Urban Beets Cafe & Juicery

“& everyone has a seat at this table.”

Above are the last words of Urban Beets Café & Juicery’s manifesto. That’s right they don’t just have a slogan or a mission statement they have a manifesto. It includes words like compassionate, empathy, and progress. Words that resonate with almost every human being and most of the time invoke thought.  See it for yourself.

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To live their manifesto, Urban Beets gives back to the community with their monthly Paws and Straws fundraising event which happens each month on a Thursday from 5:00-9:00pm. 50% of proceeds go to an organization of their choosing. They also sell eco-straws where 100% of the proceeds goes to the organization.  Pretty cool, huh.

Beside oozing positivity and building community, they are all about serving plant-based foods that are healthy, quality, and eco-friendly.  Their menu is full of colorful, inspired dishes and juices that could turn any meat eater into a vegetarian. Plus, they sling whimsical sake drinks, wine, and beer at their bar.   I tried the Pineapple Mojito and envied the Bloody Mary. I had never tried cold sake before and was pleasantly surprised.

I asked what five things any visitor should know before stepping into Urban Beets:

  1. They make everything from scratch. I mean everything. Cashew Cream Cheese, homemade. Carrot Lox, homemade. Coconut Bacon, homemade.
  2. Every item on their menu is accessible and identifiable. You won’t find any weird soy concoctions here.
  3. Variety is key. Their dishes range from poke’ bowls, to juices, to pizza, to burgers.
  4. Community impact and being environmentally conscious is important. As I mentioned, each month they hold an event for an organization that they believe in.
  5. Their atmosphere is made to relax and hangout. It’s a great place to study, read a book, catch up with a friend or even listen to live music if you catch it.

Urban Beets’ Wauwatosa location opened in August, so now you have two locations to add to your list this weekend. I had the Smokey BLT Burger and the UB Poke Bowl, however, my favorite thing on the menu is the Nutty Nib smoothie bowl.


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How We See MKE: It’s Pamela Kieck

“I think that Milwaukee is a really cool place because there are so many talented people here, there are so many artistic people here. It really is an up and coming city.”

 

 

When I first met Pamela, I felt like I had known her my whole life. She was warm and welcoming, but refreshingly authentic. In fact, she actually strives to be that way and believes that authenticity is key to keeping herself grounded. She wants to be inspiring to people and I think she’s doing just that with her brand It’s Pamela Kieck the Diary of a Curvy Fashionista, her fashion column with OnMilwaukee, and her spot on Fox 6.

Pamela grew up in South Milwaukee and is an only child, the apple of her parent’s eye. She grew up rocking the Tommy Hilfiger t-shirt, twisty butterfly hair clips, and glitter eye shadow that all of us who were pre-teens in the late 90’s and early 2000’s fondly remember. In high school, her dreams of changing the fashion dynamic to include all body types began. She wrote her first blog in 2013 at the request of her friends who wanted to know what she was wearing. Now, her goal is to make sure that young women feel comfortable in their own skin and to never feel like they can’t wear a trend. Her mission is to spread body positivity while still being healthy. She will let anyone know that you can wear any trend at any size, you just need to know how to dress your body type correctly. “Fashion shouldn’t stop at a size 10.”

Pamela has the State of Wisconsin tattooed on her wrist. If that doesn’t show you how close she holds WI to her heart, I’m not sure what would. Pamela is what I would describe as a Milwaukee socialite, but approachable and down-to-earth. You can find her on any given day or night at different establishments throughout the city. She states, “everyone is pretty nice here (Milwaukee)…I mean you can go to any given bar and end up taking shots with the people next to you. They’re like your best friend for the night. There are such cool little spots all over the city.” She loves exploring the different neighborhoods and she knows that wherever you are headed you can find the spot that meets your wants and needs. A few of her favorites are the Outsider at the Journeyman Hotel, Oak & Oyster, FreshFin Poké, and Miss Cupcake.

Pamela wants people to know that she is open to helping others with their blogs and sharing her journey. When I met with her, she had just left Mount Mary after speaking to a group of fashion students. So if you’re looking for some advice or just to have a chat, add her to your list. Additionally, she is in the midst of her twelve days of giveaways with OnMilwaukee, so if you aren’t following her already and like free stuff – give her a follow!


A special thank you to Editor-in- Chief Ciara Beckers for always keeping my grammar in check and Liz Klein Photography for the photo of Pamela!


 

Christmas Lights & Desserts with Milwaukee Food and City Tours

“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.”- Charles M. Schulz

This past weekend, I was invited to join Milwaukee Food and City Tours Christmas Lights and Desserts Tour. Christmas Lights? Desserts? Who could turn that down! Milwaukee Food & City Tours is in their 10th year of business and they aren’t slowing down anytime soon. They offer something for everyone: from Tacos & Tequila to Churches & Chocolates. The Christmas Lights and Deserts Tour was so fun and a must-do this holiday season. We stopped at three different parks to see lights, had a glass of wine paired with one of Indulgence Chocolatiers delicious treats, a glass of mulled wine and strudel at Mader’s, and a cupcake push pop from Classy Girl Cupcakes! Of course we had hot chocolate and coffee along the way – you have to stay hydrated for all of the christmas carols! We also learned a few tidbits about Milwaukee that I didn’t know before the tour. It was great to see how many repeat customers there were on the tour and how they attract multiple generations.

Milwaukee Food and City Tours owner Theresa knew something was missing in Milwaukee, before Milwaukee knew something was missing. That something was walking tours of Milwaukee! The first tour she offered was of the Brady Street area which was about two miles in total. The patrons who took the first tour were ladies that used to work together at Kopps Custard and drove up for the day in limo from Chicago. How cool is that? The tour has changed over the years, but still remains close to her heart.

One thing you may not know about Milwaukee Food and City Tours is that they offer vacation packages as well – both within the US and internationally. She was telling me about a trip to Poland that I may just have to book in the future. They also offer day trips to places like Chicago!

Their most popular tour in Milwaukee is the Pizza Bus, but I think next on my list is the Bloody Mary Brunch walking tour. Check out their website to see what tour you’d take next! The Christmas Lights and Desserts tour runs only during the month of December, so you still have a chance to pick up those tickets and experience some Milwaukee magic.

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Up next, I sat down with local fashion icon Pamela Kieck. Stay tuned for her take on what makes Milwaukee great.

A special thank you to Editor-in- Chief Ciara Beckers for always keeping my grammar in check.

Hey, Poké, Hey

” You only live once, lick the bowl”

Last Thursday, I had the pleasure of trying Fresh Fin Poké on North Ave of Milwaukee’s east side. I sampled all of their 5 signature dishes and was I amazed.  Nate (one of the co-founders/ owners) also took the time to sit down with us and share is story of bringing Poké to MKE.

Being a local, I always love to hear people’s stories of how they decided to share their passion with our community. Nate is not an exception to that. He is full of energy and is so excited to share his love of the culinary arts with anyone he meets. He has created dishes that meet the needs of the sushi aficionado, the vegan, and the person who won’t go near fish. And his sauces, man oh man. You could pour them over raw onions, and I’d think it was the best thing ever. (side note: raw onions, not my jam. so this is impressive).

Are you looking for to try something new, or missing the taste of the West Coast/ Islands?

Check ’em out!

Oh Lordy, Lordy

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”- C.S. Lewis

It’s been a minute friends. I make no excuses, other than living this here life. If you’ve been following me on Instagram @howsheseesmke, you’ve noticed that I haven’t missed a beat…except for this whole blogging thing.  I can’t promise that it won’t happen again, but what I can do…. is tell you that I’ve missed it.

I’m back, bad grammar and all.

Well… What have I been doing in the past 7 months you say? Taking a new position, moving out of my parents house, moving in with my boyfriend and his two cats, losing one of our cats, and adopting a new one that  we can only hope to love as much. Yep, I’m a cat lady now. Full disclosure: there will be a photo of one of my cats at the end of this post. (Scroll to the end if you just cannot contain your excitement)

Welp, we have some catching up to do then don’t we! I’m going to run down the highlights of the past few months. Stay with me now…

Maxie’s 

What I love about it: Happy Hour. Maxie’s has an amazing happy hour. $1.00 oysters & discounts on drinks and apps. A must try: the Pork Confit Flatbread.

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Cranky Al’s

What I love about it: Sunday’s my boyfriend and I will stop in for breakfast. If they ask you…get avocado on it…don’t ask questions. No, I’m not talking  about the donuts. They may be famous for their donuts, but in my heart they are number one on my bagel sandwich list. (This is a very real thing…don’t judge me or do…whatever)

Pro tip: if you’d like a decent donut selection, you better get there early.

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At this point you’re probably thinking, “Geez, does she even leave tosa anymore?” My answer… Yes, but only to drink apparently. I’ve been on a couple tours lately… Milwaukee MKE Brewing Company and Great Lakes Distillery. Both an excellent way to spend a Saturday afternoon if you’re looking to feel just a little fuzzy.

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I could go on and on, but I’ll finish with Sobelmans. I finally checked them out. I have to say, they are doing something right. 45 minute wait for a bloody in Wisconsin? Surprising, yes. You can pretty much find a Bloody Mary on most menus of places that open before the dinner rush. None of those will have fried bacon cheese crack on them like this one. Well worth the wait!

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It’s about that time for the cat photo! You thought’d I’d forget, didn’t you? Yeah, right! Remember if you have questions, comments, or concerns let me know! Until then, keep hash taggin #howiseemke!

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Bay View Bites

” I am and always will be- The Optimist. The hoper of far-flung hopes. The dreamer of improbable dreams.”- Doctor WhoI am. I  am. I am definitely an eternal optimist. Always have been, always will be. If it makes me naive, then so what. If it makes me ignorant, well guess that’s something you could call me. If it makes me happy, damn right.

I love Bay View. I’ll shout it from the rooftops. It’s been “up and coming” for years. Doesn’t that mean it’s here? Whatever. Lately, I’ve been hanging around a decent amount.

Drinking some wine and mowin down some meats at Pastiche…

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(Ratatouille photo by James Blair @jimstagram17)

Drinking some pineapple cider and margaritas at The Palomino Bar. Even though they’re known for their whiskey…

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Brunching at Honeypie..

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and finally stopping in to the Sparrow Collective to pick up my new favorite mug.

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We’ll just say…I’m a fan. It’s like small town USA on the south side of Milwaukee.

Good people, good food, and good shops.


Do you know where I should eat next or want to share your thoughts with me. Leave a comment  or #howiseemke to join me in our love of this city.

Walker’s Point: La Merenda and Blue Jacket Bar

Disclosure: The following is not written by me. These are her thoughts and her words…edited and formatted by me. Enjoy her point of view kids.


“Blessed are the curious, for she shall have adventures”

Hello Milwaukee! My name is Ciara, and I’m so excited to be guest blogging for Howsheseesmke! I’m looking forward to sharing my experience with all of you!

When Elizabeth told me she had never been to La Merenda in Walker’s Point, I jumped at the opportunity to join her. La Merenda has been on my list of Top 5 Restaurants in MKE for years. I usually don’t like to return to the same place twice, and like to try out new places and new food. But this place is a huge exception. The experience is different each time I go and it reminds me of great experiences with my closest family and friends. This place offers so much more than great food and drinks.

La Merenda is a tapas restaurant in Walker’s Point that uses local ingredients to showcase small plates from across the globe. Each plate that comes by subtly reminds me of all the places I haven’t been. It is like they put “wanderlust” in the tap water. My favorite dishes are the Patatas Bravas y Chorizo, Butter Chicken, and the Prosciutto Salad.

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I also had a Pink Gin, which was fresh and sweet. Elizabeth had a mojito, because she drinks rum like a pirate. La Merenda also offers communal seating, forcing us out of our comfort zone, but giving all of us the opportunity to meet other adventurers out there. We sat a the bar, however. (I like to let my feet dangle.) After having a global cultural experience, from Spain to India and everywhere in-between, we walked to the restaurant next door to explore a bit closer to home.

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Blue Jacket is a trendy seafood restaurant that I cannot wait to try. I highly recommend making a reservation. I drank the “Jamrock Beauty” and Elizabeth had an “Every Corner”. The staff was extremely fun, engaging us in conversation and playing Paul Simon on a record player. I can’t wait to go back!
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Overall, we had a fantastic night. We ate delicious food, drank delicious drinks, and explored our city! I love a good adventure. MKE is an adventurer’s dream, so many hidden gems just waiting to be dug up!

Thanks for letting me share my MKE experience! Follow me on the instas! @cbeckers813

The West Allis Farmer’s Market

” Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.” Rumi

It was a dreary weekend here in MKE. A little rain never stopped me though. Saturday, I made this years maiden trip to the West Allis Farmer’s Market.

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It was a little chilly and most of the veggies are not in season just yet! I will of course be blogging about this more than once, because it’s one of my favorite Saturday activities.  What is in season?

asparagus

mushrooms

spinach

rhubarb

  herbs (to be planted)

There are always so many beautiful flowers as well.

Here are some photos of my Mom’s favorite flower vendor Cindy’s Greenhouse.

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The flower’s made me think spring, but it sure felt a little cold! The West Allis Farmer’s Market is open from the first Sunday in May to the Saturday after Thanksgiving…Tuesday and Thursday from 12:00pm- 6:00pm and Saturday’s from 1:00pm-6:00pm. So don’t worry you’ll have lots of time to check it out!

Lulu Cafe & Bar

” The best thing to hold onto in life is each other.” -Audrey Hepburn

Happy Mother’s Day to all you Moms out there!

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I spent today celebrating at brunch at Lulu Cafe & Bar with my family.  Lulu is one of the few places in the city we all can always agree on. My little sister made the reservation and boy was that the right move. We waited outside with others in the morning before it opened at 10am and got seated promptly.

We started going to Lulu probably almost five years ago now, after church on Sundays. It has, over the years, become one of the staples in my diet. Brunch, lunch, dinner, or drinks. They have specials that change weekly. My, by far, favorite dish is the Mediterranean Steak Pita…strips of steak, large chunks of feta, and kalamta olive and tomato relish with their homemade chips and blue cheese dip. YUM! They also have a delicious roasted vegetable salad and their burgers never disappoint.

 Today, I ordered the Parisian Eggs for brunch. My sisters both had the Moroccan chicken sandwich one with the Asian slaw, the other with Lulu chips!

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As always our server was cheerful, even though she was about to have a long day ahead, and the food was superb.  I didn’t have a bloody or a mimosa today, but I’d recommend them! If you ever find yourself on Kinnickinnic, Howell, and Lincoln stop in for some good service and scrumptious food.


Have you been to Lulu? What did you get to eat?