For the ninth 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 2015."
It’s sleek. And modern. And yet oh-so-retro.
We previewed the new urban supper club, Supper, which opens today at 1962 N. Prospect Ave., just inside the Shorecrest building. And it’s a doozy.
Just stroll past the building on a cool autumn evening, and you’ll see what I mean. Huge floor-to-ceiling windows, once hung with window shades that prevented a view inside, are now open. And on busy evenings, you'll be able to see the glow of the restaurant from the exterior, including the gaiety of satiated diners, feasting on supper club favorites both old and new.
The restaurant – which incorporates modern elements into the old school supper club concept – is the brainchild of Wolf Peach owner Gina Gruenwald and Wolf Peach beverage director Erich Wilz.
Decor includes dark wood accents along with copper flourishes, like the decorative paneling behind the Supper Bar. Art deco era chandeliers hang above tables – which vary between rounds that seat 8-10 to intimate corner tables and booths for two to four.
Chef Erik Hansen, formerly of the University Club, Distil and Hinterland Erie Streeet Gastropub, heads up the kitchen at Supper, which serves both classic supper club dishes and more modern, lighter fare.
Bread service is generous and delicious, including buttery rolls and thick-cut marbled rye served with both plain and flavored butters.
Appetizers include oysters Rockefeller (market), braised escargot ($10), beef tartar ($12) along with cauliflower fritto ($9) and calf liver mousse ($8).
Snazzier elements include the foie gras torchon ($17) – featuring huckleberry marmalade and pickled radishes, served atop a rye crisp. The dish was rich and flavorful, with the sweet and sour elements cutting through the unctuous liver like a dream.
The classic lazy Susan is also available, with choices like braunschweiger, smoked trout mousse with caviar, black truffle deviled eggs, marinated olives, pickled and raw vegetables and seasonal cheeses. Get them all for $22 or pick three for just $11.
Salads include the classic wedge ($9), a frisee salad with aged cheddar, apples and walnut vinaigrette ($12) and classic Caesar with romaine, grated Sarvecchio parmesan and rye croutons ($10)
Meanwhile, the waldorf salad is a unique take on the classic, featuring cubed celery root instead of apples, along with sweet roasted grapes, spiced walnuts, lemon oil and greens ($11)
Among classic entrees, you’ll find a 14 ounce cut of Steak Diane ($40) with roasted mushrooms, housemade Worcestershire emulsion and veal reduction, Lobster de Jonghe (market) featuring butter poached lobster tail, gremolata bread pudding and creamed spinach, and an "Everynight Fish Fry" ($18) featuring beer battered cod, crispy potatoes and creamy coleslaw.
The 18-ounce veal Oscar ($44) sported a bone-in veal chop covered in butter poached crayfish and served with rich bearnaise, shallot jam and grilled asparagus.
Meanwhile, the steak Delmonico ($42) flaunted a 16-ounce bone-in ribeye served atop potato and Gruyere gratin with bordelaise.
Contemporary stylings include a half rack of lamb ($40) with artichoke gratin, Gordal olives, roasted eggplant puree and jus, along with options like wild boar ragu ($22), Coho salmon ($23) served with creamed corn, tomato panisse and watercress, and an 18-ounce pork chop ($31) with chive spaetzle, cipollini onions, ginger creme fraiche and spiced apple butter.
If you’re still hungry, desserts include favorites like baked Alaska and a modern take on bananas foster, featuring a densely delicious banana pudding with rum sauce and a dollop of ice cream.
Supper is open Sunday through Thursday from 3 to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 3 to 11 p.m. Reservations can be made by calling (414) 509-6074.
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.