Brick 3 Pizza’s chefs make their pies so easily accessible, it’s a wonder the city’s residents are eating anything else. While most pizza places are content to deliver their pies to doorsteps, Brick 3 Pizza offers eat-in, delivery, catering, and curbside service for clients craving their menu of specialty New York-style pizzas. The shop’s doors even stay open until 4 a.m. on weekends, allowing barhoppers to finish their night with a slice of mac ‘n’ cheese, mostaccioli-and-meatballs, or pesto-chicken pizza. Brick’s gigantic 34-inch extra-large pizza is a meal boon for guests with a lot of mouths to feed or as bait to catch Sylvester Stallone. Alongside their pizzas, the staff creates handheld calzones and traditional desserts such as cannoli and cheesecake.
Dough leaps from chefs' hands and pirouettes in midair before donning Rustico Pizzeria's slew of fresh toppings such as pine nuts, goat cheese, and eggplant, with gluten-free pizza and pasta available upon request. The menu includes 10 types of sandwiches, some of which are made crispy atop a sizzling grill, and pastas arrive at tables draped in slow-stewed tomato sauce and white-wine b?chamel. A rustic dining room is decked with brick walls, hardwood floors, and sturdy chandeliers. Outside, a wooden patio affords pristine views of the Milwaukee River, and an ideal station from which to christen passing ships with bottles from the Italian wine list.
Milwaukee Ale House echoes with notes of live music and the laughter of pub goers, but the building is also the site of serious work. Beyond a pair of glass doors, the pub's stainless steel fermentation tanks bubble with Milwaukee Brewing Company's creations. When they're ready, these beers make the short leap from brew room to bar tap, forming a beverage selection that Esquire described as, "plentiful and tasty, complementing the top-notch food."
The menu sports a convenient pairing chart that helps diners match prime rib, pulled-pork sandwiches, and spicy beef-and-chorizo burgers to house brews. Ideal with chicken, Louie's Demise exudes the smooth maltiness of a typical amber ale but with a balanced kick of Perle and Tettnanger hops, A meat-and-potatoes porter, the Admiral Stache ages for one month in bourbon barrels, lending a toasty vanilla flavor to subtle notes of milk chocolate and dried fruit.
Situated in the heart of the Historic Third Ward, Milwaukee Ale House's century-old building provides the main dining room and patio areas with waterside views of the Milwaukee River. The pub's decor exudes its own historic charm with exposed brick, a scattering of empty wooden barrels, and vintage beer signs. When live bands aren't performing, focus turns back to the bar area, where the taps form an ornate centerpiece built to resemble a copper-topped wooden vat. Around the vat hang white mugs belonging to members of the Mug Club and office workers who "got lost" during their coffee break.
Housed in the former Brown Bottle Guest Hall and Hospitality Center in the old Schlitz Brewery, Libiamo basks in the same old-fashioned elegance that made the venue a Milwaukee landmark. A gorgeous ceiling, elaborate woodwork, and chandeliers constructed from massive antlers set the classy yet casual ambience. Paintings of rustic Italy adorn the walls and the beautiful, familiar old bar welcomes patrons like a massive, wooden old friend. As befits the historic setting, you can get original-recipe Schlitz on tap, while ghosts of departed Schlitz cans occasionally roam the bathroom area. Libiamo also lives up to the building’s illustrious precedent with a menu of some of the best authentic Italian food in Milwaukee. Appetizers benefit from Libiamo’s delicious house red sauce. Try the tender spedini—Italian steak rolled with breadcrumbs and cheeses—or fried ravioli (both $7). For lunch, order up one of the delicious and crispy panini sandwiches, like the classic Italian beef ($7.95). Equally crispy are the thin-crust pizzas, including the sophisticated pesto chicken ($9 for small, $17.50 for large) or family-recipe linguine with meatballs ($8.50).
Fire on Water?s name conjures a mental image of pizzas, cocktails, and beer floating together on a blazing lake. The flame-licked menu sizzles with a diverse lineup of pies that range from simple and elegant margherita pizzas topped with tomatoes, sweet basil, and mozzarella. In addition to pizzas, the kitchen also dispenses boneless chicken wings, and wonton-wrapped mozzarella sticks with more cheese than a selfish mousetrap. Each day of the week brings a new drink special to the bar, which houses more than 50 kinds of beer and a lengthy selection of liquors to be hoisted toward weekly events and live music.