Beer has never been my drink of choice (hear that, Wild Turkey?), and I donâ€™t know anything about craft beers. If I have three beers a year, you could say I am on a real binge. So it was with more than a little curiosity and trepidation that my wife and I went to dinner at the Milwaukee Beer Bistro.
Imagine my surprise then when I had a great dinner, including the best Brussels sprouts I have ever had. And I mean by a big margin.
The bistro, located at 2730 N. Humboldt Blvd., in the space formerly occupied by Rio West Cantina, features small plates at very reasonable prices. The menu was put together by head chef Carson Wolfmeyer, his assistant chef Brandon Julien and owner Russ Davis.
"It was a lot of trial and error," Wolfmeyer said. "Beer is part of everything we prepare, and it took some time to get it right. Sometimes a beer just didnâ€™t taste right with what it was prepared with."
No matter how many tries it took, they have obviously been successful by creating a diverse menu where anyone could find something tempting.
But back to those sprouts.
I am not a maniac when it comes to them, but Iâ€™ve always enjoyed the dish. These came after being braised in sorghum ale and then tossed in a seasoned brown butter. They were tender with a slightly charred surface. And I don't think it requires reiterating ... but they were delicious.
The sprout dish was created by Julien, a young chef making his mark in the city.
"Heâ€™s a terrific young chef, and he learns fast," Wolfmeyer said.
I paired my sprouts with stout-braised barbecue short ribs that were tender and covered with a homemade barbecue sauce. The nice thing about it was that the sauce didnâ€™t overwhelm the taste of the short ribs.
My wife had a very interesting shrimp carbonara tortilla pizza. It was a large flour tortilla with cherry tomatoes, spinach, marinated artichoke hearts, plump shrimp and mozzarella cheese. It was a real light and delicious dish.
The bistro is open for brunch on weekends and also serves lunch on beer-infused rolls they bake themselves.
"That was the hardest thing for us," Wolfmeyer said. "None of us are bakers so it was a lot of trial and error before we got the rolls perfect."
One thing they obviously donâ€™t have to work on, however, are the Brussels sprouts.
No Talkbacks for this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Dave Begel
Published May 2, 2017
With a May 8 deadline looming, the war of words over a proposed strip club Downtown is escalating. A coalition of powerful business interests remain opposed, with the mayor and members of the Common Council on the other side, using Minneapolis as an example.
Published April 30, 2017
Let us all agree about what Junie B. Jones is not. She is not a crook. She is not a nutball. She is not in love with Handsome Warren. What she is, though, is the center of a wonderfully funny story, "Junie B. Jones Is Not a Crook."
Published April 29, 2017
Theater can make you feel a lot of things, most of them wondrous, but on rare occasion it can make me feel like a dummy. And that's what I felt like after seeing "Jane Eyre," the final show of the season at The Rep, which opened Friday night.
Published April 27, 2017
It's impossible to stop thinking about the production of "Carnival" currently being staged at In Tandem Theatre, which I reviewed on opening night last week and is a fascinating example of what can happen when you stretch yourself and dream big dreams.
Published April 25, 2017
Start with a girl, beautiful and rich. Then add in her uncle and guardian who wants to marry her so he can get the money and toss in a high-born stranger who also wants the girl's hand in marriage. What you have is Florentine's "Barber of Seville."
Published April 22, 2017
For 15 years, under the guidance of art therapist Lori Vance, ExYoMKE has gone one-on-one with some of the most disaffected children in Milwaukee, children of all races and genders, and tried to help them see the world through the eyes of an artist.
Published April 22, 2017
One of the most wonderful evenings at a theater is when the show starts on a high note and just keeps getting better and better until you get to an ending where your heart is lying on the floor and your eyes are clouded with tears. That's "Carnival."
Published April 21, 2017
"The Fantasticks" is a simple little musical, the longest running in history, about a boy and a girl and being in love. The problem in the Off the Wall Theatre production is that the boy can't hold up his end of the deal, and the whole production suffers.
Published April 20, 2017
When I'm moved, I write, and fortunately, with OnMilwaukee, I have a place for that writing. The series of Uber tales from the road have run intermittently, but this story, more than anything else, proved that words and social media have the power to spark action, to make a real difference.
Published April 18, 2017
There is nothing quite like the world of the carnies, who travel the country, state fair after state fair, luring spectators with claims of wonder and magic. And that world is coming to Milwaukee, believe it or not, in the tiny space at In Tandem Theatre.