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."
There is no shortage of fish fry options on a Milwaukee Friday, but for a step back in time try the Swingin’ Door Exchange – decorated with old Milwaukee photos and a historic feel and located in the Mackie Building, one of Downtown’s most recognizable historic landmarks – for a range of tasty breaded and fried choices.
Chef/owner K.C. Swan plates a variety of fish fry options, including fried shrimp, lake perch, cod, bluegill and a combo platter. The heart-health-conscious can opt for baked cod. There’s also a weekly Friday fish special, which means this is a flavorful – and plentiful – fish fry with a lot of choices.
Type of food: Pub grub.
Prices: Sandwiches are under $10, and entrees run $12 to $20.
Vegetarian friendly? There’s a marinated tofu appetizer and a half dozen salads on a menu that also includes a veggie melt, grilled cheese and veggie burger.
Hours: Weekdays, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Saturdays, 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sundays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Parking: Metered street parking available, as well as some paid parking structures nearby.
Vibe/dress: It’s a low-lit tap, so pretty much anything respectable goes. But it’s also got an old world feel, so don’t worry about over-dressing, either. You could even show up in a bowler hat and black suit if you were so inclined.
Hits: For $15, the breaded combo fry comes with cod, bluegill, lake perch and jumbo shrimp, plus the usual Brew City fish fry accouterments.
Misses: In a city that makes some of the most amazing house-made latkes, I'm always hoping to find a great new example, but these were dense and, except for a dash of pepper, fairly neutrally flavored.
Insider tip: Grab the table that has an interior window and you can dine with a view of the gorgeous lobby of the Mackie Building, designed by Edward Townsend Mix and constructed in 1880.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.