When this photo was taken earlier this month, it wasn’t clear what the fate of Jack’s North Hi Carryout was. Now, Shawn Gilbert reports that he’s going to keep the Riverside tradition alive. File photo The Wichita Eagle
When this photo was taken earlier this month, it wasn’t clear what the fate of Jack’s North Hi Carryout was. Now, Shawn Gilbert reports that he’s going to keep the Riverside tradition alive. File photo The Wichita Eagle

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Carrie Rengers

Longtime restaurant tradition will live on in Riverside

By Carrie Rengers

crengers@wichitaeagle.com

November 27, 2017 05:00 AM

UPDATED November 27, 2017 05:00 AM

Rest easy, Riverside and beyond, the Jack’s North Hi Carryout tradition is going to live on.

When Have You Heard? recently reported that someone purchased the boarded building where Jack’s has been for decades, it wasn’t clear who it was or what the person’s intentions might be, and longtime Jack’s fans were concerned.

Now, Shawn Gilbert says he’s going to reopen the restaurant, possibly by Christmas.

“To me, it’s just one of those things that seems like a no-brainer,” he says.

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Gilbert says he’s been trying to buy the business for about three years, which is long before the previous owner closed it.

“It finally just got to a pricepoint that I felt it was what it was worth,” Gilbert says.

Gilbert also owns Studio 13, 42 Degrees Below and the Electric Chair, and he says he doesn’t think it will be hard to add a restaurant to the mix since it’s a small building and has a built-in clientele since it’s across from North High School.

“I just don’t see how you could go wrong,” he says.

The previous owner did not give Gilbert any longtime Jack’s recipes.

“She didn’t have anything like that to give me,” he says.

Instead, he says, “I’m going to switch things up a little bit.”

Gilbert wants to cater to students who may be juggling books, phones and backpacks by giving them food that’s easy to tote, such as sliders instead of full hamburgers, corn dogs on a stick and fries and onion rings.

Gilbert plans to add picnic tables and a walk-up window for easy ordering and less congestion inside the restaurant.

He’s also working on an app that will let diners order ahead.

Gilbert says Wichita doesn’t have anything like a White Castle or Cozy Inn, such as Salina has, and he’s hoping that’s what Jack’s can turn into.

“That’s kind of what I’d like to focus on,” he says. “I’m looking to keep this place kind of quick and easy.”

Burger tour stopped at Jack’s Coffee Shop

Joe Stumpe stopped at the beloved burger joint during a burger tour in 2009. The restaurant at 6154 S. Hydraulic closed as of Oct. 1, 2017.

jgreen@wichitaeagle.com

Buddies tour burger joints together

Friends Tom Kluge and Kent Kruske have been visiting local burger joints together for 15 years. They have a spreadsheet with remarks about their dining experiences. (July 6, 2016) video by Jaime Green

jgreen@wichitaeagle.com

Carrie Rengers: 316-268-6340, @CarrieRengers