Get ready for a great visit to Milwaukee!
Kate Sadler, PhD is a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Cheryl Stucky’s lab at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Kate has spent the last two years studying how both neurons and and non-neuronal cells are involved in touch, cold, and heat sensation. She is particularly interested in the signaling changes that occur in these cell types during chronic pain conditions like sickle cell disease. Originally from Pittsburgh, Kate immediately fell in love with Milwaukee, a fellow mid-sized city with a chip on its shoulder, when interviewing for postdoc positions. Turn up the Bon Iver, cut yourself a big slice of kringle, and read her suggestions on what you should do when you’re in town for the 2019 APS Scientific Meeting:
MobCraft I love this place. It’s one of my favorite breweries in MKE due to the chill environment (e.g. ping pong tables, board games, craft pizza, open garage doors on the 3 days a year it's above freezing in MKE--- kidding!), extensive rotating tap list, and super rad business model. This place is the first crowd sourced brewery in the country; anybody can suggest a beer idea on their website, people pre-order their fave ideas, and the best seller actually gets made. These guys don’t shy away from weird ideas either---check out my interview with their head brewer for more info. Highly recommend their BatShit Crazy brown ale.
The Outsider On top of the #bougie Kimpton Hotel in the Third Ward, this rooftop bar has a carefully crafted cocktail list. Also beer (although I’ve never been super impressed with their beer selection). Suck it up and splurge on an Aperol spritz while enjoying some of the best views in the city.
Burnhearts Nestled on a street corner in Bay View, this is the best bar in MKE, IMHO. Other people seem to agree with me though since this place has been on a whole bunch of “Best of” lists. EXCELLENT craft beer selection. Dark vibes on the inside, food trucks on the outside.
Bryant’s Cocktail Lounge There is no menu here. I’m not kidding. You tell the bartender what kind of flavors you’re in the mood for (coffee and chocolate ice cream? There’s a drink for that. Frozen fruit punch? Also a drink for that.) and they make you a reasonably priced cocktail. Very dark inside. Very cool 60s lounge vibe.
Great Lakes Distillery Minimum of 6 liquor pours on tour. #worthit if you like drinking. #notworthit if you’re here for top notch whiskey or Instagram-worthy shots. Major fan of their Good Land Liqueurs.
Eagle Park Brewing Co. If you like NE IPAs or milkshake IPAs then this East Side joint will be your jam. I think these guys brew the best beer in MKE. My snobby beer friends also tell me that this place is starting to gain national recognition for the hits they keep on brewing. Speaking of hits, they’ve got GREAT concert posters/graphic designs hung all over the walls including the likes of Wilco, Ben Folds, all of the other bands I’m into.
Vanguard This low-key hang is known for sausages and whiskey. Included on the menu is a Milwaukee-style sausage that has 3 types of cheese on it and a Pittsburgh brat complete with slaw, french fries, and ranch dressing. This is not a drill. #betterthanprimantis
Conejitos A Mexican dive bar serving $1 tacos on paper plates that are ready in approximately 2 minutes. Need I say more?
SPIRE Fitness Sitting in talks all day got you feeling lethargic? Head on over to SPIRE in the Third Ward for a spin, TRX, or rowing class. First timers can pay $15 and drop into one of the many workouts offered throughout the day; equipment/spin shoes are provided by the studio.
Boone & Crockett A Midwestern hipster’s dream. While here, you must try the unofficial Wisconsin state cocktail, the brandy old fashioned. Sip on your sweet or sour version, (you can’t go wrong either way), while admiring the taxidermy and jamming out to live music. If you get hungry, toss on your flannel and grad some tacos from the Taco Moto truck permanently parked outside.
HoneyPie I don’t know if words can adequately express my feelings about this place. I’ve taken each and every one of my visitors to this cozy cafe, typically for brunch. This is where I first learned about the bloody-marys-come-with-a-beer rule that’s basically WI law. I don’t even like pie, but I love theirs. At least one person in your party is obligated to try the breakfast fries and Pilcrow sweet n’ creamy nitro cold brew; if you’re unsatisfied I’ll personally refund you.
Lakefront Brewery Four 6 oz. pours and a pint glass to take home, all for only $10! If you’ve never been on a brewery tour, this is definitely the one to do. The tour guides are jokesters, there’s a beer pit stop halfway through the education, and at the end of the tour your whole group gets to participate in a Laverne and Shirley theme song sing-a-long (#doingitourway!). Hang out in their legit beer hall after your tour, drink their Eastside Dark or Fuel Cafe brews, and for the love of all things Wisconsin, ORDER THE CHEESE CURDS.
Colectivo Best coffee in the city. I don’t care what those Stone Creek fans say. This local chain has bakery and sandwich options (try the avocado BLT), but that doesn’t even matter because their nitro cold brew (available at select locations) is award-winning and outta this world.
Odd Duck Also in the Bay View neighborhood, this small plates restaurant serves some of the best food I’ve had in my life. The constantly updated menu is vegetarian/vegan friendly and takes inspiration from all different cuisines. This is my go-to special occasion venue as prices are slightly higher than what a trainee’s salary allows for on a regular basis.
Milwaukee Public Market Okay so this is sort of still a food/drink thing (and if you’re going you better get the avocado toast at On the Bus and at least one pastry from C. Adam’s Bakery). Without food (foolish) you can still walk around and look at the cool vendors. Located in the Third Ward which is hip, very walkable, and a stop on The Hop, the brand new MKE streetcar. Buy some cheese whips at the West Allis Cheese + Sausage Shoppe for the ride back to your hotel.
The Domes The Mitchell Park Domes are three themed greenhouses full of plants, plants, and MORE PLANTS. One’s got a tropical theme, one’s a rotating show dome, and my personal favorite is the desert dome full of the best cacti. #plantladyproblems
Lake Michigan When you’re in Milwaukee, you’re never more than a mile or two from this majestic body of (sometimes stinky) water. Enjoy it by running the Oak Leaf Trail (pick it up on the south side of downtown), sipping coffee at Colectivo’s lakefront cafe, or shmoozing it up with somebody who owns a boat.
Root for the Bucks at the *brand new* Fiserv Forum Do you like sports that don’t come with a super high risk of CTE? How about 90s rap music? Crazy pyrotechnic effects? Greek freaks? Enjoy all of these things while you root on the Milwaukee Bucks, THE hottest team in the NBA this season. The Bucks are in town April 6th (the last night of the APS meeting!). Meet your friends at Good City Brewing (right across the block from the arena) for some pre-game drinks and grub (their curry fries and dipping sauce might be my favorite snack in all of Milwaukee). Any seat in the new Fiserv Forum is a good one; be sure to check out killer views of downtown from the Panorama Club and the deer sculpture made of basketball-related textiles. (Pictured below with fellow Stucky Lab postdoc Francie Moehring, PhD @FrancieMoehring)
Cheer on the 2018 NL Central Champion Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park I thought I knew what tailgating was. And then I went to my first Brewers game. Overwhelmed with the delicious smell of charcoal-grilled meats as I walked into the park, Brewers games have quickly become one of my favorite seasonal Milwaukee activities. As a diehard Pittsburgh sports fan, it's hard for me to root for a division rival, but I CAN root for racing sausages, 20,000+ fans singing “Roll out the Barrel” (still don’t know all the words), and custard + donut sandwiches. APS attendees will be able to see the Brew Crew in action April 5-7--- don’t worry, the park has a retractable roof in case the weather is sketch.
Uncle Wolfie’s Breakfast Tavern Last time I visited this cozy corner restaurant, I blissed out by shoving my face full of PB+J french toast and listening to the Star Wars soundtrack that was pumping through the speakers. 10/10 recommend. While there, be sure to check out Orange and Blue Co., the adorable attached lifestyle boutique.
Tour the Pabst Mansion If you’re a fan of gaudy 19th century design, German beer barons, or guided history tours THIS IS THE PLACE FOR YOU. Bonus points if you can find the painting with the drunk babies in it.
Milwaukee Art Museum You don’t even need to buy an admission ticket (you still totally should though) to take in beauty at this midwestern gem. The main lobby, designed by architect Santiago Calatrava, will make you feel like you’ve been transported to the bow of a super modern sailboat. I can easily spend the whole afternoon here; faves include the modern and Germanic art collections.
1840 Brewing Co. Located in a totally unassuming building in Bay View, this brewery has finally brewed enough of their time consuming but totally-worth-it-because-they’re-delicious barrel-aged and funky sour beers that the tap room is now open every Friday-Sunday. Pup and tastebud friendly. My 2nd fave brewery in MKE.