By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Mar 01, 2024 at 11:02 AM

The Eleanor Room, a compelling new bar and small plates restaurant, is slated to open within the next few months at 5636 Broad St. in Greendale. The new venue will occupy the space that was home to Ferch’s Malt Shop & Grille for over 30 years, and which more recently housed Milk Can Diner.

Ferch's, the site of The Eleanor RoomX

In fact, if you peek at the eatery’s Instagram page, you’ll quickly get a sense of the theme for the forthcoming venue, which aims to take guests on a trip back to the 1930s and 40s.

At the helm

Behind the concept are Jason and Kelly Cyborowski, Greendale residents and owners of Greendale’s J&J Contractors.

Jason, who is acting president for the Village of Greendale, brings years of industry experience to the table, having spent years working as a bartender and manager for venues including Mo’s Irish Pub, Zaffiro’s and Bushy’s in Muskego.

The CyborowskisX

Kelly, who currently handles design for J&J Contractors, has both a degree in nursing and a background in real estate. The two entrepreneurs created the concept in collaboration with Amanda Wisth of Lemonyay.

“We are both foodies,” notes Kelly. “We love going out for small plates or shareable plates, and we both enjoy trying new cocktails. Jason has always had a passion for the industry, so when the former Ferch’s space became available, we decided it was time to bring the dream to fruition.”

A blast from Greendale’s past

The Eleanor Room, she says, embraces both their appreciation for food and beverage and the history of Greendale, which was among three Greenbelt Towns created by Franklin D. Roosevelt in the mid-1930s. The restaurant's namesake, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, visited the developing town during her 1936 tour of New Deal programs in the Milwaukee area.

“Not only does she have an association with Greendale,” Kelly comments, “But she was a pretty badass woman, so we wanted to pay homage to her.”

In keeping with the venue’s theme, the Cyborowski’s have partnered with THREE SIXTY and Rev Pop to create an atmosphere that’s somewhat dark and moody, reminiscent of the 1930s and 40s. The color scheme will focus on blues and greens with accents and fixtures in dark wood, bronze and gold.

“When you walk in, we want you to feel as if you’ve walked back in time,” says Kelly, noting that the focal point of The Eleanor Room will be its horseshoe bar, which will feature plentiful seating along with a two-sided tequila bar topped with Bordeaux-colored marble on its north side. The bar will allow guests to experience the Mexican spirit in a variety of ways, including tasting flights.

To the north of the bar, guests will find the main dining room, which will feature a variety of seating options, including booths designed for comfortable, convivial dining.

To the south, guests will find a lounge area perfect for enjoying appetizers and drinks. The lounge will open out onto a spacious patio where guests can gather when warmer weather is the norm.

On the menu

On the menu, guests will find a varied selection of seasonally inspired small plates and larger entree-style options which can be enjoyed by individual guests or shared by groups.  

Local ingredients – including meats from Ray’s Butcher Shop and farm vegetables – will star in a variety of offerings including refined versions of deviled eggs, crispy Brussels sprouts and a mini chicken and waffle dish, along with seasonal risotto and a variety of seafood options.

Food options from instagramX

At the bar, guests will find beer from Explorium Brew Pub, a small, curated selection of wines and a larger menu of classic cocktails including selections like the Ramos Gin Fizz, a dirty martini, hand-muddled Wisconsin Old Fashioneds and a Tequila-based version of the classic as well. 

“We really just want to bring something new and amazing to Greendale,” says Jason. “We want it to be the type of place where people come for the first time, have a great experience and then come back and bring their friends.”

If all goes well, the Cyborowskis hope to open The Eleonor Room to the public sometime in May.

Once open, the restaurant and bar will offer lunch during the week, brunch on weekends and dinner service until 10 p.m.  The bar will remain open until close.

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.