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Support Wisconsin in the Thomas' brand Hometown Breakfast Battle

c. 1880 Chef Thomas Hauck competing with locally-inspired breakfast sandwich

Sep. 22, 2015
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In honor of its 135th anniversary, Thomas’ has launched the Hometown Breakfast Battle, a friendly breakfast competition featuring 135 of America’s chefs from 135 cities who have created their own breakfast recipes (using Thomas’ brand English Muffins and/or Bagels) to represent their culinary style and hometown. This online, voting-based competition began on Sept. 14 and runs through Oct. 25 (click here for competition details), with the first round of voting ending Sunday, Sept. 27. The winning chef will receive a grand prize of $25,000.

Four chefs from Wisconsin were asked to compete in the Hometown Breakfast Battle: Chef Shawn McManus from Madison’s Savory Creations; Chef Justin Rains from Kenosha’s Ashling on the Lough; Chef Christopher Mangless from Green Bay’s Three Three Five; and Chef Thomas Hauck from Milwaukee’s c. 1880.

“People should vote for Milwaukee for anything,” says Hauck in favor of his locally-inspired Thomas’ Original English Muffin breakfast sandwich with bratwurst-spiced pork, over-medium egg, farmstead Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese, beer hollandaise, pickled peppers and arugula. “I love Milwaukee and representing our city. I want to see Milwaukee do well and voters should want Milwaukee to win!”


Interestingly enough, the building c. 1880 calls home turned 135 years old this year, not to mention that the chef’s name is also Thomas. “Dumb luck,” Hauck calls it, “but why not have fun with it? So I made a breakfast sandwich.”

Hauck was inspired by the three things Milwaukee is best known for: beer, cheese and sausage. “I asked myself, how I can have fun with these three ingredients?” says Hauck. “So I chose pork belly, because it fits nicely on an English muffin, and seasoned it with bratwurst spices. Then I decided to use Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese, the most awarded cheese in American history and the best gruyere-style cheese you’ll ever taste, and also created a beer hollandaise sauce with c. 1880’s own custom farmhouse-style ale from Milwaukee Brewing Co. To this, I added an over-medium egg, some arugula and pureed picked peppers onto a Thomas’ Original English Muffin. When combining all these local favorites on an English muffin—and who doesn’t like an English muffin—how can you go wrong?”

When asked if c. 1880 would possibly offer “breakfast for dinner” in light of this competition, Hauck says, “ No, but my wife and son love breakfast for dinner, so I’m inspired to do that at home every once in a while.”

Hometown Breakfast Battle voters have the chance to instantly win one of 135 free Thomas’ product coupons awarded daily, and with every vote, the voter receives an entry into the Grand Prize drawing for $10,000. “It’s a win-win situation for everybody,” says Hauck. 

To learn more about c. 1880, visit c1880.com. For more information about the Hometown Breakfast Battle and to vote, visit thomasbreakfastbattle.com.


Dining Happenings:

  • Wisconsin Hospitality Group and its 36 Wisconsin-based Applebee’s restaurants, in combination with the company’s new foundation, WHG Cares, are launching their second annual “Apples For A Cure” breast cancer fundraising campaign on Sunday, September 27. During the month of October on Sundays and Wednesdays, WHG Applebee’s restaurants will donate 20% of the proceeds from the campaign’s dine-in food and drink specials. Guests will also have the opportunity to purchase exclusive campaign glassware, with 100% of net proceeds benefiting the campaign. For more information, click here.
  • The Bartolotta Restaurants and Kyle Cherek present “Alice to Achatz: The Genesis of American Cuisine,” a unique seven-course meal featuring the cuisine of six modern chefs and stories of how these chefs have transformed America’s culinary prowess. Event takes place Thursday, Oct. 1 at 6:30 p.m. at Bacchus (925 E. Wells St.). For tickets and more information, click here


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