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For 10 days, you can dine well in Tosa

Sept. 9, 2011

Zesty enchiladas at Hector's Mexican Restaurant, juicy prime rib from Open Hearth or a salty giant pretzel washed down with a beer at Leff's Lucky Town. Hungry yet?

Feed those cravings and more by participating in 10 Days in Tosa, a dining event featuring Wauwatosa Chamber of Commerce member businesses.

Here's how it works: Buy a dining access card for $10. Then Sept. 12 through Sept. 21 head out to one of 21 restaurants and each time the cardholder will enjoy a promotion that offers a savings of at least $10.

"You could put together a real interesting 10 days," said Meg McKenna, chamber executive director.

From fine dining to casual meals and family entertainment, there are a variety of options, she added. The promotion varies with each establishment from $10 off any check over $40 at Blue's Egg and Maxie's Southern Comfort to buy one get one theater ticket free and a concession discount at Rosebud Cinema Drafthouse.

The following restaurants are participating: Blue's Egg, Cafe Hollander, Dave and Buster's, Firefly Bar and Grill, Hector's, Il Mito, Innovation Restaurant, Jimmy's Island Grill and Iguana Bar, Juniper 61, Le Rêve Patisserie & Café, Leff's Lucky Town, McCormick & Schmicks, Maggiano's Little Italy, Maxie's, Meritage Restaurant, Mo's Irish Pub, Open Hearth Restaurant, Pizzeria Piccola, Ristorante Bartolotta, Rosebud Cinema and Saz's State House.

"We are a dining destination," McKenna said. "We have a thriving restaurant culture. People should see it as a reflection on the health of our community."

The idea came out of a monthly restaurant and hospitality roundtable discussion that the chamber started last year, McKenna said.

For the businesses, this may get some new people in the doors. Jimmy's Island Grill, for instance, opened only weeks ago in the Radisson Hotel Milwaukee West.

At Maggiano's, a new restaurant choice called Marco's Meal for Two will be featured, said Banquet Manager Emily McCann. On appetizer or two side salads, pasta (one order for in-restaurant dining and a second to take home) and a dessert to share costs $40. But the price will be marked down to $30 for cardholders.

"It's a lot of food," McCann said. "If they like it, hopefully they'll come back to try it again in the future."

With 10 days and so many different type of restaurants and promotions, competition falls by the wayside and it becomes a celebration of area dining options. It should also be a boost to the local economy.

"I expect that people will be dining out more than they typically would in a 10-day period," McCann said.

Innovation Restaurant in the Crowne Plaza Hotel hopes people will stop by more than once during the event. One three-course menu will be offered for the first five days, then a change up will be made for the remainder of the promotion.

Funds raised will assist the chamber, which has experienced substantial growth since early 2010, McKenna said. With more members come need for more staff time and marketing and programming dollars.

Dining cards can be purchased online at 10daysinTosa.com, as well as at Crowne Plaza Hotel, 10499 Innovation Drive; the Radisson Hotel, 2303 N. Mayfair Road; or the M&I Bank branches at 92nd Street and North Avenue, 75th and North an 76th Street and Bluemound Road. McKenna will also operate a booth at Saturday's Tosa Farmer's Market and at TosaFest.

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