Branding Iron in Goessel will reopen for weekends

A restaurant in Goessel will reopen on weekends and serve what its operator described home-made home-grown food.

This Friday from 5 to 7:30 p.m., The Branding Iron, 106 N Cedar St, Goessel,will open its doors again to serve meals prepared by Ruth Ann Wells and Joyce Dirks.

The Friday opening menu will feature bacon wrapped pork tenderloin, cucumber salad, seasoned red garden potatoes, homemade rolls, watermelon and pie.

“I love to garden wanted everything garden fresh,” Dirks said.

Dirks has been a long-time staple at the Sedgwick County Farmers Market, has a greenhouse and says that she’s working to source much of the food locally. Her own produce will also end up on the menu.

Wells and Dirks are friends and Dirks said its been their dream to try to open a restaurant.

“We were both raised Mennonite and did the big meals for family dinners, and we’ve both done farmers market,” she said.

That dream got a quick push forward this year at Goessel Threshing Days. Dirks said she had asked the owner of the Branding Iron building if she could clean it up and serve sandwiches and baked goods out of it during the event.

“I spent a week cleaning it up,” she said. During the event Dirks said sales went well and she received quite a bit of positive feed back.

“Everyone came in and said we want to see this cafe open,” she said.

So that’s what her and Wells are setting out to do.

Dirks said they plan to start small at first, with a Friday evening meal. If things go well the restaurant hopes to extend to Saturdays including a brunch as well as a dinner. Those Saturday brunches would feature various items including home-made cinnamon rolls and Kolaches.

Dirks said both she and Wells work full time jobs so operations will have to stay small for now.

She said she hopes the restaurant will fill a niche in Goessel as well as the surrounding area.

“You can get Mexican Chinese, but you can’t really get the food from our roots, the Mennonite food,” Dirks said.

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