Last updated on February 17th, 2023 at 02:42 pm
Milwaukee-based Lowlands Group is expanding its local footprint into Greenfield, with plans to add two new restaurants and a bier garden to the 84South mixed-use development later this year.
The operator of Milwaukee eateries Cafe Benelux and Cafe Hollander announced Wednesday that it will open a brand new concept, dubbed The Feisty Loon, as part of its plans for 84South. That’s in addition to what will be its sixth Cafe Hollander location and an outdoor green area with a bier garden and community gathering space.
Construction is expected to begin this spring. The restaurants are expected to open in late 2023 or early 2024, with the green space opening by summer 2024, and together would employ more than 150 people, expanding Lowlands Group’s footprint to nearly 900 employees at 11 locations.
The project will be situated on the southeast corner of the 50-acre property, at the intersection of West Layton Avenue and South 84th Street. That area, formerly home to a Steinhafels furniture store before it was razed in 2018, is known as The Lokal.
Original plans for the multi-season development envisioned a communal gathering and event space housing multiple restaurants and craft breweries surrounded by greenery and outdoor seating. Since opening in 2020, the project hasn’t amounted to much – aside from pop-up bier gardens that operated on the empty lot during the COVID-19 pandemic and summer months – but Lowlands’ plans to put down permanent roots would change that.
“During our initial planning for 84South, we identified Lowlands Group as a best-in-class operator and our first choice for the coveted corner site that we reserved for something incredibly special for the community,” said Scott Yauck, president and CEO of Cobalt Partners, the developer of 84South, which includes retail space, restaurants, apartments and an Aurora Health Care ambulatory surgery and health center. “We are thrilled to break ground on these vibrant concepts that will create a ‘destination within a destination’ at 84South.”
The new Café Hollander at The Lokal will take over an 8,800-square-foot, single-story space, with interior and exterior seating for 300 people.
The Feisty Loon will debut as what Lowlands describes as a “playful junior” of its Wauwatosa supper club concept Buckatabon. The 9,300-square-foot restaurant space will have a mid-century modern feel and seat about 300 people, indoors and outdoors. It will serve a collection of Wisconsin favorites, including brunch, fish fry, prime rib, burgers, cocktails and beer.
Situated in between the two restaurants, the outdoor space between will feature its own bar and outdoor dining experience, serving brick-oven pizza, ice cream and craft cocktails, beer and slushies. Lowlands plans use the space to host community events, sports viewing parties, live music and outdoor yard games.
“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to develop our most ambitious project so far in Greenfield,” said Eric Wagner, CEO of Lowlands. “We spent months getting to know the community, and we really hope to deliver an amenity that will serve as a gathering place for the entire area. This great corner is going to be highly activated, and our guests will be able to bounce between the restaurants and the outdoor space and make an entire evening or a whole day out of it.”