The votes are in, and the winners have been selected for OnMilwaukee's Best Dining 2009. The results of this readers' poll, including an editors' pick, are available in this series of articles that run all October long during Dining Month on OnMilwaukee.com.
Fish fries in Milwaukee are kind of like Packer Bars.
They're everywhere. Everyone has a favorite. And, they inspire a great deal of loyalty and passion among the customers.
For the third straight year, OnMilwaukee.com readers chose Lakefront Palm Garden as the best place in the city to fill their tank with tartar sauce. Lakefront gathered more than 21 percent of the votes in this popular category, which attracted many write-in votes for establishments in every corner of the city.
The Lakefront fish menu, served from 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, features cod ($9.95), perch ($12.95), bluegill ($12.95), breaded shrimp ($12.95), baked tilapia ($10.95) or a combo platter ($12.95) -- and it's probably the beer batter that keeps ‘em coming back. All of the dinners are served with a choice of fries or potato pancakes, cole slaw and bread and butter.
The food, however, is only a portion of the experience. Diners are seated "family style" at large tables, and entertained by the Brewhaus Polka Kings, who gig in lederhosen and strapped with accordions from 6 to 9 p.m.
The Palm Garden fish fry is very popular with families because there is a dance floor where children and adults can work up an appetite amid live polka ditties mixed with other classic kids' songs like the "Hokey Pokey." It's best to arrive after 6:30 p.m. if you wish to avoid the kid scene.
Editors' choice: Kegel's Inn
The Packing House
Wegner's St. Martins Inn
Balistreri's Bluemound Inn
Weissgerber's Gasthaus and Beer Garden
Silver Spring House
River Lane Inn
Cafe El Sol