In 1993, Carson Praefke opened The Tasting Room– formerly The Landing – and it was the first local bar to specialize in micro-brews and imports. It was also a popular venue for live music.
In 2007, Praefke opted not to renew his liquor license after a couple of years of not opening the bar and keeping "closed for the season" on his marquee.
In the past few years, the East Side corner has really come alive again with the construction of condos and Bel Air Cantina (Redroom has been an anchor business on that corner for years). But the Tasting Room, 1100 E. Kane St., remains silent, even though it seems like the ideal spot for another bar or eatery.
Out of curiosity, I contacted Praefke, who also works as a beer vendor at Miller Park during baseball season, and asked him what his plans are for this building.
"I still own the building and I think about reopening all the time, but it is still a hard question to answer," he says.
"Lately I've been concentrating on fixing up the apartment upstairs so that it can be rented and I've been staying there quite a bit while I work on it. I don't want to go back to working at the bar full-time, like I used to. If I could find a partner that would be interested in doing something similar that might work. If I don't come up with a good idea soon then I will probably lease it out."
Sounds like a good opportunity for the right person. Anyone, anyone?
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