It's time for Dining Month, presented by Deer District and its spooky Halloween-themed alter ego, Fear District. Throughout the month of October, we'll be serving up fun and fascinating content about all things food. The signature dish, however, is our 2019 Best of Dining poll, who's winners we will dish out all month long. Get hungry, Milwaukee!
Note: This article has been updated to reflect a new opening date, prompted by last minute maintenance to the restaurant's open hearth.
Ash is the name of the Iron Horse Hotel’s new restaurant, which will make its debut on Friday, Oct. 18.
Developed with the assistance of Chefs Daniel Jacobs and Dan Van Rite of the DVR Group, Ash is named for the wood-fired hearth around which the restaurant was designed. And its menu pays homage to simple American hearth cooking with a menu that focuses on shareable wood-fired dishes.
"The Iron Horse is steeped in American heritage," notes Jacobs. "So we’re using age-old live fire cooking almost entirely to enhance the natural flavors of the meats, vegetables, fruits and spices."
The menu, which is designed for sharing, features a variety of starters including housemade spaetzle with bone marrow, poached egg and herbs and a pork belly and squash salad with scallion relish and spiced yogurt.
There are also main dishes like ginger-soy marinated prime Bavette steak and head-on prawns with chili butter and hearth-fired toast, along with large format items like grilled short ribs and whole Spotted Cow glazed Peking duck served with a variety of accompaniments from lettuce cups to grilled bread, pickles and sauces.
Equally compelling sides include smoked cauliflower with romesco sauce and grilled broccoli with tonnato sauce.
Dishes are served as soon as they are ready – hot off the hearth – creating a leisurely and stay-and-linger dining experience.
In addition to the restaurant’s focal point – the hearth – where guests can watch chefs cooking over the open fire, the interior at Ash also includes a wall of windows offering diners a view of the kitchen, a vintage bar reclaimed from an historic Pabst Brewery tap room and a custom-painted rose (the restaurant’s icon) mural.
"Like the hotel itself, Ash is inspired by history," says Iron Horse Hotel owner Tim Dixon. "We believe it brings a unique and decidedly local dining experience to Milwaukee’s most iconic hotel. I‘m excited to introduce this concept and couldn’t be more proud to partner with our friends Dan and Dan to make this vision a reality."
Beginning Oct. 18, Ash will be open Monday through Thursday from 6:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Sunday from 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Reservations will be available beginning Monday, Oct. 14 at opentable.com/r/ash-milwaukee.
Lori Fredrich (Lo) is an eater, writer, wonderer, bon vivante, traveler, cook, gardener and girlwonder. Born and raised in the Milwaukee area, she has tried to leave many times, but seems to be drawn to this quirky city that smells of beer and alewives.
Some might say that she is a little obsessed with food. Lo would say she is A LOT obsessed with food. After all, she has been cooking, eating and enjoying food for decades and has no plans to retire anytime soon.
Lo's recipes and writing have been featured in a variety of publications including GO: Airtran Inflight Magazine, Cheese Connoisseur, Cooking Light, Edible Milwaukee, Milwaukee Magazine and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, as well as on the blog Go Bold with Butter, the web site Wisconsin Cheese Talk, and in the quarterly online magazine Grate. Pair. Share.