Be MKE: Milwaukee Ale House closing, Bucks in purple and what I ate at State Fair

·7 min read

Who we are. Where we go. What we need to know.

Be MKE Aug. 17, 2022: Hannah Kirby with The Peno Pretzel Popper Brat from Gertrude's Pretzels at the Wisconsin State Fair on Aug. 13, 2022.
Be MKE Aug. 17, 2022: Hannah Kirby with The Peno Pretzel Popper Brat from Gertrude's Pretzels at the Wisconsin State Fair on Aug. 13, 2022.

Something I haven't stopped thinking about for days: Fried Pickle Cheese Curd Tacos from Richie's Cheese Curd Tacos.

We had talked about the Wisconsin State Fair for months — and now it's somehow already behind us.

This year's event attracted 1,003,450 fairgoers — present company included — a 19% increase over 2021 attendance, the fair reported Tuesday.

Of course I tried the Sporkies-winning Peño Pretzel Popper Brat from Gertrude's Pretzels ... even though I'm not really a fan of brats (Hope admitting that doesn't get my Wisconsin card taken away).

But apparently jalapeño cheddar bratwurst is my exception? From the concoction's fresh pretzel dough to white cheddar sauce drizzle, chef's kiss.

Rounding out my top three was the Deep-Fried Buffalo Chicken Wing Dip from Mashed Potatoes On-a-Stick. Buffalo chicken dip in general is one of my favorite foods, so makes sense.

The 2023 State Fair will take place Aug. 3-13.

Let’s talk business

Will the former Northridge Mall finally be demolished? A 2019 city condemnation order, which in March was overturned on appeal, has been scheduled for review at an Oct. 3 hearing by Milwaukee County Circuit Judge William Sosnay. On Monday, Sosnay found Northridge owner U.S. Black Spruce Enterprise Group Inc. in contempt of court for failing to keep the deteriorating mall secured under a 2019 judge's ruling. Fire Chief Aaron Lipski and others testified that Northridge is a hazard to firefighters who've fought four blazes there in July and August, as well as police officers responding to trespass calls and those who trespass against the mall. Sosnay gave Black Spruce until the end of Friday to secure the property. If the company doesn't meet that deadline, Sosnay will fine it $2,000 a day until it complies with the order.

The former Northridge Mall on West Brown Deer Road in Milwaukee on Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022. Firefighters have had to respond to the abandoned mall four times in less than a month's time for a report of a fire. Northridge was sold to U.S Black Spruce Enterprise Group Inc., an affiliate of a Chinese investment group, in 2008. There are still no plans for the vacant mall. Attempts to redevelop the mall are facing more delays following a court decision against a city condemnation order.
The former Northridge Mall on West Brown Deer Road in Milwaukee on Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022. Firefighters have had to respond to the abandoned mall four times in less than a month's time for a report of a fire. Northridge was sold to U.S Black Spruce Enterprise Group Inc., an affiliate of a Chinese investment group, in 2008. There are still no plans for the vacant mall. Attempts to redevelop the mall are facing more delays following a court decision against a city condemnation order.

Thanks for the memories, Milwaukee Ale House. After 25 years, it's closing. The Ale House posted the closure on Facebook, saying it leases the space and the "building owners have decided to go in a different direction." "Very few places have been around for this long," the post said. "After such a long tenure here on the water, we are losing our beautiful home, and the city is losing a staple in the restaurant and brewing scene." The business — which will remain open until Sept. 11 — will celebrate its history there with special releases and "throwback pricing." The Facebook post also said "hopefully, it’s not goodbye forever, it’s just goodbye for now," keeping open the option that a new location could arise.

The Milwaukee Ale House in the Historic Third Ward is closing after 25 years, citing lease issues.
The Milwaukee Ale House in the Historic Third Ward is closing after 25 years, citing lease issues.

Giannis Antetokounmpo is an investor and spokesman for a telehealth company called Antidote Health. The company has been raising seed funding to build an artificial intelligence-based virtual health maintenance organization (HMO) to give uninsured and underinsured people a chance to connect with doctors via virtual chatbots and video calls. “I didn’t have health care until I was 18, until I got to the NBA and I was able to go to the doctor, talk to the doctor," Antetokounmpo said. "I wasn’t able to do that. It’s a lot of people not able to do it. I’m not the expert. I’m not the expert in this, but I care about people. And I believe it’s a human right to have access to doctors, to talk to somebody to tell them about your issues, to tell them about what you’re going through mentally, about your struggle. It’s a human right, so everybody should have that access.”

Alexa, play "Reunited." After four years, Leinenkugel’s Sunset Wheat is back for a limited time, according to a news release. Why? "Fans have been telling us for years that they want to see it back on shelves." The beer — a Belgian-style witbier that features notes of orange and blueberry, and has a tart, citrusy finish — started being available once again on Monday in stand-alone packs throughout the Great Lakes Region and included in the Lodge Variety Pack nationwide.

Due to fan demand, Leinenkugel’s is bringing back its Sunset Wheat Belgian-style witbier for a limited time, according to a news release.
Due to fan demand, Leinenkugel’s is bringing back its Sunset Wheat Belgian-style witbier for a limited time, according to a news release.

Out and about

The 41st annual Milwaukee Irish Fest runs Thursday through Sunday at Maier Festival Park, 200 N. Harbor Drive. Attendees can expect an array of Irish food and Wisconsin festival food from 35 vendors; Jameson Irish Whiskey in cocktails, slushies and Root Beer floats; entertainment on 16 stages; a Cultural Pavilion with displays; and more. Here's what to know, from ticket info to the event's headliners.

We Banjo 3 is one of many groups performing during the 2022 edition of Milwaukee's Irish Fest.
We Banjo 3 is one of many groups performing during the 2022 edition of Milwaukee's Irish Fest.

Soon, baseball won't be the only sport being played at American Family Field. X-Golf America will open at the home of the Brewers in mid-September. The 11,000-square-foot facility will feature seven indoor golf simulator bays (including three that offer views of the playing field), as well as two full bars and an outdoor patio with game views. This is a first-of-its-kind entertainment venue in a Major League Baseball ballpark, and a first X-Golf location in a sports stadium, according to the Brewers. Reservations can already be made at brewers.com/xgolf.

The former Stadium Club at American Family Field, shown under construction in 2000, has been replaced by Golf-X America golf simulators.
The former Stadium Club at American Family Field, shown under construction in 2000, has been replaced by Golf-X America golf simulators.

Hot take: Fall is in the air. And that means it's almost time for one of my favorite autumn activities: Apple picking. Here are some orchards in the Milwaukee area that allow people to pick their own apples.

Don’t go hangry

Foodies, listen up! JS dining critic Carol Deptolla compiled a list of 21 must-try food trucks and trailers in the Milwaukee area after visiting dozens this year. Some are new this summer; many are veterans. From gourmet stuffed tater tots to gumbo, here's that roundup.

A river of cheese runs through it: the cheese curd tots from Tots on the Street food truck.
A river of cheese runs through it: the cheese curd tots from Tots on the Street food truck.

If you — for some reason — have wondered what a dive bar would taste like, here ya go. Miller High Life and New York-based Tipsy Scoop pulled inspo from classic dive bar elements to create limited-edition Miller High Life Ice Cream Dive Bars. The bars feature High Life-infused ice cream; peanut swirl "bringing the saltiness of the quintessential dive bar snack"; a hint of tobacco smoke flavor; gooey caramel swirl to rep that sticky floor feeling; and a sprinkle of carbonated candy for "the iconic Champagne of Beers effervescence," per the product's description. They're dipped in dark chocolate to pay homage to the dark-lighting ambiance and dark woods of dives. The bars — available in a six-pack for $36 at tipsyscoop.com/products/highlifeicecreamdivebars — will be restocked at 8 a.m. Central Time daily, and orders will be able to be placed the rest of this week until they sell out each day, a news release said.

Miller High Life and Tipsy Scoop teamed up to create limited-edition Miller High Life Ice Cream Dive Bars.
Miller High Life and Tipsy Scoop teamed up to create limited-edition Miller High Life Ice Cream Dive Bars.

Here are the talkers

More than 20,000 MPS students were expected to start school Monday, with the rest starting Sept. 6. With COVID-19, monkeypox worries and staffing issues in the mix, here's a look at how the school year is starting off.

At this birthday party, the guests were the ones who got gifts. To celebrate his 62nd birthday, community leader Andre Lee Ellis gave away about 200 bikes to residents of all ages on the north side with the help of friends, community members and employees from Wheel & Sprocket bike shops. The city provided the bikes and bike accessories, and Wheel & Sprocket provided on-site tune-ups and repairs. "When you give, you get. So when you get, give," Ellis said.

Andre Lee Ellis, left, and a friend who has become family, Thomas Harris, share a moment during Ellis' birthday party and bike giveaway Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022, at 1313 W. Reservoir Ave., Milwaukee. "Just wanted to wish him a happy birthday," he said.
Andre Lee Ellis, left, and a friend who has become family, Thomas Harris, share a moment during Ellis' birthday party and bike giveaway Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022, at 1313 W. Reservoir Ave., Milwaukee. "Just wanted to wish him a happy birthday," he said.

Love a good throwback — especially this one. The Milwaukee Bucks confirmed on social media that their 2022-23 "Classic Edition" jerseys will bring fans back to the 2001 run to the Eastern Conference finals and a very purple era. The purple jerseys — termed the "Light it Up" version — will be worn at select games during the upcoming season and look similar to those sported by the team from 1994-2006.

These images are of the new Bucks uniforms on July 18, 2022 at Fiserv Forum.
These images are of the new Bucks uniforms on July 18, 2022 at Fiserv Forum.

Be MKE,

Hannah

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To see what I'm up to around the city, follow me on Instagram @hannahhopekirby. Always keeping it pretty profesh over on Twitter @hannahhopekirby. Be MKE love or comments can be sent to hannah.kirby@jrn.com.

This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Be MKE: Milwaukee Ale House closing, Bucks in purple, State Fair recap