Remember the Ground Round?
It’s back, after 11 years out of the Milwaukee market.
The Brookfield restaurant, which opened in May 2015, holds a lot of memories for people in the area, including owner Azeem Virani.
“I was born and raised in Racine, and I would go there all the time with my parents,” he said.
While the new Ground Round is “technically the same” as ones past, there’s one noticeable difference: No free peanuts or peanut shells on the floor.
“Now we offer free popcorn,” said Virani.
The reason? Peanuts are one of the most common food allergies around. “People wouldn’t even be able to come into the restaurant,” he said.
Virani said the restaurant still has many of the old favorites on the menu. “Burgers are still our specialty,” he said. “We have several different types.”
Besides the trademark Ground Rounder, there’s a Double Burger Buster with two Ground Rounders, American and Swiss cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles all topped with three onion rings.
There’s also a tortilla burger with cheddar pepper jack, jalapenos and tortilla strips.
With 80-plus options, there is much to choose from: soups, salads, sandwiches, fish, pasta, steak and Tex-Mex entrees.
“It’s typical American fare,” Virani said.
New is a fish fry, he said, and, because Virani owns the franchised restaurant, General Manager David Foppe said there’s more freedom to change the menu when needed.
“When we see a trend, we can attach ourselves to it,” said Foppe.
Virani said the restaurant is two in one — a sports-themed lounge and a family dining room. Plus there are three private dining rooms. Altogether, there’s seating for 210 people.
The lounge is well-attended during noon football games, but those in the family dining room who don’t care that much about the game “won’t hear a peep,” Virani said.
“But they might ask about the score — we are in Wisconsin,” said Foppe.
The restaurant draws largely from the Brookfield, Waukesha, West Allis and New Berlin areas, and from nearby hotels. Shoppers at Brookfield Square who want a break from the mall also frequent the Ground Round.
And then there are those who have sentimental attachments to the restaurant, like former employees.
“We’ve also had a lot of people who had their first date at the Ground Round,” said Foppe.
Ground Round - More information
ADDRESS: 1005 S. Moorland Road, Brookfield
RESERVATIONS: Not required
FARE: Wide variety of standard American fare and remembered for their classic burgers served with a variety of toppings, including cheese, bacon and cheese, onion “tanglers” (rings), and sautéed mushroom and Swiss cheese. Also serves a wide variety of specialty burgers, such as the Big Daddy Quesadilla Burger, burger served between two tortillas and stuffed with pepper jack, cheddar cheese, Pico de Gallo and chipotle mayonnaise. Salads, steaks, seafood, pasta, chicken, ribs, flatbreads, and soups and salads are also featured.
PRICE RANGE: You can get a crock of soup for $4.99, and mozzarella cheese sticks are $7.99. You can also get a smaller, 1/4-pound Ground Rounder burger for $7.99. At $19.99, steak and shrimp, grilled asparagus béarnaise on a 12-ounce center cut sirloin, and the full rack of BBQ baby back ribs are the most costly entrees on the menu.
HOURS: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily
HANDICAPPED ACCESSIBLE: Yes