North Avenue Market Opens Wednesday
New food hall brings food, drink, gathering space to former bank building on 59th and North.
North Avenue Market, a food and retail hall located on Milwaukee’s West Side, will have its soft opening Wednesday, Sept. 7.
Throughout the past weeks, many of the market’s vendors have marked the date as a tentative soft opening, and social media was abuzz Tuesday in anticipation of the new market located at 5900 W. North Ave.
North Avenue Market will house a variety of food vendors, plus retail, co-working and conference space and a stage and event venue. The two-level, 10,232-square-foot space can seat up to 150 guests with additional lower level and outdoor patio seating.
Tabitha Donohue will be general manager at the market, which is located in a former Associated Bank branch in the Uptown neighborhood near Wauwatosa. The market has nine confirmed vendors with space for several more.
Bittercube, the slow-crafted cocktail bitters company, will anchor the main-floor space with an expansive bar offering classic cocktails as well as lower-alcohol drinks and mocktails. Bittercube will also operate Mosler’s Vault, a speakeasy-style bar located on the lower level in the former bank vault.
Fresh Farm Bowls, formerly a food truck operation, will make its brick-and-mortar debut at the market. Chef Jonute Svien will offer his American, Italian, Asian, and Mexican-inspired dishes featuring fresh, local produce. All bowls are customizable and the menu includes gluten-sensitive and vegetarian options.
Another vendor, S’Blendid Boba Tea, will offer organic fruit teas and thai tea with bursting boba, black tapioca, grass jelly or house-made honey and passion fruit jellies. S’Blendid will also have made-to-order Korean fried chicken sandwiches.
Aside from Mosler’s Vault, the lower, garden level is home to “Dessert Alley.” The sweet street will feature Arty’s Sweet Talk Cupcakes and A&B Desserts: offering popcorn, sweet snacks, smoothies and milkshakes — with or without the booze. Arty’s menu includes options for vegan, gluten-free and diabetic eaters.
Another vendor, Curtis Bones Cuisine, submitted a license application for the food hall in June but isn’t listed as a vendor on the website.
The market is still looking to fill several spaces ranging in size from 76- to 276-square feet.
Many of the vendors are also hiring chefs, bartenders and more.
In line with its mission to be a welcoming space for all, many elements of the market are designed with accessibility in mind. An area of the Bittercube bar is at table-height, which allows wheelchair users to sit at the bar. There is also an elevator to the lower level. Taste of Java offers drive-through and walk-up windows for convenience and contactless pickup.
North Avenue Market will emphasize giving back to the community with plans to donate to the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee and the Ability Center (TAC), according to reporting by On Milwaukee. The market will also create scholarship for LGBTQ+ youth and children in foster care.
Several of the vendors have their own philanthropic ambitions. Farm Fresh Bowls will donate $0.10 from each bowl sold to Giving Angels MKE Foundation, a local Milwaukee nonprofit. At S’Blendid, 10% of profits will go to supporting local animal shelters.
North Avenue Market will become the newest of the city’s growing portfolio of food halls. Others in Milwaukee include Milwaukee Public Market at 400 N. Water St., Crossroads Collective at 2238 N. Farwell Ave., Sherman Phoenix at 3536 W. Fond du Lac Ave., Paper Table at 733-737 N. Milwaukee St. and 3rd Street Market Hall at 275 W. Wisconsin Ave. in Downtown.
Another food and retail hub, Flour and Feed, was slated to open this summer, though that window is quickly closing. Located at 2150 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., the food hall/market hybrid is on the plaza next to KinetiK Apartments. Flour and Feed has been hosting Gathering Place Brewing Company’s pop-up beer garden in the past few months.
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