A preview of the food coming to The Avenue

A preview of the food coming to The Avenue

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Preview of 3rd Street Market Hall

3rd Street Market Food Hall

3rd Street Market Food Hall

The food hall trend continues. Another, called 3rd Street Market Hall, is coming to the new development taking over the Grand Avenue Mall, simply called The Avenue. On the street level, the food hall is set to feature more then 20 diverse food vendors from around the city.

The first round of vendors announced are:

  • Stone Creek Coffee, who already has a small kiosk inside the Grand Ave Mall skywalk.
  • Milk Can, a startup concept by Milwaukee chef Kurt Fogle and the team behind Muskego’s Bass Bay Brewhouse and noted pastry chef Kurt Fogle. Milk Can will feature the staples of the Dairy State—cheese curds, burgers and frozen custard.
  • Funky Fresh Spring Rolls, who already has one of its locations inside the existing Shops of Grand Avenue. The other location is inside the Sherman Phoenix.
  • Donut Monster, the brainchild of Jackie Woods (a former Ardent chef) and his spouse Sara. Their line of scratch doughnuts toots the horn of quality ingredients.
  • Char’d, a “New Korean” concept whose owners also have a full-service Third Ward Char’d location and a new Korean fried chicken bar, called Merge, on the East Side.
  • Waterford Wine & Spirits, a 13-year-old company with locations on Brady Street and in Delafield.

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Momo Mee

There’s a new Asian fusion spot tucked away in Walker’s Point. This makes the second place in Milwaukee that serves traditional Shanghai soup dumplings. It also serves traditional Japanese yakisoba and ramen. Plus, xiao long bao, Szechuan spicy chicken wings, samosas and more. This place is definitely worth checking out for its variety—there are plenty of vegan options too. It’s open now. See the menu and location here.

Bavette’s Uplands farm cheese tasting and meat raffle

And now, let’s talk about meat. This is the sixth year that Bavette La Boucherie is doing its Uplands farm cheese tasting and meat raffle. Each year, Uplands farm buys some Berkshire piglets to raise at the farm, feeding it the whey from the cheesemaking and letting them out to pasture. They then finish the hogs on acorns. The result is delicious, nutty pork. For this event, Bavette will butcher the whole hog ahead of time, and then for three dollars per ticket, raffle off the cuts.

To start the night off, there’s a tasting of the award winning artisan cheese from Uplands farm, including the very seasonal Rush Creek. Then comes the meat raffle of this special pork. The full menu will also be available to eat for dinner while the meat raffle is happening. Get tickets here.

Uncle Wolfie’s Breakfast Tavern

Uncle Wolfie’s has done some recent pop up events at Drink Wisconsinibly and The Tandem, but the people wanted more. On December 17, Uncle Wolfie’s Breakfast Tavern will be open for business in the Brewers Hill neighborhood. We don’t quite have a full menu, but take a look at the restaurant’s Instagram for views of the delicious breakfast food and the beautiful Cream City brick building, which also holds Orange and Blue Co., a boutique owned by the same couple.

Wild Roots

Thi Cao, the executive chef at Buckley’s, is opening a new restaurant in West Allis called Wild Roots. It’ll be contemporary American food with plenty of flavorful spins on the familiar dishes brought to you by Cao’s creativity, which includes Vietnamese, American, French, Spanish and Italian influences. He says you can also expect many “wild” elements, like local seasonal ingredients, foraged mushrooms and venison. He also plans to have a chef’s table, where he will invite those sitting there to watch him create new dishes, sample fresh ingredients and be the first to try new innovations. Wild Roots is expected to open late January or early February.

Cottonmouth…

We just discovered a really delicious new thing—the small-batch cotton candy at an African American woman-owned business called Cottonmouth. Forget that artificial pink and blue nonsense on a stick that you had as a kid, Cottonmouth has flavors like caramel apple, coconut, mint chocolate chip, mocha latte, wedding cake, salted caramel, pumpkin spice and more. We didn’t know cotton candy could be so good or so artisanal. Right now, it looks like you can only find it at pop-up events and for-hire at events like weddings, but follow Cottonmouth on Instagram to know when they’ll be spinning cotton candy in a place near you.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

There’s more to Kehr’s Candy than its Milwaukee Public Market stand

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Kehr’s Candies

You might have seen Kehr’s Candy shop inside the Public Market, but the factory on 36th and Lisbon is where all the magic happens. In the December issue of Milwaukee Magazine, Ann did a lengthy profile on the business for a sweet holiday piece.

Here’s the story: Pearl and B.D. Kehr met at a ballroom in Milwaukee and later married. In 1930, early in the Great Depression, the young couple decided to open a store to make and sell caramel corn and potato chips. Little capital was necessary. “All we needed was sugar, butter, popcorn, and potatoes,” B.D. Kehr said. Soon, they discovered caramel corn and potato chips alone did not produce enough income, so they began making candy.

During the Great Depression, it was common for unemployed craftsman to sell their skills. The Kehr’s bought recipes from candy makers who stopped in. These men tutored B.D. Kehr on how to cook the candy. Their first product was chocolate fudge. The selection grew from there. The Kehr’s moved to several different buildings in the city before settling in at 3413 W. North Avenue. In 1941 they opened another store on Lisbon Ave. This location has served as the main factory for over 75 years. The Kehr’s used this factory to produce ice cream and candy to supply three additional “Kehr’s Candies” storefronts. When they retired in 1960, their son William (Bill) took over the reigns and closed all but the factory store. Bill spent his whole life working in the family factory. Fun fact: Bill’s other passion was organ music. Bill mixed over a dozen records as Bill “The Candyman” Kehr and he was well known to organ music and polka enthusiasts.

Current owner, Paul Martinka, started as a stock boy in 1983. For 12 years Paul worked under Bill learning to run the factory and learning the skills needed for fine candy making. Now he owns the business and continues the family tradition of hand-dipped candy.

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Blues Egg’s holiday menu

Blue’s Egg is exploring German cuisine and German-inspired brunch creations this holiday season. Through the month of December, look for Blue’s Egg’s German specials and join them for some Gemütlichkeit this holiday season. The restaurant is bringing in Butterkäse and busting out recipes for Sauerbraten, Schnitzel and baked goods. As always, you can also order from the regular menu.

Miss Molly’s pizza night

Pizza is back at Miss Molly’s on select Fridays: December 7, January 4, February 1, March 1 and April 5. These are perfectly baked pizzas with the freshest of ingredients. The pizzas change each time, but on December 7 the options include a kettle range Italian sausage, mushroom and onion pizza, a chèvre, caramelized onion, balsamic drizzle and arugula pizza and a plain cheese pizza for the kids.

Meat on the Street Flippin’ Taco Tuesday

Every Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Meat on the Street is doing a Filipino-inspired Taco Tuesday for carnivores, vegetarians and vegans alike. Just look at the menu. These photos of the tacos are the only reason you need to go there. Find the restaurant in the Eleven25 At Pabst food court.

Crossroads Collective food hall

Crossroads Collective food hall on the corner of Farwell and North Avenues is almost here. After some construction setbacks, the soft opening has been moved back to December 14, but you can expect it to open shortly after that. In the micro food hall, we’ll see new East Side locations for Laughing Taco, Scratch Ice Cream, Falafel Guys, Heavens Table BBQ, Frida and the Beerline Cafe. Stay tuned for a sneak peak of the development soon.

Tre Rivali’s pies for a cause

From now until December 24 , Tre Rivali (in the Journeyman-Kimpton hotel) will be selling five-inch pies for $10 each with 50 percent of the proceeds donated to No Kid Hungry’s Chefs Cycle, a fundraising endurance event featuring award-winning chefs and members of the culinary community fighting hunger outside the kitchen. Pie flavors include dark chocolate peppermint cream, salted caramel apple and maple pecan.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

For food as fresh and creative as the atmosphere, head to Merge in Milwaukee

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Merge

Merge, a new Korean Fried Chicken spot, is now open in the former space of Yokohama on the East Side. It’s owned by the same people as Char’d in the Third Ward. They know Korean fusion—and style. Merge takes a very creative approach to the space and the menu.

Because of the lounge areas, two bars, a food window and the flow and movement all of that allows, the place reminds us of the trendiest L.A. food halls, except it’s only one restaurant. The murals and posh furniture make Merge very stylish, but not  as swanky as Char’d. The food is just as good as the sister restaurant, though the owners had a bit more fun with the menu. It’s filled with fun comfort foods that match the creative and comfortable atmosphere.

From the food window, you can order kimchi mac and cheese, kimchi tacos, Korean-style corn dogs, elotés, rice cake skewers and of course, the Korean fried chicken (double fried) with sauces like soy garlic, honey mustard, sweet and spicy and volcano. There were also plenty of vegan options. And don’t be fooled by these casual snack foods, they are full of surprisingly sophisticated flavor.

About the drink menu. From the draft cocktails and beers to the playful house drinks like a “Bitter Man,” you can tell that a lot of thought went into these offerings. You have to see for yourself how much genius (and value!) is on the bar menu.

After trying all of this on the soft opening night, all I can say is that I was deeply satisfied and very certain that Merge is going to be a hot spot in Milwaukee soon.

Okay…and I had one more thought. The only thing that could be improved was the ’80s hits playlist. As your friendly neighborhood music and food expert, I would recommend a mix of American hip-hop and K-pop instead.

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Sherman Phoenix 

The Sherman Pheonix is finally rising from the ashes today. The grand opening celebration is from 5-8 p.m where you can explore all the vendors and see the space, which has such a great story. And since this is a food podcast, we’ll be paying special attention to the restaurants. We’re really excited to try Sauce & Spice pizza, Next Level Vegan, Funky Fresh Spring Rolls and the Shindig juice and coffee cafe. Check out the full list here.

Small Pie’s new savory menu

Small Pie, Honeypie’s smaller sister shop in Bay View is not your average sugary bake shop. Small Pie has expanded its menu to offer even more savory hand pies like chicken curry, sausage pizza, classic cornish beef, cheesy barbecue pork, ham and potato with three year cheddar, a Philly cheese steak and pot pies, like a lamb shepherd’s pie. The restaurant will also be offering savory scones and hot ham and rolls.

Ann-Cognito

The December issue of Milwaukee Magazine has a profile on our very own Ann Christenson, called Ann-Cognito. I think everyone should read it to hear about the life of our favorite undercover food critic. Check it out in the most recent issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Herzlich willkommen to the first Christkindlmarket in Milwaukee

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Christkindlmarket Milwaukee

Christkindlmarket Milwaukee

With the new town square-esque space outside of the Fiserv Forum, it seems perfect that Milwaukee is also getting its first Christkindlmarket this year. With Milwaukee’s strong German heritage, the only thing that doesn’t make sense is why we didn’t have one open sooner.

At the market you can find hot drinks like Belgian cocoa and spiced wine and taste plenty of international delicacies. And if you’re so inspired, you can also shop for trinkets from Eastern Europe, craft ornaments and genuine alpaca goods.

But back to the food. Other food vendors will be offering pierogis, baked cheese, English toffee, teas, spices and more.

West Allis is also having its own Christkindlmarkt for the second year in a row, though it is very different. On Friday, Nov. 30 and Saturday, Dec. 1, about 70 specialty Wisconsin food retailers, product vendors and artisan crafters will be at the open-air West Allis Farmers Market for an evening of outdoor holiday shopping.

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Jewels Caribbean 

Jewels Caribbean is now open in Bronzeville. We already tried it and loved it. Full disclosure though—Natasha, one of our part time DJs at 88Nine, has spent the other half of her time opening the restaurant with her family. Her sister, Lennora Jules, and her mom Lucile are the official owners, though Natasha executed much of the business side of the project. Lennora and Natasha were both born and raised in Milwaukee, while their parents, Lucile and Selo, are from the Caribbean island of  Saint Lucia. Naturally, the restaurant’s menu incorporates both family recipes and traditional Saint Lucian dishes. Check out the menu here.

The family is no stranger to the food industry. Lucile’s family owned a grocery store chain in Saint Lucia and currently own two locally popular restaurants there as well. And her husband Selo ran a well-known bar in Saint Lucia.
We’re excited to see this island’s flavor and identity enter and expand the Caribbean food scene, not just for Milwaukee, but for all of the upper Midwest, where there is still so much untapped potential for more dimensions of cuisine from this broad region.

Ristorante Bartolotta’s White Truffle Festival

When we think of black truffles we think of Italy. When we think of white truffles we think of France. And the holidays.

The elusive diamonds of the culinary world, the Alba white truffles are now at the peak of the season. And Ristorante Bartolotta has them. Each year, it has white truffles, sourced by world-renowned Urbani Tartufi, flown in from Italy and on to the menu.

If you’re feeling extravagant, you can order from the special White Truffle Festival menu now through the end of the year.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

What to do when you don’t want to cook turkey on turkey day

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Milwaukee restaurants open on Thanksgiving

Photo courtesy of ChopHouse

If you don’t want to cook on Thanksgiving (or if you tried, but failed and now have a dry, burnt bird) here are all the Milwaukee restaurants that will be open on Thanksgiving.

Packing House

Packing House has a drive-thru and will serve you a Thanksgiving meal through the window from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. It will also have a sit-down dinner service. On the holiday menu is hand-carved, slow-roasted turkey served with hot gravy, apple and sausage stuffing, house-made mashed potatoes, brown sugar-glazed sweet potatoes, green beans amandine and fresh whole cranberry relish, served with a side of chicken soup or salad and fresh oven-baked bread. Wow.

Devon

Devon at Bayshore Mall is doing a Thanksgiving prix-fixe menu from noon to 8 p.m. The first course is a choice of butternut squash soup, Maine lobster bisque, baby greens salad or a caesar salad. The second course is (of course) roasted turkey, cornbread and sausage stuffing, whipped yukon gold potatoes, gravy, glazed yams, green beans with pecans and cranberry-orange relish. Then you get your choice of desserts: pumpkin pie, apple croustade, crème brulee or mixed berries.

Tre Rivali

Tre Rivali in the Journeyman-Kimpton Hotel will be doing a Mediterranean-inspired Thanksgiving day buffet (from 11 a.m.-6 p.m.). Check out Chef Heather’s menu here.

Iron Horse Hotel

The Iron Horse will have a bountiful buffet for its Thanksgiving brunch from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. with autumnal flavors and classic brunch fare.

Mason Street Grill

Mason Street Grill at the Pfister Hotel will have a prex fixe dinner from 1 p.m to 7 p.m. with the option of free range Amish farmed roast turkey or salt crusted prime rib with all the fixings. For the youngest members of the family, the menu also has a choice of turkey, prime rib or the famous crowd-pleaser, macoronie and cheese. See the full menu and get reservations here.

Pfister Hotel

Apart from the Mason Street Grill’s event, The Pfister itself is doing a Thanksgiving brunch in the ballroom from 11 a.m.–3 p.m.

ChopHouse

ChopHouse at the Milwaukee Hilton is doing a holiday menu alone with its regular menu from 4-9 p.m. Highlights from the menu include spiced plum soup, orange-sage brined turkey breast and pumpkin ginger cheesecake.

Sweet Diner

Sweet Diner will be open on Thanksgiving, serving the regular menu until 10 a.m. Then from 10 a.m. to close, the special Thanksgiving menu will be available. Or if a cozy night at home is your thing, Sweet Life Events, the restaurant’s new catering service is also offering a special carryout dinner for six people. check out both menus here.

Tired of turkey?

Tired of turkey? Us too. Here are three other ideas on alternative Thanksgiving meals.

Try new global cuisines every year. Select a region of the world each Thanksgiving and center your feast around the ethnic foods found there. Think about it—Thanksgiving is about immigrants, so why not celebrate new cultures every holiday?

Do a dumpling potluck. We’ve talked about it before, but there are so many different varieties of dumplings found across the culinary world. Have each family member bring a different “dumpling” dish. You’d be surprised at the variety that this will bring to your table.

Have a seafood feast. Seafood is a great special occasion food that will switch things up and still satisfy everyone.

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Irie Zulu

Here’s some heartwarming news from Irie Zulu. Yollande Tchouapi Deacon, the young woman who owns it, is cooking a free pre-Thanksgiving meal for 400 low-income and struggling people (about 200 families) at 8 a.m. this Saturday November 17 at Mt. Zion Lutheran Church in Tosa.

She’s cooking African and Jamaican dishes, such as peanut stew and rice, curry chicken, South African curry vegetables and plantain. These items typically cost $20-25 a plate in the restaurant. This will be the third year Yollande is doing it.

Guests have to already be registered with Tosa Cares, a Wauwatosa food pantry. All slots are filled up for this year’s feast, but the organization is also providing families with a turkey and stuffing, potatoes, cranberries, pumpkin, muffin and cake mix to bring home on the same day at Tosa Cares.

Holiday Folk Fair International

Holiday Folk Fair is back from Friday, November 16 though Sunday, November 18. Travel around the world at the State Fair park to explore Wisconsin’s multicultural music, food, dance and arts. The World Cafe is legit. It will have an assortment of time-honored recipes passed down through generations will introduce you to distinct and extraordinary flavors that will awaken your taste buds.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

A preview of the food that will be bringing people together at the Sherman Phoenix

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Preview of food at the Sherman Phoenix

spring rolls sherman phoenix

Funky Fresh will be opening a second location in the Sherman Phoenix building

The grand opening of the Sherman Phoenix is coming up on November 30. Here’s a preview of all the food options we’ll see there:

  • Sauce & Spice pizza
  • Buffalo Boss chicken wings
  • Next Level Vegan
  • Lush Popcorn
  • Shindig Café juice and coffee
  • HoneyBee Sage Wellness apothecary
  • Purple Door Ice Cream
  • Confectionately Yours
  • Funky Fresh Spring Rolls

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Funky Fresh Fest

In other news from Funky Fresh, TrueMan McGee is also hosting an all-you-can-eat spring rolls festival on Saturday, November 10 from 7-10 p.m. to celebrate the restaurant’s three year anniversary and the opening of its second location.

Celesta

Celesta Restaurant is a globally minded vegan restaurant that serves otherworldly food, always house-made, soulful and with bold flavors. It moved into the old Abu’s Jerusalem of the Gold space on Farwell on the East Side. Now, the owner, Melanie Manuel, is starting a new Dinner Party series, starting with an homage to Abu’s, whose Middle Eastern specialties included falafel, (meat-based) shawarma and tabbouleh. Abu’s, which was around from the late 1970s to late 2010, also served a rosewater lemonade that grew so popular that Celesta’s Manuel got the recipe and serves it now at her restaurant.

The homage dinner on Sunday Nov. 25 at 5:30 p.m, served family-style, includes hummus and pita, tabbouleh, spinach pie, Mujaddara (rice-lentil pilaf), Lebanese okra, falafel and (for dessert) asafiri, which is a wonderful filled pancake. Plus Arabic coffee or tea to finish the meal.

It’s a small restaurant though, so tickets are limited. You can make your reservation here.

Falafel Guys at Crossroads Collective

Food truck and restaurant Falafel Guys, known for its falafel, chicken shawarma sandwiches and more are joining the lineup of vendors of the Crossroads Collective food hall, due to open in November on the East Side.

The other restaurants lined up for the food hall include Laughing Taco, Scratch Ice Cream and Frida, a soup-and-sandwich restaurant named for Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, from the owners and chef of Tess., Chef Martin Magana, who is from the Mexico City area, is fan of the painter’s.

Tacos and tortilla making with Jesus Gonzales of Mazorca

On Sunday, November 18 from 1:30-3:30 p.m., Strange Town is hosting a rare cooking lesson with Jesus from the Mazorca taco truck. The casual, fun class will be dealing with plant-based, vegan angles on everyone’s favorite – the taco! Beginners to pros invited. Recipes will be given in physical form at the event. Strange Town is a small space without stations for everyone to cook, so this is more of a demonstration-style class, but still informative.

“Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat”

We’re loving the new cooking show on Netflix “Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat.” It’s a four-episode series based on (and named after) Samin Nosrat’s James Beard Award-winning cookbook and it’s unlike any other food show on TV. Nosrat rejects the traditional “reality” formula and makes a show that is actually real. This is one show you won’t regret binge watching this weekend.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

In Milwaukee, winter is not the end of farmers market season

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Milwaukee Winter Farmers Market

The Milwaukee Winter Farmers Market opens on November 3, 2018. You may not have known about this weekly farmers market in the Mitchell Park Domes, but it’s been around for 10 seasons.

You can visit it on Saturdays from November 3 – March 30 (except November 24 and December 29) from 8 a.m. to noon.

The Milwaukee Winter Farmers Market brings together about 50 weekly vendors in the Greenhouse Annex at the Mitchell Park Domes. There, agricultural vendors offer high quality fruit, vegetables, meat, eggs, poultry and dairy products. Local food vendors also bring a wide variety of freshly baked goods, jams, cider, honey, maple syrup, sauces and soups, as well as delicious global cuisine.

This year, the market will have more vegan food vendors and more Fondy Farm vendors like Alice’s Garden and Redstone Rice.

And here’s a pro-tip: Take advantage of the veggie valet. The market offers a free “coat check” to store your haul while continuing to shop or run other errands.

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Dorie Greenspan and her new book “Everyday Dorie: The Way I Cook”

November 3, Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro is hosting an author luncheon featuring New York Times food columnist and multiple James Beard Award winning chef Dorie Greenspan, the author of a new cookbook. The chefs at Lake Park Bistros will be taking on her recipes and serving them while Dorie speaks. Unfortunately, the event is sold out. But Ann did get in interview with this no-nonsense and inspiring self-taught chef and baker. They spoke to each other about cooking simply and using what you have in your refrigerator to experiment. You can read that interview in the November issue of Milwaukee Magazine, which is on shelves now.

Bittercube Bar & Bazaar

Bittercube is quickly becoming one of the most popular bitters in the country—we’ve been seeing it everywhere when we travel. Now, the company has finally upgraded its warehouse and factory to a permanent space on Lisbon in the Sherman Park neighborhood. Not only has it upped its distribution game, but the upgraded spot includes the brand new Bittercube Bar & Bazaar. The concept features a cocktail bar and tasting area where you can sample drinks, then explore the “bazaar” to buy the ingredients to recreate them at home. Bittercube Bar & Bazaar is open now.

 View MKE review

Ann reviewed View MKE, the new restaurant in the old Wolf Peach building. Like Wolf Peach, View is doing a lot of wood-fired pizzas. Ann wasn’t really a fan of those. But she says it is also doing a lot of well-executed small plates. She liked the Korean beef tartare with gochujang aioli and the seared moonfish. Overall, she says its a worthy Wolf Peach successor.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Milwaukee will get its first Korean fried chicken joint in November

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On November 21, Merge will open to the public in the former space of Yokohama on the East Side.  It will be an urban pub that will serve cocktails and craft beers and will offer Korean Fried Chicken as its signature menu. It will be the first dedicated Korean fried chicken wing joint in Milwaukee.  But what is Korean Fried Chicken aka KFC? (yes, KFC.)

Merge, Korean Fried Chicken in Milwaukee

The concept of Korean Fried Chicken can be traced back to the Korean War when U.S. military presence introduced fried chicken to the country.  From there, it evolved into something unique and familiar.  The biggest difference between Korean-style and American-style fried chicken is that the bird is fried at least twice. The first time it is fried it is cooked at a lower temperature and then dipped back in the oil at a higher temperature.  The chicken is also usually coated with cornstarch instead of flour.  Then at the beginning of the 21st century, Korean chains started to add a variety of flavors and sauces to the chicken.  And because of the cornstarch, the chicken remains crispy after the sauce is on the chicken.

You can find several KFC spots in Chicago like Bonchon and Crisp. Now, Milwaukee is part of the tasty club with the introduction of Merge.

In addition to the fried chicken, Merge will serve other snacks such as tacos, burgers, fries, Korean-style corndogs and more.

“Other than that the wings are cooked in Korean Fried Chicken style, we are not trying to serve authentic Korean fare at Merge. It may be heavily influenced by Korean cuisine, only because that’s what we are good at, but will not be limited to just that. We’d like to add more globally inspired menu as we go. All food will be available for take-out and delivery,” says Hank Kim from Char’d.

From the press release:

The atmosphere is vibrant with mural artworks and hip vibes from the settings. There are booths, small tables to large tables for big groups, and lots of bar seatings. As you know, at Char’d we are a full-service restaurant with a bar in the front. At Merge, it’s more like a large bar with an independent kitchen inside. For food, guests order at the kitchen and bring their food to wherever they desire to hang out. With this shop-in-shop concept, people can interact more within the space and will be easier to merge and socialize with others. It’s also great for those who just want to take some wings to go, they can walk straight to the kitchen.

The interior design concept at Merge is inspired by the colorful street art at the Black Cat Alley right next door. We wanted our space to be of an extension of that art scene. The murals give the space a casual, playful vibe that suits our food well.

Patrick Kapple, the former owner of Yield bar (which lived at the very same space before Yokohama) and Amanda Walters with tons of bar managing experiences will be co-managing the bar.

Jungsub Yoon (Culinary Arts major and brother of Yosub Yoon, the executive chef at Char’d) will serve as the chef for Merge.

These will be Merge’s hours when they open:

  • Tues-Thursday 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.
  • Friday 4 p.m. – 1 a.m.
  • Saturday 11 a.m. – 1 a.m.
  • Sunday 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Monday – CLOSED
  • Kitchen will close earlier than bar closing time.
88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Three new Milwaukee restaurants we’re excited to try

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New Milwaukee restaurants

Trouble and Sons

From the owners of MOXIE Food + Drink, Trouble and Sons Pizzeria in Whitefish Bay opened on October 16, 2018. It’s is a rustic Italian inspired space, serving a menu of authentic homestyle pizza.

Press. au marché

Since 2015, Press. has served authentic Belgian Liège waffles at area farmers markets, festivals and private events out of its cute blue camper trailer. Now, Press. has realized the dream of most food truck owners—to turn it into a brick-and-mortar store. Press. au marché (at the market) will be opening in early 2019 in the Third Ward’s Marshall Building at 207 East Buffalo Street. Until then, you can find the trailer parked outside of the Marshall Building weekly on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. You can get a sneak peek of the new sweet and savory menu here and at Press.’ new trailer location.

Merge

A new bar and restaurant, Merge, will be filling the old Yokohama space on the East Side and could be opening as early as November. Jongsoo Kim of Kanpai Izakaya and Choonghoon Lee of Char’d are behind the concept, which they said will have a similar vibe to the likes of Snack Boys (think: small plates, nice cocktails, loud music and graffiti style walls). The menu will have six to eight items made from scratch with a Korean twist, including wings, fried dumplings and different versions of corn dogs.

Other Milwaukee food news and culinary events

Milwaukee Film Feast 

Our favorite part of the Milwaukee Film Fest (October 18-November 1) is the Film Feast category. These fiction and documentary films will explore and celebrate the culture of gastronomy. Here’s the full list of food films. Make sure you watch them on a full stomach or get some snacks at the theater. And listen to the full podcast above to hear Anne’s review of the first film she’s seen so far in the series, “The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution.

Mazorca Fest

It’s been a year since Mazorca set up shop on the corner of 1st Street and Pittsburgh. To celebrate, Mazorca is hosting its first ever Harvest Fest on Oct. 27 from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. at 209 S. 1st Street. The free fest will feature Mazorca tacos, tortas and beer along with sweets from Algo Dulce. In addition to the tasty bites, there will music from local artists like Brown’s Crew and a beat battle.

Taco brunch

The folks at The Laughing Taco are welcoming the Rivera Rio brothers back in Milwaukee all the way from Monterrey, Mexico where they opened their casual restaurant Cometa this. They are bringing their delicious food to Laughing Taco for some taco mañaneros (brunch tacos) on Sunday from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

Black Sheep’s brunch menu is expanding…again

In November, Black Sheep is adding some new items to the brunch menu. In addition to the classic chicken and waffles, bagel and lox, breakfast chimichanga and more, the restaurant will now serve a modern croque madame, southern fried chicken biscuits and a banana split. Brunch on!

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Where to get a fish fry in Milwaukee when it’s not Friday

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Where to get a Friday-style fish fry even when it isn’t Friday

5 O’Clock Club fish fry

Lakefront Brewery

Aside from Lakefront Brewery‘s great Friday fish fry of perch and more, the beer hall also offers the classic Milwaukee beer-battered cod fried to perfection every.day.

St. Paul Fish Company at the Milwaukee Public Market

You can get a fresh cod, perch, walleye, grouper or catfish fry every single day at the Milwaukee Public Market over at the St. Paul Fish Company.

Bass Bay Brew House

The Bass Bay Brew House is a quaint little escape on a lake in Muskego, WI that has an incredible cod fish fry every day that the restaurant is open, which is Wednesday through Sunday.

5 O’Clock Club

Another one out in lake country is Pewaukee’s 5 O’Clock Club, which serves a cod and perch fish fry Tuesday through Friday and until 4 p.m. on Saturdays.

Milwaukee food news and culinary events

New happy hour at Char’d

The new happy hour menu at Char’d features a lot of veggies. Weekdays at 4:30-6 p.m., the $3-$5 snacks on the menu are all meatless, including white kimchi salad with orange and pickled tomato, a grilled perilla avocado with perilla salsa, potato crunch and baguette and a buttercup squash soup with sweet rice balls, pine nuts, fried carrots and baguette.

The deals extend to cocktails, with $4 tap beers, $5 select wines by the glass and $6 cocktails (including a ginger hot toddy and jujube old fashioned).

Milwaukee farmers market closing schedule

A number of farmer’s markets have already closed for the season, but here are the ones that are still open. Maybe you can use this last chance to get to a market you haven’t been to before.

The Walker’s Square Farmers Market‘s last day is on October 21, 2018.

The Shorewood Farmers Market‘s last day is on October 28, 2018.

The Westown Farmers Market‘s last day is October 31, 2018.

The West Allis Farmers Market‘s last day isn’t until November 24, 2018.

And the Winter Farmers Market at the Domes opens for the season on November 3, 2018.

Oyster Fest at Harbor House

It’s Oysterfest at Harbor House! It’s the one week of the year where the spotlight is on these little gems of the sea. Visit Harbor House on October 22-28 for up to 15 different varieties of oysters, happy hour oysters ($1.25/each) and oyster dish specials like champagne oysters, caviar and leeks, an oyster stuffed rainbow trout and an oyster po’boy sandwich.

Oak Creek Fall Festival

Fall Festival is Oak Creek’s harvest tradition in Drexel Town Square on October 20. It’s an indoor-outdoor event celebrating everything autumn. The Fall Festival has family-friendly events, a chili competition and a long list a great food vendors.

Why is everyone in Wisconsin taking shots of bitters?

This article in Punch wants to know. They say that our state sells more Angostura per capita than any other—and it’s not because of our affinity for the Old-Fashioned. We’re also wondering what you think the origin of this habit is. Let us know.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee