New late-night burger concept planned for historic Brady Street building

Building could also house bar and diner

A historic building on Brady Street is being renovated to house multiple food and beverage  concepts, including a new takeout-only burger eatery.

Hot Box Burger Shop is slated for a mid-August opening at 707 E. Brady St. The fast-casual, street food concept will include Mexican and European flavors, said co-owner James Roufus.

Roufus owns the business with his brother Anthony Roufus. The two grew up on the south side of Milwaukee, but have relatives that have lived for multiple generations on the city’s East Side near Brady Street. They drew on the varying cultures of both of those areas as inspiration for the concept’s menu.

“We are bringing the south side to East Side,” he said.

Hot Box Burger Shop will serve takeout-only burgers, fries, cheese curds, brats and custard among other fast food-style fare. Customers will place orders at a window on the exterior of the building and there won’t be interior dining space, but sidewalk seating will be available. The restaurant will eventually offer delivery via Grub Hub or Uber Eats, Roufus said.

He said he wants to bring more dining options to the west end of Brady Street, which is less lively than the strip’s eastern portion.

Hot Box Burger shop would cater to the area’s late-night crowd. The business has applied for an extended hours license to operate from 4 p.m. to midnight on weekdays and 4 p.m. to 3 a.m. on weekends.

Hot Box is one of three concepts planned at the building, which is owned by the brothers’ cousin, Salvatore Sivilotti. Roufus said the building is currently undergoing renovations, but there is also a diner and tavern in the works.

Maredithe Meyer covers restaurants, retail, tourism, and sports and entertainment. She joined BizTimes in 2015, previously as an intern reporter. She earned a degree in journalism from Marquette University in 2017. When she's not on the job, Maredithe coaches field hockey and loves exploring her favorite city on earth, Milwaukee.

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