By Lori Fredrich Senior Writer & Dining Editor Published Jun 24, 2020 at 7:01 PM

Bars and restaurants across the city have been slowly re-opening. Among them is The Garage, a long-time East Side hang that sports a large, well-appointed patio.

The Garage, 1709 N. Arlington Pl., opened its patio nearly two weeks ago at 25 percent capacity, offering safe, socially distanced quarters that include two walk-up plexi-glass service areas at the bar and practices guided by both CDC and City regulations.

But the one thing The Garage didn’t bring back was its food menu.

"We decided not to reopen our kitchen this summer, " says Leslie Montemurro, co-owner and co-founder of the Mojofuco Restaurant Group. "Instead, we’re giving business to area food trucks and more variety for our guests by hosting them in an area behind the patio bar."

Secret Eats

The new food program, cleverly titled "Secret Eats," launched quietly this past weekend, featuring weekend brunch with Hidden Kitchen. But the festivities are scheduled to continue throughout the summer with a loaded slate of food trucks slinging delicious eats for imbibing guests.

Trucks have been scheduled through the end of June and include:

  • Thursday, June 25: Tots on the Street from 5 to 11 p.m.
  • Saturday, June 27: Milk Can Hamburgers & Frozen Custard from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Sunday, June 28: Hidden Kitchen from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Fatty Patty from 5 p.m. to close
  • Tuesday, June 30: Fatty Patty from 5 p.m. to close

Trucks expected to make regular appearances include Hidden Kitchen, which will be offering dishes like birria tostadas and avocado toast for brunch most Sundays, and Drift, which will be serving up New Zealand style meat pies and a variety of new menu items on select Friday nights and Saturdays for brunch.

Montemurro says that they’re currently working out a consistent schedule, but they hope to publish a full calendar of truck appearances soon. In the meantime, you can watch The Garage's Facebook and Instagram pages for updates.

"I’m really proud of our staff and what they’ve been doing. We had a good plan, and things have gone well," adds Montemurro. "We’re excited for summer and hope we can bring on a good variety of food trucks over the next few months."

Food trucks interested in keeping regular shifts at The Garage can reach out by email at mschupbach@hihatlounge.com

The Garage is open Monday through Friday from 3 p.m. to close and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to close.

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.