Your Rating: None
8 Ratings

Type: Bar, Eatery

2101 N Prospect Ave
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 53202-1110
United States

(414) 287-2053

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Added by brewQ on 07-07-2006

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Ratings: 8 |  Reviews: 6
Photo of Eman17
4.17/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Photo of andrewrutman
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of EnJeiBee
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

I've been here quite a few times in the past year and I've certainly enjoyed myself. I always get the feeling that there is a pretty solid crowd that always makes their way there on weekends.

The atmosphere is pretty relaxed and comfortable. The service is decent, but since there is normally only two people working the bar it can get sluggish.

Their selection is OK, but they've elected to carry only two taps (always Spaten). Beyond that, they have a small beer selection with various brews from around the world.

Having only eaten there once, I don't feel that I can fully address the menu. However, I did notice that it was smaller and pricier than expected.

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Photo of emerge077
4.29/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

2014: Great little article on Allium:

Cafe Brucke is certainly a hidden gem in Milwaukee's East Side, the place has that intangible "je ne sais quoi" that sets it apart in terms of atmosphere and general Gemütlichkeit. It feels authentically European as other reviewers have said, though i've never been to Europe either. There were banners from the Neue Galerie in New York on the wall showcasing German Expressionist art. Sparse framed art on the wall and potted plants in the windows, with faded yellow coasters of obscure beers i've never seen or heard of. Maybe 10 tables in the place, there was a group of 15 or so holding court in one corner. The small bar sat 6-8, and the staff were playing records on a turntable on one end of the bar.

Spaten and Optimator were on tap, $4 for a .3L, .5L & 1L were also available. Bottle selection was affordable and varied, notable interesting choices included 1809 Berliner Weisse, Cuvee Réne, Aventinus, and others. Styles ran the gamut, 50 or so bottles covered all the bases. Trappist ales had their own section, they had everything but Westvleteren.

Tim was the bartender, and he chatted the whole time I was there about Milwaukee neighborhoods and the future of Cafe Brucke. Apparently ownership changed this year, and there may be changes in the future, but I hope they don't alter the atmosphere at all. Hand built shelves on the back bar hold an eclectic assortment of spirits with some interesting whiskies and spirits from local distillery Great Lakes.

Overall this is the sort of bar that's timeless, classy, relaxing, and effortlessly cool. Pretty much an ideal spot to unwind after a long day and get some quality locally sourced grub too.

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Photo of Beerfayce
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

I visit Cafe Brucke when I am interested in a comfortable, low-key experience. As the name suggests, it is modeled after a German Cafe (from what I understand in speaking with the owners, myself having never been to Europe...) so it is a small place with tasteful artwork scattered about. Located on the Eastside just off of busy Prospect ave, I would visit it often if I lived in the neighborhood.
Colorful interior with a mixture of chair and wooden booth seating inside and sidewalk seating when the weather permits. The menu is small but offers tasty salads, soups, sandwiches and desserts, made fresh. Additionally you can get cheese and pate plates, or even pretzels and mustard as an appetizer, all of which go well with the German beer on draft. They usually have two Spaten taps, the Optimator or Helles and occasionally a Bock or Octoberfest. There are also a number of bottles featured, including a "trappist flight to heaven" that gives you 6 small bottles of various belgian beers (Orvaal, Westy, etc.)
Service is friendly but as it is usually only the bartender and the server, expect to wait slightly if you visit on a busy evening. Prices are fair and the quality is good; the atmosphere is terrific and the owners, who are usually working, are very nice to talk to. Check this place out if you are in the area!

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Photo of BeerBelcher
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

I've never spent time in a corner Belgian cafe, but I did spend some time in corner walk-up cafes in Italy, and Cafe Brucke reminds me of those experiences. This is not a place to rush through, and unfortunately during my visit I was in a bit of a hurry. I really liked this bar not as a pure beer nirvana, but as a really nice place to hang out that happened to have some nice beers.

Decor is soft colors and wood. There is a big metal roadside historical sign behind the bar devoted to the subject of Wisconsin brewing history. I sat at the bar, and we were served by two women, one of whom was the owner, whom I would describe with the title "barrista" rather than bartender.

There were two taps; during my visit they were both Spaten (lager and maibock). Bottle slection was about 40 bottles. I had an 1809 Berlinerweiss, which was great and came in some nice Tripel Karmelet glassware.

Food was simple stuff, but I had a chicken sandwhich with sundried tomatoes and tampenade which was tasty and inexpensive, although I left a bit hungry.

I would highly recommend this place as a nice spot to relax.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

This was a fairly minimalist place, located right on the corner of Prospect and Windsor Streets. The door opened almost right onto the wood bar, just past a couple of tables to the left of the door. Off to the far right was a separate dining area, but I did not partake on my visit. The kitchen and the Mens’ washroom were both at a right oblique to the bar. You should definitely take note of the replica road marker above the back bar which commemorated “Wisconsin’s Brewing Industry”.

They only offered a couple of taps (Lakefront Belgian White and Spaten Lager) but they had thirty-six bottles with Miller Lite and Point Special as the only clinkers. They offered lots of German, English, and Belgian beers, plus Bell’s, New Glarus, Dogfish Head, Lakefront, and Anchor.

Their most unique offering was the Berliner Kindl Weisse “Stoplight Sampler”, which consisted of one bottle of Weisse poured into three separate glasses, with two of the glasses mit Schuss – woodruff (green) and raspberry (red) and one glass an unadulterated pour (gold/yellow). Properly aligned, the glasses looked like a stoplight. Ha!

Jerry the bartender was an amiable, knowledgeable fellow, but the place was just a little too slow for my taste.

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Photo of brewQ
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Just south of the bustling Eastside intersection of Prospect and North Avenues, this Euro Cafe is well worth a stop when in Milwaukee.

Owners Jerry and Christine know beer and food(Jerry is a rep for Spaten and previously for Paulaner/Hacker-Pschorr).

They have a slick design tap set, alebit just two lines. The unit has a cold water rinse that chills the glass and helps control foaming. Current brews were a Lakefront Witbier and, surprise, Spaten Lager.

The bottles, 40 plus, are where things get interesting: Among the offering are 3 Fullers' flavors, Jenalin Ambree, DFH ApriHop, St. B abt 12, Allagash Dubbel, Dink, Sprecher, Franziskaner, Berliner Kindl Weisse (with stoplight syrups) Trumer Pils, two Grimbergens and more Belgians. NO BUDMILLCOORS- just some Point for those who want macrolager styling.

For dessert, how about a Franziskaner Dunkel with lemoncello?

They use proper glassware and really know the beer (esp. Jerry). They offered books and copies of background information on the beers! True beer lovers and advocates here.

Food looked fantastic, even artistic, but we were here for the beer.
Smoking is allowed only at the sidewalk tables outside- a nice place in the summer.

Also check out the huge State Historic Marker above the back bar-
a nifty tribute to the history of Wisconsin brewing, on loan to the Cafe.

This place is unique for Milwaukee. Perhaps an indicator of good beer places to come. Prosit.

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Allium in Milwaukee, WI
Place rating: 4.18 out of 5 with 8 ratings