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Dining at the H-D Museum

Motor and Café Racer offer a taste of Americana

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Jul. 09, 2008
Visitors to the Harley-Davidson Museum will have a couple of options for grabbing a bite between exhibits.

The kitchens of the Motor restaurant and the Café Racer will be firing like a pair of V-Twin cylinders when the museum opens its doors July 12 in downtown Milwaukee, Wis. The two restaurants offer dishes designed to invoke memories of the open roads of America.

“Designing a menu that embraces the Harley-Davidson legacy is one of the most fun and gratifying challenges I could take on,” says Robin Rosenberg, master chef of both Motor and Café Racer. “There’s a rich heritage in Harley-Davidson. To have a chance to bring that culture to life through food is one of the greatest things I’ve ever been a part of.”

The menu of the 150-seat Motor features regional signature dishes from across America such as Georgia-inspired peach cobbler, Little Rock-style BBQ ribs and Kansas City strip steak. The Motor Company’s hometown is also well-represented with Milwaukee bratwurst, Wisconsin cheddar, Lake Michigan walleye and locally-brewed beer.Motor is located along the Menomonee River at the southeast corner of the museum grounds.

Motor also offers fare tinged with Harley-Davidson hallmarks such as flatbreads representing tire skidmarks and a triple-portion Reuben-on-potato pancake dish named after the familiar sound of a V-Twin engine: “Potato Potato Potato”.

Living up to its name, the Motor’s seating area is divided into sections with design elements and artwork made from actual Harley-Davidson engine parts.

Communal tables and horseshoe-shaped bars are designed to encourage interaction between diners while 100 outdoor seats offer views of the museum grounds and the nearby Menomonee River.

For a quick refueling stop, the Café Racer offers lighter fare for grab-and-go eating. The menu includes items such as breakfast burritos, Bobber Brat, Kick-n-the-Pants Buffalo chicken sandwiches, the hand-held Clutch pie and the classic peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a layer of potato chips between the PB and the J.

Those choosing to eat in at the Café Racer can take in the racing-inspired décor featuring Harley-Davidson and Buell racing pictures and a racing stripe color palette.

“After a ride, bikers often gather to share stories of the day’s journey – the Harley-Davidson experience is made of those moments of connection,” says museum director Stacey Schiesl. “From the menu selection to the space design, Motor and Café Racer offer bold flavors of the open road in a space that fosters the camaraderie Harley-Davidson is known for.”

Motor is open for lunch and dinner while Café Racer provides breakfast, lunch and light dinner. Diners do not need a museum ticket to eat at either restaurant.

“Motor and Café Racer will certainly ‘wow’ visitors to our museum,” Schiesl. “And they’re sure to be local favorites for people who like good American food with a bold spin that will keep them coming back again and again.”

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Harley-Davidson Museum Grand Opening