Bartolotta takes on food and beverage at Edgewater Hotel

Restaurant group has signed two-year agreement with Madison property

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Milwaukee-based Bartolotta Restaurant Group has signed a two-year consulting agreement with the Edgewater Hotel in Madison to manage and improve the hotel’s food and beverage department.

Owners of the Edgewater approached the Bartolotta group and the agreement has been in place for four months, Joe Bartolotta, co-owner of the Bartolotta restaurants confirmed.

“I rotate my people in and out of the property to advise and help manage their food and beverage department,” Bartolotta said. “They have a gorgeous building, but it doesn’t have the elements of hospitality that they are looking for.”

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Bartolotta said his team are implementing the “Bartolotta Way,” into the property and the Edgewater is planning on launching several new concepts in April.

“We’re not in hiding, but I’m just a consultant I would rather they control the message,” he said.

Numerous calls to Edgewater management and ownership were not returned.

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The Edgewater Hotel, 1001 Wisconsin Place, opened in 1948 in downtown Madison. The 202-room, 356,220-square-foot hotel underwent a $100 million renovation, expansion and design overhaul and was reopened in August 2014.

The hotel has four restaurants – a steakhouse, a seafood restaurant, a casual dining restaurant and a café and a large catering department that Bartolotta is also overseeing.

Madison Alderman Michael Verveer, who represents the downtown area, said in the months following the reopening, he heard several complaints about the hotel.

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“It got off to a rocky start, but they have seemed to have righted the ship,” Verveer said. “I’ve not heard the number of complaints that I had in recent months. Whether that is because of the help of a Milwaukee company, I can’t say, but they’ve seemingly gotten their act together in a major way.”

Bartolotta Restaurants operates 11 restaurants in the Milwaukee area, from fine-dining establishments such as Lake Park Bistro to casual restaurants like Pizzeria Piccola. The company will open three restaurants in The Mayfair Collection in Wauwatosa next year, and operates Osgood’s at The Mayfair Collection

Bartolotta also runs the Downtown Kitchen in Milwaukee’s U.S. Bank Center and announced in November it would take over management of food service at the Kohl’s Corp. headquarters campus in Menomonee Falls.

When asked if he is interested in moving into the Madison market, Joe Bartolotta said, “Not right now.”

“I have three restaurants plus Kohl’s going, so I’m pretty busy,” Bartolotta said.

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