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: Martin Moore

“It doesn’t matter if you’re seventeen or seventy-seven, there is something for you to do. We have a casino, bars, restaurants, museums and a beach. The people are awesome. If you come to Milwaukee and you say you didn’t like it…. It’s not the city. It’s you.”

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I am starting to realize that the more Milwaukeean’s I chat with, there’s not a person who thinks this place is just “alright.” I’m always greeted with a laugh or a chuckle when I ask, “How would you describe Milwaukee to someone who has never been here?” It strikes a chord. A small bit of pride is always included in their answer. The quote you read above was Martin Moore’s answer to that question with the addition of “Dope as ____”, but I’ll let you fill in the blank.

Like any other Milwaukeean, Martin has his favorite restaurants: Blu & the Pfister Hotel, The Safe House, The Swinging Door Exchange and Barnacle Buds. His favorite hangouts include the pier at McKinley Marina, the Oak Leaf Trail, and Discovery Word. You’re probably wondering…why is she telling Martin’s story? What makes Martin stand out? Why can’t she just get to the point already!? Here we go…

In 2017, Martin landed his dream career as a photographer, filmmaker & marketing extraordinaire with Koss. You may have seen his YouTube channel, Twitter account, or even him walking the streets with a huge grin on his face while filming a vlog (video blog). Martin has a way of capturing his audience to make you feel like you’re walking right beside him, experiencing exactly what he is experiencing at this very moment. He’s been an entertainer since birth, starting with a competitive career as a magician at seven years old. That knack for the spotlight definitely shows.

His vlogs cover a variety of topics: adventure, travel, career, personal life, and, my favorite topic, Milwaukee. I asked how he got to where he is now and if he has any advice for people when taking the leap in order to land their dream job. He said that through grinding, perseverance, human connection and well, vlogging (That’s how Koss found him). He attributes many things in his life to vlogging. It opened up opportunities for him to meet people, practice public speaking, and move from fixing cars to his current dream job. He let me know that he wasn’t afraid to fail. He said that many people are afraid…but you might as well fail at something you love, since it is just as easy to fail at a job you hate.

Martin’s first vlog was asking people on Bradford Beach why they love Milwaukee, using his iPhone. While most of them said beer, one person did say that it was the people. And that, folks, is why we all keep coming back.

 


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

 

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.

How We See MKE: Kayla Tafoya of BeTimeless

“I think of Milwaukee as deep in tradition, where the people are kind and regular. The food and drinks are warm. You can always go out for a nice time.”

I first found Kayla when scouring ETSY for some Wisconsin décor and fell in love with her designs on BeTimeless. Kayla’s adorable pillows, shirts and stationary are immediately recognizable and are a staple in some of my favorite shops, including West Elm Milwaukee, Apricot Lane, The Waxwing, Sparrow Collective, Broadway Paper, Wisconsin Candle Company, The Local Store, and most recently Milwaukee Home. I recently got the privilege to sit down with Kayla to learn more about her business and her life.

Let’s start from the beginning. Kayla and her mom had always wanted to open a small wedding boutique. She was working retail just after graduating college and decided it was the time to begin making their dream a reality.  The name BeTimeless was a nod to weddings and their timelessness.  They received their LLC for BeTimeless and the rest is history.

Although Kayla’s brand has rapidly expanded, her favorite item she’s ever created is her “thanks man” groomsman card which remains a part of her wedding collection. She stated, “it was an easy, simple design, but I have to laugh when grooms ask for them last minute.”

Kayla grew up in the Fond du Lac area and now resides in Wauwatosa. You can find her love for our home state in her designs. She first began printing the State of Wisconsin at the request of a bride for a ring bearer pillow. From there, she posted them on her ETSY which caught the eye of a Wausau store who asked if she would sell them to them at wholesale prices. While telling me the story, Kayla laughed and said “I sold my first pillows for five dollars a piece, can you believe that?”  While she no longer sells her pillows wholesale for five dollars (nor should she), they’ve caught the eye of thousands all over the country. She even ships to Canada!

Kayla describes her brand as bubbly and I have to agree. She has an eye for whimsy and is always exploring new designs to expand her collection. She has new ornaments up for the holiday season in her ETSY shop and a recent new collaboration with Milwaukee Home that she is particularly excited about. She is inspired by local business owners like Steph Davies, owner of The Waxwing, and local photographer Sara Shaffer. When speaking about Sara she said, “I admire her because she is a business lady through and through and built up her business as a “side gig”. She works full time during the week and still manages to pull off photography sessions and weddings on the weekend and edits like a mad woman during week nights. She has an amazing way of capturing people candidly. She is detail oriented and extremely organized. A powerhouse of a photog. 

You can find Kayla eating at Blue’s Egg, Odd Duck, or Wolf Peach when she leaves the studio for a breath of fresh air. She enjoys spending time with her husband, family, and her neighbors who have turned into family. She, like many Wisconsinites, also has a deep rooted love for the Green Bay Packers, Aaron Rodgers or not.

Are you looking for fun holiday gift? I’m partial to her Bloody Mary ornament and countless Wisconsin pillows that are strewn about in my home, but check out Kayla’s website and follow her on Instagram at @shopbetimeless to give her some local love.  I am so excited to feature her as the first of many stories on How We See MKE.


Have you seen Foodie Flight & Fab Flight on Instagram? Coming next week, my interview with Jettset Local’s Katelyn Carlisle.

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


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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.

Bright Copper Kettles and Warm Woollen Mittens

“Remember kid, there’s heroes and there’s legends. Heroes get remembered but legends never die, follow your heart kid, and you’ll never go wrong.”

 The Babe: The Sandlot

Recently, since I’ve started blogging of course, people have been asking me for my favorites…favorite restaurants, favorite parks, favorite festivals, favorite views of the city, or favorite stores. Honestly, here is my answer, I find new favorites everyday. I stumble upon places and they become my new favorite.

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I have an uncanny ability to feel at home in the strangest places. I could be in a bar in Austin, a coffee shop in Jackson Hole, a sushi place in Appleton, or even the Trevi Fountain in Rome. Those are all places I’ve been and fallen in love. (see above and below) Not with someone, but with myself, with the people I’ve interacted, and the time I took to just take it all in. Now that you know my secret, I’ll give you a little list of favorites and if I can’t pick one… I’ll pick two or three or four. Enjoy!

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Okay here we go…

Favorite Food Anywhere: sushi, chicken salad, and bagels with cream cheese

Favorite Bars: Matty’s Bar and Grill (New Berlin, WI), Rosie’s on Water (Milwaukee, WI),  Camp Bar (Shorewood or Wauwatosa, WI)

Favorite Drink to drink at said bar: white Russian, vodka soda, mojito, Cosmo, and think that’s hand mixed and doesn’t include dark liquor or grenadine.

Favorite Restaurants: Lulu’s Cafe and Bar (Bayview, WI), Belair Cantina (Wauwatosa WI), La Reve (Wauwatosa, WI), Cafe Benelux (Third Ward/Milwaukee, WI) Tochi (Shorewood, WI), and Kanpai (Third Ward/Milwaukee, WI) These are just a few. I eat somewhere new 90% of the time.

Favorite Flowers: hydrangeas, wild flowers, anything that’s big that has real color

Favorite Coffee Shops: Colectivo (Wauwatosa or Bayview locations), Aggies (serves Stone Creek Coffee) on Greenfield in Milwaukee, and The Starbucks on Bluemound near 124th. I don’t discriminate.

Favorite Ice Cream places: Leon’s Frozen Custard (Milwaukee, WI), Purple Door Ice Cream (Walker’s Point/Milwaukee, WI), Babe’s (Bayview, WI) and Gilles Frozen Custard ( Milwaukee, WI). I could eat all of them right now… where’s my spoon.

Favorite Parks: Lapham Peak ( Delafield, WI), Peninsula State Park (Fish Creek, WI), South Shore Park (Bayview, WI), and Seven Bridges or Grant Park (South Milwaukee, WI)

Favorite quotes: “The important thing is not to be bitter over life’s disappointments. Learn to let go of the past. And recognize that every day won’t be sunny, and when you find yourself lost in the darkness and despair remember it’s only in the black of night you see the stars. And those stars will lead you back home. So don’t be afraid to make mistakes, or stumble and fall, cause most of the time the greatest rewards come from doing the things that scare you the most. Maybe you’ll get everything you wish for. Maybe you’ll get more than you ever could have imagined. Who knows where life will take you. The road is long and in the end, the journey is the destination.” -Whitey Durham from One Tree Hill

“Maybe some women aren’t meant to be tamed. Maybe they need to run free until they find someone just as wild to run with.”- Carrie Bradshaw

“Be in love with your life, every detail of it.”- Jack Kerouac


I think that’s a good place to leave you. Try some of my favorites or let me know what some of your favorite’s are. I’d love to hear about it.