Food & Drink

The Godfathers

The first time I ever went into the Pfister was when my godfathers (I have two) spontaneously invited me for a hamburger in the café. I didn’t know regular people from the local population could do that sort of thing, and I was nervous to be dining at an…

29 Jun 10:54 PM 0 Read More...

For You, For You, I Skitter-Skatter In The Dark

At my desk I get a good view of the lobby flowers that get changed regularly. Two weeks ago they were a purple irises. Back in the day there used to be a whole courtship code that was communicated by flower arrangements. If a suitor gave me a bouquet of…

26 Jun 11:52 PM 0 Read More...

Without Getting Even Slightly Frazzled

Dr. Hollander likes to talk and play at the same time. This afternoon he invites me to pull up a chair and keep him company.   He hasn’t any sheet music with him but there’s no song he can’t play on the lobby piano. Aware of this, I…

12 Jun 11:09 PM 0 Read More...

They Seem Very Busy

The woman does not want to be identified.

The woman can make you an iced coffee.

The woman frequently makes me an earl grey

with a side of questions concerning Harry Potter.

 

She first read Harry Potter as a high school student

back in her homeland, the third major…

05 Jun 11:20 AM 0 Read More...

25 Pedestrians of Milwaukee on a Friday at 4:30p.m.

On the twenty-third floor I go to the windows to learn about the pedestrians of Milwaukee.

A man is just off work from a job where they blast air conditioning, see his long sleeves? This man is free now but carries the burden of his day and his backpack…

31 May 2:20 PM 2 Read More...

"The Painting" By Joe

Mr. Joe Charney, Pfister lobby lounge frequent visitor, has already been written about by the two hotel narrators before me. And much of what he told me was also accurately described in those blog posts. But not everything! Here you will see why Mr. Charney needs a third story, my…

30 May 1:23 PM 1 Read More...

Hey Historians Of The Future, READ THIS!!!

I am at my typewriter when a woman comes up to me with a request for a love letter. The reason for her love letter being ordered: the two of them are apart while her partner goes on an extended trip to Boston, Winnipeg and Lake Forest to pursue the…

24 May 5:11 PM 0 Read More...

Under the Pfister Sky

In the lounge I spy a woman with two screens: a glowing tablet in her lap and a texting device in her hand.  I decide I must approach this woman of information. All at the same time she is reading, texting someone and telling me, “I’m not actually all…

15 May 11:05 AM 0 Read More...

Math Guy

What the heck am I doing at the 23rd floor bar as a solo woman in her 20’s with no intention to drink anything stronger than tonic water?  It’s 10 p.m., all lights are mostly out, the voices are quiet, ice clinks.  I am sober as a…

10 May 10:16 AM 1 Read More...

Strangers become friends over food, paint and travel stories

Last week, artist-in-residence Stephanie Barenz, executive chef Brian Frakes and I hosted an evening of painting, eating and travel story telling. Nine people attended the event, called “Gathering Of The Senses,” which took place in Stephanie’s studio.

Each participant submitted a photo from a recent vacation to…

30 Jan 12:21 PM 4 Read More...

Would you put this in your coffee?

In my eight months as the Pfister Narrator, I’ve learned a lot about traveling, hotels, art, people and, just last night, trends in coffee.

I sat down next to Ron and Jonathan in the Lobby Bar and noticed they were both enjoying tall, black coffees. We started chatting and…

22 Jan 2:41 PM 0 Read More...

Discussing dentistry: from the art of whitening to biting down on that goop

For the second year in a row, the Pfister hosted employees of Henry Schein, a worldwide distributor of medical, dental and veterinary supplies. Although the company is based in New York, the dental headquarters are in West Allis, which is what brings the workers to Wisconsin.

Last night at the…

15 Jan 2:21 PM 0 Read More...

From facelifts to world peace: What Pfister guests want for the holidays

A couple of nights ago, I went to the Pfister’s Lobby Bar and Blu and randomly asked visitors and guests what they wanted for the holidays.

“You know, if I were Santa or Oprah and the sky was the limit,” I said.

I was surprised, amused and touched by…

15 Dec 5:11 PM 1 Read More...

His shocking story sparks inspiration

Ranachith “Ronnie” Yimsut is a genocide survivor, an orphan and a refugee. He is also a brother, husband, father, architect, author, teacher and social justice activist.

But more than anything, Ronnie is an inspiration.

I met Ronnie in the Cafe at the Pfister and I don’t think I have…

30 Sep 1:52 PM 1 Read More...

Partyin' with the boss

Imagine seeing your coworkers only once a year. Such is the case for Sue, Nancy and Missy, who work in the banking industry from their homes in three different states.

Once a year they meet in Milwaukee, at the Pfister’s Lobby Lounge, to connect in person. Nancy lives in…

10 Jul 1:08 AM 0 Read More...

Minnesotans, motorcycles and the Mall of America

A few years ago, I went to the Mall of America in Minnesota for the first time. I was surprised to see a kiosk featuring shirts that read “friends don’t let friends drive to Wisconsin” and merchandise embossed with other playful-but-rivalrous messages.

I turned to my partner…

20 Jun 5:32 PM 0 Read More...

The dancer, the drag queen and the mystery woman

Recently, I had my first mohawk spotting at the Pfister Lobby Bar, and so, naturally, I had to chat with the man rocking the spiky hairdo.

“So how long have you had a mohawk?” I ask him.

“For forever,” he says. “I just got it redone yesterday. I’m a…

18 Jun 1:25 PM 0 Read More...

A birthday celebration sparks good conversation with a banker

During my first month as the Pfister Narrator, I have already spent a lot of time hanging out at the Lobby Bar, Cafe and Blu, talking to guests and hearing what brought them to the hotel.

Recently, for the first time, I went to Mason Street Grill. It was my…

28 May 12:40 PM 0 Read More...

The Pfister Five: Meet international model Raengel Solis

Welcome to a new series on the blog called “The Pfister Five.” Occasionally, I’ll post a five-question interview with a guest. To kick this off, here’s a chat with Raengel Solis, an international model who stayed at the Pfister recently. 

Raengel was born and raised in the…

11 May 1:11 PM 0 Read More...

Talking New York City, identical twins and happy hours with the McDonoughs

It was clear Mary and Tim McDonough were having Date Night at the Lobby Bar. Snuggled closely on the couch in front of the fire, Mary cradled a glass of Shiraz and Tim held a Sambuca with three coffee beans. Engrossed in quiet conversation, they paused only to laugh.

Of…

08 May 12:10 PM 0 Read More...

The three-hour Milwaukeean

After I overheard – OK, totally nosily dipped into – Mario Guerra’s cell phone conversation when he was sitting next to me at the Lobby Bar, I gleaned he had recently moved to Milwaukee.

“So how long have you lived in Milwaukee?” I asked Guerra, who was wearing a nice suit…

06 May 9:55 AM 0 Read More...

Pfister Files: A Tradition of Fine Dining

Over the next few months, I will be dusting off pages from the Pfister’s history books and sharing bits of the Pfister’s prolific history. This is the third post in this series.

The Pfister Hotel was and still is a mecca of fine dining.  The holy grail? A…

25 Apr 8:45 PM 0 Read More...

A Master and His Admirer

Dr. Jeffery Hollander has had a prolific career in addition to his 30-year tenure as the Pfister Hotel’s Musician-in-Residence. “He is so talented, I love the way he interprets the music. No one else plays like he can.” Natalia will be the first to tell you…

21 Apr 11:59 PM 0 Read More...

5 O'clock Coffee Talk

It’s happy hour! What are we doing drinking coffee? It’s the kind of Friday night that calls for a martini – straight up.

I take my usual seat at the Lobby Lounge bar, looking around at the flurry of activity as hotel guests arrive for the weekend and the…

09 Apr 4:34 PM 0 Read More...

Carla and Tommy

“I made a song!” she declared with a Christmas-morning smile. Dan invited her over to the piano in the lobby to play a few notes. “He knows that Jeff always plays ‘Summertime’ for me, because that’s the song my mother used to sing to me when I was…

03 Apr 10:34 PM 0 Read More...
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