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Decades of proud family history inside Vitucci's

Vitucci's may have closed in November 2019, but it seems incomplete to define it solely by its final chapter. The East Side landmark operated continuously for 85 years, under the same family ownership, for its entire history.

85 years.

The cocktail bar went through its share of changes over the years, from upscale bar, to supper club, to music venue, to a college bar, all within the same building on North Ave.

At one time, Vitucci's chefs grilled steaks in house (in the present-day fireplace), while servers treated patrons to an upscale dining experience. You could get a shrimp cocktail for $0.90, and a filet mignon would set you back just $3.25.

Then in another Vitucci's iteration, at some time in the 1980s, you could even catch OnMilwaukee's Bobby Tanzilo playing drums in the back room with his punk band.

For 85 years, Vitucci's was a lot of things to a lot of people in Milwaukee.

This week, Bobby and I chat about the rich Italian family history of the longstanding East Side cocktail bar. Listen to the podcast, and find more photos at

Director of Digital Content | Radio Milwaukee