Breakfast Club

Gene Olson and Sherry Dorr enjoy a meal Thursday at The Breakfast Club in downtown La Crosse. Downtown Mainstreet is hosting a 10-day food festival beginning today, with classes, demos and dining specials.

Foodies will get their fill over the next 10 days, with flavor and finesse on the menu during Restaurant Week La Crosse.

Starting today and continuing through Sunday, April 29, Restaurant Week, formerly called Eat Week, will feature both classic and innovative food and drink from 26 downtown establishments, including Lovechild, King Street Kitchen, Grounded Specialty Coffee, El Rodeo and Kate’s on State. Offerings at select locations include multi-course meals with wine and beer pairings, chef demonstrations, cooking classes and tours.

A partnership between Downtown Mainstreet Inc., Between the Bluffs Beer, Wine and Cheese Festival and Explore La Crosse, the food-themed festival has been a community favorite for the past four years.

“I think the foodie movement, in the area and nationwide, really attracts locals and visitors alike,” said Joanna Conrath, marketing and events coordinator for Downtown Mainstreet Inc. “It’s a chance to showcase all our fantastic restaurants in the area ... the restaurants get to feature new things they don’t usually have on the menu and get feedback from customers, and it’s also a chance to draw in new people.”

Diners will be treated to menus ranging from delightfully kitschy — a “spammoth breakfast” from the Breakfast Club features a “slab” of the divisive pork product — to the trendy: made-to-order sushi at 4 Sisters Fourth St. Bar.

For upscale dining, the Charmant Hotel and Waterfront Restaurant and Tavern will offer elite “prix fix” menus, the latter featuring “Devils on Horseback,” a savory blend of medjool dates, gorgonzola cheese, smoked bacon, cashew butter powder and maple sriracha glaze.

Vegetarians won’t be left out, with Kate’s on State dishing out Tortellini Oliverto, a flavorful pasta with olives and vegetables, drizzled with basil pesto. Vegans will find options at Hackberry’s Bistro, from the black bean and beet burger to the “Secret Benedict Arnold,” comprised of portabella mushrooms and chickpea tofu and seasoned with pesto and red wine vinaigrette.

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Beer lovers can hop on a shuttle on April 27 for Taster’s Eve, with stops at assorted establishments for drink specials and craft brews. For an extra kick, stop by El Rodeo Mexican Restaurant all week for an exclusive tequila pairing menu. Wine aficionados can sip along with Steve Phelps from Break-Thru Beverage, Wednesday at Piggy’s Restaurant.

Restaurant Week will close with a “Bacon Bloody Brunch” on Sunday, April 29, at the Southside Oktoberfest Grounds, with the classic Bloody Mary updated with beer instead of vodka, and “Beermosas,” minus the champagne.

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General assignment reporter

Emily Pyrek covers health, human interest stories and anything involving dogs for the La Crosse Tribune. She is always interested in story ideas and can be contacted at emily.pyrek@lee.net.

(2) comments

Buggs Raplin

Cassandra2, go for it.


I wish your article on the restaurant week included info that allows us to choose an actual meal and make reservations. It's very vague and could be much more useful with that info.

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