One of the largest local restaurant expansion projects this city has ever seen is complete ‒ well, Phase I is done! So, behold the much larger Buckley’s Restaurant and Bar, which started service in the new addition this week (801 N. Cass St., 414-277-1111).
The Buckley family were quite successful at keeping their progress out of prying media eyes before the addition was complete. What you’ll see from our photos is very in keeping with the vibe co-owner Pam Buckley created in the original dining room (whose renovation is in Phase II of construction). Elegant but not stuffy. They’ve added fireplaces for a (much appreciated in winter) cozy feel. The “best way to describe the interior… My mom set it up, but this time she had a budget,” Britt says, laughing. And yes, it has darker-toned walls, plus lots of creamy trim popping against the hardwood floors and bare wood tables, plus black-and-white tile in the entryway.
The menu remains “pretty much as is,” says Britt Buckley, and that means the Buckley’s dishes that have developed followers (from the lunch menu’s lobster roll to the Buckley burger and the dry-aged strip loin with rosemary roasted potatoes on the dinner menu) have not departed. Before executive chef Thi Cao’s departure at the end of 2018, Britt, son of founders Mike and Pam Buckley, had hired chef Van Luu to form part of the cooking team. Luu’s background includes heading the kitchen of the former Locavore restaurant at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.
Britt doesn’t expect menu changes until everyone is acclimated to the digs. The kitchen staff has a kitchen five times larger than what they were working in before, he says. Pam, known for her signature carrot cake, also her own pastry kitchen, a new and welcome change for her.
Kitchen hours: Mon-Sat 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sun 10 a.m.-10 p.m.