Inspired by the “swanky ’60s,” Buttermint in Shorewood (4195 N. Oakland Ave.) kicks off dinner service on Tuesday, Dec. 14. The restaurant replaces Blue’s Egg Shorewood and is owned by the same parent company, Black Shoe Hospitality (which also operates Maxie’s, Story Hill BKC and Blue’s Egg on 76th Street). The new concept for the space was announced back in August.
The menu, created by chef/co-owner Joe Muench, is modern and takes cues from the restaurants of the early 1960s. “It’s been a long time coming. Our team has helped us build this through incredible challenges,” co-owner Amy Kerstein said by press release. “We are thrilled to share what we’ve created with the community. We hope Buttermint will be a gathering place for generations to come.”
The team spent a year renovating the space, which they describe as swanky and electric, “with good vibes and a hint of nostalgia.”
Chef Muench’s menu includes a raw bar (also a focal point of its dining room), featuring chilled seafood preparations, fresh-shucked oysters and chilled meats and vegetables. The menu will change frequently based on ingredient availability. Some early dishes include hiramasa crudo, poached egg & caviar, house-smoked sturgeon, turkey galantine, duck liver pâté, a lamb and white bean salad, and house-smoked sturgeon ($14-$18).
The opening appetizer list includes “comfortably upscale presentations” of crispy chicken XO, veal sweetbreads, fried lobster, chickpea fries and okonomiyaki Japanese pancake ($12-$20). Entrées range from grilled swordfish and Arctic char à la Bavarian to roasted Amish chicken and grilled Niman strip loin steak ($25-$44). For desserts, there’s a butterscotch miso tart, oeufs à la banana, and a Messy Romanoff. Those offerings will change as well.
“Updated retro luxury” is the theme of the beverage menu, which includes classic cocktails, including The Original Mai Tai, The Last Word, Vesper, Sloe Gin Fizz, Rye Manhattan, Sidecar and an adult kiddie cocktail, the Shorewood Shirley, that features Central Standard Door County Cherry Vodka ($10- $13). Tap cocktails include Buttermint’s Old Fashioned, and an all-premium Long Island called the Atwater Beach ($9-$10). The curated wine list includes more than 150 selections ($32-$98). The opening tap beers list highlights local and regional craft brewers, including New Glarus, Third Space and Eagle Park ($6-$8).
Some details about the hours: The bar will open at 4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. It will feature a “North Shore Happy Hour,” running 4-6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday with something called a “North Shore Pour” – a larger pour of wine, or additional chaser to a beer or craft cocktail.
The full dinner menu is available 5-9 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Reservations are recommended but they’ve designated 30 seats in the bar and lounge for walk-ins. You can make a reservation through OpenTable via the link at buttermintrestaurant.com and by calling 414-488-2587.
There are also plans to open for an upscale Saturday-Sunday brunch in 2022.