By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Oct 03, 2016 at 11:01 AM

For the 10th straight year, October is Dining Month on OnMilwaukee, presented by the restaurants of Potawatomi Hotel & Casino. All month, we're stuffed with restaurant reviews, dining guides, delectable features, chef profiles and unique articles on everything food, as well as voting for your "Best of Dining 2016."

Like any new restaurant entering into only its second week of service, Bumstead Provisions – the new deli, grocer and restaurant at 2671 S. Kinnickinnic Ave. in Bay View – is still working out a few kinks in both their service and menu. But, even so, we found ourselves pleasantly surprised on our first visit.

Menu selections are playful and sometimes unexpected, offering dishes that bring together both high and low-brow cuisine in a deliciously seamless fashion. In our book, that adds up to a dining experience that we’ll be more than willing to repeat again and again.

Here are some of the items that caught our eye.

1. Doughnuts

Why not pump a little bit of foie gras mousse into your doughnut hole? These babies are rich and deliciously sweet with just a touch of savory unctuousness from the foie gras ($6.50).

2. Chef’s board

Boards are great for noshing. And this one’s no exception. Ours included slices of chorizo, finocchiona, Hooks 5 year Cheddar, pistachio pate, bread cheese, peppercorn garlic butter and house-pickled vegetables ($24).

We also have it on good authority that the chef’s board is going to evolve to include all sorts of interesting, fun things in the future. So, we’re looking forward to seeing what Bumstead will do to mix things up.

3. Sandwiches

One of our favorites was the lobster cheesesteak ($15), which features tender thinly sliced prime rib, Velveeta cheese sauce and plenty of healthy chunks of fresh lobster on a nice, soft bun. If you can’t admit to (even secretly) loving Velveeta, this sandwich isn’t for you; but, if you can appreciate its salty, umami-esque qualities, you’ll love it when juxtaposed with the sweetness of the lobster.

But, there’s similar comfort in the Bay View melt ($12.50), which features shrimp, crab, lobster and artichokes buried under a generous layer of Wisconsin Cheddar cheese on a ciabatta bun. Each is served with house salt and vinegar chips and a pickle.

4. Carne asada fries

If you love a bowl of fries covered in the works, this dish might be your jam. Seasoned tenderloin, olives, tomatoes, lettuce, guacamole and bacon dust sour cream are piled high atop truffle oil seasoned fries in this generously assembled dish ($12.50).

5. Triple duck hash

If you love duck, try this dish featuring sliced duck sausage, hash made from duck bacon and fingerling potatoes ($18). It’s served (surprise) with a sunny side up duck egg on top. If you’re lucky (as we were), you’ll get a double yolk.

6. Meatball of the moment

If a big, tender meatball sounds delicious to you, you should definitely check out the "rotating meatball" ($8-9) featuring a one-pound meatball showcasing various seasonings and sauces. This particular meatball was covered in a sticky Asian ginger sauce and served atop a bed of rice and topped with a little egg hat. Yum.

7. Shrimp & noodle salad

If you’re looking for fresh and bright, you’ll find it in the shrimp and noodle salad with grilled melon, radishes, cilantro and a light summery sweet ginger dressing ($10).

8. Pork belly cinnamon buns

On the other hand, if you’re looking for something rich and porky, you’ll find your match in the pork belly cinnamon buns ($9). Hint: they’re not really buns. They’re thick strips of pork belly rolled in cinnamon sugar, fried in butter, rolled and skewered.

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.