New Pizzeria in Third Ward
Plus: A new BBQ joint. The Original reopens. And the return of Lowlands Group patios.
Brute Pizza is moving into a brick-and-mortar location at 316 N. Milwaukee St., sharing the Donut Monster kitchen and kiosk there. Brute Pizza is a pop-up concept created by Donut Monster’s Jackie Woods and Paris Dreibelbis, specializing in sourdough pizza. Lori Fredrich reports:
Woods notes that the new brick and mortar will expand the options for the nascent pizza brand, which has in recent months catered primarily to North Shore customers in their limited delivery and pick-up area.
“It’s exciting,” he says, “It will not only give us the ability to expand the menu, but also really dial in on the consistency of the product, a luxury we haven’t had while using our Roccbox pizza oven.”
Dreibelbis agrees. “Overall, we’re looking forward to a better, more consistent product for customers. We’ll also have a much larger capacity for orders, so we won’t have to turn down customers on busy nights. And because we’ll be more centrally located, we’ll be better able to serve customers Downtown and in the surrounding area.”
…The Brute Pizza trailer is in the process of being sold… And, with the money from the sale, they will be investing in a larger hearth style gas pizza oven, which will then be installed in the new Third Ward Kitchen.
Dreibelbis recommends ordering at least one day ahead by sending a direct message with your order details to @BruteMKE on Instagram. All orders are scheduled on a first-come first-served basis, with availability every 15 minutes during regular service.
Pizzas are 12” and feature a sourdough crust, with pricing between $15 and $18 each. Options include a specialty pizza of the week (announced on social media), plus staples like the Margherita (cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, olive oil and Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese); the Three Cheese (mozzarella, parmesan, Pleasant Ridge Reserve); the P.P.P.P. (pepperoni, peppers, peppadews and Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese); the 414 (sausage, mushrooms, onions); and the Chefs’ Pizza (anchovies, capers, garlic, Pleasant Ridge Reserve and magic brush).
There are also sides like parmesan bites, Caesar salad and Caesar fried Brussels sprouts along with rotating sweets from Matilda Bakehhouse.
Big Daddy’s BBQ Opening Second Location
Big Daddy’s BBQ and Soul Food, which opened its first location in Riverwest at the former Milwaukee Beer Bistro and Rio West Cantina location, is opening a second location in Franklin. The new spot, located at 7700 S. Lovers Ln., is expected to open sometime in June or early July. Erik S. Hanley reports:
“It’s a great location, a good area that’s good for our type of food,” (co-owner Donald Lee said. “There’s really no barbecue close around there.”
Lee said Mayor Steve Olson has been supportive and neighbors have been positive. The couple plan to scale down the Milwaukee menu a bit for the new location to make room for barbecue specials.
Lee said he and his wife had been looking for a second location for about six months. Despite finding one, their search isn’t over because the couple also wants to open a third restaurant in Waukesha or Wauwatosa to franchise Big Daddy’s.
Opening a restaurant in the middle of a pandemic wasn’t easy, and Lee said the most difficult aspect was that dine-in wasn’t an option. However, they had a feature not all restaurants offer.
“We did have the patio,” he said, adding that the Franklin location will offer dine-in as well as a patio experience.
Whether you’re in the mood for a brisket, catfish, rib tips, baby back ribs or ‘soul food sides,’” Lee said he offers cooking that is “sweet and tangy” with his own recipe barbecue sauce and dry rub.
East Side Restaurant The Original Reopens
The East Side fine-dining and craft-cocktail restaurant The Original is welcoming customers back for indoor and patio dining. The restaurant, which is located in the former East Side Red Dot space at 2498 N. Bartlett Ave., shut down for six months at the beginning of the pandemic before shifting slowly into private dining and limited carry-out. Frederich reports:
“We are taking our reopening very slowly and working with a limited staff,” says co-owner Eric Rzepka. “There will be hiccups to start, but we are taking our time to make sure that we can give guests the safest and most enjoyable experience possible.”
The restaurant is placing a priority on patio dining, with six tables and two booths available for guests. On days when temperatures fall below 60 degrees, Rzepka says they will accommodate diners with socially distanced dining in their dining room.
That means guests can once again enjoy The Original’s craft cocktail program, along with a slightly abbreviated menu of spring menu staples – including a seasonal take on their popular seared scallops, mushroom ragu with polenta and grilled New York Striip – plus a few new items, including a Korean fried chicken wing starter and lamb kofte.
The full menu will also be available for carry-out. View the full menu here.
“Our staff is fully vaccinated, and our staff will be wearing masks through the end of the year. Our goal is to operate as safely as possible while still offering our guests the experience that they’ve come to expect.”
The Original is currently open Wednesday through Saturday for dinner service from 5 to 9 p.m.
Now Opening Outdoors: Lowlands Group Patios
Lowlands Group has officially announced via press release the reopening of its patios starting May 6. Seven Lowlands Group restaurants located in Milwaukee will offer outdoor seating: Cafe Benelux, Centraal Grand Cafe & Tappery, Buckatown Tavern & Supper Club, Cafe Hollander Downer, Cafe Hollander Tosa, Cafe Hollander Brookfield and Cafe Hollander Mequon.
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