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New Pizza and Chinese Restaurants

Plus: new Third Ward bakery, Walker's Point coffeehouse.

By - Dec 13th, 2017 03:43 pm
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Blaze Pizza.

Blaze Pizza.

Anyone looking for holiday cheer can find it at a new cafe in Walker’s Point. Full of Beans Cafe (184 S. 2nd St.) has moved into the Mabbett and Breeds building, and is officially open to the public. Owners JoAnn and Rob Hausknecht have realized their dream of opening a cozy, comfy cafe serving every kind of joe.

OMC’s Lori Fredrich describes the cafe’s offerings:

Options include house drip coffee as well as espresso, lattes (including the Honey Bear honey latte and Sugar Daddy caramel and cinnamon lattes) and mochas along with blended espresso drinks, chai, hot chocolate and steamers – all served in cheerfully colored ceramic cups…

Currently, the cafe also offers housemade chocolate chip cookies, but in the days ahead, Hausknecht says they will expand their menu to include scratch-made blueberry muffins and apple pie.

The coffee will be from Stone Creek Coffee. The cafe also has “Waffle Weekends” planned on Saturday and Sundays, starting as soon as next week. Full of Beans Cafe is open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Blaze Pizza on Oakland Ave.

It was just last we reported that Monster Pizza on Oakland and Locust had closed. Well the area, a hotbed for pizza, already has a new pizza purveyor plying its pies: Blaze Pizza at 2907 N. Oakland Ave. The location is the third Blade in the Milwaukee area, the other two being at the Bayshore Town Center (5734 N. Bayshore Dr.) in Glendale and the Brownstones Shopping Center (17530 W. Bluemound Rd.) in Brookfield. The restaurant is in walking distance from UW-Milwaukee, providing a convenient option for students willing to drop $8 on a pizza.

Fredrich has more:

In keeping with the chain’s commitment to “Intelligent Choices for Our Pizzas, People & Planet,” elements of the restaurant are constructed from recycled and sustainable materials. They also make use of eco-friendly packaging, and energy-efficient LED lighting…

A signature element at Blaze locations is the interactive open-kitchen format which allows guests to customize one of the menu’s signature pizzas or create their own, choosing from a wide selection of fresh, artisanal ingredients, including vegan cheese and gluten-free pizza dough – all for about $8. Once ordered, the pizzas are “fast-fir’d” and ready to eat in just about 180 seconds.

Blaze Pizza got its start five years ago with just two restaurants in Irvine and Pasadena, California. According to Forbes, the location is open 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10:30 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday,  and 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.

New Third Ward Bakery

The Third Ward will have a new bakery and cafe in early 2018. Batches, owned by DanDan pastry chef Jaceleen Latin-Kasper, is slated to open at 401 E. Erie St in the Domus apartment building.

While DanDan and EsterEv owners Jeff Joerres, Chef Dan Van Rite and Chef Dan Jacobs are also involved, Batches is Latin-Kasper’s “baby.”

The Journal Sentinel’s Carol Deptolla previews the fare:

The bakery-cafe will sell Anodyne coffee and espresso drinks, house-made ice creams, menu items such as salads, wraps and soups available to go, and savory baked breakfast foods, such as potato tot casserole and Saturday morning quiches.

Pies and cakes will be sold by the slice and whole. Prices will be on par with other bakeries, the owner said, starting around $2 for cookies.

The bakery will make its own waffle cones and have five flavors of ice cream and sorbet, made in small batches at the shop, that will change occasionally.  

A 6-foot refrigerated pastry case will hold three kinds of candy bars, cheesecake and vegan cheesecake, two or three kinds of pie and a couple of kinds of cakes. Another 6-foot space will display five kinds of cookies, vegan and gluten-free brownies, and several kinds of sweet breakfast breads sliced to order from long loaves — traditional cinnamon swirl coffee cake, gluten-free chocolate-banana and vegan lemon-blueberry.

Linda Thai, Latin-Kasper’s sous chef, will be the new pastry chef at EsterEv, but Latin-Kasper will stay on as the pastry chef at DanDan. Hours at Batches will be 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, and 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays, with possible extended summer hours.

New Chinese in West Allis

The new Sze Chaun Restaurant (11102 W. National Ave.) brings more authentic Chinese food to the Milwaukee area. The restaurant is owned by Luo Shungui and Sun Yin, who are from Chengdu, China. Shungui and Yin are also Sze Chaun’s chefs.

Deptolla details the menu’s offerings:

It delves more broadly into regional Chinese dishes, including homestyle tofu ($10.95) with thin pork belly slices, leek, black bean sauce and chile flakes, and fish maw with chile pickle ($14.95).

The menu covers everything from beef and lamb to seafood, and it has chilled dishes such as cold noodles in the house chile sauce ($6.95)…

Sze Chuan also serves dry hot pot and stone pot dishes, such as dry pot tea tree mushrooms ($15.95) and chicken stone pot ($13.95).

Lunch specials are served Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The restaurant is open Sunday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Chef Gorman Leaves Ambassador Hotel

In June, Jason Gorman influenced the changes made to the Ambassador Hotel’s restaurant and bar (2308 W. Wisconsin Ave.) when they were rebranded as the Fitz and Gin Rickey respectively. Six months later, Gorman has officially left his position as the hotel’s culinary director.

Deptolla reports on statements from Gorman and the Ambassador Hotel’s owner:

“I wish them nothing but the best,” Gorman said by text, after confirming he no longer was the head chef at the hotel and its restaurant, the Fitz. He also oversaw Deco Cafe and the food at the bar, Gin Rickey…

A written statement from hotel owner Rick Wiegand said that “while Gorman is an incredibly talented chef, he simply was not a good business fit for the hotel’s food and beverage operations,” and wished him the best.

Gorman’s wife, Jennifer Gorman, is still the hotel’s pastry chef, and she will be joined by executive sous chef Brittany Greene. Jason Gorman’s past posts as head chef were at the Milwaukee Art Museum, Iron Horse Hotel and Dream Dance Steak.

Correction: At Blaze Pizza the price of a pizza is $8, the company doesn’t sell pizza by the slice as the story originally indicated.

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