The Edison is preparing to make its official debut at 322 N. Broadway in the Historic Third Ward, serving its first guests beginning Friday, June 30th with a grand opening to follow on July 5.
Serving a menu of classic American fare in an upscale environment, the newest restaurant from Benson’s Restaurant Group, will aim to be both a destination for special occasion dinners as well as a regular stop for guests who wish to partake regularly in its menu of charcoal grilled meats and indulgent sides, along with brunch and lunch offerings seven days a week.
“I’ve worked in a lot of restaurants over the years where you could say the food was great,” notes The Edison General Manager Patrick Erdman, “But here at The Edison it really is.”
Dim the lights
With design by Rinka and construction completed by ADK, the dimly lit restaurant accommodates 140 guests inside with a variety of seating options from traditional two- and four-tops to booths and bar seating.
The spacious booths divide the dining area from the bar and line the back wall in the restaurant.
Additional high-top booth seating is available around the large prohibition-era-style bar, which will serve up a menu of craft brews with a focus on the Midwest, a curated wine program featuring red, white, rosé and sparkling options, plus craft cocktails and zero-proof quaffs, many of which have been batched to allow for more efficient service.
Selections include a house Manhattan (Noah’s Mill Bourbon, Willet Pot Still Reserve Bourbon, Rishi Wild Thai Black Tea, Infused Cocchi Vermouth di Torino, Bittercube Cherry Bark Vanilla & All Day Aromatic Bitters); the gin-based “The Air Up There” featuring a glass washed in Rothman & Winter’s Creme de Violette, Ford’s Gin, lemon, Mathilde Peche, honey syrup and Bittercube Orange Bitters.
A Japanese highball machine will also allow the bar to serve up cocktails like their classic Gin Rickey featuring Roku Japanese Gin, lime, Bittercube Orange & Cherry Bark Vanilla Bitters and house seltzer.
The bar also boasts an extensive whiskey collection, including rare allocations like Lock Stock & Barrel 21 Year Straight Rye Whiskey, Willett 8 Year Bourbon, Heaven Hill Heritage 20 Year, Elijah Craig Single Barrel 18 Year and Elmer T. Lee Single Barrel.
The menu, which was created by Benson’s Executive Chef Alex Sazama in collaboration with The Edison Executive Chef Anthony Janssen and their chef team, features varied starters from baked truffle cheese served with garlic rubbed ciabatta ($14) and a modern take on Pigs in a Blanket featuring Wagyu links wrapped in puff pastry, seasoned with “everything bagel spice” and served with saffron hot honey ($15).
More unique items include crispy lobster fingers cooked in tempura batter and served with scallions and house cocktail sauce ($35).
“Our charcoal grill is a differentiator for us,” notes Sazama, “It offers flexibility for cooking between 300 and 600 degrees and will allow us to unleash our talents in terms of offering specials like butcher cuts and other unique items.”
That includes starters like Memphis dry rubbed coal-fired wings served with gorgonzola cheese dressing ($15), along with main dishes like a coal-fired Duroc pork chop finished with sage browned butter sauce ($28); and both an 8-ounce filet ($55) or 32-ounce Porterhouse steak based in herbs and drawn butter and served with braised mushrooms ($80).
It also includes an equally compelling cauliflower steak served with pickled golden raisins, serrano pepper aioli, black lentils, petite greens and curry vinaigrette ($22).
Other highlights include sweet tea brined chicken served with miso lemon jus and button mushrooms ($28); lobster served with fennel pollen cream, peas and housemade pasta ($36); and seared scallops served with miso carrot puree, coal-fired mushrooms, snap peas and chive oil ($34).
On the sweeter side, guests will find items like Basque Cheesecake, Chocolate Miso Tart, a Skillet Cookie served with gelato and The Edison’s signature Rum Cake, a dessert revived from Sazama’s childhood memories and taken to a different plain with whipped creme fraiche and lime zest. All are $12 each.
Upscale brunch (every day)
Meanwhile, brunch service will be offered seven days a week beginning at 10 a.m. And it’s delectable details like brioche bread and high-quality bacon, both of which will be “cut too thick”, that will assist in making the everyday breakfast and lunch offerings memorable.
Offerings will include memorable creations like airy Ricotta Scrambled eggs served with multigrain toast, bacon “cut too thick”, home fries and truffle butter ($15); and The Benny featuring shaved prime rib, caramelized onions and poached eggs served on English muffins with horseradish sabayon and home fries ($23).
Guests will also find items like Creme Fraiche pancakes with lemon curd, powdered sugar, fresh berries and lemon zest ($15); and Brioche French Toast featuring luxuriously thick-cut brioche, brûléed banana, candied walnuts and hazelnut cream butter ($16).
Lunch options include the Edison Burger, a double with American cheese, Edison sauce, bacon "cut too thick" on a brioche bun with marinated cucumber and a choice of greens or home fries ($17); a sweet tea brined fried chicken sandwich with Edison sauce and marinated cucumber ($15); and the Edison Hero with shaved prime rib, bacon "cut too thick", fontina, crispy onion and horseradish sabayon on a truffle buttered hoagie with choice of greens or home fries ($28).
Drinks will include an ever-changing bellini special ($9) along with a mimosa ($12), house bloody mary ($12) and other brunch-worthy concoctions like the C&C (Deau Cognac, Heirloom Espresso Martini Liqueur, cold brew coffee, crème de cacao, heavy cream or non-dairy substitute, Bittercube Chipotle Cacao Bitters and freshly grated nutmeg, $12).
Zero-proof options will also be available including Just a Dash (Milwaukee-made Sans Juniper Zero Proof Gin, lemon, honey syrup, orange blossom flower water, house seltzer, $10) and the Butterscotch Alexander with Burnt Butterscotch Demerara, cacao nib, cubeb berry, cold brew coffee, heavy cream or non-dairy substitute and freshly grated nutmeg ($8).
Meanwhile, Happy Hour will take place Monday through Friday from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. and includes specially priced snacks including house Parker House rolls with whipped honey maple butter (two for $7); baked truffle cheese spread ($8); Tempura shallots ($8) and mac & cheese ($6). Drink specials include $6 highballs and mini martinis, $8 wine pours and select cocktails, plus $4 Montucky Cold Snacks and $3 Miller Lite and Miller High Life.
“We are so pleased to be able to open another venue in one of the most unique neighborhoods in town,” notes David Marcus, CEO of Benson’s Restaurant Group. “And we are excited for the opportunity to build long-term relationships with customers who are excited to return time and time again.”
Guests interested in getting an early peek at the new sophisticated neighborhood grill concept can participate in The Edison’s soft opening, which will accommodate walk-ins beginning June 30.
Beginning July 5, The Edison will be open seven days a week for brunch, lunch and dinner. Hours will be Sunday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Reservations from July 5 forward are available on OpenTable.
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.