Simma's Bakery has been a Milwaukee staple for 30 years, and its decadent desserts have shared more laughter and tears than a soap opera about birthday clowns. The mom-and-pop shop was founded by Simma Yundov, a woman who immigrated with her husband and two children to the United States from Russia in 1979. She built the bakery from the ground up, making a name for herself and touching the lives of countless people. After her death more than a decade ago, Simma's daughter carried on her mother's work and recently passed the br?l?e torch to Mark and Peggy Carollo, who, Veil magazine, have years of experience in the family-run bakery business. Today, the walls are covered with awards and recognitions?tributes to Simma's legacy. The bakery was named one of the The Knot's Best of Weddings 2013 vendors, a top Wedding Cake Designer in the Shepherd Express Best of Milwaukee 2012 awards, and has been a winner or finalist in CityVoter's Best Cakes category for six years running. The shop has also been voted the Best Place to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth in 2012 by both the editors and readers of M magazine.
Going to the movie theater should be more enjoyable than watching a movie at home??a concept that Rosebud Theater has down pat. Cinephiles regain the sparkle in their eyes as they enter the historic venue, which originally opened as The Tosa Theatre in 1931 and was recently modernized to have great views and stellar sound. Unlike cramped multiplex theaters, Rosebud houses one solitary, comfortably spaced theater, where visitors won?t have to worry about hearing explosions from the monster-truck movie next door or accidently walking into the wrong monster-truck movie.
In addition to typical movie snacks such as popcorn, candy, and soda, the Rosebud sports a full menu of appetizers, sandwiches, quesadillas, and pizza, as well as a full bar stocked with wine, cocktails, and microbrews??all of which are delivered to patrons during featured presentations. Rather than standard chairs, the theater is furnished with cushy loveseats with room for 180 movie lovers to savor first-run Hollywood hits without wrestling strangers over armrests.
North Avenue Grill may be a diner, but it’s hardly a greasy spoon. Cooks build sandwiches, soups, and omelets from scratch, using local ingredients and a creative New American approach. Many dishes—including stacks of steaming pancakes—are gluten-free, and most that aren’t can be tailored to the needs of guests with wheat, barley, and rye sensitivities. Breadsmith, Rocket Baby, and Molly’s loaves form the foundation of many sandwiches, from the meaty Tosa cheesesteak to the vegetarian Portabella Baby.
Coffee comes from Sven’s in Bay View, whereas ice cream hails from Madison’s famous Chocolate Shoppe. Burgers are crafted by hand with fresh ground chuck and sirloin, rather than an 8-ounce can of hot-pink Play-Doh. Diners can relax in burnt-orange leather seats as they eat, or take part in Wednesday night movie trivia and Throw You Out Thursdays, when lucky diners are tossed to the curb after dining but before paying their tabs.
The technicians at Natural Cleaners revivify garments while respecting the earth's delicate ecosystem, eschewing traditional petroleum-based solvents for GreenEarth, a nontoxic formula made of silicone derived naturally from sand. Five Milwaukee-area storefronts bustle free from fumes and pollutants as suits, dresses, and coats shake off dirt during dry or professional-grade wet cleanings. Wedding-dress cleaning and preservation primes gowns for years of heirloom storage or Miss Havisham costume contests, and an in-house seamstress alters hemlines and cuffs to create dashing silhouettes. Household textiles also kowtow to Natural Cleaners' expertise as draperies, bedspreads, and feather pillows return home spic and span.
Family patriarch Nordy Rockler opened the doors of his first store in 1954 to supply his fellow craftsmen with knowledge, friendly advice, and a large selection of tools for at-home woodworking projects. Now, the chain of retail outlets brims with more than 20,000 tools and specialized woodworking equipment. Next to a steely rainbow of hinges, casters, and screws, a supply of lumber and exotic hardwoods provides planks for building tree houses or just leaving around as a warning to uncooperative trees. The tenor buzz of power tools operated by newly knowledgeable guests drifts from educational sessions on operating equipment and woodworking.
Snap Fitness, bustling with cardio and strength-training gear, throws open the doors to its facilities 24/7. Before exercisers put sneakers to treadmills or lift their first weights, staff meet with them to talk about their fitness goals before suggesting personalized fitness plans based on clients' strength, cardio condition, and bionic-limb manufacturers. The gym keeps members motivated with regular check-in calls and demystifies healthful eating with custom online meal plans designed by nutritionists. Staff also forestall exercise-routine boredom by working individually with clients on a routine basis.