kristin chapman

Creative Bleed Archive

Adventures: Milwaukee's Best

Drink Schlitz, tile mosaic on Brady St., Milwaukee, WI. © kristin chapmanMilwaukee is not like a New York or Chicago where people flock to explore the sights, trends and history. Nor does Milwaukee have that “coolness” hype that a city like Austin has. Yet seeing the signs for Milwaukee the last two times I was in Chicago got me wondering... how far is Milwaukee? And what's there besides yard beers? So this last trip to Chicago we took a little excursion and explored Milwaukee.

lagoon at Veteran's Park, Milwaukee WI © kristin chapmanMilwaukee to my surprise is a young town in an old city. Which might have something to do with the amount of colleges located in Milwaukee, like Marquette, Milwaukee School of Engineering and the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, just to name a few. Milwaukee's skyline lacks corporate skyscrapers, and consist mainly of apartment buildings. The architecture has that rust belt Midwestern feel of brick buildings and polish flats. It has an old fashioned feel with a youthful vibe offering more then PBR’s and grad degrees. It has an amazing art museum, a beautiful lake front, killer restaurants and festivals nearly every weekend. And yes, of course there is beer too!  So, I put together a little day in downtown Milwaukee just for you. If you've been there, please share your favorite spots. I have a feeling I'll be back for you, Milwaukee. Till then. Enjoy! K

Milwaukee Art Museum. © kristin chapman

Go: by train, it’s an hour and half train ride from Chicago’s Union Station. You want the Hiawatha Route which runs frequently between Milwaukee and Chicago.

Stay: At the County Clare Irish Inn, an Irish pub and guest house in the Lower East Side. This hotel is ideal for couples, but works if your traveling with small children. Take advantage of the made to order omelets, complimentary for overnight guest.

Walk: to Veteran’s Park and check out the lake side.

Fly: a kite from Gift of Wings. A small kite from the store will make a great souvenir for the little ones and a fun memory.

and explore at the Milwaukee Art Museum.  There is also Discovery World and Betty Brins Children Museum.

Ride: the Downtown Trolley to the Historic Third Ward for lunch at the Public Market after lunch check out the shops.

Say Cheese: hop back on the trolley and stop at the Wisconsin Cheese Mart and Bar for a cheese plate and beer or wine pairing.

Beer Me: Take the River Walk to the Lakefront Brewery for a tour. If you are there on a Friday, go for Captain Rusty's fish fry in the brewery's Palm Garden. It's family friendly with live polka music, now that's a Midwestern fish fry!

Downtown Milwaukee River Walk © kristin chapman

Other Great Spots:

Glorioso's Italian Market on Brady Street. I'm a sucker for these gourmet shops. Cheese, wine, sandwiches and gelato!
Coffee at Alterra on the lake.
Brunch at Honey Pie in the Bay View or the Trocadero in the Lower East Side.

Rushmor Records in the Bay View, Milwaukee, Wi © kristin chapman