By Zack Zupke
Creative Services Manager
For some, the end of summer can be quite depressing. It means back to school and back to cool – weather, that is. Admittedly, I often feel a slight longing for early June come this time each year. But then my glass-half-full voice nudges me, reminding me this is actually the best season(s)of the entire year. A trip to METRO, the recently-renovated restaurant on Hotel Metro’s first floor, on Saturday gave credence to that inner know-it-all.
We (my wife and I…and Mr. Inner) know about METRO, having stayed at the hotel on our wedding night, but we’d never had METRO’s brunch. You know that saying “You can’t miss what you don’t have?” Well, that’s just the man behind the curtain telling you what he wants you to hear. Maple Pecan French Toast. Oatmeal Brulee. Tuna Terrific and the Milwaukee Style Ruben. Bloody Marys and mimosas. (insert persuasive harp strings here) You do miss METRO’s brunch. You do miss METRO’s brunch.
My miss ordered the biscuits and gravy. SPOILER ALERT: they’re the best biscuits and gravy I’ve ever had and I only tried a fork full. They’re house-baked, topped with a creamy sausage gravy (DROOLER ALERT) and accompanied by two perfectly-scrambled eggs and a generous amount of American potatoes. Even with my one-fork assistance, she could not finish it all.
I too had difficulty finishing my selection, the Mexicali Cobb Salad: mixed greens topped with tomatoes, onion, avocado, Monterey jack cheese, chorizo (on the invention scale, it’s the wheel, running water and then chorizo) and fajita-style chicken topped with honey lime dressing. You know how when you were a kid (or, last week), you would spoon icing right out of the container, no cake needed? Well, I could eat METRO’s honey lime dressing sans a salad. Of course, the other seven ingredients of their Mexicali Cobb do go quite deliciously on the side, as did my bloody Mary - part drink, part meal – which included a marinated beef stick and glass-sized pickle.
I was just getting to the end of said beef stick when dessert arrived: chocolate raspberry mousse. This mousse was more on the moose side, blending the traditional light and airy texture of mousse with the thickness of an incredibly-moist cake. Topped with an eighth-inch sheet of pure chocolate, this was perhaps the best cake, er, mousse, I’ve ever had. It’s the kind of dessert your stuffed-to-the-brim stomach at first refuses and your brain smartly counters, with a Brooklyn accent, of course, “What are you, stupid? Fuhgedaboudit! Eat! Eat!”
We’ll never forget about brunch on the patio at METRO on that Saturday, when summer and fall gently collided and we watched the world go by and thought, “This is the best time of year.”
By Zack Zupke
Creative Services Manager
Downtown Milwaukee offers visitors everything discernable palates desire. Asian fusion to Indian spices, succulent steaks to French perfection, delizioso Italian to fresh seafood, Milwaukee’s cuisine is truly international. But, sometimes, we all want and need our American comfort classics. And, of course, a mechanical bull.
Enter Red Rock Saloon on Water Street in the heart of downtown Milwaukee. The bustling street is filled with burger joints, brew houses, Mexican and Irish restaurants and plenty of bars, but only one screams (insert “yee-haw!” here) true Americana. Old-fashioned oak bars and stools. Live country and rock bands. Shelves and shelves of exclusive "Red Rock Saloon" single-barrel Jack Daniel's whiskey. Barbecue (Dillon, Rowdy Yates and William Munny are just a few menu items) as far as the sniffer can sniff. And, the aforementioned mechanical bull for the bronco buster in all of us.
We moseyed over on a Tuesday, itchin’ to see what all the hub-bub was over Red Rock’s BB-Quesday $2 specials. We weren’t inside but two seconds and we had two BB-Quesday menus and $2 Lone Stars (a tasty lager from the lone star state) in our ranch hands. After a long day of rustlin’, to say it was comforting would be like saying Texas is sort of sprawling.
We were sort of hungry, so the Texas-sized choices made it real easy for us to put check marks next to darn near everything. $2 pork sliders? Check. $2 slow smoked and rubbed Red Rock ribs? Double check. $2 Red Rock wings (only 11 flavors to choose from)? You guessed it. Check times two. And, just for good measure, we checked out the $2 garlic mac n’cheese AND the $2 chipotle mac n’cheese (cuz what’s more comfortable than a fork full of creamy mac n’cheese? Er, two fork fulls, I guess) and the $2 southern approved fried pickles (they should have late-night infomercials where you can donate to help people who’ve never had a fried pickle).
I approved of another round of Lone Stars to wash down all of the above and gazed (more like glazed) at our stable of BBQ goodness. I thought, this is it. This is happiness. Saddled up next to my partner with no worries about which fork I’m supposed to use or how many crumbs do I have to spill on the tablecloth before the server comes and sweeps them in to her hand. I had BBQ sauce on my fingers and face and all over my Lone Star and I was happy I did. Then dessert (fried s’mores Pop Tart under a mound of vanilla ice cream) came and I was even happier.
While we were bullish on dessert, we were a little on the full side for a mechanical ride. I reckon it just makes me look forward to our next visit to Red Rock Saloon all the more. Even if the bull gets the best of me and I land on my backside, I know it’ll be comfortable again.
By Bill Prange
Web Marketing Specialist
There are few things closer to my heart than supporting those who support us – the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces. That’s why I’ve had this weekend highlighted on my calendar all summer, when there will be a convergence of three special events taking place, each celebrating an element of our military. Milwaukee will get an inside look at our our armed forces that is usually not seen by the general public.
The action started this week with Navy Week. Milwaukee is one of 15 American cities that will be celebrating Navy Week, in conjunction with the commemoration of the Bicentennial of the War of 1812. Navy Week showcases the Navy in a way that most of us have never seen. You can climb aboard a 450-foot Navy ship during public ship tours, watch demonstrations from the Navy Dive Team and the “Leap Frogs” Navy Parachute Team, enjoy performances by the Navy Band, plus more.
The commemoration continues on Saturday, August 11 with the “Field of Honor: A Salute to the Greatest Generation” event, presented by the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight. The Honor Flight is a program created to bring World War II veterans and terminally ill veterans from other wars to see their memorials in Washington, DC. Miller Park will host the world premiere of the Honor Flight documentary film. The film captures the spirit, wisdom and stories of living WWII veterans. Click here for ticket information.
The action then turns to the skies as the annual Milwaukee Air & Water Show returns to the lakefront on August 11-12. One of the premier aviation festivals in the country, this year’s Air & Water Show will feature the Black Diamonds Jet Team, the U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor, the U.S. Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey, and many more performers wowing crowds with their aerial acrobatics. The Show is free to watch, but you can buy reserved tickets to get up close and personal with all the action.
I’m proud that Milwaukee has the honor of hosting these events and many of our military personnel. Most of us have some connection to the military, through family, friends, coworkers or some other acquaintances. I hope you’ll join me in taking advantage of this unique opportunity to honor those who have served our country and those who continue to do so.
The Milwaukee Shootout is pro beach volleyball’s version of the All Star game. The top four men’s and women’s professional beach volleyball teams from the previous four Series stops (Florida Open, Belmar Open, Chicago Open and Hermosa Beach Open) will be competing in a skills competition on Friday evening, followed by a round-robin series of matches on Saturday and showcased by four semi-final and final matches on Sunday.
The men’s field includes 2011 Milwaukee Shootout champions Sean Scott and John Hyden who return to Bradford Beach to defend their title against the top teams on tour, including 7’2” Ryan Doherty, a relative newcomer to the sport but already winning three pro beach events in 2012.
On the women’s side, the #1 seeded team and four-time winners in 2012, Jenny Kropp and Whitney Pavlik will make their first appearance at Bradford Beach.
5pm – 7:30pm: Jose Cuervo All-Pro Skills Competition
Saturday, August 4:
10am – 4pm: Jose Cuervo Pro Beach Volleyball Milwaukee Shootout Round Robin
4:30pm: Bradford Beach Volleyball Series Women’s Open Finals on Stadium Court
5:30pm: Bradford Beach Volleyball Series Men’s Open Finals on Stadium Court
Sunday August 5:
9am – 1pm: Jose Cuervo Pro Beach Volleyball Milwaukee Shootout Semifinals
1pm: Bradford Beach Co-ed 4’s Finals on Stadium Court
2pm – 4pm: Jose Cuervo Pro Beach Volleyball Milwaukee Shootout Finals
Teams that have qualified for the Milwaukee Shootout are:
Sean Scott / John Hyden
Ryan Doherty / Casey Patterson
Avery Drost / Ty Tramblie
Matt Prosser* / John Mayer
(*Matt Prosser will take Brad Keenan’s place due to schedule conflict)
Jenny Kropp / Whitney Pavlik
Tyra Turner / Priscilla Lima
Kristin Batt / Raquel Ferreira
Jennifer Fopma / Brooke Sweat
In addition to the hard-hitting pro beach volleyball action, title sponsor Jose Cuervo has filled the sand with entertainment at the Cuervo Village, a full festival-like atmosphere that features music, consumer contests, giveaways and much more. Admission for the Jose Cuervo Beach Volleyball Series Milwaukee Shootout is free to the public.
At the completion of volleyball activities on Friday and Saturday evening, there will be free reggae concerts featuring The Urbanites on Friday and RAS Movement on Saturday. All shows will begin at approximately 7pm.
After the tournament, head over to the Iron Horse Hotel, where you can enjoy drinks exclusively made for the tournament and only available this weekend.
So grab your flip flips and sunglasses... and head to the beach!
VISIT Milwaukee is an award-winning convention & visitors bureau providing information on premier events, hotel accommodations, transportation, restaurants and fun things to do in Milwaukee, Wisconsin! Experience the warm hospitality of Milwaukee's local businesses. We hope to see you soon!