Hipster Hideouts Chapter 2: The Palm Tavern


Across the street from Lee’s is another great drinking establishment, The Palm Tavern. The Palm is related to The Sugar Maple, and the bars share some similar characteristics. Firstly, they both promote breathing and lung health; smoking is not allowed. They also both offer an extensive selection of beer; The Palm has 25 world brews on tap, as well as over 200 bottled beers to choose from. The two joints also have the same style of antique cash register that add to the ambiance of the bars.

One of the best things, I think, about The Palm is what it doesn’t have. There’s no flashy sign out front marking the entrance. So, if you’re trying out The Palm for the first time, look for the place that doesn’t look like a bar, cause that IS the bar. They also don’t have much to distract you from the ever so important task of drinking; there are no pool tables, dart boards, a jukebox etc. Words of wisdom: when making a trek to The Palm, bring some good company. If the conversation quickly takes a dive south, you’ll have nothing to do to try and revive the situation but order another drink , which I guess isn’t such a bad thing after all. I’m sure a few of you started cringing when I noted that there was no jukebox at The Palm. It’s ok to be shocked, I was too when I first found out. But have no fear my dears, owner Bruno Johnson plays some really good soul/jazz tunes from the 1930’s-70’s that seem to somehow make the beer go down smoother. Johnson has owned the legendary Chicago jazz label Okka Disk for over nine years and plays the kinds of tunes he likes, hoping his costumers will like them too.

The bar itself is small and cozy, occupying the first floor of an old house. The lighting is dim and the colors, dark and rich. While anyone would feel comfortable grabbing a drink at the palm, I’ve mostly seen the seats at the bar filled by younger (20-30) trendsetters or those still sharply dressed in the day’s business attire. I will be honest, the drinks here are pricey, which makes The Palm an ideal place for an after dinner cocktail, or a nightcap before you hit the hay.

The Palm Tavern

2989 S Kinnickinnic Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53207-2518

(414) 744-0393

Price: 5-25 bucks

Serving: Drinks, Jazz and Dark Corners

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