U is for Union House



Go west from Milwaukee on I-94. Use Exit 285 in Delafied and head south on 83. Pass the crappy chain restaurants and large box retailers and then six miles of subdivisions, forest and farms until a sign appears–Genesee Depot. The Union House is impossible to miss, a massive, two-story supper club with a wrap-around porch in the center of town.

Arriving at the Union House is arriving in the past.

And we arrived there on a weeknight early in December. Our reservation was unnecessary, but there were several diners in each of the dining rooms, as well as a small number of people at the bar.

As the first person to arrive, I pulled up a stool and ordered a beer … sadly, it turned out to be a flat Guiness. About half of us had been there before, including Cindi, whose submission was picked (Michelle and Adam also selected Union House). A number of us were excited about Union Houses wild game specials. Read More


Q is for Quivey’s Grove



Two moments of musical clairvoyance bookended our visit to Quivey’s Grove in Verona, Wis. (near Madison). This was fitting since our group of friends came together around our similar taste in music.

The first moment happened on the car ride to Quivey’s Grove. Since there were no restaurants in the Milwaukee-area that met our criteria, we expanded our range to include Madison and Chicago and all picked Quivey’s Grove (Shannon’s submission was selected).

I told my car-mates TJ, Shannon, Cindi and Michelle that I didn’t know the song “Blurred Lines.” No one believed me, but I was honest. TJ, who was driving, was incredulous, and said it was the song of the summer and it was probably playing on the radio at that moment.

A turn of the dial and there it was … Robin Thicke’s hit.

This was just before we pulled into the palatial plot of land that accommodates Quivey’s Grove–two century-and-a-half-old buildings housing two distinct dining options–the Stone House and the Stable Grill (both buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places). Shannon chose the Stable Grill because it had a larger menu and was the more casual dining option. Read More

SPECIAL EDITION: Wisconsin State Fair Dining


“In my opinion, the more indulgent the fair food, the better.” -Michelle

On an overcast Sunday, the last day of the Wisconsin State Fair, nine of us gathered to indulge in decadent fried goodness and other foodstuffs. It was Shannon’s idea to do a special edition of the ABCs of Milwaukee Dining at the Wisconsin State Fair. The usual crew was there–including Marilyn and Mike–and we were joined by Brendan and Clare, two friends who have relocated to Chicago and who’d come home to partake in this Wisconsin tradition.

All nine of us ordered an item and then, after the Fair, we ranked the items in the order we would eat them. Since there were nine of us (and Marilyn, who wouldn’t share her Cheerios for the contest), we were all full by the end of this quest. Read More

M is for Meritage



Cindi described her aspirations for Meritage, and expensive meals in general, in what will heretofore be known as “The Cindi Principle”:

When I spend a lot of money at a restaurant, I want to feel like I would be satisfied if it were my last meal. It’s dramatic but its the truth.

It’s a tremendous point and, as I reviewed the online menu for Meritage (Cindi’s pick), I hoped it would live up to The Cindi Principle. The girls decided that we would dress up for our dinner at this American fine-dining establishment.

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K is for Kyoto

When people harangue me for my notorious pickiness when it comes to food, I always cite sushi as my lead counterpoint. Sushi isn’t for everyone, but I love it!

So it is amazing that, for several years, I’ve possessed the knowledge that all-you-can-eat (AYCE–thanks Cindi) sushi is available in our area but I haven’t given it a try. Thanks to Adam selecting Kyoto and winning during this quest, that was about to change.

On a chilly Monday evening we ventured out of Milwaukee for the first time during this quest. Kyoto, like many sushi places for whatever reason, is located in a strip mall–known to no one as Woodland Court. (Does anyone ever know the names of strip malls?) This one, on the southeast corner of the intersection of 76th and Layton in Greenfield, is bookended randomly by a jewelry shop and an employment services provider. Read More

J is for Jow Nai Fouquet

On a chilly, rainy Thursday night, we ventured out to our second ethnic restaurant and second Cindi pick in a row, Thai place, Jow Nai Fouquet.

The place has only been open for a year and none of us had been there before, but we were back in familiar territory, on Farwell, between two of our other stops, Eatery on Farwell and Comet Cafe. Several of us had never even been to a Thai place before, so we were all curious about what Jai Now Fouquet would have to offer.

They do not take reservations and we were lucky to arrive when we did. Read More

H is for Hinterland Erie Street Gastropub

The definition of hinterland is the area surrounding a city. For our group of diners, though, our next restaurant, Hinterland Erie Street Gastropub, was right in heart of the Third Ward, an area where we’d enjoyed our last dinner together.

Hinterland is a brewing company from Green Bay, Wis. This was their second foray into the restaurant business–they also operate Hinterland Green Bay, another fine dining establishment. I’d tried and enjoyed their Pale Ale before, and was excited to find out what the food was like at a gastropub, which is why I chose Hinterland. (I won again!)

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