For the eighth straight year, October is Dining Month on OnMilwaukee.com, presented by Locavore, the newest restaurant at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino. All month, we're stuffed with restaurant reviews, delectable features, chef profiles and unique articles on everything food, as well as the winners of our "Best of Dining 2014."
Seven months ago, I visited a Puerto Rican restaurant called La CaribeÃ±a, 1704 S. Pearl St., because it was new and generating a positive buzz.
While there, I met co-owner Edwin Ordonez, who shared information about his interesting and challenging past, the story of how his restaurant evolved and the fact he wanted to someday open a much larger restaurant, sports bar and nightclub.
Tonight, Ordonez â€“ along with his two business partners â€“ will open Mangoâ€™s Tropical Bar & Grill, 721 S. Cesar Chavez Dr.
"This will be the most unique sports club and night club in the city," says Ordonez. "We want to bring something new to Milwaukee."
Ordonez owns the business with Frank Sandino, who also owns Milwaukee's Bamboo Lounge, and Greg Kieckbusch, who formerly managed Buffalo Wild Wings restaurants and created much of the Mangoâ€™s menu.
Mangoâ€™s is based on a Florida establishment of the same name. Itâ€™s located inside a massive space featuring two stories and three bars, each with a different theme (including a tiki lounge). The interior is equipped with a full kitchen, a small casino, "video walls," murals and more.
The large, free parking lot in front of the club will definitely be an asset.
Mangoâ€™s menu featuresÂ "bar food with a tropical twist." Highlights include wings, Caribbean shish-ka-bobs and "Juicy Lucy" burgers, which are hamburgers stuffed with melted cheese.
Thereâ€™s also a menu item called "The Tsunami" â€“ a one-pound cheese-stuffed burger topped with two fried eggs, pork shoulder, avocado and more.
"Anyone who can eat it in under 15 minutes gets it free," says Ordonez.
Ordonez hopes Mangoâ€™s will serve as an entertainment destination for a diverse group of Milwaukeeans who are interested in food, music, sports, drinking, hanging out and / or dancing.
"I really want to combine the communities â€“ Latin, Caucasian, African American," he says. "People are going to know Mangoâ€™s."
Mangoâ€™s grand opening takes place tonight â€“ Friday, Oct. 17 â€“ at 9 p.m. The event will feature music by DJ Mighty Thor and free cupcakes by Cuppie Cakes Creations. There is no cover.
According to Ordonez, a ribbon-cutting will take place with Mayor Tom Barrett at 5:30 p.m.
Mangoâ€™s will be open seven days a week, starting at 3 p.m.
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