By Lori Fredrich Senior Writer & Dining Editor Published Mar 01, 2018 at 12:15 PM

It’s the end of an era for Buca di Beppo restaurants in Wisconsin. The chain has closed its last existing Wisconsin location at Southridge Mall, 5300 S. 76th St., effective immediately.

Last March, we reported that the long-time location on Van Buren had closed after over a decade in business. That closing left the Southridge location, which opened in 2013, as the only location remaining in Wisconsin.

"I’m sad to see them go and I’m unhappy that this space will now be vacant and not operating," noted Mike Doble, proprietor of Explorium Brewpub, a fellow Southridge tenant who has enjoyed the traffic generated by the Buca's location.

"I contacted the manager of Buca this morning to extend our condolences and to offer for staff to apply for open positions at The Explorium Brewpub. In addition, I offered to try to accommodate any parties or banquets that may be scheduled. That’s about all we can do to try to soften the blow to the staff and their guests."

Buca di Beppo – which roughly translates to "Joe's Basement" – first opened in the basement level of a Minneapolis apartment building in 1993. Today, the chain is owned by Planet Hollywood International, Inc. The chain boasts more than 100 locations in 25 states.

Lori Fredrich Senior Writer & Dining Editor

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.