While the Brewers, and every other team in the MLB, struggle with injuries and try to get their lineups in order for today’s season opener, Ryan Braun‘s sights are set higher than any pop fly heading for his glove.
He has a new baby. No, he didn’t knock up one of the (alleged) several local girls he’s been reported to “swing his bat at.” He doesn’t have a new car (maybe he does, I don’t really know), parakeet, puppy or human (at least not yet… I’m still working on that one). He has reopened his restaurant. I use “he” loosely, since Milwaukee’s SURG Restaurant Group pulls the strings on this marionet, having purchased the formerly known as Waterfront Grill in January.
Opening officially April 4, Milwaukee’s home opener, Graffito (which is basically “graffiti” in Italian) had a little preview party, thrown together by M Magazine. I went there the other night with the BBFF as her plus one to the invite only bash. It’s still in the same building as Waterfront (and in case there was any confusion, all the Waterfront’s discarded furniture can conveniently be seen through the windows of the adjacent windowed storage space. Classy).
We walked into a bit of a ballywho, but were swiftly directed to the name tag table by all three of the minidress clad, high heeled hostesses. With identification secured, we grabbed some free wine, snagged an hors d’oeuvre or two (you seriously have to hunt servers down sometimes. I know, I used to be one), concocted our own Aveda scent (which Katie promptly spilled down her shirt. Spooge style. Yikes). The highlight of my night was at the end, when a local sports anchor and a radio man sauntered over to snag a free subscription (ah, connections), and I shamelessly plugged my journalism degree/sports interest.
Did you know that I know that Braun has only played for the Brewers, started as a third baseman his first year before heading out to left field his second, was 2007 National League Rookie of the Year, has been a Silver Slugger and All Star every year since, has started all but three games he’s ever played, has an overall .307 batting average and used to live above the Bayshore Mall? Might any of those knowledge eggs I just laid in your brain hatch and convince you to give me your card and, in the near future, a job? (Okay, so I didn’t drop any stats for this guy, but he did give me his card. Thank God for eyeliner, jeggings and braless tops…)
I did some research, checking into all the hooplah for this new place. Let me share that with you first… It’s got the same buildup as the Waterfront did. Graffito is going to be great, the food is going to be delicious and innovative and unique, the atmosphere and ambiance and decor will be edgy and inviting and reflect the creativity put into the new menu by the new chef… It’s like hearing parents talk up their kids – they love them, and support them, and really want to believe what they’re saying about them (in reality, little Tommy would be better off shining the bats than swinging them, but let the kid live his life).
Katie told me that they were still cleaning pipes and construction off the floor the day of the party. Apparently throwing the old furniture next door wasn’t some sort of innovative, artsy inspired move to display the segway from old to new (a stretch, but I’m still in art museum mode). The food was meh (there are ingredients other than tomatoes, and they don’t have to be drowning in sugar for people to eat them). The decor was as good as it used to be (considering the layout was exactly the same and if it hadn’t been for the tagging on the one wall, I might not have noticed I wasn’t in Waterfront). The new tables in the cocktail area were cool (and “raw” according to reviews), though their function at this point is unknown (drinks only? food consumption? mounting?). The staff was friendly and attentive, let’s hope they can handle more than a cocktail party (the service at Waterfront was shit).
I would love if Braun’s new restaurant is successful. I love the Brewers, I think Braun does great things for the team, I think they’re going to have a helluva season (first game, case in point). And while I rarely think it’s a good idea to take a baseball bat to the head of a horse that was killed months ago by incompetent employees and mediocre food, I’ll check it out, after a game in my Brewers gear or in a dress with my dude. Giddy up.