The Bridgewater restaurant to open Oct. 25 at R1VER development

See photos of new 11,000-square-foot riverfront eatery

The dining room at The Bridgewater.Credit: Benson's Restaurant Group

After 10 months of planning and preparation, The Bridgewater Modern Grill is just a few days away from its public grand opening in Milwaukee’s Harbor District.

The upscale-casual restaurant officially opens Tuesday, Oct. 25, at 2011 S. First St., as the newest addition to Brownsville-based Michels Corp.’s R1VER development. The Bridgewater is also latest concept coming out of Milwaukee-based Benson’s Restaurant Group, formerly known as Hospitality Democracy.

Situated along the Kinnickinnic River, its newly built 11,000-square-foot restaurant space seats 165 people inside and 80 people outside on its 245-foot-long riverfront patio and lounge area.

The seasonal, locally sourced menu was designed around the restaurant’s custom oak-fed Jade grill, featuring dishes such as the Veal Tenderloin with smoked wild mushrooms, sherry reduction; Pulled Duck Tostada with duck barbacoa, ancho chili, avocado puree, yellow pico, cotija, radish and lime; and the Ancient Grain Salad with miso sweet potato puree, charred onion, snap peas, wild mushroom, avocado and cilantro pumpkin pesto. In addition, its beverage program features custom cocktails, a robust wine list and local, craft beers.

“We’ve created an experience unlike any other in the area, and are excited to debut it to our friends, neighbors and community,” said David Marcus, chief executive officer of Benson’s Restaurant Group. “The Bridgewater is ideal for special occasions and everyday celebrations alike …”

The Bridgewater will donate 10% of all proceeds on Oct. 25 to the Bay View Community Center food pantry and 10% of all proceeds on Oct. 26 to the United Performing Arts Fund

“We’re excited to welcome The Bridgewater Modern Grill to our backyard, and we are so pleased to be partnering with the restaurant on this Give-Back Night during a time of increased need for our organization and Food Pantry,” Chad VanDierendonck, food pantry director at Bay View Community Center.

Also during opening week, The Bridgewater will transform its riverfront patio into a fall fest atmosphere, with a professionally carved pumpkin wall, lawn games, live music and more.  Each reservation during opening week will include a complimentary Bridgewater lap blanket, perfect for the fall season, while supplies last, according to a news release.

Beginning Oct. 25, The Bridgewater will serve lunch and dinner, with operating hours from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. 

Maredithe has covered retail, restaurants, entertainment and tourism since 2018. Her duties as associate editor include copy editing, page proofing and managing work flow. Meyer earned a degree in journalism from Marquette University and still enjoys attending men’s basketball games to cheer on the Golden Eagles. Also in her free time, Meyer coaches high school field hockey and loves trying out new restaurants in Milwaukee.

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