New Afro-Jamaican Restaurant Coming
Plus a revamped John Hawks and Choco Bella will move.
The biggest news on the dining front was the announcement that a new Afro-Jamaican restaurant will be coming to Wauwatosa. Yollande Deacon, owner of the specialty foods company, Afro-Fusian Cuisine, is buying a building at 7237 W. North Ave. where she will open the restaurant, to be called Irie Zulu, and also create a production kitchen for her line of spices and sauces, as the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has reported. “Deacon is from Cameroon, and her husband is from Jamaica,” story noted, and in the 15 years since she moved her to attend Marquette University, “she’s been replicating dishes from home, finding ingredients with flavors and textures reminiscent of ingredients unavailable widely here.”
Deacon wants to introduce diners to “the many countries and cuisines of Africa and its influence in Jamaica via the same key principle: Food that is naked, that has soul … food that is culturally engrained and nutritious, meaningful and appetizing,” she told OnMilwaukee.com.
The site previously housed a bridal shop. Deacon hopes to open the restaurant as early as this July.
Choco Bella Will Move
The little chocolate shop on Kinnickinnic Ave. is moving to a location just a few blocks away
According to owners Kari and Luis Mendez, Choco Bella is picking up and moving all that delicious inventory in order to take advantage of greater foot traffic at the intersection of Lincoln and KK. Choco Bella opened in 2012 at its current location, 2474 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., where customers can buy handcrafted artisanal creations like chocolate barks, truffles, and other freshly made confections.
Of particular interest are the couple’s unique creations, including Rumchata bites and strawberry balsamic candies, to name a few.
The new location will be at 2257 S. Howell Ave., next to the popular Café Lulu restaurant. The owners are expecting to make the move sometime next month.
New Brunch at Who’s On Third
Who’s on first? Don’t ask me.
What’s on second? Couldn’t tell you.
As for who’s on third, not sure, but I can tell you what: Brunch.
Like many Milwaukee restaurants lately, the questionably named Who’s on Third pub at 1007 N. Old World Third now offers a weekend brunch menu, reports the Journal Sentinel. A number of tantalizing options are available: The Milwaukee omelet, made with Usinger’s sausage. Bourbon berry French toast. Oatmeal. Breakfast sandwiches. Lots and lots of bacon.
And of course a free mimosa/beer-mosa with your entrée.
Bloody Marys are also available, with a chaser of any tap beer you choose.
John Hawks Gets Revamped
The cozy, well-lit English interior of John Hawks Pub can make it seem private, even with its less-than conspicuous location along the Milwaukee River, near the Wisconsin Ave. bridge. It was founded by Bobby Bell in the 1970s and sold to Brian Ward (of Ward’s House of Prime) in 2012. Ward revitalized the old English pub, adding a few freshly English items to the menu like pot roast, shepherd’s pie, and potato-wedges with English curry sauce, as OnMilwaukee.com reported that year. According to new owner and former managing partner Sonni Islami, who bought John Hawks in January, customers can expect a number of new changes down the road, including to the name – he plans to rename the restaurant John Hawks Grill.
Islami was a frequent customer, According to JS reporter Carol Deptolla, and jumped at the chance to buy the restaurant. He believes its riverside patio makes it an ideal place for a grill-style restaurant and plans a number of design changes to accommodate the new concept, including a change of color palette to darker earth tones.
In December, Islami also bought the building that housed Porticello, a lakeside Italian restaurant in Oconomowoc that closed in 2010. After John Hawks Grill is up and running in Milwaukee, Islami hopes to open a second restaurant in summer at the Oconomowoc location.
John Hawks Pub is located at 100 E. Wisconsin Ave. Hours are 11am to 11pm.
Stoneridge Inn Changes Owners
The former Hale’s Corners supper club Diamond Jim’s Stoneridge Inn has changed owners and its name, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The Stoneridge Inn, as it’s now called, will undergo minor changes under new management.
According Deptolla, the menu is being updated and will offer more options for appetizers, calamari, wings, and fried eggplant among them. The restaurant is set to undergo a remodeling, including a new façade and updates to the banquet room, kitchen, and restrooms.
New owners John and Diane Demopoulos currently operate the Greek-Italian Athens restaurant on Mitchell Street. They also owned Boulder Junction in Brookfield, which closed in 2002.
Stoneridge Inn is open 4 to 10pm, Tuesday through Thursday, and 3 to 10pm on Friday. Weekend hours are 4 to 10pm on Saturday and 4 to 9pm on Sunday.
Changes at Tower Restaurant
The former owner of Diamond Jim’s, Jim Letizia, is leaving to focus on changes to his other restaurant, Tower Restaurant and Bar.
Letizia is changing the casual establishment – formerly a sports bar and eatery – into a supper club. Letizia remodeled and redesigned, including lowering the hanging chandeliers, to give the new Tower Restaurant a classier, more intimate atmosphere.
Dinner is enhanced with bread baskets and relish trays, according to the Journal Sentinel. Tower features Friday fish fries and serves prime rib on weekends. A number of menu items have made the jump from Diamond Jim’s, including sweet potato casserole and banana cream pie.
Tower serves lunch Tuesday through Saturday starting at 11am, and stays open for dinner. Breakfast is served on Sundays at 9am. The space features live music Saturday nights.