Wichita’s best
Experience true fine dining at Cibola’s

By Patrick Mileham

Explore the Cibola logo and you’ll discover a story as legendary and intriguing as the restaurant’s award-winning menu. Six stars, arcing over a conquistador gazing through a spyglass, represent the fabled lost cities of Cibola, where tales of immense riches and prosperity captured the imagination of the world’s most daring explorers, including Francisco Vázqyuez de Coronado.

“When we began thinking about names for the restaurant, we knew we didn’t want something plain,” says Kevin Brown, who co-owns Cibola with Tracy Fahrbach. “Since we decided to create a fine dining experience with an Old World theme, we realized Cibola was the perfect name because legend says the people who lived there ate off plates of gold.”

Brown and his staff of 55 have created a restaurant filled with culinary jewels that are sure to rival the riches Coronado longed to experience. “In the beginning, our goal was to create a multidimensional restaurant where people can enjoy great food and great service in a comfortable and appealing atmosphere,” Brown explains. “I think we’ve been very successful in accomplishing that goal.”

Fine Food for Lunch or Dinner
The menu at Cibola is a treasure trove of delicious dishes suitable for dinner or lunch. Prime aged beef, the freshest seafood and an extensive list of fine wines to complement any selection are available to enjoy every evening. Customer favorites include beef tenderloin with rustic mashed potatoes, grilled asparagus and peppercorn veal reduction; pan seared jumbo sea scallops over lobster risotto with confit tomatoes and sweet pea coulis; and butter poached lobster raviolli in a saffron and tomato sauce, topped with asparagus tips and fresh herbs.

“One of our most popular dishes is jumbo fried shrimp,” Brown says. Cibola chefs pair the over-sized shrimp with wild rice pilaf and grilled asparagus. A serving of horseradish-chili sauce adds kick and magnifies the flavor of the dish. Brown adds that fresh seafood is delivered every two to three days to guarantee every customer enjoys the highest quality possible.

Of course, access to exceptional cuisine isn’t limited to just the dinner crowd. Hamburgers, soups and sandwiches also receive the unique Cibola touch to fulfill any lunch appetite.

“Our lunch menu has definitely won diners’ attention,” Brown says. “We see many regular customers several times a week. They love the food and the choices we offer.”  Brown adds that lunch at Cibola is fast and affordable. “We want everyone to know that our lunch prices are comparable to many other restaurants in the city. However, no one else can match the same distinctive Cibola atmosphere.”

Upscale Ambience
Since 2000 when the doors to the restaurant opened for the first time, Cibola visitors have been greeted with a mixture of subtle, inviting hues on the walls and ceiling that give the interior an open and refined setting. Rich, beautifully finished wood accents line the dining area and boldly define the lounge. Tables dressed neatly in crisp white linen tablecloths are arranged throughout the restaurant, each bathed in warm sunlight that pours through several oversized windows during the afternoon. Outside dining is also available on a spacious patio with a scenic lake view.

To enhance the intimate feeling, Cibola ceilings feature special treatments that soften restaurant sounds so diners can talk comfortably. Every aspect of the restaurant is designed with the customer in mind.  

“Details are everything,” Brown explains. “One of the reasons we’re successful is because we take the time and effort to focus on every detail—from table settings to wine options to the absolute best food ingredients. We want to make each customers’ experience memorable every time.”

For those interested in getting up-close-and-personal with their dinner as it’s prepared, customers can reserve the chef’s table. “I like to call this three-hour experience the tour of the factory,” says Brown, who explains that his restaurant offers the only true chef’s table in Kansas. “We’ve created an exclusive seating arrangement in the kitchen that can accommodate between four and eight people. Diners have full access to everything that happens in the kitchen. However, unlike any other establishment in the state, our chef’s table customers have their very own chef who cooks what they when they want it.”

Unmatched Experience
To make special engagements even better, Brown and his staff offer custom catering services. “Since we have no catering menu, we never do events the same way twice,” he explains. “We’ve even turned a backyard into a safari. It just depends on what the client wants.” Whether for a group of ten people or a crowd of 1,000, the Cibola crew works overtime to create the best experience for their customers’ needs.

Customer dedication and an intense focus on details have generated a great deal of attention for Cibola. Beginning in 2003, the restaurant has been recognized each year as a AAA Four Diamond Award winner. “Only about five percent of restaurants in the country get this award,” explains Brown. To become a Four Diamond Award winner, a restaurant must provide a distinctive fine-dining experience with a menu that reflects a high degree of creativity and complexity, and the staff must meet or exceed guest expectations.

The reputation for consistently providing a unique, high quality experience has turned Cibola into a destination location. From singles meeting for drinks, couples celebrating their anniversaries, or groups of friends looking for a relaxing and memorable dinner, Cibola is the restaurant of choice. “I bet we have three or four couples get engaged here each week,” Brown says. “Cibola is much more than a restaurant. It’s a place where people share their lives.”

 

Quick Stats:
Company:
Cibola

Established:
2000

Employees:
55

Key to Success:
Attention to detail

Awards:
AAA Four Diamond Award Winner

Description:
Old World experience in New World elegance

Location:
Bradley Fair
1900 N Rock Road
Wichita, KS  67202
316-631-3700
www.cibolarestaurant.com