Thursday, October 6, 2011

El Beso - A Tribute to Friends and Birthday's

Ah, September.  The month of 8 million births! Admit it... you know at least 15 people born in the month of September.

I am very happy to share the same birthday with my good friend, Valerie.  To celebrate another year of life and friendship, we had dinner and margarita's at a new restaurant in Milwaukee. 

El Beso, in Greenfield, is a new Mexican restaurant in the Milwaukee area.  This place wins "A Hint of Thyme Award" for the best renovation of a building.  El Beso took over the abandoned Champps Americana and has transformed it into a Mexican hacienda and bar.  Unlike some other building-takeovers that have failed to reinvent the venue, these owners have completely redesigned the building to be unrecognizable as the former Champps restaurant.  It's incredible.

There are hand painted murals on almost every wall.  Every intricate detail of a Mexican paradise is creatively woven into the floor, ceiling, desert bar, and band.  I was in awe of the beautiful paintings and, I must admit, feeling a bit ADD as I looked around to take it all in.

The only negative comment about El Beso is that the high ceilings do create some extra noise.  It's very hard to hear all the people at your table without yelling.  If the band is near your section it's even more difficult to hear.  Word of advice... do not use this venue for an important meeting or talk.  However, lunch time might be different and not as crowded.

El Beso's menu is much like any other Mexican restaurant in the area.  It has the average selection with a few exciting options.  They have a great bar menu and the Bahama Mama's were fantastic!  I elected to try the Sopes for an entree.  Unfortunately, I had filled up with the free chips and salsa prior to the entree. 

I have read a few reviews about the restaurant will say that the food isn't very "authentic".  Honestly, I don't feel it necessary to whine about it's "lack of authenticity".  We very much enjoyed the food and it won't get much more authentic this far north of the Mexico border.

Valerie and I were subjected to 2 birthday songs.  The band, Trio Expucta de Oro, first sang a Spanish song that was unknown to us.  Then they sang happy birthday in Spanish - which was a real treat.  The band was fantastic and their harmonies were perfect.  The other servers came by after dinner with 2 pieces of chocolate cake and sombrero's for me and Val.  They all sang "Happy Birthday Cha-Cha-Cha".  It was probably the first time in my life that I didn't mind someone singing happy birthday to me because it was so fun!  

September birthday's indeed, the servers were busy singing "Happy Birthday" about every 3 minutes to a different person.  It was definitely a night of celebrations.

El Beso was a great place to celebrate our birthday's together.  Great pick, Val!

Valerie and I with chocolate cake and sombrero's

Sopes at El Beso

Copyright 2011 Hint of Thyme.  All rights reserved.

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