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Café Centraal to reopen as Centraal Grand Café & Tappery in February

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- In addition to undergoing extensive renovations, Café Centraal in Milwaukee’s Bay View neighborhood will be reopening in early February as Centraal Grand Café & Tappery. 

The new concept is an evolution of Café Centraal which adds an entirely new beverage experience with over 70 beverages on tap, including beer, wine, cocktails, craft soda, tea, coffee, and other non-alcoholic offerings. The restaurant will also reopen with an expanded kitchen, new food and beverage coolers, refinished flooring, a redesigned bar, and a dramatic visual update throughout the space. 

“It sounds trivial, but the design really unfolded from the idea that the front door for Centraal really should be on the corner of KK and Lincoln,” said Dan Herwig, director of brand and marketing at Lowlands Group. “For decades, the building was a neighborhood drugstore with one of those quintessential corner entrances. We started the project with that as a major focus, and it ended up driving many of the space decisions inside.”

Besides moving the entrance to a more prominent corner, the new design also divides the building into two more-defined spaces: the “Tappery” in the front of the building, with a larger focus on the extensive curations of beers and craft tap beverages, and a “Grand Café” space in the back of the restaurant that is more focused on brunch, lunch and dinner. In addition, the design also features an event space with an art gallery vibe, featuring prints from Amsterdam artist Eddy Varekamp, as well as an extensive courtyard for outdoor dining.

Inspired by the eclectic, international food culture surrounding Amsterdam’s Centraal Station, the menu will continue to feature diverse, global café fare, but will introduce a “snacks” menu to accompany the beverage offerings, as well as some large-format platters meant for sharing between diners. 

One of the biggest changes to the menu will be the addition of brunch on weekdays, meaning they will offer full-service, sit-down breakfast every day. The brunch menu will also be updated with a focus on fresh, local ingredients from Wisconsin sources. The new Tappery menu will also include many new breakfast-friendly beverages on tap, including iced teas and coffees, kombucha, bloody marys, and other non-alcoholic drinks.

Lowlands Group has not set a firm reopening date for Centraal yet, but is currently targeting the first week of February. More information about the project can be found at cafecentraal.com.

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