We made a pretty last minute decision to hit the road this weekend and drive up to Milwaukee for Valentine’s Day. Even though we live in such a big city with lots to do, we tend to end up staying in or just around our neighborhood when it is so cold outside. So the winter ends up being the perfect time for us to drive to a nearby city to do some exploring.
We had one other excuse for taking a mini road trip because we had to use our gorgeous new bags from Weekend Bag Company (they sell them on Amazon!) The company is run by husband and wife team Jon and Melissa Briggs and came about after many weekends trips and the realization that duffel bags are not made to be both functional and chic, while staying in your budget!
Their bag, The New Standard, is designed to be both a garment and duffel bag. The bag is flat when it is all completely unzipped. This allows you to place shirts inside what becomes the bottom of the bag and it keeps them from getting wrinkled. After you’ve packed those items, you can fold and zip the bag so it becomes a duffel bag and pack the rest or your stuff. They’ve even included pockets for your shoes! The idea behind the bag is to pack smart and light, making it the perfect bag to grab on your weekend or overnight trips. We love how easy it is to pack and the sleek, chic design.
We packed up our bags on Sunday morning and made the quick drive from Chicago to Milwaukee. Since the weather was cold and snowy, we knew we wanted to limit ourselves to indoor activities. Up first was a tour of the Stone Creek Coffee Roasters factory. We learned about everything that goes in to having a delicious cup of coffee from where the beans are grown, to how they are washed and roasted. They had some coffee available for us to sip on while we walked around the different areas of the factory. Their coffee and pastries were so tasty and the perfect way to warm up on such a snowy day.
After we were well caffeinated it was time to enjoy another type of beverage at the Central Standard Craft Distillery. This tour included a craft cocktail as well as a cocktail glass, which made the $7 (per person) tour price totally worth it! We heard about the process they go through to make their vodka, gin, bourbon, oat whiskey, and chocolate vodka, while sampling each as well. Our tour guide was super entertaining and we enjoyed every last sip of our cocktails.
We needed a bite to eat for lunch so we went to the Milwaukee Public Market where there was a huge selection of food and crafty items to peruse. Once we saw they had a seafood restaurant we headed there and didn’t look back. The lobster roll and lobster bisque were so good!
After all the food and drinks we went to our hotel to relax and get dolled up for our Valentine’s Day dinner at Mason Street Grill. They offered a Prix Fixe meal, which we always think is so much fun, so we save it for special occasions. I had a cob salad the seared scallops while Dan and gumbo soup and the short ribs. We shared some macaroni and cheese, which was just a little too cheesy for my taste. After the meal they served a dessert trio with key lime sorbet, hazelnut creme brûlée, and an apricot chocolate cake. While delicious, it left us both completely stuffed and not in the mood to do anything else but lounge back at the hotel.
We started off our Monday at Brewed Cafe with a delicious cappuccino and chai tea. The cafe was so cute and they played the Smiths the whole time we were there. Basically if it were in Chicago I’d be tempted to go there every day. The weather warmed up some, so we walked along Brady Street, but unfortunately most shops hadn’t opened yet.
Our last main stop of the trip was to Lakefront Brewery for a tour. They give you 4 tokens, 1 to use on each 6 oz pour, which was just the right amount. Our two favorite beers were their New Grist Ginger and the Fuel Cafe Coffee Stout. The tour guide was great and made the tour not only informative but super entertaining. Afterward we shared some delicious Wisconsin cheese curds because you can’t go to Wisconsin and not have some form of cheese! Before we had to head home (to go to the Blackawks game where they won 7-2!!) we hit up some vintage and record shops in the Bay View neighborhood and each got a few items that we are super excited to wear soon!
Hope you all had a wonderful Valentines Day!