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Indeed Partners with Girls Rock MKE!

Plus: Sprecher launches Honeycrisp apple soda, Discourse plans Third Ward cafe and Atwood BBQ exits Crossroads Collective.

By - Sep 17th, 2023 11:15 am
Indeed Brewing Company. Photo by Sophie Bolich.

Indeed Brewing Company. Photo by Sophie Bolich.

An upcoming fundraiser at Indeed Brewing Company will support women, girls and gender expansive individuals through a partnership with Girls Rock MKE!

On Tuesday, Sept. 19, the brewery will donate 100% of proceeds from all taproom sales, including beer, merchandise and to-go purchases, to the nonprofit organization, which empowers individuals of marginalized identities and diverse experiences through music education and performance.

The weekly fundraiser, Indeed We Can, sees the brewery support a wide range of causes — although, with a title that recalls Rosie the Riveter’s rousing call to action, the Girls Rock MKE! partnership feels like a natural fit.

Indeed Brewing Company, 530 S. 2nd St., will be open from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Sept. 19. Fundraiser-related events will begin at 5 p.m. Attendees can RSVP online.

Sprecher Introduces Honeycrisp Apple Soda

While most breweries are preparing to launch their Oktoberfest beers, Sprecher Brewing Co. has another seasonal flavor in mind: apples.

The Glendale-based craft brewery recently launched a new, limited-edition soda, made with raw honey and a blend of Honeycrisp, Cortland and McIntosh apples hand-picked from the Wood Orchard in Door County.

Sprecher Honeycrisp Blend Apple Soda will be available in 16-ounce cans at retail locations throughout the Midwest and beyond starting on Sept. 18. Wisconsin retailers include Festival Foods, Woodman’s Food Market, Sendik’s Food Markets, Metcalfe’s Market, Piggly Wiggly, Trig’s and a number of other local independents stores.

Earlier this summer, Sprecher launched a limited-edition Door County Cherry Soda, which was only available in Wisconsin.

“From its introduction in May, consumers purchased our Door County Limited-Edition Cherry Seasonal Soda at a brisk rate proving their love for all things Wisconsin,” said Gary Goldstein, chief sales officer for Sprecher, in a statement. “We’re confident that this fall release of Honeycrisp Apple Blend Soda in partnership with Wood Orchard from Door County will be just as well embraced. It is an amazing fall seasonal soda.”

Pilot Program Aims To Lower Infant Mortality Rates Through Healthy Food

Two community-based organizations are joining forces on a healthy meal delivery system aimed at improving health outcomes for mothers and infants in Milwaukee.

Progressive Community Health Centers (PCHC) and Food For Health recently introduced a joint program that will provide healthy meals, nutrition guidance and wellness support to nearly 120 high-risk prenatal patients in Milwaukee, with the intent of lowering infant mortality rates.

Representatives from both organizations appeared at FFH’s Bronzeville headquarters, 2007 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., for a Sept. 14 press conference, held in conjunction with National Food is Medicine Day, to discuss the new program.

“We’re very excited to share with you how Food For Health is taking action on nutrition and food insecurity for those with the most vulnerable health needs,” said Kathy Koshgarian, CEO and president of FFH, which operates under The Dohmen Company Foundation.

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Atwood Hwy BBQ Exiting Crossroads Collective After 5 Months

As of Thursday afternoon, Atwood Hwy BBQ Company closed its vendor stall at Crossroads Collective.

The restaurant made a same-day announcement on social media to inform patrons of its departure from the East Side food hall, 2238 N. Farwell Ave.

“The decision was not made lightly; however, circumstances beyond our control have forced us to reevaluate our operations, and after careful consideration, we believe it is in the best interest of our business to close this location,” the post said.

Shortly after, Crossroads Collective shared a statement regarding the news. “These last several months, we’ve loved having the smoky smell of BBQ flowing from our kitchen and having stick-to-your-ribs goodness at our fingertips,” said the post, which also noted that the closure is the result of “unforeseen circumstances.”

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Cubanitas Celebrates 20 Years

Twenty years ago, Marc Bianchini and his wife, Marta, opened Cubanitas in downtown Milwaukee. Since then, the city has seen momentous change, but some things — like the restaurant’s award-winning Cubano — haven’t changed a bit.

Cubanitas, 728 N. Milwaukee St., will celebrate two successful decades in business with a three-day party this weekend, inviting guests to partake in live music, dancing, drink tastings and giveaways.

The owners expressed gratitude to patrons of the restaurant in a post on their website. “On behalf of the Bianchi family and the entire Cubanitas team, we want to express our heartfelt gratitude to all of our incredible customers who have been with us throughout our journey. It is with immense joy and gratitude that we commemorate our 20-year anniversary as a cherished member of the vibrant restaurant scene in Milwaukee.”

Festivities will kick off on Thursday, Sept. 14, with a live performance by Cache MKE from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. The local group plays a variety of Latin dance music including salsa, bachata and most styles in-between.

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New BBQ Spot For Farwell Avenue

After more than three decades of selling barbeque on the streets of Milwaukee, Jericho’s BBQ is seeking a permanent home.

Entrepreneur and pitmaster Jerry Shaw has been running the restaurant as a mobile operation since the early 90s, serving his slow-smoked meats and southern-style sides out of a converted Type A school bus.

Now, he’s preparing for big growth, with plans to open a brick-and-mortar restaurant at 1814 N. Farwell Ave., in the Lower East Side neighborhood.

In keeping with its quick-service roots, the new location for Jericho’s will be a counter-service establishment, offering meals to go as well as a handful of tables for on-site dining.

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Discourse Bringing Experimental Drinks to Radio Milwaukee

Discourse Coffee is poised to expand in early 2024 with a new location at Radio Milwaukee, restoring a cafe presence to the building for the first time since Stone Creek Coffee‘s pandemic-era departure.

The partnership is a natural fit; Radio Milwaukee and Discourse are both in the business of storytelling. The connection is clear for the radio station, which paints a picture of the city’s art and culture landscape through music and local coverage.

At Discourse, however, stories are constructed through layers of flavor. Co-owner Ryan Castelaz has even created a title for the concept: narrative drink making. Some of the cafe’s most popular concoctions equate to liquid translations of cherished memories, he said. Moonwater, for example — a cafe favorite — was inspired by night swimming in Door County.

Castelaz, who leads Discourse with his business partner, Sean Liu, said the upcoming cafe will be a “full evolution” of the team’s ultimate vision for Discourse. That includes a menu of traditional coffee and espresso drinks, as well as more adventurous options — all with an emphasis on locally-sourced and housemade ingredients including bitters, powders and scratch-made syrups.

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Pier Garden Reopening for Negroni Week

Pier Garden officially ended its 2023 season on Aug. 31, but there will be one last chance to visit before the sun officially sets on summer.

The riverfront beer garden, located at The Starling, 102 N. Water St., will reopen from Sept. 19 through 21 to join in Negroni Week: Cocktails for a Cause. The global celebration, sponsored by Imbibe Magazine and Campari, aims to raise awareness and funds to support access to fresh, healthy food for all.

A portion of The Pier Garden’s proceeds from the three-day event will be donated to Slow Food, which promotes a local, sustainable and affordable approach to food and cooking. The organization has more than 80 local chapters throughout the country, including three in Wisconsin.

“We love the idea of using a classic cocktail to raise awareness for an important community cause,” said Ramsey Renno, co-owner of The Starling, in a statement. “And we love even more the chance to put our own spin on it. Personally, it’s one of my favorite drinks, especially the Stanley Tucci recipe.”

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Ruby’s Bagels Will Represent Milwaukee at New York BagelFest

Ruby’s Bagels is headed to the Big Apple. Milwaukee’s own handmade bagel operation will join a lineup of the nation’s best bakeries at the fourth annual BagelFest in New York City.

The two-day festival will take place Oct. 21 and 22 at the Starrett-Lehigh building in the Chelsea neighborhood, featuring more than 20 artisanal bagel vendors from across the country, as well as topping, condiment and beverage purveyors including Oatly and Topo Chico.

Participating businesses will offer bagel samples, themed drinks and bagel-inspired art — all while competing for awards such as Most Creative, Best of the Boroughs and — the most coveted — Best Bagel, which comes with a hefty monetary prize in addition to a lifelike everything bagel-shaped trophy.

BagelFest will also feature demos and entertainment for guests, as well as a chance to vote for the People’s Choice award. Last year’s event attracted more than 2,000 attendees.

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New Italian Bar and Restaurant Open on East Side

The lights are on, drinks are poured and pizza ovens are blazing at 2856 N. Oakland Ave. Baccara and Cafe Terrazza recently began their soft openings, bringing business back to the East Side building for the first time in over five years.

The Italian-inspired bar and restaurant replaced Monster Pizza and Black Rose Irish Pub which closed in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

The two storefronts — which total a combined 8,000 square feet — sat empty until early 2023, when owner Donnie Dries began work on the building.

The hospitality venture was a new one for Dries, who operates Dries Painting & Restoration, but had no prior industry experience. He did, however, have an eye for design, and used his own company to spruce up the building’s interior. Meanwhile, he hired a childhood friend to lead the kitchen.

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Baked Dreams Expanding to Sherman Phoenix Marketplace

Tamesha Russell has been fulfilling dessert-lovers’ dreams since 2012. She’s also been pursuing her own.

The entrepreneur and owner of Baked Dreams will soon open a second location for the business at Sherman Phoenix Marketplace, 3536 W. Fond du Lac Ave.

Russell made the official announcement on social media in early September and said she hopes to open the new bakery and cafe by mid-November.

“We are so excited to officially be a part of the Sherman Phoenix Marketplace family,” she wrote in an online post. “Baked Dreams Bakery and Cafe now loading!!!!”

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Former Packers Doing Podcast at Bay View Brewery

Brewery, taproom, festival host and now recording studio — Torzala Brewing Co. really does it all.

The Bay View brewery, 2018 S. 1st St., recently partnered with LeRoy Butler and Gary Ellerson, offering up a space for the NFL alums to record their weekly podcast, “Leap 36.”

The partnership, facilitated by a customer, was a natural fit for founders Tricia and Jeff Torzala, Jake Palubicki, Renee Martinez and Brian Michalak, whose enthusiasm for beer is matched only by their devotion to the Green Bay Packers.

“I felt an immediate connection with the founders and owners of Torzala,” said Butler, a former Packers safety who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2022, in a statement. “Not only are they passionate Packers fans, they work hard to promote the culture and history of Milwaukee with everything they do, and I respect that.”

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Riverwest’s Circle A Closing Next Month

Circle A, a longtime refuge for musicians, artists and fans of all stripes is closing its doors later this fall.

The tavern and live music venue, 932 E. Chambers St., will host a series of final events in September and October, concluding more than two decades in business.

On Saturday, Sept. 23, the business will host A Farewell To Circle A, featuring a three-band lineup and $10 cover. Resist Her Transistor will start things off at 8 p.m., followed by The Haddonfields, who are making the trip from St. Louis. The Jetty Boys, a Sheboygan-based pop punk group, will close out the evening.

The following weekend, Sept. 30, Circle A will feature a lineup of solo artists including Matt Davies, Connor Lamue, Eb Albeit, Dandy Freling, Derek Pritzl, Joseph Huber and Kat Wodtke, with accompaniment from Will Hansen.

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Turning Tables Introducing New Team, New Menu

Turning Tables Tavern & Eatery is turning over a new leaf.

After just over one year in business, the restaurant, which doubles as a teaching kitchen for aspiring restaurateurs, is preparing to introduce new team members and a fresh menu of signature dishes at a Sept. 23 grand reopening celebration.

The event, which coincides with Doors Open Milwaukee, will take place from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at 1034 N. Vel R. Phillips Ave. Turning Tables is located inside Turner Hall, which is among more than 130 Doors Open sites this year.

The details of the new menu remain under wraps for now; however, owner Emerald Mills shared that the restaurant will change up its daily offerings with fish fry Fridays, family-style Saturdays and soul food Sundays, following the reopening.

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Temporary Beer Garden Opens at Henry Maier Festival Park

It’s never easy to say goodbye to summer in Milwaukee. That’s why Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. is drawing the season out just a little longer with the temporary addition of a beer and cocktail garden at Henry Maier Festival Park, 200 N. Harbor Dr.

The pop-up attraction is situated on the eastern edge of the grounds, offering sweeping waterfront views and a chance to bask in the late-fall sunshine while enjoying a beverage and a bite.

Offerings will include Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy, Terrapin, Miller Lite, Miller High Life, Vizzy, Topo Chico, Lakefront Oktoberfest and Hazy Rabbit. Draft cocktails, wine and non-alcoholic beverages will also be available, along with assorted snacks. Carry-ins are not permitted.

Family-friendly programming, including live acoustic music and lawn games, will be available.

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Brunch Returns to Riverwest Co-op

Brunch is back at Riverwest Co-op & Cafe — at least for the month of September.

The neighborhood grocery store, 733 E. Clarke St., shared the news in a social media post earlier this week, encouraging diners to mark their calendars for Sept. 10, 17 and 24.

Every brunch service will include savory egg muffins (a vegan version made with tofu is also available), smoothies, tea and coffee; a rotating selection of specials will expand on the core menu each Sunday.

This weekend, Sept. 10, guests can expect the co-op’s oversized vegan pancakes, as well as vegan biscuits and gravy. The following weekend, brunch will include Korean bibimbap with egg or barbequed tofu and a not-yet-announced new menu item. The Sept. 24 brunch will feature a breakfast reuben sandwich and another new menu item.

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La Bodega Nears Grand Opening on Mitchell Street

A new, Latin American-inspired cafe will officially open its doors later this month, with plans to deliver a dose of color, community and coffee to the South Side.

A grand opening ceremony for La Bodega, 731 W. Historic Mitchell St., is set for Monday, Sept. 18.

The cafe, first proposed last summer, marks the culmination of a longtime dream for owner Eleazar Maldonado, who said he hopes the business will double as a community gathering place.

While designing the cafe space, formerly the site of an A-1 Beauty shop, Maldonado drew inspiration from both his wife’s Latin American roots and his own extensive travels throughout Central and South America.

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