Restaurant Rave: The Safe House
Posted by Patricia Gorecki | 10/11/2013 | Category: Restaurant Raves
Columbus Day weekend is finally here. We know that many of you will be traveling for your long weekend, so we've put together a special spotlight Rave. This week, we take you north of the border to Milwaukee—home of the Brewers, Miller Brewery and Summerfest. Staying in the Chicago area? Check out our archived Restaurant Raves for great dining spots around the Chicago area.
The Safe House, $$, Milwaukee
779 N. Front Street, Milwaukee, WI 53202
Reviewed by: Trish Gorecki
Tucked away down a nondescript alley in the midst of Milwaukee hangs a plaque for a business titled International Exports Ltd. Behind the door, you are greeted and led into a small waiting area. There you are asked for the password. Don’t have the password? Be prepared to perform something embarrassing, from waddling like a duck to dancing the hokey-pokey. When you have finished “proving” yourself, a wall slides open to reveal a hidden restaurant. Welcome to The Safe House.
This popular spy-theme restaurant, based on the secret refuges set up for spies involved in covert operations, is filled with real memorabilia, espionage displays and deceptive nooks and crannies. Make sure to check out all the historic artifacts on display, including an actual piece of the Berlin Wall, a pair of bank doors holding actual bullets from their encounter with famed outlaw John Dillinger, and a cell door from a former East Berlin KGB prison.
The spy-theme continues throughout every inch of The Safe House, right down to the expertly-named drinks and specials such as “The Soviet Defector” and “Parallel Universe.” Not only are the dishes aptly names, they are seriously delicious. Start off your meal with a Wisconsin classic—”Flash-Fried Wisconsin Cheese Curds.” The white cheddar curds, batter-dipped and served with a Top Secret sauce are absolutely amazing.
For your main meal, choose between a selection of American classics with a twist. Try out “Our Man from Havana”—a reuben with Caribbean island dressing to give it a bit of a kick. The “Spyburger” can be upgraded with the addition of an “International Cover,” from the “Greek”, with blended spinach, artichokes and cheese to the “Mexican” with pico de gallo and pepper jack cheese.
Oh and remember that embarrassing display you had to perform to enter? That was being displayed on a monitor inside the restaurant. Don’t worry though. Patrons are always known to applaud the performances.
When it’s time to leave, try and find the secret exit ... you don’t want to blow your cover!
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