By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Aug 19, 2021 at 11:36 AM

It’s been nearly a decade since Odd Duck opened their doors at 2352 S. Kinnickinnic Ave. in Bay View, but today the restaurant announced that they will be making a big move to a new home in Walker’s Point.

Earlier this summer, owners Melissa Buchholz and Ross Bachhuber purchased the building 939 South 2nd St. (formerly Meraki) and will be working to revamp the space in preparation for a move in early 2022.

Meraki exteriorX

“We really wanted to find Odd Duck a permanent home in a building we owned,” noted Buchholz. “We love Bay View so much and will miss it immensely, but we are so excited to contribute to the already vibrant restaurant scene in Walker’s Point. And it’s literally just a few minutes north.”

More of what makes Odd Duck shine

Fans of the restaurant can be assured that the concept for the new location will not change. An ever evolving menu of small plates and shareable dishes will remain the Odd Duck canon. However, thanks to an expanded kitchen and vastly more storage space, there will be room for expansion of those offerings.

“It’s a game changer for us as far as what we are capable of doing in the kitchen,” notes Chef Bachhuber. “In our current tiny kitchen we are always pushing the boundaries, trying to create the best and most interesting food we can within the parameters of the space. In the new space, the sky is the limit. We really will have the space and equipment to do whatever we can dream of. That’s the new challenge, figuring out how to limit ourselves.”

Among the building’s assets is a wood fired oven, which will allow for the creation of new oven-fired dishes. Thanks to additional storage, beverage director Erich Wilz will also be able to expand the restaurant’s wine program, offering more selections from across the globe. Guests can also look forward to the continuation of the restaurant’s creative cocktail program, which will be better able to prepare in-house syrups, tinctures and the like thanks to the larger kitchen.

Bigger, but still cozy

And yes, the number of dining tables will nearly double, due to a larger dining area and bar; that’s very good news for all the diners who’ve clamored for reservations since the restaurant reopened in May for indoor dining.

But if you think more seats means a less cozy environs, Bachhuber and Buccholz want to assure diners that they are committed to maintaining a cozy, homey and welcoming vibe in the new space.

“The building is a literal mid-century building, so there will be nods to that in the décor. The space will be warm and inviting with lots of ducks and plants, like always,” assures Buchholz. 

The plan right now

Odd Duck will remain in its current location through the end of 2021, closing for about a month to complete the transition to its new home. If all goes well, that transition is likely to occur in January of 2022 with an opening planned for late winter or early spring.

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.