Late night dining guide
Note: The contents of this guide were checked for accuracy when this article was updated on April 18, 2010 at 11:03 a.m. We continually update the thousands of articles on OnMilwaukee.com, 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.
There are definitely days when you've fallen out of the 9 to 5 lifestyle and a 3 p.m. lunch is followed by a 10 p.m. dinner. Whether you're out on the town and need a sobering meal or just finished second shift and haven't eaten since lunch, Milwaukee's late night options are sure to fill your belly.
Based on recommendations from bar crowd diners and hospitality industry veterans, this is list reflects Milwaukee's best in the late hour.
1310 E. Brady St., (414) 272-2233
Open Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.- 3 a.m.
Apollo Cafe, located in the heart of Brady Street, continues the neighborhood's Greek and Italian cultural cuisine. This counter-service restaurant offers classic souvlaki, hummus and feta, gyros and spanakopita. Entrees and sandwiches are available in a variety of meats including lamb, chicken and beef as well as tuna and vegetarian options.
Balzac Wine Bar
1716 N. Arlington Pl., (414) 755-0099
Dining service available Monday-Thursday 4 p.m.-11 p.m., Friday-Saturday 4 p.m.-midnight, bar service daily from 4 p.m.- 2 a.m.
On the east side, Balzac is known for an ever-changing, indulgent and alluring wine list. However, laying in the shadow of an incredible vino experience is a tapas and appetizer menu that is just as inviting. With food pairings for almost every wine on the list, Balzac offers a significant menu of appetizers, tapas and flatbreads. Appetizers include baked cheeses, small salads and brochettes of meats, olives or veggies. A selection of cheese and wine flight combinations are also offered.
1935 N. Water Street, (414) 226-2245
2625 N. Downer Ave. (414) 964-1190
If late night Mexican cuisine is what you want, Bel-Air cantina offers their full menu until midnight every night at their Water Street location and Friday and Saturday at their Downer location. With a wide variety of tacos and burritos to choose from, they are sure to have something for everyone.
Brick 3 Pizza
1107 N. Old World Third St., (414) 224-6040
Open Monday-Thursday 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Friday-Saturday, 11 p.m.-3 a.m., Sunday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
Brick 3 Pizza started slicing pizza in spring of 2009 with a New York twist on a local favorite. Serving pizza by the pie or the slice, the Downtown restaurant offers just about everything from classic pepperoni or meat lovers to specialty Caprese or BBQ chicken and bacon.
2608 N. Downer Ave., (414) 963-6366
Full menu service daily from 8 a.m.-midnight
A Diablos Rojos creation, Cafe Hollander brings touch of Dutch culture to Milwaukee's East Side. A taste of Holland includes mussels and frites, a variety of burgers, brats and mashers and of course a daily fish fry. Breakfast selections are offered all day but a more complete breakfast menu is offered daily from 8 to 11 a.m. and a larger brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.
2797 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., (414) 238-2406
Open Sunday-Monday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday 11a.m.-12a.m.
Known for their humongous slices of pizza Classic Slice is a must if you're looking for a late slice. Apart from pizza they also have calzones and sandwiches. They also accommodate to gluten free and vegan customers.
1947 North Farwell Avenue, (414) 273-7677
Open Monday through Friday 10 a.m.-2 a.m. and Saturday-Sunday 9 a.m.-2 a.m.
Food that will make you think you are back at your parents house. Everything is made from scratch with their signature "slow food". Grab some late night eats when you go in for their cheap beer nights.
728 N. Milwaukee St., (414) 225-1760
Open Monday-Thursday 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-1 a.m. Closed Sunday.
Named one of the top 30 restaurants in the city for the last four years, it's no wonder customers return time and time again for a taste of cuban flavor plus minty mojitos. Cubanitas offers traditional cuban fare including pork, chicken and ham sandwich options as well as steak and seafood entrees. Tamales, ceviche and guacamole round out the appetizer list and are certainly followed by an array of torte and flan desserts.
The Dogg Haus
1433 E. Brady St., (414) 727-1224
Open everyday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
It's one of those nostalgic foods that sound perfect at bar time. Hot dogs. But The Dogg Haus doesn't simply offer up your standard dog with ketchup and mustard. Offering a long list of meats, toppings and sides, The Dogg Haus gives you options upon options for creating the dog of your choice.
Elsa's On the Park
833 N. Jefferson St., (414) 765-0615
Serving food until 1 a.m., bar open until 2 a.m.
Catering to a hip and trendy Downtown crowd, Elsa's has mastered upscale versions of nachos, wings and burgers. Not only are the offerings tasty, but you can get them until 1 a.m. every night of the week. With a bar that is open until 2am daily, this lounge style restaurant offers anything from appetizers and salads to sandwiches and dessert.
Fire Pit Sports Bar & Grill
1721 W. Canal St., (414) 847-7993
Located inside the Potawatomi Casino this bar has everything that a sports fan could ask for. The kitchen offers the full menu until 2am. Great choice for the late night munchies. Try the signature Pit Burger.
George Webb (numerous locations)
Open 24 hours, seven days a week
We'd be remiss if we left out the granddaddy of all 24 hour diners, the famous George Webb's. Let's be honest: Webb's isn't gonna win any awards for gourmet food. But it's fast, cheap and always open. Chances are you'll run into some old friends, or meet some of Milwaukee's most unusual regulars at Webb's. Try not to think too much about the cleanliness of this place; when you have a hankering for some grub and less than $5 left in your wallet, chances are there is a George Webb's near you.
1033 N. Old World 3rd St., (414) 291-5600
Formerly known as Tutto Restaurant and Bar, is the most recent creation of the Giovanni family. The people of Milwaukee will be able to once more enjoy Italian classics cooked by Giovanni and his family. The new Giovanni's will be in an upscale environment with the feel of the its predecessor, bringing old traditions alive. Giovanni's Restaurant is set to open October 1st.
2207 E. North Ave., (414) 291-0645
Open daily 9 a.m.-4 a.m.
Just two blocks away, Jalisco's offers up big burritos to the late night diner. No, this isn't breakfast, but just how picky can you be after last call? This Mexican food will fill you up, and there's nothing like a burrito the size of your head to soak up any of the lingering beer still in your system.
1532 W. Wells St., (414) 344-1234
3129 N. Oakland Ave., (414) 967-9014
Open daily until 3 a.m.
Would you like "The Big John" or "The Pepe?" "The Country Club" or "The Bootlegger?" Whatever cleverly named sub sandwich you choose will taste great after a long night bellied up to the bar. Jimmy John's has two locations open (or delivering) until 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Sandwiches come piled high with provolone cheese, mayo, sprouts, tomatoes, cucumbers, avocado and the meat of your choice, or try the "Vegetarian."
1030 E. Juneau Ave., (414) 272-0011
Open Monday-Friday 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. and Saturday-Sunday 9 a.m.-12 a.m.
In a trendy, casual environment, The Knick offers sandwiches, salads, entrees and desserts everyday until midnight. Opening early on Saturday and Sunday, the Knick now offers a full brunch until 3pm followed by dinner menu options.
125 E. National Ave., (414) 389-0125
Open Monday-Friday 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (lunch), Monday-Thursday 5 p.m.-10 p.m. and Friday-Saturday 5-11 p.m., bar service until close daily
Specializing in international and regional flavors, La Merenda offers tapas style dining with small portion dishes from Thailand, Colombia, Italy, Mexico and more. The full dinner menu is served until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays making this the perfect destination for unbelievable variety and authenticity in the late evening.
2214 N. Farwell Ave., (414) 271-7424
Open 24 hours daily
Ma's is the ultimate East Side late night breakfast oasis. If you've been to Ma's during daylight hours, you'll notice a big difference at 3 a.m. Open 24 hours a day, the service is great anytime. Despite a boisterous after bar crowd, the staff is still courteous and the food is still top notch. Ma's is a bit more expensive than some of its neighbors, but the quality is well worth it. A hearty breakfast at this classic Greek diner is just what you'll need to sleep off a rough night out.
Michael's Family Restaurant
2220 W. Wisconsin Ave., (414) 344-7333
Open 24 hours
This 24-hour restaurant is great for two reasons. First, you can order anything from pancakes to steak and it all tastes pretty good. The food is served fast and hot. Second, it is very cheap; perfect if you have a growling stomach and only two crumpled dollar bills in hand. Located near The Rave and the Marquette campus.
Mo's Irish Pub
142 W. Wisconsin Ave., (414) 272-0721
10842 W. Bluemound Rd., (414) 774-9782
Serving dinner Sunday-Thursday until 11 p.m. and Friday-Saturday until 1 a.m. Bar service until 2 a.m.
With Downtown and West Side locations, Mo's has you covered for late night cravings. Mo's full menu offers a combo of Irish favorites like shepherd's pie and reuben sandwiches as well as American classics like burgers, wraps and salads. Plus, wash your late night dinner down with the perfect pint of Guinness, Harp or Smithwicks.
NYPD (New York Pizza Deliveries)
231 East North Avenue, Milwaukee, (414) 562-4444
Quality, made to order food at a reasonable price. The dough and sauce are made from scratch. Get a free 2 ltr. of soda with any purchase of $20 or more.
2867 N. Oakland Ave., (414) 963-1393
Open daily from 10:30 a.m.-3 a.m.
With a good location and great hours, this Greek fast food joint will hit the spot after a night out on the town. You'll be surprised by their diverse menu, but their shish-kabobs and gyros come highly recommended. A little farther north than the other late night hot spots, Oakland Gyros is worth the trip.
Omega V Restaurant
3473 S. 27th St., (414) 645-6595
Open 24 hours daily
Also known as Paul's Omega, this south-side restaurant is open 24 hours a day and serves breakfast anytime. There are waffles and pancakes smothered in fruit and whip cream and omelets with veggies and feta cheese served with the Omega's Greek toast. If breakfast isn't what you want, Omega also serves an array of lunch and dinner foods of all kinds, including burgers, gyros, chicken kabobs, ribs and more. The place is large so you should never have a problem getting a table and Paul's family and staff are very friendly.
776 N. Milwaukee St., (414) 272-6896
Open Monday-Thursday until 10 p.m., Friday-Saturday until 3:30 a.m.
Catering to the lively crowds of the Milwaukee Street bar scene, Ouzo offers up an incredible selection of kebabs, sandwiches, spanakopita, salads and desserts. Check it out at bartime and you'll see the party move from the clubs to the cafe.
1827 N. Farwell Ave., (414) 289-9993
Open Sunday-Thursday 10 a.m.-3 a.m. and Friday-Saturday 10 a.m.-4 a.m.
Its pizza may not rival its neighbor down the street, Zaffiro's, but the late night option can't be beat. Pizza Shuttle serves more than just pizza, and the crowd at this East Side hangout tends to be a little younger. When you're not in the mood for just breakfast, this is one of the few places in town that will serve up a piping hot pizza and great breadsticks into the wee hours of the night.
1122 N. Edison St., (414) 223-1122
Open 11 a.m.-12 a.m. daily
Located just off of the Water Street bar scene strip, Vagabond, formerly Rudy's Mexican restaurant, offers casual mexican dining along with a wide selection of margaritas. It's the perfect stop on your way to or from a night out on the town.
1903 E. Kenilworth Place,(414) 226-2626
With more than one location in the city, Toppers has become a staple of late night eats. If you are not in the mood for the classic pepperoni slice, then try one of their very unique specialty pizzas they offer. Great for the closing stop after a night of bar hopping.
Ward's House of Prime
540 E. Mason St., (414) 223-0135
Open daily from 4 p.m.-1 a.m.
Ward's serves at its bars until 1 a.m., and many nights features $5 martinis and flatbread pizzas. The menu has Prime Rib entrees, Cajun mac and cheese, Ward's chive fries, lobster ravioli and more.
249 N. Water St., (414) 431-1133
Open Sunday through Thursday until 10 p.m. and Friday-Saturday until midnight
Located on the Milwaukee River, Water Buffalo is perfect after a long night out on the water or out on the town. Enjoy their satisfying weekly specials during the week, including half-price wine nights on Wednesday.
The Wicked Hop
345 N. Broadway, (414) 223-0345
Open Monday through Friday 11 a.m.-2 a.m. and Saturday-Sunday 10 a.m.-2 a.m.
Located in a thriving area of the Third Ward, The Wicked Hop offers full lunch, dinner and Sunday Brunch menus. Enjoy local & imported beers, pub grub and live music any day of the week. Don't forget to try one of their Bloody Mary's during brunch!
714 E. Brady St. Milwaukee (414) 226-9999
Sun-Thur: 4pm-2am, Fri & Sat: 4pm-3am
A Brady St. staple. With the slogan "Food so great you'll scrape your plate," this east side restaurant's menu also offers burgers, fish, chicken, and frozen custard to satiate your late night cravings.
I'd never go to Ma Fischer's considering what they charge for their menu items. If I want to go to a good, reasonably priced Greek diner I'll go to West Allis before I'd go to Ma Fischer's.
Balistreri's Bluemound Inn serves pizzas, sandwiches, and apps until 1am seven days a week.
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