Chow Down In Milwaukee

Restaurant Reviews

Downtown Downing Week 2021

Downtown Dining Week is going on now! Many local restaurants around Milwaukee are participating in this dining week experience, hoping to see friendly faces again and entice new customers to try their unique cuisine. 

After a year long hiatus from dining out, now more than ever customers want to get out and try new things while restaurants are looking to bounce back to somewhat normalcy. During Downtown Dining Week, we can all achieve our goals and help the economy while doing so. 

There is no better time to dine out, find a new favorite restaurant, try a dish you wouldn't normally, or get the dish you've been missing for so long. Each restaurant has either a $13 lunch menu or a $25/$35 dinner menu, and some restaurants have both. 

Here is a sneak peak of a few of the restaurants participating. 

The Knick

The Knick’s DDW lunch and dinner menu are both three course meals which is a lot of bang for your buck considering the deal you’re getting. The knick is located at 1030 E Juneau Avenue and is open every day of the week from 9AM to 12AM.

For the appetizer, I ordered the Gazpacho, a chilled tomato and vegetable soup. The aroma brought me to a garden of fresh tomatoes right away. Upon tasting, I immediately tasted basil and other herbs which were accompanied by kick od acidity. The tomato based soup was light, but rich and the texture was fine grit, with no clumps. I’d say this was a perfect choice on a hot summer day.

Next came the Entrée, which I choose to be the Pulled pork sandwich. I was shocked after my first bite of the sandwich because I was expecting a different flavor. Instead, the pulled pork had the seasoning of a Mexican taco. The piled high shredded pork was nicely sauced with the seasoning though, and only need a bit more of the pineapple slaw. The pineapple slaw was quite refreshing and consisted of cabbage, carrots, red onion and the pineapple. The dish was accompanied with waffle fries that had the seasoning of which reminded me that of curly fries.

Finally, I chose the flourless chocolate cake for the dessert. It was amazing, to say the least. It was shockingly decadent and creamy with a thick cheesecake consistency. There is a mix of both milk and dark chocolate and dressed with a drizzle of raspberry sauce which added tartness to this very sweet dish.


I took my son and significant other to Flannery’s for lunch, and between the three of us, we were able to order almost everything on the DDW menu. Flannery is located at 425 E Wells Street, right by Cathedral Square Park.

The appetizers offered are Reuben Rolls, cheese curds and chicken wings. When you think of food, rarely do you think of shape, but we were all shocked to see the square cheese curds as they arrived. The coating is airy and slightly crispy, but I must say, I was expecting a bit more cheese for the size of the curds.

The Reuben Rolls definitely belong on the menu in this Irish flared restaurant. There’s a lot of corned beef in these fat, wonton wrapped rolls. The beef was well seasoned and nicely chopped so the bite was easy to eat. The only thing that could have made this better would be more sauerkraut inside the roll because the thick, creamy thousand island dressing on the side was well appreciated. This is a very filling appetizer.

When ordering the wings, you are given your choice of sauce and either ranch or blue cheese. My son order the wings with barbeque sauce and the ranch dressing. Immediately he said, “These are tasty. Really juicy”, as he covered his entire mouth area with sauce. Needless to say, he finished almost all of them. The wings were hearty, good sized and cooked perfectly – not too dry or underdone. I also appreciate the array of flavors they offer.

When it came to the Entrée’s we decided to try the half-pound cheese burger and the blackened Mahi fish tacos. Justin and my son order their burgers medium, and medium well and had the choice of lettuce, tomato, pickle or onion on them along with the choice of cheese. The burgers came out cooked just the way they ordered them. Justin says that the meat itself was well seasoned and flavorful and that there was enough cheese on the big burger to be able to get the kick from the pepper jack.

My Mahi fish tacos were a delight. With the combination of the prominent cabbage, pungent cilantro and lightly breaded fish, these tacos are quite light and very refreshing.

Dessert was a must for all of us. We ordered each dessert, the carrot cake and the brownie, both of which contain nuts. The carrot cake was fluffy yet still moist and was topped with a thin layer of smooth cream cheese frosting. The brownie was velvety and coated your mouth every bite. The nuts in the brownie must have been minced because I could hardly taste they were there. Either way, this is a brownie that will leave you wanting another.

Rodizio Grill

The Rodizio Grill is a great choice for anyone who likes a laid back, leisure dining experience that includes tableside carvings, allowing you to try various meats at snack size portions, as well as a salad and sides buffet bar. This Brazilian steakhouse is located right by the river at 777 N. Water Street.

After being seated you are able to go up to the salad and sides buffet bar which included a variety of items, from salad fixings, a fruit selection, various pasta salads, beef stroganoff and cheesy bread. The mashed potatoes had the skin on, mostly smashed and were a great based for my beef stroganoff. I loved the sauce of the dish, but it could have used a lot more beef bits and mushroom. The cheesy bread were rather balls and not cheesy at all, but the fresh mozzarella balls made up for that. My absolute favorite item from the buffet bar was the fried plantains. They were mashed but still held their thick, finger sized shape. They were significantly glazed and topped with a course, caramelized sugar that gave a tad crunch to the otherwise soft, sweet side.

Here comes the meat. The waiters come to your table with a specific meat on a spit and ask if you would like any. If yes, then they carve you off a slice as you grab it with the provided tongs. They have a wide variety of meats that circle around ranging from chicken and beef to pork and sausage.

I’d say my absolute favorite is the honey glazed ham, simply because of the glaze. It’s a thick, glossy sweet finish to a great piece of ham. The notes of honey and maple are prominent and pleasing. I thought this would be an even better bite if I combined it with the sweet plantains. My gosh, was I right!  

The garlic beef is a well-cooked meat, little to no pink and has just a hint of garlic flavor. The texture and seasoning reminds me of shredded roast beef, it was delicious. I wanted to put this on a bun and dip it in Au Jus.

The marinated chicken thigh with the bone has a lot of meat on it and the skin isn’t crunchy but done enough to enjoy its flavor with the meat. When it came to the chicken breast meat, though, it was a tad dry. The sweet and spicy sauce didn’t stick well to the meat because there certainly wasn’t much, but you could still taste the sweet chili flavor they used. The bacon that wrapped around a different chicken breast was appetizing; I just wish the bacon had been cooked a bit longer.

Suddenly, it was like a water balloon of juice exploded in my mouth as I bit into Rodizio’s sweet, fresh grilled pineapple. Immediately my mouth filled with pineapple essence and I was bombarded with zest. That was a well welcomed gift from the grill.

I was shockingly impressed with the top sirloin which I found to be very tender, almost soft. The lean red meat wasn’t chewy at all and I loved the outer brown char. Even the fat around some of the edge was flavorful and easy to eat.

**You can visit to view all participating restaurants and their Downtown Dining Week Menus. 

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