In Marketplace

In Bay View, Groppi's is one of the oldest Italian food stores in an area of the earliest Italian settlements.

Milwaukee ethnic grocery store guide

Note: The contents of this guide were checked for accuracy when this article was updated on Sept. 15, 2000 at 12:20 a.m. We continually update the thousands of articles on, but it's possible some details, specials and offers may have changed. As always, we recommend you call first if you have specific questions for the businesses mentioned in the guide.

Milwaukee is a city of immigrants. Except for the native peoples, we all came from someplace else and, thankfully, we brought a little of our culture with us. One result is a wide variety of ethnic grocery stores catering to the diverse tastes of Milwaukee's ethnic communities. Here is a sampling.

A.J.'s Polish Deli
1215 W. Lincoln Ave., (414) 643-7733
A.J.'s is the only exclusively Polish grocery in the city specializing in Polish pastries, perogies and breads.

Anh Chau Oriental Market, Inc.
3170 S. 27th St., (414) 384-0370
The first thing you'll notice is the insane cleanliness, quality and quanity of products in this Asian market. Carrying products to accomodate a range of Souteastern Asian tastes, Anh Chau is the perfect stop for Asian groceries.

Attari Supermarket
3042 S. 13th St., (414) 645-5880

Small in space but huge in selection. Thats the way at Attari. A well stocked meat counter, Middle Eastern oddities and bulk size rice and flour staples make this ethnic grocery store hard to define yet extremely comprehensive.

Bavarian Meat & Sausage Shop
8310 W. Appleton Ave., (414) 464-3610
This north side shop gives Usinger's a run for its money, however, with a mouth-watering (assuming you eat meat, that is) choice of German meats.

Brennan's Market
19000 W. Bluemound Rd., (262) 785-6606
Brennan's carries wine, cheese, produce and specialty items from all over the world including Chile, Australia and Ireland.

CHU HAI Oriental Market
7510 W. Appleton Ave., (414) 536-7626
This small market offers a variety of Oriental and Asian specialties.

El Rey
1530 S. Muskego Ave., (414) 672-9707
916 S. Cesar E Chavez Dr., (414) 643-1640
1320 W. Burnham St., (414) 383-7786
1023 S. 16th St., (414) 643-0184
3524 W. Burnham St., (414) 643-1616
El Rey has five locations but the supermarket at 35th & Burnham is the best, with aisle upon aisle of Mexican specialty food and beverage. A small but packed produce section and deli counter are augmented by a "fast" food counter. This is the place to go for breadfruit seeds, tamarind nectar, Jamaican sodas, ready-to-eat mole sauce, guava jelly and more.

G. Groppi's Market
1441 E. Russell St., (414) 747-9012
In Bay View, Groppi's is one of the oldest Italian food stores in an area of the earliest Italian settlements. Sustaining decades of business, Groppi's is now reinvigorated and buzzing anew thanks to new owner John Nehring.

1020 E. Brady St., (414) 272-0540

This well known establishment has the city's best Italian deli counter and refrigerator cases full of cheeses and other tasty options. A selection of dried pastas, beans, cookies, coffees and much more make this a one-stop shopping option.

Grecian Imports
1532 S. 84th St., (414) 771-3480
Likewise, Grecian Imports has a complete website describing their products and offering online sales. Food specialities include yogurt, grains and bakery as well as an online list of recommended products.

Hmong Asian Food Store
1243 S. Cesar E. Chavez Dr., (414) 384-9990
Located in the heart of Milwaukee's Hmong community, this family owned store offers Asian produce, specialty goods and meats.

Indian Spice and Groceries
10633 W. North Ave., (414) 771-3535

This west side grocery has a wide range of Asian specialties and a good selection of curries and other spices required to perfect your Indian dishes.

International Foods
1920 E. Capital Dr., (414) 964-7115

Acts as a small grocery in this Milwaukee/Shorewood neighborhood and carries foods from around the world. Specializes in Russian products to cater to a large Russian population in the area.

4303 W. Vliet St.

A local Greek favorite, Olympia is the perfect place for a great selection of olives as well as filo, feta, lamb, oils and more.

Outpost Natural Foods
100 E. Capitol Dr., (414) 961-2597
7000 W. State St., (414) 778-2012
2826 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., (414) 755-3202
In addition to organic produce and a wide range of grains, cereals and rice in bulk, a good mix of ethnic foods available, from Chinese to Italian to Middle Eastern.

9131 W. Cleveland Ave., (414) 321-5522
If Greek specialities are your favorite, visit Parthenon either in person or online where a limitless number of authentic foods and goods are available.

Russian Gallery and Food
3557 N. Oakland Ave., (414) 332-2800
This small shop located in the same strip of stores as Harry's Bar and Grill offers a large quantity of both Russian produce, foods and gifts.

500 E. Silver Spring Dr., (414) 962-9525
4027 N. Oakland Ave., (414) 332-3140
8616 W. North Ave., (414) 456-9525
10930 N. Port Washington Rd., (262) 241-9525
2195 W. 1st Ave (Grafton), (262) 376-9525
5200 W. Rawson Ave, (414) 817-9525
7901 W. Layton Ave., (414) 329-9525
13425 W. Watertown Plank Rd., (262) 784-9525
2643 N. Downer Ave., (414) 962-1600
With several locations throughout the city, Sendik's carries a wide range of imported cheese, meats, wine, produce and packaged foods and are a great source for those somewhat exotic items you can't get at Kohl's or Pick 'n' Save.

1030 N. Old World 3rd St., (414) 276-9150
It's no secret and not really a grocery store, but the selection of authentic German sausages and deli meats is unrivaled and all made on the premises. From blood sausage to beer brats and braunschweiger, Usinger's can't be beat.

The list of Asian grocers goes on and on... here are a few of the local favorites.

Asia Market
813 S. Layton Blvd., (414) 672-3303

Asian Mart
1125 N. Old World 3rd St., (414) 765-9211

Rhino Food Store
7411 W. Hampton Ave., (414) 393-9900

Superior Oriental Food Store
2729 W. Vliet St., (414) 344-8080

Viet HOA Supermarket
4900 W. North Ave., (414) 442-4016

There's a whole 'nother guide to be written about bakeries in Milwaukee, but, in the meantime, here's a quick sampling of some ethnic favorites.

Bella Bakery
960 W. Oklahoma Ave.
Bella's is THE place for Polish bakery, breads and rolls. Get there early to get a babka without having to fight off any Seinfeld characters.

1100 E. Oklahoma Ave., (414) 486-7747

A little farther south and in the heart of Milwaukee's original Italian community, Canfora's offers breads, pastries and daily specials.

4827 W. North Ave., (414) 442-2830
This local favorite bakes up Grecian specialties including baklava and butter biscuits.

Lopez Bakery
1601 W. Lincoln Ave., (414) 672-6808
1100 W. Mitchell St., (414) 672-1830
624 W. National Ave., (414) 383-4845

This Mexican bakery has an astonishing array or treats, late hours and low prices.

Roma's Italian Bakery
3600 S. Chase Ave., (414) 744-4806
Roma's Italian bakery offers Italian baked goods at reasonable prices.

1711 W. Mitchell St., (414) 831-1885

Located just west of Lopez's bakery, Sabrosuras also offers Mexican, Puerto Rican and American bakery items.

1101 E. Brady St., (414) 272-4623
After winning dozens of annual awards, Peter Sciortino's is thought to define Italian bakery in Milwaukee. Breads, rolls, pastries and cookies are made daily.

Ya Ya's Cookies
4320 N. Oakland Ave., (414) 332-9292

Specializes in Grecian cookies. Ya Ya, of course, is a term of endearment for Greek grannies.

We have, no doubt, left out your favorite ethnic grocery store or bakery, so please use the talkback section below to add them for your fellow readers. Happy eating!


alishalouise | Jan. 18, 2013 at 6:37 p.m. (report)

I was really happy to find this article, and then super sad to see it's been SOOOOOOOOOOO long since it has been updated. It definitely needs one! Thanks OnMilwaukee should you get to it. :D

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MilwaukeeCity | Dec. 29, 2009 at 10:54 a.m. (report)

Their is an ethnic sausage place on 3001 South 9th Place called C R Market. This list does need to be updated if the last update was 10 years ago!

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Idle1 | Nov. 20, 2009 at 8:03 p.m. (report)

What/where is Bella's? The address you list was an empty storefront for years and now appears to house a Mexican bakery.

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mmemme3227 | Sept. 12, 2009 at 3:53 p.m. (report)

Looking for Native American Grocery store

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grimreaper1962 | Dec. 27, 2008 at 3:34 p.m. (report)

There used to be a corner store named Pat's Corner on 28th and Rogers. They had the best hot Polish ham on Sunday mornings. Does anybody know if there is a place compairable to that around anymore?

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