I've been lurking for awhile, but this is my first post.
I've always hated most wedding receptions because the food was usually so terrible (tasteless chicken cordon bleu or tough prime rib in an ugly hotel ballroom, blecch), but now I'm planning my OWN wedding, so I'm looking for suggestions from fellow food-lovers. I'm looking for a good reception site and/or a place to hold my rehearsal dinner. I need lots of help, mainly because I do not live in Milwaukee - I'm from Oklahoma! (We're having the wedding in Milwaukee because my fiancé lives there and we'll live there after the wedding.)
Details: My guest list is not going to be huge - probably 100 - 125 people at most. Half of them will be from out-of-town while half of them will be native Wisconsinites, so I want to dazzle both groups with wonderful food at my wedding.
I'm wanting to have a Saturday noontime brunch in October of 2002, so I've gotten a few suggestions like Hubbard Park Lodge (which looks fabulous) and the Hotel Metro (which seems much different than your usual hotel ballroom.) I'm leaning towards a place like the Hubbard Park Lodge, because the view will be fabulous for a daytime reception, but I'm willing to look at a lot of different places. Our budget is around $5000 for the reception (perhaps a little more, if needed).
The church where the ceremony will be is just south of the downtown area, so the downtown locations are great (just ten minutes away), but other suggestions are welcome.
As for the rehearsal dinner place, I want something reasonably priced and casual - nothing too fancy, but something classic and comfortable so we can relax before the next morning's events. I'll have maybe 50 people there. I've gotten a few suggestions, including the Historic Turner Restaurant. I need some more places to check out!
I would love any suggestions you can offer... or, if you'd like, you can shoot down the suggestions I already have. :) I'll be making a trip to Milwaukee in early August and I hope to get some arrangements made then.
Thanks so much -