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“Old Roots is now Wolfe Peach”
Review of Wolf Peach

Wolf Peach
Ranked #40 of 1,535 Restaurants in Milwaukee
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $7 - $32
Cuisines: European
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Breakfast, Reservations
Description: Fueled by passion and a 6,000-pound wood-fired oven, Executive Chef Cole Ersel pairs beautiful ingredients from local farms, purveyors and artisans to create food to feed the soul. To foster a casual, communal experience, our "Como Viene" service style delivers food "as it comes" - fresh, bright and ready to share. The Milwaukee skyline is a beautiful backdrop from our Brewer's Hill perch.
Reviewed January 9, 2013

We loved Roots and were surprised when it closed but soon reopened (in November 2012, so many of the reviews below are for Roots, not Wolfe Peach, though much applies). We decided to try it out within the first six weeks. The chef of Roots stayed and the atmosphere and great setting remain the same but the menu and other elements have changed. The upstairs and downstairs which had different menus, with the upstairs one being more upscale, are now the same. The now have a wood-fired oven and the emphasis is on sharing smaller plates which they serve "como viene," fresh when the dish is ready. The same fresh local food, including that which is grown on their own farm and in the gardens surrounding the stairs up the hillside and around the patio in the summer. The waitress explained all of this to us and said that they were working out all of the bugs of a new restaurant and they were very open to any feedback we might have.

I called on a late Saturday afternoon to see if we could get reservations and none were available until 9 pm. However, the hostess said that bar seats weren't reserved and they left two tables open for walk-ins so we could take our chances. I'm glad we did! We went early, around 5:45, and were offered the opportunity to sit at what they called a shared table where walk-ins could share a rectangular table which seated about 8. We were the first there so my husband and I took a head seat and corner seat which felt very intimate. After we ordered, a group of 4 joined our table seated toward the other end but one of their group sat next to me. They faced toward one end of the table and we, toward the other. We ocassionally commented on one another's food so the set-up felt completely intimate for us but friendly toward the other group. Actually, more comfortable than seating for two with a row of 2-tops against a bench with a chair on the outside where you feel like you are sharing a table with the couples on each side but you are separate and it feels a little invasive to talk across the foot that separates the tables. At the Wolfe Peach table, you agree to sit at a shared table but you aren't expected to order together or talk with one another but permission to greet each other is expected. The 2nd table they make available is an even longer shared table so, if you don't mind or even enjoy such a set up, it seems that there is a good chance walk-ins can be accommodated, especially if you count bar seating. And tables for just your group or couple can be reserved. Enough about seating.

We loved the food! We ordered a kale salad, a grilled octopus small dish and a trout larger plate which was set on a lentil puree. They had a list of items which I believe they called "conservas" which seemed to be very interesting purees served with crostini. They brought by mistake the kale infusion which they left for us when we mentioned that we had ordered the kale salad instead. They were very apologetic and brought the kale salad promptly. But we had the opportunity to taste each. They were very different from one another but equally delicious! The trout was excellent though a little too salty for us. We may be more salt-sensitive since we have a low-salt diet but the waitress was appreciative of our feedback and said that she would tell the chef.

We will definitely go back as a couple and will bring others at times for the broader sharing experience, which we wouldn't have been as inclined to do at Roots. It still has the great views and warm, trendy but not pretentious atmosphere and wonderful outside seating in the summer.

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1  Thank Eleanor H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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217 - 221 of 313 reviews

Reviewed January 8, 2013

The Roots Cellar had long been our go-to spot for brunch until they closed in late 2012. We were crushed!

Luckily, Roots has re-opened as Wolf Peach—and we were not disappointed with our first try last night.

We ate upstairs and enjoyed the cozy, soft-lit dining area. Since we had mostly eaten in the Cellar in the past, it was a refreshing new experience to eat upstairs—I like the lighting much better and the view of downtown is nicer also.

The service was quite good-- our server explained a whole load of cheese, charcuterie and mussels specials for the evening, and was happy to check with the kitchen when I had a question on some ingredients. As explained by the server and on the menu and website, the service is “as it comes”—so instead of dishes coming in a set order, they're sent from the kitchen in whatever order they are ready. This creates a fun, tapas-style experience which we really enjoyed. The wait for our first dish was quite short, so we were enjoying our first bites within minutes of ordering.

We wanted to try several different dishes, so we opted for some of the smaller plates so we could order a few and share everything. We had the crispy kale salad, Brussels sprouts, the “Mussel Monday” special (all-you-can eat mussels, several varieties available—we had celery and bay leaf), pork belly, and the lamb sausage pizza. This was more than enough food for two hungry people. While I am glad we had so many options to try, I would probably choose one or two fewer plates next time. Most of the portions could have been enough for three people to share, and since the mussels were “bottomless” we could have ordered more, but just chose one serving (1 pound) since we had so many other dishes to try already.

Some highlights: the kale salad was by far my favorite. The kale leaves paired with the cashews really did create a “crispy” experience, and the lime dressing was a very nice, subtle touch—it was not overly citrusy. The grapes and verjus were great additions to the Brussels sprouts, which were just the right texture (soft, but not mushy; a bit charred, which I like, and definitely not dry thanks to the verjus). The mussels were better than what I’ve had at other restaurants lately—they were firm, but not rubbery and overcooked, and had an excellent flavor from the broth. I certainly would have taken advantage of the “bottomless mussels” deal if we were a larger party and/or if we had ordered fewer other dishes. I was already enjoying these dishes so much that I only had a few bites of the pizza and pork belly. While I didn’t have more than just a taste of the pizza, I wouldn’t say that anything really stood out to me about it—though I’m sure the goat cheese was a great addition. The pork belly had a great flavor and practically melts in your mouth, but again I didn’t eat much of it. I am not a big eater of fatty meat, so the style of this one isn’t my usual preference, but it would certainly live up to expectations of pork belly lovers.

Overall, we had a great first dining experience at Wolf Peach. The service was friendly and very attentive and we really enjoyed the “as it comes” style that allowed us to share many different dishes. We’ll definitely be back. Who knows? Maybe we’ll even become Mussel Monday regulars.

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Thank Meghan M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2013

We went with a group of 9. We made reservations and had a table upstairs looking out over Milwaukee. Make reservations, or you will be downstairs...great ambience down there, but a little crowded for my liking and warm. Glad we had reservations. Food was very good. We tried and shared numerous pizzas, appetizers and main entrees. Food portions are not huge so if you have big hungry people, you may not want to share. Had a wonderful waiter from South Africa who was extremely knowledgeable. Once we placed our order, food came fast. Very organized kitchen!

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Thank Jo R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2013

We went to check out the new venture. We had absolutely lived Roots, so we were curious to try Wolf Peach. We dined Tapa style, ordering items 2 or 3 at a time. We loved the entrees! We also tried one of their pizzas, and enjoyed that as well. The main floor was remodeled, moving the bar. The lower level seemed to the same layout. It was very loud, but looking around, everyone was just enjoying themselves. We found their pricing to be reasonable.

Thank Susan D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 15, 2012

Sometimes service make a great restaurant even better. Our waitress tonight was both fun and attentive. Tonight we dined at Wolf Peach, formerly Roots. It was fabulous. The males in the party ordered the bone marrow appetizer. I gagged as they slurped up the gelatinous material on to bread. They LOVED it! The waitress even brought additional bread for them, and the she also brought bread for the non-meat eaters. The brussel sprouts were charred and delicious with grapes and grape juice. Two of the party had ribeye with Bearnaise sauce and they loved it. I ordered the truffle potato and kale. It was very flavorful, but a bit greasy. The waitress brought extra bread and that made the dish perfect. We ordered 2 bottles of Siva-Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon. We will definitely be back.

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Thank Librariandonna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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