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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Stubby's Pub Improves Its Grub

Craft beer list continues to draw customers

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It's always nice to see restaurants improve over time, as is the case with Stubby's Pub & Grub. The restaurant, which opened in 2010, is a pleasant place with a large bar and a deck that overlooks the Milwaukee River. Right from the start, Stubby's attracted customers with its fine beer list. Currently there are 53 craft beers on tap, plus an additional selection of reserve bottles. The food used to be a bit uneven, but by the end of last year the menu saw some serious upgrades. The positive change coincides with the arrival of Brad Clark, former chef for the glowingly reviewed Bunkers in West Allis.

While the current menu boasts many changes, the better elements of the old menu remain. The Stubby's burger ($12.95) is a big offering, with beef topped by bacon, barbecue pulled pork, cheddar, haystack onion strings, lettuce and tomato. Stubby wings ($11.95) remain fine bar fare, with plump chicken wings and a choice of sauce: barbecue, buffalo or honey habanero. The beef and chorizo chili ($3.95-$5.95) is still hearty and bold in flavor.

But the new items are worth a venture as well. The bacon fries ($5.95), which arrive in a paper cone, are fine fries seasoned with herbs and dusted with crumbled bacon. Sides of house-made ketchup and mustard aioli accompany this starter. Other tempting starters include a charcuterie plate ($10.95) and Crispin cider and brie baked scallops ($11.95). The latter's sauce of herbs and Parmesan makes it a distinct departure from the chicken wings.

Classic entrees include items like beef tenderloin fillet, grilled chicken breast and pan-roasted salmon. An edgier option is pork belly and seared scallops ($18.95). The pork belly, from Yuppie Hill Farm, is more meat than fat, which is unusual for this cut. It is served over fingerling potatoes and pan-roasted green beans.

If you want a fine example of chef Clark's skills, stop in for dinner on a Saturday evening. This is when a three-course meal is served—each course paired with a specially selected beer. At $30, it is a decent deal.

Stubby's also is very much a bar, with a pool table and many TV sets. You can tell the crowd is having fun. The menu changes are good ones—Stubby's has definitely upped the ante on its grub.

Stubby's Pub & Grub

2060 N. Humboldt Ave.

(414) 763-6324

$$

Credit Cards: All Major

Handicap Accessible

Stubbyspubandgrub.com

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