Potawatomi Hotel & Casino in Milwaukee announced plans Wednesday to reopen its high-end Dream Dance Steakhouse on Jan. 18.
Dream Dance, which has been closed since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, will resume operations with the same upscale food and beverage program it's long been known for, including prime cuts sourced from the Allen Brothers of Chicago and more than 400 selections of wines from around the world.
The restaurant space itself boasts a relatively fresh look, having undergone a $1.3 million renovation in 2019, just months before the pandemic hit.
With the reopening of the restaurant, Potawatomi has brought on new leadership. Ben Jones has been named head chef of Dream Dance as part of his larger role as executive chef of the entire property, which includes sushi restaurant RuYi and Canal Street Cafe. Jones has more than 20 years of culinary experience, most recently as executive chef at the Sage Lodge in Pray, Montana. He also owned a wood-fire catering operation and was a guest chef at the renowned James Beard House in March 2016.
Font-of-house operations at Dream Dance will be led by Rohit Nambiar, who joins Potawatomi after spending the past 25 years in the Chicagoland area, most recently as director of operations at Prairie Grass Café and Wine Club in Northbrook. He has also received his certification as a Level 2 Sommelier from the Court of Master Sommeliers.
The current Dream Dance restaurant was opened as part of the casino’s expansion in 2008. The restaurant made its debut in a much smaller space off of the casino’s current bingo hall in 2000.
The restaurant's reopening comes in the midst of a $100 million renovationto the casino’s third floor, which it now calls its second level. The 120,000-square-foot project will create new gaming, food and entertainment experiences, including 1,800 slot machine stations, a new bar with 28 bar-top “slot seats” (a first for Potawatomi) and an array of 4K televisions. The project will also include the addition of Rock & Brews, a restaurant co-founded by Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley of the rock band KISS. The restaurant will be located just off the skywalk. It will also include a stage for live music performances.
The project originally was scheduled for a spring 2023 completion, but now Potawatomi anticipates opening in phases, with the entire floor up and running by fall, a casino spokesperson said.