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BBQ Pop-Up in Bay View and Farewell to Dino’s

Plus: Leo Lounge opens, vegan option comes to Brady Street and more

By - Aug 7th, 2022 04:12 pm
Smoked turkey from Sweet Smoke BBQ. Photo courtesy of Adam Beilke.

Smoked turkey from Sweet Smoke BBQ. Photo courtesy of Adam Beilke.

Pop-Up Serves Texas-Style BBQ

Sweet Smoke BBQ, a pop-up that frequents the Bay View neighborhood, brings a taste of Texas to the Midwest.

The mobile restaurant, which officially launched in April, makes regular appearances at Enlightened Brewing Company, serving a variety of meats right off the smoker accompanied by homemade sides.

Adam Beilke, a former accountant, decided to go all-in on his barbeque concept after a life-changing meal at Franklin Barbeque in Austin, Texas.

“I quickly became obsessed with trying to recreate it,” he said. “Over the next 10 years I was enamored with not only that, but just cooking and barbequing everything I possibly could over a live fire.”

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Dino’s Riverwest Is Permanently Closed

Dino’s Riverwest has permanently closed. The announcement came Tuesday afternoon via a Facebook post from the restaurant. The full post read:

“As of today, Dino’s will be closing its doors permanently. We thank you all for your support and love! We are all sad to see this spot go, as we have had so many great shows, meals and times together! We appreciate you!”

The neighborhood favorite at 808 E. Chambers St. originally opened in 1968 as a bar under the ownership of Leo Dinon. In 1983 the business expanded into the adjacent building and began offering Italian food cooked by his wife Rita. The place had a long, 50-year run with several brief closures, but always found its way back to business.

Dino’s closed in 2019, but disappointment quickly turned to celebration when two former regulars announced plans to revive the establishment just a few years later.

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Twisted Plants Brings Vegan Bar Fare to Brady

Twisted Plants recently opened its second location, bringing its plant-based burgers and comfort food to the Lower East Side neighborhood, 1233 E. Brady St.

Arielle Hawthorne and her husband, Brandon Hawthorne, started the operation with a food truck back in 2019, later expanding to a brick-and-mortar in Cudahy, 4905 S. Packard Ave., in the spring of 2020. The newest location opened in June.

Opening a fully vegan restaurant in the land of cheese curds and custard may seem like a risky decision, but Twisted Plants quickly garnered a loyal fanbase.

In fact, it became apparent to Hawthorne after opening the second location that many customers had been making the trip to Cudahy, about a 30 minute drive round-trip from downtown, just for their fix.

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New Lower East Side Cocktail Bar

A new cocktail lounge quietly opened a few weeks ago in Milwaukee’s Lower East Side neighborhood in the building perhaps best known as the former home of Trocadero.

Named for the fifth sign of the zodiac, Leo Lounge is located above the Mexican-Italian fusion restaurant, Tauro Cocina, at 1758 N. Water St.

Ahidé Valdepeña, who co-owns both businesses with her husband, Alberto, said that the pair had always planned for a bar to accompany the restaurant, but the process moved along faster than they originally expected.

Tauro Cocina opened in early June with Leo Lounge following a month later.

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Cloud 9 Cereal Bar Planned for North Avenue

A new cereal bar is set to open on the north side, serving Frosted Flakes, Lucky Charms and a heaping spoonful of childhood nostalgia.

Cloud 9 Cereal Bar will be a 90s-themed restaurant at 3341 W. North Ave. in the Walnut Hill neighborhood. Owner Kristina Rucker said she plans to have the restaurant open by the fall.

The first-time business owner’s goal is to make customers feel like kids again, she said, but without the rules.

“When you’re a kid, your parents only give you that one choice of sugar cereal,” she said. “But now you can pick whatever you want. Both cereals in one bowl or whatever the case may be.”

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New Cafe Open in Brewery District

When Iran Amandah was in the planning stage of opening his first cafe, he had three goals in mind: support local businesses, give back to the community and create a long-lasting brand.

After one month in business, he has already accomplished the first two and is laying a foundation for the third.

Amandah opened Boiler House Cafe at the end of June. The cafe is located in the Brewery District, a section of the Westown neighborhood. It’s named for the building’s historic function of heating the water for the Pabst brewery.

The cafe serves hot and iced coffee and espresso drinks using Valentine Coffee Roasters beans. A selection of teas are available, as well as signature summer drinks like lavender lemonade.

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