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New owner looking for restaurant tenant for former Joe's Bakery location


File this under the category of a location to keep an eye on. (Or perhaps under the category of late-night, drunken donut memories.)

But it looks like there may be a new business coming to the former location of Joe’s Bakery — which for those of you who weren’t in town years ago, was a late-night institution that served many a student a donut after a night on the town.

Brad Ziegler, a local bar owner, recently purchased the vacant building near Ninth and Mississippi streets. But Ziegler told me the building definitely won’t become a bar.

“It probably will become some sort of restaurant,” Ziegler said.

He said he’s had about 20 inquiries since he bought the building in December, and all but one of them have been interested in using the building for some sort of restaurant. Most ideas have been centered on quick-service, in and out type of restaurants for the location, which is just off the edge of KU’s campus.

Ziegler doesn’t yet have a deal for the building, but hopes to have one signed in the next couple of weeks. In the meantime, some work already has begun on the building.

“It definitely needed a good scrubbing,” Ziegler said. “We took out the duct work so it doesn’t smell like a donut shop forever.”

I’ll let you know if I hear more specifics.


Phil Minkin 5 years, 3 months ago

Parking will be a problem and any kind of a drive-thru seems unlikely.

Matt Schwartz 5 years, 3 months ago

I like the idea of having a walk in place.

George_Braziller 5 years, 3 months ago

Too much of a good thing can be too much. I lived about 150 feet from Joe's for 7 1/2 years and eventually I came to hate the smell of cooking doughnuts.

deec 5 years, 3 months ago

I worked at Joe's for a few months back in the 70s. Joe used to take the unsold doughnuts home and feed them to his livestock. He also paid us in cash in one of those white doughnut sacks with the social security deductions written in marker on the outside.

TheEleventhStephanie 5 years, 3 months ago

They did that long past the 70's, and I just remembered it when you said it! Purple marker on a white bag. They were good people to work for.

suggestionbox 5 years, 3 months ago

Egg salad sandwiches wrapped in Saran. Perfection. Part of the benefit of Joe's was the quick lunch option.

deec 5 years, 3 months ago

Remember the lines of students late at night waiting for the fresh donuts to be ready? Or the giant cookies with the garish pink frosting?

kernal 5 years, 3 months ago

The blueberry donuts usually came out around Midnight, warm and glazed. The best!

msezdsit 5 years, 3 months ago

Don't expect anything to special coming from this formula.

Richard Heckler 5 years, 3 months ago

I would think fresh Pizza by the slice, good cheese sandwiches and an excellent tasting herb garlic tofu spread rolled up in a tortilla would do well. All can be done quick and easy for not too much money...... can we say Wrap It Up.

Plus water and juices = it's off to a flying start. Folks can get their brew next door.

TheEleventhStephanie 5 years, 3 months ago

Somebpdy really oughta bring back the Glass Onion.

1julie1 5 years, 3 months ago

Speaking of work done on places that are closed, we noticed some activity at the old Pachamama's restaurant location near the 23rd St. HyVee. Is anything locating there?

sleepy33 5 years, 3 months ago

Many, many years ago (early 70's I'd say), when my parents were dating, my mom went to Ottawa University, while my dad was a student at KU. Of course, the ladies couldn't have any male visitors in their dorm rooms and had a strict curfew, so my dad and his friends would go to Joe's late at night and get fresh hot donuts, then drive to Ottawa. The girls would lower a bucket down from their dorm room window to they could take delivery of the fresh baked goods.

Bob Forer 5 years, 3 months ago

The place always made decent money. The drawback to owning it was the long hours, and getting up early in the morning. The original owner (was he named Joe?) worked his butt off for years and made a decent living, but I think he retired fairly early because of the amount of work it required.

irvan moore 5 years, 3 months ago

we really need another mexican restaurant

chootspa 5 years, 3 months ago

Great. I'm now hungry for egg salad sandwiches and fresh donuts.

hackman 5 years, 3 months ago

Have we all forgotten "the hole in the wall" with your sandwich,deviled eggs,chips and dessert in that cool white box? Add some Joes donuts and we've got the 1970's back.

Sarah Carr 5 years, 3 months ago

The Hole in the Wall had the best Reuben's, ever!

Bob Forer 5 years, 3 months ago

I loved that place. The roast beef sandwiches with the "special" sauce. Great potato salad.

danmoore 5 years, 3 months ago

And their delivery car was a sandwich.

yourtaxdollarsatwork 5 years, 3 months ago

Good point on the parking and drive thru. Joe's only has 3 spaces behind the building. The parking in front is designated with a 30 minute limit, reflecting the walk-in nature for the former Joe's, Jensen's Liquor and Owens Flower Shop. Owens has been at their location for 50 years and Jensen's has been there for a long time. Parking on the west side of Owens is restricted to Owens customers and delivery vans. And I don't think the gas station on the east side of the alley really wants to provide parking. Don't forget the delivery trucks for flowers and liquor that have to block the north and west side parking areas to make their deliveries.

I say bring back Joe's. I worked downtown but walked to Joe's for the $1.25 chicken salad on white or wheat in SaranWrap. And just think how many chicken's lives were saved thanks to Joe's chicken portions in the salad. The perfect diet lunch.

Joe Hyde 5 years, 3 months ago

Imagine if the original Joe's Bakery had been in operation during Roy Williams' time as KU's head basketball coach. (Remember how Roy would buy boxes of Krispy Kreme donuts for the students who were tough enough to camp outside Allen Fieldhouse, sometime for days prior to big games?)

Joe's pastries and sandwiches were so good, instructors would have been forced to relocate whole classes to the sidewalks outside Allen Fieldhouse, just to keep those kids fed and educated.

Melissa Isaacs 5 years, 3 months ago

Ummm...the original Joe's WAS in operation during Roy William's time at KU.

bearded_gnome 5 years, 3 months ago

when the "new owners" tried to bring back Joes, they failed because they made the doughnuts too small, and cut corners in other ways. was not good, destined to fail that way.

oh how I remember Joe's! a box of them tucked under your arm, walk into your KU office...

LadyJ 5 years, 3 months ago

On Valentine's day, they would sell a huge heart shaped donut for you to share with your valentine.

Lenette Hamm 5 years, 3 months ago

I remember going into Joe's one Valentine's day to pick up cookies for my co-workers. One of those huge, heart-shaped and decorated cookies was on display, but broken right down the center. I said something like "Was the cookie made this way deliberately so that some guy (or girl) whose heart is broken could give it to the person who broke it?" The woman behind the counter laughed and said, "I've waited all morning for someone to comment on it - so here, it's yours!" My kids enjoyed it for dessert. Joe's was the best in so many ways...

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