By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Jan 23, 2023 at 11:02 AM

It’s as important as ever to support the amazing collection of local restaurants that we have in our beautiful city. And there’s no better way to do so than making a commitment to patronize them throughout the year. To guide you on your journey, I’ve composed a list of 52 amazing restaurants. Try just one of these every week and you’ll have visited them all by the end of 2023.  View the full list here.
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Sanford
1547 N. Jackson St., (414) 276-9608
sanfordrestaurant.com
New American
$$$-$$$$

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In an age where new and shiny is king, there are still reliable classics that deserve attention. Among them is Sanford, a staple fine dining spot that (quite literally) helped to put Milwaukee on the national dining map.

Even 30 years after opening its menu of globally inspired seasonal New American fare is still relevant and (more importantly) delicious. Even more – despite the humility with which James Beard Award winning Chef and co-owner Justin Aprahamian approaches his work – a meal eaten under his watch is nearly guaranteed to be memorable.  In fact, if anything is a rarity at Sanford, it's an off-night.

Currently, Sanford offers a choice of a four course menu or seven course surprise tasting menu. Menus change daily, but you can peek at the sample menu on their website to get a gist of what you might find. Ultimately, it’s a selection of nicely balanced dishes which reflect both refinement in technique and a great deal of playfulness in their flavor combinations.

Wanna impress your date for Valentine’s Day? Now is a very good time to make a reservation.

Pro tip: Guests tend to dress up at Sanford, insinuating there’s a dress code; but like most modern spots, there isn’t. Go as you feel comfortable; they won’t turn you away.

Recommended: The surprise tasting menu; it’s unparalleled

Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host

Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club. 

When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.