By Lori Fredrich Senior Writer & Dining Editor Published Oct 10, 2019 at 12:01 PM Photography: Lori Fredrich

Exciting things are in store for the building at 1023 Old World 3rd St. which is currently home to Trio, the combination bar/restaurant, ping pong lounge and events venue.

Paul and Natalia Hackbarth, owners of Hackbarth Hospitality Group (which includes Camp Bar, Campsite 131, Birch, The Atrium and Sound by Design), are currently under contract to purchase the building, which they plan to convert into a bar on the lower level and a two-level events venue.

Although the sale of the property is still pending, Paul Hackbarth says they hope to close in early December. Trio will maintain occupancy and remain open until they officially take occupancy.

From there, Hackbarth says they will proceed with remodeling all three 4,200-square foot floors, enacting primarily cosmetic changes to transform the venue into two distinct businesses: DEER CAMP bar and restaurant on the lower level and VISTA, a bi-level events venue on the second and third floors.

DEER CAMP

DEER  CAMP, cleverly named for its proximity to Fiserv Forum, will capitalize on the well-established Camp Bar brand, offering guests a cozy rustic environment in which to enjoy drinks and a small menu of food items.

"In many ways, it will be similar to the Camp brand," says Hackbarth. "But we’re envisioning something a bit more rustic. So the aesthetic is likely to showcase more taxidermy along with new fabrics, textures… and a lot more blaze orange and camouflage."

"I’ve always had the vision of putting a bar near Fiserv," he continues, adding that the "DEER CAMP" name has been in the back of his head for over a year. "And this opportunity is perfect. It will be exciting to be involved in the growth of the surrounding area, while operating venues that are a great fit for our current business model."

VISTA

Meanwhile, VISTA will provide a unique Downtown event space that will operate similarly to The Atrium in Shorewood, providing guests with options for both a second floor indoor venue along with a flexible rooftop space overlooking Downtown. Hackbarth says they are also planning to give the spaces a similarly elegant-yet-urban, industrial-chic vibe along with state of the art audio visual, lighting and sound.

In the end, Hackbarth says, VISTA will aim to leverage Hackbarth Hospitality Group's extensive experience to create a one-of-a-kind destination for weddings and corporate events.

As for a timeline on the project, he says there’s a good chance Milwaukee will see a fully operational DEER CAMP by early 2020.

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.