1. Shop From Cedar & Spruce
ALLI WATTERS, DIGITAL & CULTURE EDITOR
This slouchy armchair is handmade by local stained glass artist Molly Jackson, who runs the one-woman operation Cedar + Spruce Studios. She cuts, grinds and foil-wraps each of the pieces, which come in a variety of colors. I snatched one up as a gift for a friend. They’re $54 at cedarandsprucestudios.com.
2. Take Home Some Desserts From Le Rêve
CHRIS DROSNER, EXECUTIVE EDITOR
My stop in the Tosa Village café was a treat for my wife for Valentine’s Day, but this could score you brownie points with your sweetie on any occasion. The desserts at Le Rêve Patisserie & Café (7610 Harwood Ave., Wauwatosa) are extraordinary – they’re right there in the French restaurant’s name – and travel well. Even on a busy night in the dining room, the counter dessert service is quick and easy. Our selections were divine: opera torte, a French twist on tiramisu using almond biscuits; and chocolate caramel tart, with its gooey, decadent center ($7.50 each).
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3. Try the Bread at Taqwa’s
ANN CHRISTENSON, SENIOR DINING EDITOR
I’ve got to tell you about this bread. Saturday night I was out on the hunt for dinner and landed at Taqwa’s (4651 S. 27th St.), which is equal parts Middle Eastern bakery and sit-down restaurant. Owner Taqwa Obaid is a terrific baker, and Palestinian stone oven-baked taboun breads play a starring roll in meals here. It’s so good dipped in Obaid’s smooth, mild hummus. She also does bread-like filled pastries called fatayer and fills them with ground beef, spinach, mashed potatoes or (my favorite) creamy Mediterranean cheese. And then there’s a house specialty which is another vehicle for that wonderful flatbread. Mosakhan, as it’s called, features a base of taboun bread seasoned with caramelized onions, sumac, lemon and olive oil and crowned with a grilled half-chicken. Delightful.
4. Read Maame by Jessica George
BRIANNA SCHUBERT, ASSOCIATE DIGITAL EDITOR
If you’re looking for a great read that’s also super buzzy right now, this is it. Jessica George’s Maame came out at the end of January and has been receiving lots of attention since – including being the February pick for Read with Jenna, the Today Show’s book club. I absolutely loved this book! It’s about a young woman in her twenties (named Maddie) who is living at her parents’ house and taking care of her sick father while her mom is in Ghana running a family business. When her mom returns, Maddie moves out on her own and has a lot of new experiences for the first time. It’s about her growing up and finding her own identity – beyond just who she is in the context of her complicated family life. This book evokes everything from laughter to tears, with relatable characters and a memorable story
5. Shuffle Some Shamrocks
ARCHER PARQUETTE, MANAGING EDITOR
This Saturday is Milwaukee’s annual Shamrock Shuffle, a pub crawl in honor of good ol’ St. Paddy’s Day. I’m only about 15% Irish on my grandfather’s side, but when March rolls around that number skyrockets up to 100 faster than you can say “Lucky Charms.” (Sorry, Uncle Giuseppe. After the holiday, I’ll be munching gabagool and slicking my hair back again.) St. Patrick’s is a lovely holiday: the music, the dancing, the culture, and yes, the booze. And the Shamrock Shuffle brings all that joy to Walker’s Point, Martin Luther King Dr., and Brady and Water streets for a day of pub-hopping and live music. Tickets for the Brady and Water shuffles are already sold out, but you can still snag MLK and Walker’s Point ones and get in on the Irish celebration.