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Tanya Tandoc

Restaurant Review: The Artichoke

Fletcher Powell

If you don’t already know about The Artichoke, at 811 North Broadway in Wichita, you are missing out. It has been locally owned by Pat Audley for 30 years in the same location. He and his wife Molly and their staff serve up delicious sandwiches (get the onion bun) and strong drinks every day but Sunday. To quote Pat, “Even God rests on Sunday.”

The menu at the Artichoke is just sandwiches, salads and sides, with the occasional Mulligan stew or other Irish-themed special. Everything tastes good and fresh and is made-to-order, arriving stuffed and toasted quickly and efficiently.

The Audleys are proud of their Irish heritage, and always throw a killer St. Patrick’s Day party. You will want to get there early for the corned beef and cabbage. This year, the party is on the 16th, because that adheres to their quote about rest for Sunday.

The Artichoke is famous for live music, and has been a venue for thousands of musicians, whether established or up-and-coming. They host a singer-songwriter circle some Wednesdays, and it’s a marvelous place to see new talent develop and experience the love and support that more seasoned musicians show to the new ones.

I went with a friend this week, and had my usual: the Famous #8, with jalapenos. It’s a turkey sandwich with bacon, cream cheese, shredded lettuce, and tomato, seasoned with Italian dressing and Parmesan cheese. I rarely vary from this choice. My friend, a plain food eater, had Nancy’s Roast Beef, topped with only cream cheese and Swiss, no veggies or dressing. I love that a place can be flexible, for both the daring (ooh, jalapenos!) or the less so (no tomatoes!).