Historic Bar Tour: Pre-Prohibition

Milwaukee Food Tours

Zerve Seller: MKEFoodTours
Activity #5623
  • Stroll the Third Ward to visit places like the Public Market, sample delicious foods, and learn about Milwaukee's unique culture.

  • Join us to tour Milwaukee’s best - from rich cultural history to delicious treats, you’ll be amazed by our city’s hidden treasures!

  • Experience a new twist on the progressive dinner concept while discovering the city’s German roots & new restaurants on the RiverWalk!

Available Dates & Times Price Duration
All times listed are Central time zone


Since 1847, Milwaukeeans have been quenching their thirst in Milwaukee's many historic bars. 

The Historic Bar Tour: Pre-Prohibition is a 3-hour bus tour into some of the most historic and famous bars in Milwaukee. Spending about 30 minutes at each location, you'll relax while learning some of our most interesting and colorful history through the tales of our taverns. 

We will visit four bars on this tour. You will enjoy four 6-ounce beers and one 6-ounce Old Fashioned. You will also receive a traditional German pretzel, discounts at some locations for return visits, a chance to win Milwaukee Food & City Tours trivia prizes, round-trip transportation and guided fun.

Only non-alcoholic substitutions will be offered for this tour. Please note that we also offer a discounted designated driver pricing.

  • All guests on our Historic Bar Tour must be 21 or older.
  • Although minimal walking is required, there is still walking involved. 
  • This tour is NOT handicap accessible and attendees will need to go up/down minimal stairs to get on/off the bus multiple times. 

What Is Not Included?

Please bring extra cash with you if you'd like to purchase additional items during the tour. Please note: some stops do not accept credit cards.
Gratuities for your tour guide, although not required, are always appreciated.

Meeting Location

Bay View / South Milwaukee (Milwaukee, WI) (Exact meeting location details will be provided immediately upon purchase of tickets.)
22 Reviews Rating: 4.9 4.9 out of 5.0
Verified Customer Reviews
Always from real, paying customers
# of Reviews Positive
= Overall
% Positive Average
Last 3 months 6 18 0 = 18 100% 5.0
Last 6 months 12 34 0 = 34 100% 4.9
Last 12 months 14 40 0 = 40 100% 4.9
All 22 60 0 = 60 100% 4.9
22 Reviews
Displaying 1 - 10
Sort by: Date Attended Gender Age Where From Group Type
Rating: 5
Learned something!
Sat, Mar 21  2:00 PM Unspecified 40-49 Local Group of Friends
You don't know which bars you are going to visit until you board the bus. I was a little disappointed that 3 out of the 4 bars we went to, we've been to before (we are locals). HOWEVER, we learned something new and interesting at each of those 3 bars. And we sampled drinks we've never had there before. So it almost felt like our "first time" again! Robert, our guide, made the tour lots of fun and had plenty of historical facts to share about the bars and the areas we were in. We felt well taken care of and had a fantastic time!
Milwaukee Food Tours responded:
We are glad you could join us on the Historic Bar tour and we appreciate your feedback. Many of our tour attendees are native to the Milwaukee area but we like to hear that we taught you something new about our great city. Your guide, Robert, is a great ambassador for Milwaukee and a fountain of knowledge. If you are interested in another "spirited" afternoon in Milwaukee, check out our Sunday Bloody Mary Brunch tour!
Rating: 5
Fun time!
Sat, Feb 21  2:00 PM Female 40-49 Local Family Without Children
We enjoyed visiting bars that have been around for ever! The characters in these establishments were even better!
Rating: 5
So much fun! Highly recommend
Sat, Feb 21  2:00 PM Female 30-39 Local Family Without Children
we had a blast on the historic pre-prohibition bar tour. Our tour guide was fun and super knowledgable. I can't wait to go on another tour!
Rating: 5
Had a blast!
Sat, Feb 14  2:00 PM Female 20-29 Local Group of Friends
We had a great time on this tour! We're from nearby, and it was so fun to explore places we had never been to, and to see a whole new side of Milwaukee. Robert, the tour guide, was absolutely wonderful and so informative. Whether you're visiting from out of town or live near Milwaukee, definitely check out these tours! We'll be coming back for another one for sure.
Rating: 5
Great tour and tour guide
Sat, Feb 14  2:00 PM Female 30-39 Domestic Tourist(s) Couple on a Date
These tours are great! Not only do they make them fun but they are very informative. We tried to stump our tour guide, but you can tell he was very passionate and knew his stuff.
Rating: 5
Great tour
Sat, Jan 24  2:00 PM Female 30-39 Local Group of Friends
We had a great time on this tour and went to four bars that we never heard of!
Rating: 5
Great way to see some of Milwaukee
Sat, Nov 22, 14  2:00 PM Male 30-39 Domestic Tourist(s) Group of Friends
Had a great time with a group of friends, was an excellent way to show them some bars that are very Wisconsin and have some interesting history behind them. Nice way to get off of the main bar areas of downtown and see some neighborhood bars that have stayed intact for a long time.
Rating: 5
Had a Great time on the Bar Tour
Sat, Nov 15, 14  2:00 PM Female 50-59 Local Group of Friends
Our tour guide was great - she told us the history of each tavern and she was very outgoing. The group we had was fun and enjoyed the tour much more then we expected. Great hearing the history of each tavern and of course the beers and brandy old fashioned helped to make it more fun. Would highly recommend the tour...
Rating: 4
Missing something
Sat, Nov 8, 14  2:00 PM Female 40-49 Domestic Tourist(s) Group of Friends
Hi. The tour guide was great but the tour was a bit frustrating. There was a large drunken group who talked the whole time the tour guide (she was so gracious!) gave her talk in the bus. My friend is deaf in one ear and couldn't hear her because of the other group's noise and had a headache by the end. Usually on these tours, the guide talks inside the building too so we expected that and were disappointed when she didn't. We'd hoped we could hear her then while the big group went and just drank. So, although her talk was interesting, much of what she said we couldn't hear.

She did try to nicely ask them to be quiet so we realize there wasn't much she could do with them but it would have been nice to have heard more history in the bars and not just have a long time to drink.
Rating: 5
The tour was great!!!
Sat, Nov 8, 14  2:00 PM Female 50-59 Local Group of Friends
We had a group of 11 who all really enjoyed the tour. Our Tour Guide was great and shared a lot of historic knowledge with us while in route. I think we might get the same group together to try out your Bloody Mary Tour next.
Displaying 1 - 10 of 22
Ratings and Reviews for:
Is advance purchase required? Is cash accepted?
Tickets must be purchased in advance, as space is limited per tour. To maximize your chances of getting the day and time you prefer, please book well in advance. Cash is not accepted.
What happens if it rains or snows?
The tours are held rain, shine or snow! In the extremely rare event that the tour has to be canceled, you will be able to reschedule to another time or get credit for a future event.
If a tour is sold out, is there a waiting list?
If a date/time is sold out or not listed as an available tour date, there is always a chance that if requested, we can add an additional tour on that date/time. Please click on the "Contact MKEFoodTours" link to let us know what date you are interested in.
What is the maximum number of people per tour?
As this is a bus tour with limited seating, the tour is limited to 22 attendees per tour.
What sort of food will I be sampling?
The tour provides an authentic German pretzel for guests to nibble on between visits to historic bars.
Are beverages provided?
You will enjoy 4 6-ounce beers and 1 6-ounce Old Fashioned. Only non-alcoholic substitutions will be provided. If you are purchasing a ticket that does not include alcohol tastings, the beverages included are lemonade, root beer and soda. Remember to bring cash with you if you want to purchase extra items.
Does this tour have anything to offer someone who will not be participating in the alcohol tastings?
Definitely! You'll enjoy learning about the history, architecture and entertainment destinations of the city, as well as be able to participate in trivia games. We offer a discounted rate if you will not be drinking alcohol.
What about dietary restrictions?
We will do our best to accommodate any dietary restrictions provided we are aware of them in advance. Please notify us of any dietary restrictions you have upon purchasing your tickets. If you have further questions, please click on the "Contact MKEFoodTours" link to inquire.
Do we just drive around and drink?
Absolutely not! Milwaukee has a wonderful, rich history. Visitors learn the history of the city and learn about the many ethnic influences that shaped our great city. The tour is fully narrated by your guide, who will discuss history, culture, architecture, and entertainment offerings, and introduce you to newer establishments.
What bars do we visit on the tour?
It's a surprise! We will visit a variety of historic bars, but do keep in mind that the tour routes and thereby the exact places we visit may vary from tour to tour.
How much walking is included?
Although our specialty tour is via bus, please note that some walking is still required - we encourage you to wear comfortable shoes and weather-appropriate clothing. These special holiday tours are NOT handicap accessible and will require attendees to go up/down stairs.
Can I bring children on the tour?
No, all participants on this tour must be 21 or over with a valid ID.
Does the tour end at the same place we meet?
Is the tour wheelchair and baby stroller accessible?
Are bathrooms available during the tour?
Yes, bathrooms are available during the tour at selected bars.
Is there parking near to the tour's meeting point?
Yes, there is parking located near the meeting point. Specific parking details are included in the meeting location directions after purchasing.
Does this tour have anything to offer a native Milwaukean?
Definitely! Many of our attendees live right here in Milwaukee. Locals often attend to learn about the neighborhoods and the city in which they live. Our knowledgeable guides will tell you exciting secrets about the city and perhaps introduce you to new favorites!
Are cameras allowed?
Yes, visitors are allowed and encouraged to take pictures at any of the establishments we visit.
Are pets allowed?
Due to the policies of the various food establishments we visit, pets are not allowed on this tour.
Are tours offered only in English?
Yes, we only offer tours in English at this time. Please click on the "Contact this Seller" link if you would like to make arrangements for your own interpreter to join the tour.
Does the tour leader accept gratuities?
Gratuities are greatly appreciated, although not mandatory.
Do you offer gift certificates?
Give the gift of exploring the sights and flavors of Milwaukee's most historic and delicious neighborhoods with a gift certificate for a Milwaukee Food Tour experience! These make perfect gifts for holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, or simply to say "Thank You" or "Welcome to Your New Home." The recipient selects their tour route of choice plus schedules the tour at a time convenient to their schedule. For complete details and to purchase a gift certificate, please email theresa@milwaukeefoodtours.com
Do you offer private tours?
Yes! Private tours and step-on guide service is available for large groups. Please click on the "Contact MKEFoodTours" link to inquire further.


Refund/Rescheduling Policy

Non-refundable, cannot be rescheduled.
Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded and cannot be rescheduled because your space is being guaranteed at the event.

Weather Policy

Activity takes place rain or shine.
The activity runs regardless of weather conditions. In the rare situation where the seller is forced to cancel the event, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule to another time (subject to availability).

Other Policies

All guests must be 21 or over with a valid ID.
Each attendee must be 21 or older and have proper government-issued ID.

Milwaukee Food Tours

My name is Theresa Nemetz, and I combined my love for Milwaukee and my husband's love for great food to create Milwaukee Food Tours. Inspired to do so by my great-grandparents, Guiseppi and Rosa, who 100 years ago immigrated to Milwaukee from Santa Flavia, Sicily. Milwaukee has a rich Italian, German, Irish and Polish immigrant history, its an honor to be able to share the stories of the exceptional immigrants that brought our city to life.

We are Milwaukee's original - and award winning - food tour. I am a Certified Tourism Ambassador (CTA), an alumna of Future Milwaukee 2009 and have served as a culinary speaker at a number of tourism-related conferences. We even recently won the 2010 Governor's Rising Star in Tourism Award! Credentials aside, at Milwaukee Food Tours, our passion is firmly rooted in food and in Milwaukee.
We are proud of two pieces of commentary often provided by our attendees: “I’ve lived here my entire life and never explored Milwaukee like I did today” and “I was expecting a tasting but this was a full meal!” Whether you are a Milwaukee native, visiting the city on your own or traveling as part of group, you will not be disappointed.  We consider our tours a progressive meal with a side of history.
Stories from Milwaukee's culinary scene are plentiful, and I invite you to immerse yourself into our culture in a fun and intimate way by experiencing a Milwaukee Food Tour. Come hungry, and be inspired!

Bon Appétit! 

Please call Zerve at
1 (800) 979-3370
to get more information or
book this activity now
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