Milwaukee's Latest Restaurant and Brewery Openings

Jul. 22, 2016
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Photo via Good City Brewing Facebook

From MKE style pizza to Chicago-style fast food, there's been a slew of restaurant openings lately. Plus, three more breweries and taprooms have recently opened for all your beer needs.

Brunch has opened at Plankinton and Wells downtown. They serve brunch—shocking, I know—seven days a week until 3 p.m., making it one of MKE's few coveted weekday brunch spots. Now you can start your day with a bacon flight with three types of bacon products, s'mores pancakes or a Wiscomelette. 

Taqueria El Jefe and Cafe Grace have opened in the Mayfair Collection in Wauwatosa. Both are a joint venture of The Bartolotta Group and the Phoenix Hospitality Group, along with ABV Social which opened about a month ago in the same location. El Jefe serves traditional Mexican and modern tacos in a fast casual setting. Tacos are all served a la carte and include carne asada, fried shrimp, Cantonese char siu pork and even a croque madam-inspired ham and cheese taco. Cafe Grace, on the other hand, bills itself as an upscale French cafe. Classics like steak frites, rillettes, escargot and duck confit make up the menu. Currently they are open for dinner only, 7 days a week.

Fixture Pizza Pub has opened at 623 S 2nd St. The pizza focus is on Milwaukee-style thin cracker crust, though a deep dish option is also available. Unlike most pizza joints, the sauce goes on top of the cheese here, even on the thin crust. Pizzas are named for Walker's Point bars and businesses, like Walker's Pint taco pizza or Coast In Bikes with feta, pineapple and olives. There are also a number of appetizers, snacks, salads, sandwiches and even charbroiled oysters to choose from. An indoor bocce ball court will be installed soon.

Jerusalem Pastries has opened in Greenfield at 4171 S 76th St. The opulent interior is centered around the Middle Eastern sweets and pastries on a bar-like display counter. Pick and choose your favorite sweets by the piece, then sit at a table to enjoy. A full menu of lunch and dinner options is also available, with favorites like hummus, falafel, shawarma and kabobs.

Portillo's has opened in Brookfield, the first location in Wisconsin for the Chicago-based chain. The large counter service fast food restaurant is most famous for their Chicago hot dogs, Italian beef sandwiches, chopped salads and chocolate cake. According to the owners, the plan is to open many more Wisconsin locations in the coming years.

Canal Street Cafe has opened inside the lobby of the Potawatomi Hotel. It replaces more upscale Locavore with diner and comfort food classics. It's open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, serving up dishes like chili cheese fries, sriracha chicken strips, burgers and other sandwiches, plus entrees like meatloaf, pot roast and chicken fried steak. 

Tre Rivali has opened at 200 N Broadway in the new Kimpton Journeyman Hotel. The modern Mediterranean menu is comprised of mostly small plates and ranges from chicken liver mousse to homemade ricotta gnocchi and wood fired pizza. Also of note: The Outsider, the hotel's rooftop patio and bar is also open. It boasts stunning views, fire pits and craft cocktails.

Enlightened Brewing has opened their new taproom in the Lincoln Warehouse, the same spot they've been brewing their beer. The taproom is located on the corner of 1st and Becher, and sells their brews for $5-$6 per pint. The brewing facilities will be moving to a larger space behind the taproom so guests can watch brewing in progress. 

Good City Brewing has opened at 2108 N Farwell. They brew in an “open concept brewery” in order to make customers feel like they're part of the brewing process. Brews currently on tap include IPAs, British session ale, mosaic pale ale, pilsner, porter and lager. They also offer a substantial food menu, with lots of snacks, cheese and meat boards, sandwiches and entrees like mac and cheese made with their pilsner. 

MobCraft has moved its operation from Madison to Milwaukee at 505 S 5th St. The completely crowdsourced brewery has been based in Madison since opening in 2012. The beers they brew are decided by online votes based on user submitted recipes. Past winning recipes that have been brewed include a berry bourbon barrel-aged sour and chocolate and jalapeno stout. The taproom at the brewery is also open, with 25 taps, patio seating, growlers and food trucks on the weekends. 

Upcoming Beer and Dining Events

July 22: Ray's Wine dinner at Bacchus. Five courses paired with wines from Ray's. Tickets are $85 plus tax and gratuity.

July 22: 2-Year Anniversary Party at Central Standard Craft Distillery. Celebrate two years of distilling with food carts, drink specials and the release of a new, secret product.

July 23: Firkin Fest at Cathedral Square Park. General admission tickets are still available for $49.

July 24: Ray's Wine 55th Anniversary Party. Live music, food trucks, ice cream, tailgate games and lots of $2.55 beer specials.

Follow BCB on Twitter for more news and events: @BrewCityBooze.

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