Rhonda Williams is finally ready to open her 750 Soul restaurant on East 13th Street.

Soul food fans who loved the food Rhonda Williams served when she ran Rachel’s Kitchen at 818 N. Mosley have been waiting three long years for her promised return.

They almost got it in early August, when Williams planned to celebrate the opening of her new restaurant — 750 Soul at 4601 E. 13th St. But then, Williams’ account was dropped by her food provider, Sysco, and she had to postpone at the last minute.

Now, Williams is ready to announce another launch date. She’ll open the doors on Wednesday, Sept. 22, and will again serve the burgers, catfish, pork chops, meatloaf, sweet potatoes, greens, stewed okra and other soul food specialties she offered at Rachel’s Kitchen from 2014 until 2018, when she had to close to care for her ailing mother.

Attentive restaurant fans, though, have noticed that 750 Soul has appeared to be open for business several times over the last few weeks. Williams said that her daughter, experienced vegan chef Nicole Williams, has been serving her vegan fare out of the restaurant through twice-a-week popups: from noon to 4 p.m. on Sundays and from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesdays.

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Rhonda Williams previously ran Rachel’s Kitchen at 818 N. Mosley. Courtesy

Nicole, who calls her business Eat of the Earth, makes plant-based dishes like cauliflower bowls, jerk mushroom tacos, mushroom scampi, vegan peach cobbler and more. She’s been developing a following and found even more customers at the Aug. 22 ICT Veg Fest at Blood Orchard Market. Ever since, fans have been flocking to the pop-ups to get her food, Rhonda said.

Those pop-ups will continue this week: Nicole will be serving mock tuna sandwiches, vegan mac and cheese and a Haitian lunch plate out of the restaurant from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. today. People can order ahead by calling 316-295-3029.

Once Rhonda opens next week, 750 Soul will become two restaurants in one. Nicole will serve her vegan fare alongside her mother’s soul food menu from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Nicole also will continue occasional pop-ups on Sundays.

Rhonda said that once she’s established, she’ll likely extend the hours at 750 Soul.

She first announced her plans to open 750 Soul in January 2020, and her sign has been up at the space — previously home to Miller’s Bar-B-Que, Froggar’s BBQ and New Great Wall Chinese restaurant — for more than a year.

Williams said she’s excited to see her old Rachel’s Kitchen customers, who she still hears from. She’s also looking forward to working alongside her daughter.

“It’s my daughter and myself in this one together,” she said. “That way, when I pass on, I can have her to keep it going.”

This story was originally published September 15, 2021 10:33 AM.

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Denise Neil has covered restaurants and entertainment since 1997. Her Dining with Denise Facebook page is the go-to place for diners to get information about local restaurants. She’s a regular judge at local food competitions and speaks to groups all over Wichita about dining.