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The lowdown at Paper Table, high spirits at Ray’s

The exterior of Paper Table (left) and the scene from last year's Ray-borhood BBQ Bash.
Paper Table Food Co. / Google / Ray's Wine & Spirits / Facebook
The exterior of Paper Table (left) and the scene from last year's Ray-borhood BBQ Bash.

Each week on This Bites, dining critic Ann Christenson from Milwaukee Magazine and Radio Milwaukee’s resident foodie Tarik Moody dig into the city’s culinary and restaurant culture to help you find new spots, old favorites and the best ingestibles around Milwaukee.

Tarik and Ann decided to take a breather for the month of August so they can return, reenergized and bellies full of new discoveries, with new episodes in the dying days of summer. But we didn’t want to leave you out of the loop when it comes to the area’s food scene, which had — as always — plenty going on this week.

It would be extremely difficult, if not impossible, for me to start anywhere other than Sophie Bolich’s remarkable story on Paper Table. Bolich is firmly entrenched in all things food and drink happening around Milwaukee, and is a steady source of news on that front over at Urban Milwaukee. She put those connections to work while exploring the complicated situation at Paper Table, the food hall located on North Milwaukee Street.

Five current and former tenants who set up shop at Paper Table talked to Bolich about broken promises, demands for lofty payments on short notice, critical technology failures and other issues they encountered. The impact has been devastating, as individuals who dreamed of breaking into the restaurant world instead found themselves in a nightmare of evictions, foreclosures and — for one person Bolich talked to — living out of their car.

That’s just a piece of the story, the full version of which you can (and should) check out here. There’s also a handful of more positive items to focus on this week, including:

As August continues, we’ll keep delivering roundups like this every Friday to keep you in the know. In the meantime, subscribe to This Bites so you don’t miss Tarik and Ann’s triumphant return and the continuing saga of Milwaukee’s longest-running culinary podcast.