I like dives. I don’t know why or when my love affair with dimly lit bars/restaurants started, but there is something about walls lined with wood paneling and decorated with awkward yet tasteful art that gets me every time. So naturally, when my friends took me to The Palomino for their “Hangover Brunch” I was elated. While exploring Milwaukee, I have found that a lot of restaurants and bars are “related.” The Palomino fits nicely into Milwaukee’s gastronomic family tree, and has the same blood type as Comet, Fuel, the Hi-Hat and The Garage.
When we drove up to the place, I noted the outside to be very unimpressive, but I like that. The inside has wood paneling (YES), a bunch of booths and old 50’s style laminate tables. Oh, and don’t let me forget about the western theme; cowboys and horses seem to be everywhere you look.
The menu is pretty standard, except they really cater towards vegetarians/vegans and even have a separate vegan fryer. I got the Brunch Burger and my friend ordered Biscuits and Gravy; we both had Tater Tots on the side. We also (of course) got a couple bloody Marys. Now the BMs were OK and strong, but they didn’t have enough spice, so I just asked our waitress for a jar of Tabasco and fixed that little problem. I did, however enjoy the pickled brussel sprout swimming in the tomatoey goodness. I thought the food took a while considering there weren’t many other folks in the restaurant, but we were in no hurry and didn’t mind the wait. My burger was pretty good; it came topped with a fried egg, bacon and gooey cheese; I asked for an addition of fried onions, which I think should be served on any food whenever possible. The Tots were really crispy and totally made me feel like Napoleon Dynamite. I was nervous about getting Tots because I think the last time I had the perfect potato pillows was in high school, and they were not good; soggy and bland. I was glad I ventured out of my comfort zone because the tots were the best part of the meal.
While this wasn’t the best brunch or service I have ever had, I enjoyed it and would definitely go back for dinner and a drink. I also hear they give away free Jell-O shots every time the packers score, and that is worth another appearance at The Palomino in and of itself.
2491 S Superior St.
Milwaukee, WI 53207
Prices: 5-10 bucks
Serving: Sat/Sun Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Drinks and Cowboys