MKE World Palace | Restaurants


Patricia (Patty) Kiefer

Patricia Kiefer from Oconomowoc knows what it’s like to walk among the fragrant lemon trees, olive groves and vineyards of Italy. She dined in Michelin starred restaurants in small towns in Portugal. She can find prime spots to picnic in the French countryside and recommend wines from a century-old South African vineyard.

And when she returns from her travels, Kiefer happily frequents independent restaurants owned by the region that remind her of the extraordinary experiences she has had on her travels around the world.


Charcuterie board from Bavette la Boucherie

Hike through Provenence

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A trip to Baux-de-Provence in Provence, France

On a National Geographic tour of Provence, Kiefer and a group of friends hiked Avignon and made their way to Châteauneuf-du-Pape, where they raised glasses of Côtes du Rhône. Two guides provided salad, cheese and French wines for their daily picnics in the countryside. A highlight of the trip, she says, was exploring Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, where Vincent Van Gogh was inspired to paint his iconic “Starry Night”.

One of Kiefer’s most memorable dinners on this trip was served by the owner of La Ferme de Gerbaud, a herbal farm in Provence. When the tour group arrived, the farmer was harvesting herbs wearing “a yellow raincoat, a nice scarf and rubber boots,” Kiefer recalls. “She cooked us a lemon chicken with herbs from Provence, then we were able to buy herbs in her store after we had finished eating. She was just lovely.

Kiefer says Bavette la Boucherie in Milwaukee’s third quarter, with its mouth-watering range of artisanal meats, cheeses and wines, brings back fond memories of his adventures in France. Like La Ferme de Gerbaud, Bavette is both a delicatessen and a restaurant. Owner Karen Bell’s menu reflects both her love for Milwaukee and her experiences living and working in the United States and Caracas, Paris and Madrid, where she owned and operated a successful restaurant.


“Purpetiello” Alla Luciana (Mediterranean stewed stew with tomatoes, olives and capers) from Ristorante Bartolotta

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A central market in Florence, Italy

An Italian feast

Italy is a favorite destination for Kiefer, and not just for pasta. Her first taste for Italy dates back to 2011, when a hike took her to Genoa, Pisa and Florence and she fell head over heels in love with Italian wines.

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Enoteca Pitti Gola E. Cantina in Florence, Italy

“I’m pretty picky about wine, but in Italy, I’ve never met a wine that I didn’t like, even table chianti,” she insists.

Back home, Ristorante Bartolotta in the village of Wauwatosa is one of his top picks for authentic Italian cuisine, especially since Paul Bartolotta has added an outdoor patio, La Terrazza, to his seating options. It also added a back-to-back series of four-course dinners, each highlighting regional dishes from regions such as Tuscany, Sicily and Campania. The food, as well as the atmosphere under the stars, brings Kiefer back to memories of his vacation in Italy.

“I love these quaint little restaurants, and a lot of them have added alfresco dining,” she continues.

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A cooking class (“Cooking Class Il Falconiere”) in Cortona, Italy

Lago Su Bella on Lake La Belle is another Italian foodie destination that Kiefer recommends. “They have an excellent aubergine parmigiana and a nice selection of wines,” she notes.

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Sweet Basil, Franklin

Kiefer says Stone’s Throw Winery in Door County is a great source of Italian-inspired wines: “The owners, Russell and Lisa Turco, have a villa in Italy and are involved in the Italian scene, particularly in Florence. and in Tuscany, ”she says. The Turcoes import their grapes directly from California and use many of the same processes used by major Italian wineries, she adds.

Adventures in South Africa

In the wine region of South Africa, Kiefer enjoyed his stay at the historic Lanzerac Hotel in Stellenbosch, near Cape Town. “This wine estate was created in 1692,” she explains. “We had a great meal with wine pairings.”

The Manor Kitchen at Lanzerac offers bobotie, South Africa’s national dish. Bobotie is made with ground beef or lamb, seasoned with cinnamon and other spices, much like meatloaf. She says the Zesti restaurant in Hartland, which showcases dishes from around the world, sometimes offers “a good curry bobotie with fresh fruit on the side.”

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Enoteca Pitti Gola E. Cantina in Florence, Italy

The world on a plate

For a variety of international dishes, La Merenda at Walker’s Point offers small, global plates. You can try a taste of Italy, Spain or Argentina, for example, “and they have the wines to go with it,” she notes.

For flavors of Indonesia, discover sambal goreng udang, made with gulf shrimp, sambal chili paste, garlic, sesame, coconut milk and coconut mashed potatoes (a vegetarian option is also available). Curry lovers will swoon for the butter chicken, and vegetable lovers will not be able to resist the grilled parsnips with Moroccan spices.

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A fish specialty restaurant in Lisbon, Portugal

Although the pandemic has interfered with travel plans in 2020 and 2021, Kiefer plans to visit Russia, Paris and Provence next year. In the meantime, she will recall her travels to Wisconsin’s unique bistros, sidewalk cafes and vineyards. MKE


Grilled parsnips with Moroccan spices and pan-fried trout with a side of white rice from La Merenda.

Around the world in 80 bites

The ethnic diversity of Milwaukee has led to a wealth of authentic and tasty international dishes. Below are 80 additional recommended restaurants for adventurous palates to savor.

Do you have any favorites that you would like to suggest? We follow these hashtags on social media: # MKEin80bites, # MKE80bites, # Aroundtheworldin80bites, #worldlycuisine or the cuisine of your choice (for example #ethiopian, #africancuisine)


Island Jam, South Milwaukee

La Caribeña, Milwaukee

Pepper, Milwaukee

Sabor, Milwaukee

Uppa Yard, Milwaukee

Mexican, Cuban, Latin American, Puerto Rican

Cubanitas, Milwaukee and Oak Creek

Guadalajara, Milwaukee

Guanajuato, Milwaukee

Mara’s Grill, Milwaukee

Salvador, Milwaukee

La Borincana, Milwaukee

La Caribena, Milwaukee

Shalom, Milwaukee

Spanish traveler, Pewaukee

South American

Tricicolo Peru, Milwaukee

Chef Paz, West Allis

C-Viche, Milwaukee

Tavo’s, Milwaukee

Polish, German

A&J Polish Deli, Milwaukee

Polonez, Saint Francis

Kegel Inn, Milwaukee

Mader’s, Milwaukee

Irish, Scottish

County Clare, Milwaukee

McBob’s, Milwaukee

Mo’s Irish Pub, Wauwatosa

Thistle and Clover, Milwaukee


Balistreri’s, Milwaukee and Wauwatosa

Baribiere’s, Milwaukee and South Milwaukee

Carrabba’s, Brookfield and Greenfield

Onesto, Milwaukee

Pasta tree, Milwaukee

SALA, Milwaukee

Tavolino, Milwaukee

Tenuta’s, Milwaukee


Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro, Milwaukee

Le Rêve Patisserie & Café, Wauwatosa

Pastiche Bistro, Brown Deer

Mediterranean, Greek, Portuguese, Balkan, Serbian, Scandinavian

Amilinda, Milwaukee

Apollo Cafe, Milwaukee

Eldr + Rime, Wauwatosa

Mistral, Milwaukee

Oakland Gyros, Milwaukee

Old Town Serbian Gourmet House, Milwaukee

Cafe Ouzo, Milwaukee

Pita Palace, Milwaukee

African, South African, Ethiopian

Ethiopian village of Alem, Milwaukee

Blue Star Cafe, Milwaukee

Ethiopian Cottage Restaurant, Milwaukee

Immy’s African Kitchen, Milwaukee

Middle East: Arabic, Pakistani, Indian, Persian, Iranian, Turkish

Anmol, MilwaukeeCasablanca, Milwaukee

Damascus Gate, Milwaukee

Maharajah, Milwaukee

Ramallah, Milwaukee

Shah Jee’s, Milwaukee

Shahrazad, Milwaukee

Shawarma House, Milwaukee and Brookfield

Asian: Vietnamese, Hmong, Thai, Korean

EE-Sane Thai-Lao Cuisine, Milwaukee

Hue, Milwaukee and Wauwatosa

Cafe Mekong, Milwaukee

Momo Mee, Milwaukee

Strange duck, Milwaukee

Phan’s Garden Restaurant, Milwaukee

Pho Saigon, West Allis

Seoul Korean, Milwaukee

Stone Bowl Grill, Milwaukee

Thai cuisine, Milwaukee

Thai restaurant in Bangkok, Milwaukee

Vientiane noodle shop, Milwaukee

Chinese, Sichuan

Cheng Wong, Milwaukee

Golden Gate, Waukesha

Huan Xi, Milwaukee

Jing’s, Milwaukee

RuYi, Milwaukee

Sze Chuan, West Allis


Ginza, Milwaukee

Japanese Kawa, Milwaukee

Japanese Cuisine Koi, Milwaukee

Maki Yaki, Milwaukee

Red light ramen, Milwaukee


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