Taps: 8 / Bottles: 80
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 8 | Reviews: 6 | Display Reviews Only:
3.55/5 rDev -19.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5 | $$$
This is definitely a hidden gem...I Mapquested directions to this place and thought for sure Id been misled when I turned down Weil Street. The Riverwest neigborhood is improving, and also houses the Stonefly/Onopa brewpub (reviewed separately).
Nessun Dorma is a small but lively bistro...it feels a bit like Trucodero but smaller, Italian, and more beer focused (Trucodero has Kronenberg as one of there 3 draft beers for reasons that escape me!). There is definite attention paid to beer in this establishment with a quickly rotating draft selection and a wide variety of glassware. There are perhaps 8 taps and approximately 80 beers in bottles. During my particular visit on draft I noticed Capital Winter Skal, Red Seal Ale, Goose Island IPA, Anchor Christmas Ale, Hennepin, and a few others. The food was pretty good as well (I had a panini sandwhich at the bar with salad; nothing complicated), but a bit pricey given how nice a restaurant this is.
The bar is sort of the focus of the main room. The bartender seemed too busy to chat much, but he was friendly and efficient. The ambiance of the place was very cozy and would be a good beer-focused restaurant to trick your wife or girlfriend into going to as a romantic dinner.
Overall, I was quite impressed with my experience at Nessun Dorma.
And for those who are curious (as I was), I'll mention that "Nessun Dorma" is the final aria from Puccini's opera "Turandot." Literally it means "let no one sleep," as Princess Turandot orders no one sleeps until they discover the name of an unknown Prince (Calaf). Pavarotti and other famous singers have performed this. Ah, if beer can force us to learn about opera, is there anything it can't do?
12-24-2006 14:27:21 | More by BeerBelcher
4.05/5 rDev -8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
Finally stopped in here recently. Sad I've missed it for this long. Located in an old house in the Riverwest neighborhood. The place is rather unassuming from the outside. Once inside you are greeted by dark wood and a warm atmosphere. It literally looks and feels like someones living room. Friendly greetings from the staff welcomed us to settle in at the bar.
The beer list wasn't as long as some places around town but well thought out. We ordered a few and perused the menu. Again not the largest menu but all the items were well thought out and sounded fantastic. We settled on a cheese and olive plate. Which turned out to be out of this world. I could stop here every night and order the same thing for the rest of my life.
This will be on my list of highly recommended places for anyone looking for great food and a solid tap selection.
05-28-2012 18:15:32 | More by beerwolf77
4.25/5 rDev -3.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3 | food: 4.5 | $$
Atmosphere- Bottom level of a small house in Riverwest. Pure Milwaukee. Long bar on left, tables on right and in back room. Cozy but not jam-packed. A few tables on sidewalk when the weather warms up.
Quality- Good ingredients in food and cocktails. The carry mostly craft beers. I've been consistently impressed by the presentation of their food, especially the nightly specials.
Service- Pretty good, especially at the bar. Friendly but not too chatty. Servers are extremely friendly and seem like they enjoy working there. They sometimes get caught up in conversations, but that lends a friendly tone to the place.
Selection- 6(?) beers on tap, about 50 in bottles. Taps usually offer IPA/IIPA, Belgian, Pilsner, Always Riverwest Stein (you're in RW afterall). Occasional rarities like Hopslam or Lakefront My Turn series. Never blown away by 6 taps, but I've been here a few dozen times and have NEVER been disappointed. Rotates enough to keep me interested. Bottles are always changing a bit as well.
Food- This is what keeps us coming back. Awesome pesto. Great paninis. Great specials and soups. Give it at try. A few vegetarian options.
Value- Well worth the price. the only item over $11 is the nightly special. Most paninis are between $9-10.
05-24-2014 20:21:15 | More by robear
4.43/5 rDev +0.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
What a find... i've been meaning to drop in here for a long time and finally had the chance. After walking by a year or so ago during the day, I really wanted to visit Nessun Dorma. It looked like just the laid-back neighborhood joint that would deliver, due to the taps and menu posted online.
Tonight, it was a great experience there. When we wandered in early on a Friday night, the neighborhood was completely quiet all around. It was a small wood-accented room, with a couple smaller rooms a few more tables. Several mirrors advertising beer and whiskey dotted the sparse walls. Dark wood tables and chairs, floor and trim gave it a cozy european vibe.
Tap selection included: Moylans Kilt Lifter, Bells Rye Stout, Old Foghorn, Upland Helios Pale, Riverwest Stein, SN Porter, Red Seal, and Bells Sparkling Ale. In bottles, Rodenbach 750s, 4 Oskar Blues options, Pere Jacques, O'So, Victory, Furthermore, Lakefront, and more. Respectable Bourbon & Scotch selection too...20 varieties of each, even Yamazaki 18 yr. for crying out loud.
The vibe was very cozy, I would have stayed here all night if not for the desire to visit a few more establishments. Food wise, we had the artichoke dip which was excellent, and generously portioned. The food here is fairly upscale and affordable, tonight they had a lobster ravioli special for example.
Check it out if you're in the Riverwest area.
11-28-2009 07:17:45 | More by emerge077
4.45/5 rDev +1.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $
If Nessun Dorma were located in a different area, I would visit quite often. The Riverwest neighborhood has a reputation for crime compared to the pristine East side or Northern suburbs, and most people I know who live there have had their car windows smashed or have been mugged. As it is I still go there frequently because of the quality of the bar, and I don't wish to scare off any potential visitors- simply be aware when coming and going. I have not yet had a problem in my years of patronage to Riverwest locations.
This is indeed a gem as others have suggested: a small, beautiful all-wood corner bar with a plethora of quality taps and fine whiskeys and scotches to boot. The food they serve is always well made and although I don't eat there very regularly, I have never had a bad meal. My only comment is that I would like them to vary the menu a bit more, but again a small quality menu is vastly preferred to a large mediocre one.
As the name suggests, much of the fare has its roots in Italian cooking with bruschetta and tapenade appetizers, homemade soups and deserts, and panini and pasta dishes. The service has always been friendly, and most of the bar staff is very knowledgeable. Regional, national and international taps are all well represented so there is a beer for all tastes, and the prices are very good (as an example, I enjoyed a pint of beer for the same price as a 10 oz goblet at another bar in town). I don't come there for the wine or spirits but both are represented well at Nessun Dorma. Late nights can sometimes get raucous with loud music playing and a crowded bar, but on the whole one of my favorite places in milwaukee.
06-15-2010 21:57:40 | More by Beerfayce
4.5/5 rDev +2.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Id heard some good things about this place, but or some reason I didnt get around to visiting until yesterday. I came back today. This place is wonderful. Very good taps, and a large and varied selection of solid everday micros, many Belgians, and some harder to find seasonals and/or extreme beers. The bartender (I think hes the owner) is knowledgable and passionate about beer as well as liquor and wine, and hes pretty friendly, too. The atmosphere is likewise inviting, a little earthy, bistro-ish without the attitude. The food was also very good. I could see this becoming my second favorite place in Milwaukee (after Romans Pub) -- and, if Im hungry, it might rank ahead of Romans!
08-17-2007 02:20:21 | More by Flyer
Nessun Dorma in Milwaukee, WI
- out of 100 based on 8 ratings.