Normally (not always, but normally) when I hear that a Milwaukee area restaurant has closed I usually shrug my shoulders and say to myself, "Well, I am not surprised. The food was not very good or the service was terrible or they offered poor value, et cetera.
However, I was sincerely saddened to learn that Third Ward Caffe recently closed. That was one of my favorite restaurants in Milwaukee. It was definitely more upscale but never in anyway stuffy or pretentious. Service was always good and I think their food rivaled Ristorante Bartollota for some of the best Italian cuisine in the state. And now that I think about it, I have had several meals over the years at Third Ward Caffe that were better than meals at Bartollota's. Usually on cold winter nights. The atmosphere, service and food at Third Ward Caffe just warmed people right up.
In the old days (they opened 30 years ago) it was considered a bit expensive. But that was back when the Third Ward was just a bunch of dirty warehouses and stinky tanneries and not an enclave for trendy boutiques and condos for yuppies that it has now become. Times change, I guess and now it is about what's new! What's hot! Where are the cool and pretty people eating!
What a shame.