In Dining

The Vincent pizza is topped with marinated steak, black beans, jalapenos and cilantro.

Jack Rabbit Slims trades its smoker for a pizza oven

Jack Rabbit Slims, 8028 W. National Ave. in West Allis, is undergoing a bit of an identity change.

The restaurant, which opened in December 2015 as a country music bar and barbecue restaurant, has taken the last few months to take a step back and reevaluate.

"Going into this business, the kitchen side was pretty tough for me," says owner Chris Surges, who was a former owner of Rumor Upbeat Lounge. "But, we've really made a lot of changes. We've upped the level of service we're providing, and we've really listened to what our customers want in terms of making menu changes."

Certain favorite items will remain on the Jack Rabbit menu, including the Texas Twinkies, nachos, chili and a number of sandwiches. But the barbecue portion of the menu has been traded out for a full menu of hand-tossed housemade pizzas.

"One things I did a lot was to go out and talk to people from this part of West Allis," says Surges. "And one of the things that kept coming up as something people wanted was pizza."

Chef Juan Manuel has taken charge of the pizza menu, which includes six signature pizzas, like The Vincent, featuring marinated steak, black beans, jalapenos and cilantro ($16); The Jules with marinated pork, pineapple, corn, red onion and red peppers ($15); and more classic varieties, like The Butch with Italian sausage, pepperoni and bacon ($15).

A basic pizza with "secret sauce," olive oil and mozzarella for $11 can also be embellished with a list of toppings including steak, sausage, barbecued chicken, pork, bacon, cream cheese, mushrooms, onions, peppers, corn and black beans.

Pizza is currently available for dine in and carry-out. Delivery will be available beginning next week, says Surges.

Jack Rabbit Slims continues to offer live music on Friday and Saturday nights. They've also added karaoke on Tuesdays and $2 taco offerings on Thursday evenings.

Jack Rabbit Slims is open Tuesday through Sunday from 3 p.m. to bar time. The kitchen is open until 10 p.m.


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