By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Jan 12, 2024 at 10:01 AM

The Milwaukee Metro area will soon have its very first location of Forage Kitchen, a Madison-based concept that aims to offer fresh, satisfying scratch-made fare in a quick, convenient format.

Last May, we tipped you off that the locally-owned grain bowl and salad restaurant would be coming to the former Great Clips at 103 E. Silver Spring Dr. in Whitefish Bay. Just seven months later, we have word that the new fast-casual eatery will be opening on Monday, Jan. 15.

Whitefish Bay locationX

Guests who are familiar with the Whitefish Bay location will find the former hair salon utterly transformed.  The eatery is bright, airy and welcoming with clean modern lines and a bit of artistic flare thanks to a bespoke mural created by Milwaukee artist Bigshot Robot. Outside, guests can look forward to the addition of a sidewalk patio for al fresco dining in the spring of 2024.

The new location is part of an overall plan for growth of the Forage Kitchen brand, which has signed a lease for their second Milwaukee-area location in Pewaukee, which is expected to open in the spring of 2024.

"As we continue our growth in Madison, we felt the time was right to bring the flavors of Forage Kitchen to folks in and around Milwaukee looking for a fresh, healthy, and satisfying meal," says Henry Aschauer, founder and owner of Forage Kitchen and the eatery’s sister brand, Forage Kombucha.

On the menu

Local sourcing is part of the mission at Forage Kitchen, so guests will see ingredients from purveyors including Alsum Produce (Friesland), Rocket Baby bakery (Wauwatosa), Flynn Creek Farms (Verona) and Carr Valley Creamery (La Valle).

Amid the eatery’s menu offerings, guests will find grain bowls, salads and soups including seasonal offerings like The Green Mole Bowl (black and red rice, quinoa, roasted tomato and onion, poblano cabbage slaw, black beans, guacamole and green molé with charred poblano and pineapple dressing; V, GF); and the wing-inspired Buffalo Bowl features black and red rice, kale, pickled red onions, cucumbers, roasted brussels sprouts, giardiniera, buffalo sauce and house-made ranch dressing (V, GF).

The Buffalo Bowl
The Buffalo Bowl (Photo: Forage Kitchen)

Seasonal soups include Butternut Squash Soup featuring a comforting blend of squash, carrots, apples, ginger, sage, onion, garlic, spices, sesame oil and a topping of roasted pepitas and cilantro oil (V, GF). 

Whether guests create their own bowls or choose from any of Forage’s signature bowls, guests will find the menu options amenable to a variety of dietary preferences thanks to housemade dressings and adjustable toppings to accommodate vegetarian, plant-based and gluten-free diners.

Take for example Forage Kitchen’s hearty Vegan Chili (kidney, pinto and black beans, chipotles, tomatoes, onions, spices, white onion). It can be modified with a variety of add-ons including roasted chicken, mild cheddar cheese, tortilla strips, green onions or cilantro. 

Vegan Chili
Vegan Chili with optional modifications (Photo: Forage Kitchen)

Forage Kitchen offers fast casual dine-in service, as well as online ordering for pickup and delivery at or through the Forage Kitchen app. Guests can also sign up for the Forage Rewards program, earning $10 off for every $100 spent, plus other members-only benefits.

Beginning Monday, Jan. 15, the restaurant will be open seven days a week with hours from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host

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.