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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Friday, Aug. 22, 2014

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When I was lost on a country highway or popped out of the subway, the iPhone gave me my precise location.
When I was lost on a country highway or popped out of the subway, the iPhone gave me my precise location.

External or internal compass?

Before I got the iPhone, I had a faint fear it would put too much information at my finger tips any hour of the day.

I hypothesized I might become addicted to checking my email 60 times a day, using a calculator to perform even the simplest of math equations and quickly jump to quell disputes on actors or movies with a jaunt to Wikipedia.

Simultaneously, I reveled in the thought of checking my email from anywhere, mapping my route in any city and letting go of my separate phone, iPod, and camera. It was an internal argument between good and evil with uncertainty on which side of the slope my iPhone or user's behavior would ultimately fall.

But of course, I got the iPhone.

And so, now six months into ownership, I admit I'm a fan of most of the iPhone's abilities. It's easy and convenient, fun and constantly evolving.

It was only once I took it on a few short trips that I started to see it; I have a feeling my former iPhone fear might just be on the verge of realization. I'm starting to think it might be making my travelling life just a little too easy.

With the iPhone in hand, there was no need to analyze maps, invoke directional assistance or employ my stellar sense of direction. Google Maps showed me the way. When I was lost on a country highway or popped out of the subway, the iPhone gave me my precise location.

This being said, while I admit it stirs a fear of complacency and general inability, it often quells overwhelming uncertainties of meandering completely unfamiliar neighborhoods.

And so, a trade-off emerges in the age of technology. On one hand, lose the iPhone and you regain a sense of pioneering self-reliance. But, on the other hand, the iPhone dramatically helps me do more, see more, and be in more places for more experiences every day.

Home of the "Six Buck Lunch," don't miss beef sliders, Charlies chopped salad or pulled pork and slaw.
Home of the "Six Buck Lunch," don't miss beef sliders, Charlies chopped salad or pulled pork and slaw.

Rapid review: Club Charlies

October is the third annual Dining Month on OnMilwaukee.com. All month, we're stuffed with restaurant reviews, delicious features, chef profiles, unique articles on everything food, as well as the winners of our "Best of Dining 2009."

Club Charlies
320 E. Menomonee St., (414) 763-8548
www.clubcharlies.com

Club Charlies opened earlier this year to give Third Ward workers and residents another spot for casual dinner and drinks. Framed by a front wall of floor to ceiling windows, this is a great summer time hang out with cool breezes and plenty of light.

But, all winter long there are plenty of dining deals to make this a Third Ward destination. Home of the "Six Buck Lunch," don't miss beef sliders, Charlies chopped salad or pulled pork and slaw.

If you find one of the owners behind the bar, be sure to ask for the story behind the name Charlies!

Menu: Classic American bar food.

Price: Inexpensive.

When to go: Open at 11 a.m. daily, hit up Club Charlies during the lunch hour for a six dollar deal or stop in after work for daily happy hour specials.

Dress: Club Charlies is a very relaxed, bar atmosphere where anything is acceptable. Show up in jeans or business wear and you'll feel right at home.

Don't miss: The Wednesday special is one that can't be beat. Stop in for a mouth watering ½ lb. beef filet for just $8.99.

Parking: Street parking is available right out front or throughout the Third Ward.

The Harley-Davidson Museum is now one of Milwaukee's biggest tourist attractions.
The Harley-Davidson Museum is now one of Milwaukee's biggest tourist attractions.

Making quick Milwaukee recommendations

Yesterday, here at OnMilwaukee.com we got an e-mail from a company executive in Illinois planning a trip for 13 employees to Milwaukee in November.

On the initial list, they wanted to visit a brewery, eat at a German restaurant, do a tour and listen to some live music. Apparently, those things, and in that order, are classic Milwaukee specialties.

His e-mail requested guidance and recommendations; more or less, a Milwaukeean to help cut through tourism advertisements and get to the best this city has to offer on a Tuesday night.

So, after careful thought, I gave this exec a call to steer him in the right direction.

What about a brewery? Obviously, we have our share of fully operating breweries and brew pubs but, it's tough to recommend Lakefront Brewery over Sprecher or Water Street Brewery over the Milwaukee Ale House. Then of course, there's the new Rehorst tour, as well.

Where to go for German fare? Mader's or Karl Ratzsch's immediately come to mind but honestly, I've never been to either and so it's tough to sell something of which you really know nothing about.

What's the best local tour? I thought perhaps the Harley-Davidson Museum, maybe a trip to Usinger's or an afternoon at the Warhol exhibit at the Milwaukee Art Museum.

Lastly, live music is the tough one. Where can you find live music in Milwaukee on a Tuesday night? Again, I thought maybe the Milwaukee Ale House, Old German Beer Hall or Mo's Irish Pub.

What are your thoughts? Where would you send someone coming to Milwaukee for just one night?

Karma's exterior looks like a little taste of Europe right here in Milwaukee.
Karma's exterior looks like a little taste of Europe right here in Milwaukee.

Rapid review: Karma Bar & Grill

October is the third annual Dining Month on OnMilwaukee.com. All month, we're stuffed with restaurant reviews, delicious features, chef profiles, unique articles on everything food, as well as the winners of our "Best of Dining 2009."

Karma Bar & Grill
600 E. Ogden Ave., (414) 220-4118
www.site.karmamilwaukee.com

At first glance, Karma's menu looks like classic bar options of burgers, sandwiches and pizza. And while you can find nachos, quesadillas and chicken strips, they also offer items slightly off the grid like pretzel rolls with beer and bacon cheese sauce or spicy macaroni and cheese with applewood bacon.

Menu: Small twists on classic bar food.

Price: Inexpensive.

When to go: Load up on all-you-can-eat ribs on Tuesdays, build your own pasta on Wednesdays or catch deals on fish tacos on Thursdays. Don't miss the Friday fish fry or Sunday brunch.

Dress: Anything is acceptable; sport team colors to watch the big game, jeans and sweatshirts for casual dinner or business attire during the weekday lunch hour.

Don't miss: Known for its burgers and pizza, you don't want to pass up these traditions at Karma. Want to mix it up a little? Opt for sweet potato fries or Asian cole slaw. The marinated steak sandwich offers a tasty lighter option with mixed greens, sautéed artichoke hearts and portabella mushrooms.

Parking: Find street parking or use the parking lot just east of the restaurant.