After much anticipation, the Melthouse Bistro, 1857 E. Kenilworth Pl., opened on Monday. The eatery, located inside the new Latitude apartment building, specializes in gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. (Grilled cheese for grown ups? Well, yes, but they do have one kids' sandwich on the menu, too.)
I stopped by this afternoon to check it out.
The sandwiches are made with all Wisconsin cheeses and range in price from $6.95 to $8.95. And all have a lot more than just queso stacked between pieces of locally made bread. The Athena, for example, has feta, grilled eggplant, red onion, tomatoes and a Kalamata olive tapenade on focaccia. The Carnegie features Swiss cheese along with ham, pickles and mustard on Italian bread.
All of the sandwiches come with fruit, chips or coleslaw.
The menu also boasts soups like Wisconsin cheese and beer, grab-and-go salads and sides of cheese curds and bacon. Melthouse Bistro also has a good selection of mostly local beer and wine. The menu suggests beers that are believed to pair best with the sandwiches.
Troy and Susan Davis, owners of Melthouse Bistro, live in the neighborhood. Susan says they were inspired by living in the area.
"We want to bring more good food to the East Side," she says.
Melthouse Bistro is the couple's first business venture, but probably not its last. According to general manager Jerry Cruz, they hope to open other locations in the future.
"We have our eyes on a couple of spots, but for now, we're focusing on this place and making sure we do it right," says Cruz.
The space is casual, with both booths and tables, and flourished with wood planks taken from the granary at the Davis' family farm in Watertown. Photos of the farm adorn the walls as well.
Melthouse Bistro is open Monday-Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday-Sunday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.