is a little difficult to spot. When I first entered the building I turned around and walked out to make sure I had the right address because I didn’t expect to walk into an office building lobby. I also wasn’t sure I parked in an approved spot and was hoping my car wouldn’t be towed. ;)

      The Mexican buffet sounds like heaven…it’s my favorite type of cuisine. It’s always nice to be able to order anything off the menu, no questions asked.

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