Magical Beans and Barley

Matt Schoeffler, happy at Beans

Matt Schoeffler, happy at Beans

WMSE’s Underwriting Director, Matt Schoeffler, joined the staff just a week after last year’s Food Slam.  Since then, he has eaten “many, many” chicken burritos at Beans and Barley. When I asked him what he liked about them so much, the man-of-few words spoke an enthusiastic “everything.” Prodded a bit more, his face lit up as he told of the perfectly-melted-every-time cheese and the addition of olives, so often missing in most burritos. Though tempted to order his stand-by, Matt decided on one of the evening’s specials, a spinach and feta lasagna, with which he was very pleased. I took a cue from Matt and had the roast tomato and smoked provolone sandwich with spinach and pesto mayo. I ate the whole thing. I could not stop. Every bite begged to be followed by another. The melted cheese wilted the spinach perfectly, and the roasted tomatoes added a delightful sweetness. Its gooey goodness made it feel like one of the more indulgent things on the menu considering Beans and Barley is known as the go-to place for healthy, vegan and vegetarian options. Still, I felt I had done something good for myself when I was done. I always do at Beans. A nice amble through the adjoining store helps digestion. Even on a full stomach, it’s hard not to ooh-and-ahh over the desserts, baked goods, salads, deli items and cheeses in the store’s cases. I usually find a unique gift for a friend (or myself) and take advantage of their fantastic magazine and card offerings. The food, the service and the space are a breath of fresh air; everything feels so healthy and kind. Inside Beans, it’s easy to feel you don’t have a care in the world. No wonder it has been a Milwaukee staple for more than 30 years.

Smoked provolone and roast tomato sammich...mmmm

Smoked provolone and roast tomato sammich…mmmm

Matt’s musical pairing: Temper Temper – “Trust Me”

Matt says, “Eating at Beans & Barley always reminds me of driving up to Milwaukee during my college years to go to shows at such wonderful venues as The Globe East, Mad Planet, Onopa Brewing etc. No matter what, I always took the time to stop at Beans & Barley to eat before a show. The food was, and still is, top notch. This is one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite bands of Milwaukee’s past, Temper Temper. Their guitar player, Jim Neumeyer, is now co-owner of Beans and Barley. Things come full circle. Even though so many great Milwaukee bands have come and gone over the years, it’s great knowing that Beans is still here.”

by Food Slam blogger Steph Kilen

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