Weekend in Wisconsin's Winter Wonderland
Mon, 02/23/09 11:48 AM
Friday February 20, 2009 The race was on! The place I really wanted to have dinner was Serb Hall. Unfortunately, they only serve their famous fish fry until 8:00PM. And my plane landed at 7:15PM. Knowing my history with Midwest Airlines running late, I was making contingency plans. But the Roadfood gods were on my side on this night, as my plane landed a few minutes early and my suitcase was the first to appear on the baggage carousel. No complications at the car rental counter and 15-20 minutes later, I spotted this welcome sight. I pulled into the parking lot at 7:49 and took off for the door. When I ran inside, I asked the man waiting at the podium, "Did I make it"? He seemed surprised and told me they are open until 9:00PM. I told him the website says 8:00PM (which I was wrong about) and he told me the buffet closes at 8:00PM, but the fish fry was until 9:00PM. So, you are saying I ran a car full of nuns off the road for no reason? He led me to the hostess station, where a young lady took me to my table, which was table #100. This place just may be the largest restaurant I have ever been seen. In his review, Michael Stern mentions that this is the largest fish fry on earth and I believe it. Later on, when my waitress Patricia, who is a real pro and took great care of me, found out I was not a local, she asked if I was in town for the RV convention. This place is so big, they could hold the convention here and not even disturb the diners. Not having attended many (if any) fish fries before, I was surprised by the many different types of fish available.
Left to my own devices, I would have most likely gone with the lake perch, since I have always enjoyed it in the past. But Patricia really recommended the walleye. I don't think I have had walleye before, so I went with that.
Meanwhile, there was an uninteresting looking basket of bread and a bowl of cole slaw, wrapped in cellophane, sitting on the table. The cole slaw was very crisp and had a strong vinegary taste.
My fish arrived and it looked great!
Three long fillets that had an audible crunch when you bit into them. The walleye meat was flaky and just melted in my mouth.
Delicious! Good garlic mashed potatoes, with a side of butter, came with my fish.
You may have noticed on the menu above, that Serbian sauce can be purchased for an additional dollar. Patricia explained that is was peppers, onions and tomatoes in a tomatoey sauce.
She said some use it for their fish, while other put it on top of their mashed potatoes. I ate the first fillet, by tearing the fish apart and dipping it in the sauce. What can I say, I am a dipper! The second fillet, I used the more conventional method and covered my fish with the sauce. #3, I just used the tartar. This fish is so good, there is no wrong way to eat it.
They had Dutch apple and lemon meringue pie available, but Patricia admitted that it wasn't homemade. I told her I would go to Kopp's for frozen custard instead. She said I should go to Leon's since it was so close. I sheepishly told her, I would probably go to both. She laughed, but I sensed that she didn't believe me.
Before I left, I walked around the building. This place is actually owned by the Serb church next door and is more of a social club than restaurant. They even have a bowling alley!
I was told to check out the Hall of Presidents, where they have paintings of all the presidents who have visited, but it looked like the room was in use and I didn't want to disturb them.
5101 W. Oklahoma Avenue
You can't possibly come to Milwaukee and not get frozen custard, so Leon's was the next stop. The only thing better than the custard itself is the great looking signage.
Truly some of the best neon signs in Roadfood. I looked over the short roster
and settled for two scoops of raspberry custard.
The young lady who waited on me was very snotty, but this custard was worth putting up with her. Firm, with a strong raspberry taste, what I wouldn't do to have a Leon's near me.
3131 S. 27th Street
Since it was still early and there was more frozen custard to be eaten, I stopped at the Kopp's location in Greenfield.
Considering it was after 9:00PM, the place was still very busy. I looked over the flavors of the day
and went for the strawberry.
The first thing that you notice is the custard at Kopp's is much softer. It started melting immediately, which made taking photos of it a real chore. I do prefer the firmness of Leon's better. But Kopp's gets bonus points for all the strawberries inside the custard.
On this night, I liked Leon's better. On previous visits, I preferred Kopp's.
I noticed several of the young men working the machines, with long lengths of custard coming out.
I don't know what their job is called, but I suggest custard wranglers!
7631 W. Layton Avenue
I checked into my hotel, the Sleep Inn by the airport.
Much more to come.....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Fri, 02/27/09 12:42 PM>