Racine's Hob Nob offers modern supper club experience
Aletto begins his 22nd year at the Hob Nob in February of 2012 and his 35th year in the restaurant business overall. Glowacki, who is originally from Kenosha, says she and Aletto put in 60-hour work weeks at the Hob Nob before finally cutting back after the kids were born. Aletto now commutes from Florida once a month and every other week around holidays.
"Not that he doesn't lust after restaurants here (in Florida) -- he does -- but I tell him, 'You can't be in six places at once,'" Glowacki says with a laugh.
The Hob Nob's management team consists of bookkeeper and events coordinator Kara and dining room manager Teresa, who've been at the restaurant since the mid-1990s. Glowacki says they keep things humming at Hob Nob and credits them with some of the long-term consistency that customers appreciate.
The staff of 40 full- and part-time employees wears a somewhat standardized, formal uniform of black trousers, vests and white shirts, but each staff member does so with a different color tie. Glowacki can't remember when this practice first started, but knows it came about because staff members wanted to "mix things up and have their personalities show through." Some "special ties" are also used on special evenings, such as New Year's Eve, when the bartenders are prone to wearing light-up ties.
Banquets are a large part of the Hob Nob's business. The restaurant has three banquet halls and consists of several unique rooms, each with its own name. For example, the downstairs banquet area is called the Monet Room, named for the Impressionist watercolors on its walls.
The building originally built by the Higgins family also includes the Bel Mar (a beautiful bar and seating area purportedly named for two women, one of which may have been Mrs. Higgins), the Persian Room is behind that and the Moroccan Room is across the hall. The hall leads to a large dining area more simply called the Cocktail Lounge, which has an art deco theme and perhaps the most spectacular view of Lake Michigan one can have while sitting at a bar.
The Terrace Room is adjacent to the Cocktail Lounge, and was added in 1996. It has large glass walls which offer lake views from just about every dining position.
The aforementioned Moroccan Room is interesting not only for its tent-in-the-Sahara desert theme, but because it's semi-private, seating a maximum of six.
"It's first-come, first served. We get a lot of engagements in that room, as well as anniversary parties," says Glowacki.
Although closed every Monday, the Hob Nob is open almost every other day of the year, with a notable exception. "We're only closed four or five days of the year, including Christmas Eve and Super Bowl Sunday," says Glowacki.
"We don't have any TVs, so what's the point?" she says, laughing.
The Hob Nob does a good job walking the line between tradition and innovation, adding new menu items while maintaining the high-quality and consistency of the mainstays. Glowacki emphasizes it's a casual dining environment, they get a lot of boaters in the summer and that all customers throughout the year, no matter how they're dressed, come out for an experience they can no longer get anywhere else.
"We keep things fresh, but we pride ourselves on our level of service," Glowacki says.
<< BackPage 2 of 2 (view all on one page)
Post a comment / write a review.
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.