At the end of 2020, Cafe Asia closed their restaurant for good at 6456 E. Central. Pho Le has since taken over the Cafe Asia to expand their restaurant. Cafe Asia owners, Yook and Mike Gan, thought the break would be good after being in the restaurant business for over 20 years. They wanted some time to recharge their batteries before jumping into their next venture: Asian Wok.
The new restaurant at 29th and Rock in the former Rita’s Italian Ice space has quietly been open for a little over a week. This was all intentional as the Gans wanted to keep it slow as they tweaked things and worked on their new restaurant. Word slowly start to spread of the opening and they decided to finally go official with the news.
2929 N Rock Rd Ste 105, Wichita, KS 67226
Sunday – Monday: 11am – 2pm
Tuesday – Saturday: 11am – 2pm; 4pm – 8pm
Asian Wok offers a mix of Thai, Malaysian, and Chinese cuisine. Their menu which is temporary at the moment will encompass roughly 50% of the menu found at Cafe Asia. After speaking with them, they are extremely excited to start introducing Wichita to different dishes. Many of them native to Malaysia that cannot be found here. The Gans are big on experimenting with different dishes for family and friends so be prepared for all sorts of unique offerings. Desserts are also coming soon. Everything is still running under a soft opening pretense so what you may see today may not be there a month from now.
For now, they are just getting acclimated to their new space and perfecting everything from the menu to the design of the restaurant. For example, they will soon post more pictures of menu items on the wall, so customers can see what they are ordering. Once it gets warm out, a patio will also be set up to the south end of the building.
Most of the orders at Asian Wok during their first week has been carryout. There’s very limited seating inside; only a handful of tables are available. Diners who would like to dine-in are encouraged to call ahead to see if seating is available.
I stopped in real quick to get a quick glimpse of the inside and (of course) grab a meal. My dinner started off with some fried calamari and dumplings. The calamari was pretty amazing. They weren’t breaded like most places. It was wrapped in a thin wonton wrapper to keep the surroundings extremely light and crispy. The idea sounded great and the execution came off perfectly.
The dumplings were also made on site. They weren’t your frozen variety. Each dumpling was made in the back and stuffed with white chicken and given a slight crispy texture.
To end my first visit to Asian Wok, I had one of their seafood bowls with udon noodles that will be making an appearance on their updated menu. In the noodle world, udon is probably my favorite of them all. The noodles were then topped with shrimp calamari, mussels, and shrimp. Then everything sat in a bowl of broth that had distinct hot and sour flavors with fragrant spices and herbs. It was a beautiful warm dish for a cold evening. I was already full halfway through it.
It was good to have the Gans back. I’m not sure what I would have done had Cafe Asia closed forever with nothing to turn to. It’s one of the few restaurants in town that I often frequented for such a long period of time. I was all smiles upon walking out of Asian Wok.
Here’s their temporary menu. Please note this is just temporary, there will be many changes to the menu in the coming weeks:
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