Here's where to find the best sights (and bites!) in Milwaukee.
Take in the sights of the Third Ward from the second story rooftop patio of Café Benelux. Named after the Benelux region in Europe (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg), this Third Ward restaurant stays true to its heritage by providing a long list of beer choices. Take a look in their “bier book,” but be warned: it may take a while to make a decision! Their rooftop patio is a great place to sit and people-watch while soaking up the sun. Head to Cafe Benelux for their delicious brunch and head to the roof to relax above the hustle and bustle of the Third Ward.
346 N. Broadway St.
Unwind for a post-work drink at this swanky destination. Located at the top of the Pfister Hotel, Blu Bar & Lounge provides stunning views of Milwaukee’s skyline and the lakefront. While at the Blu, you’ll be transported back in time by the classic blue finishings and soft jazz music playing softly in the background. Their location on the 23rd floor provides unbeatable 360-degree views of Milwaukee that you will be pressed to find anywhere else in the city. Go for happy hour Monday through Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. to stay for the sunset.
424 E. Wisconsin Ave.
Screaming Tuna is the place for sushi in the Third Ward. Situated on the Milwaukee River, skyline and river views are guaranteed here. Start with the Blackened Octopus appetizer and then move on to the Seaweed Salad or try one of their specialty rolls – the Screaming Tuna is a house favorite. From your seat on the patio, you will look north to the heart of downtown. In the evening, the sunset reflects beautifully off the water and is the perfect setting for date night. This casual Asian bistro fills up quickly, so be sure to make a reservation before arriving.
106 W. Seeboth St.
Located in a historic and recently renovated park pavilion, this Bartolotta restaurant is perfect for Sunday brunch. The French-inspired menu boasts traditional favorites from delectable croissants to their Omelette aux Champignons. Its location perched on a bluff overlooking Lake Michigan means the views are top-notch, too. Grab a seat by the window for an expansive view of Lake Michigan and its shoreline.
3133 E. Newberry Blvd.
Looking for a quick bite and a 240-degree view of Lake Michigan? Look no further. Nestled in the Milwaukee Art Museum, Café Calatrava does just this. The glass walls of the café and its creative design showcase the waterfront view and reflect the ingenuity of artist Santiago Calatrava, for whom the café is named. Café Calatrava’s menu is constantly changing and showcases contemporary cuisine with a variety of options. You can’t go wrong in choosing a place to sit at the cafe, as all tables are poised to take advantage of the spectacular views of Lake Michigan.
700 N. Art Museum Dr.
Perched atop Brewer’s Hill, Wolf Peach provides impressive views of the Milwaukee skyline. This shabby chic venue has a European-inspired menu of shared plates. Wolf Peach is known for using locally sourced ingredients—even some from their on-site urban garden! Their Spanish Chorizo Pizza is a fan favorite and pairs well with the Milwaukee view. Their patio seating offers one of the clearest skyline views in the city. Head to Wolf Peach at sunset to take in the pastel backdrop.
1818 N. Hubbard St.
A tropical food paradise can be found on the ninth floor of the Kimpton Journeyman Hotel. The Outsider has both indoor and outdoor rooftop seating, allowing guests to take in the picturesque scenes of Lake Michigan and the city skyline. Pair the Marinated Seafood Ceviche with the New World Conquers (payet pisco, smith & cross rum, honey, coconut, lime, mulling spice, angostura bitters) for the full tropical effect! If its a chilly night, warm up out at the rooftop bar next to a fireplace or get moving while playing one of the group patio games during the summer months.
310 E. Chicago St.
You can’t get much closer to dinner on the water in Milwaukee than at the Harbor House. Located across from Discovery World, this Bartolotta restaurant features both steak and seafood. Oyster fans can delight in their selection of fresh oysters, showcased daily at the raw bar. Dine out on the patio to take in the sights of the Milwaukee Art Museum and beautiful Lake Michigan. Nothing beats being right on the water, and Harbor House delivers when it comes to both quality food and views. The fresh fish and sound of the waves will transport you to seafood heaven!
550 N. Harbor Dr.
Grab a locally brewed pint and relax out on the patio of the Ale Asylum Riverhouse! Located directly on the waterfront, this updated tavern provides fantastic views of the Milwaukee riverfront. Sit outside on the patio on a warm summer night (or ask for a seat inside near the windows if its chillier) and take advantage of the spectacular river views. Before heading over to an event at the Bradley Center, head to Ale Asylum Riverhouse and hang out on the patio during happy hour Monday through Friday, 3-6 p.m. Be sure not to miss their Crab Rangoon Nachos.
1110 N. Old World 3rd St.