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Permanently Closed - Rustico Pizzeria - A Zarletti Restaurant

151 reviews
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$30 and under
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Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem (168)
  • Great for Outdoor Dining (134)
  • Fit for Foodies (129)

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This restaurant is permanently closed.

Escape to Italy when visiting the Rustico Pizzeria. This authentic eatery specializes in Tuscan delights, with a stunning riverfront patio offering some of the best views in Milwaukee. Located on scenic Water Street, Rustico Pizzeria's patio has been one of the city's favorite spots for a hearty slice, as well as entrees, appetizers and a popular weekend brunch. The menu features a wide variety of dishes, including wood-fired pizzas, baked pastas, homemade meatballs, sandwiches and savory appetizers, such as fried olives and the best Arancini around.

Rustico Pizzeria has a full bar, offering craft cocktails, beer and wine to complement selections.

Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Italian, Pizzeria
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Hours of operation

Lunch & Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 11:00am - 10:00pm

Friday & Saturday: 11:00am - 12:00am

Sunday: Brunch from 11:00am-2:00pm 11:00am - 9:00pm
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Phone number
(414) 220-9933
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Brian C. Zarletti
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Cross street
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Parking details
Street parking is ample in the Third Ward and there are also several public parking lots and parking structures available.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Delivery, Entertainment, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 151 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.1  based on all time ratings
Noise · Moderate
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
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RyanL (Milwaukee)
5.0  Dined on June 18, 2016

First time here and the food was great. Had the Apple Gorgonzola pizza and cheese bread. Service was outstanding. Waitress even helped with directions and Milwaukee recommendations.

Shea (Milwaukee)
5.0  Dined on June 16, 2016

We gathered here with two other couples. We had not been together for years - maybe 25! We had a wonderful experience mid week in the early evening. I am so happy Rustico was suggested. We will be back.

OpenTable Diner (Milwaukee)
4.0  Dined on June 3, 2016

Great ambiance. Excellent food and service. Very near theater or a great place from which to stroll the riverwalk. People watching from the outside deck.

OpenTable Diner (Milwaukee)
3.0  Dined on May 28, 2016

The middle of our crispy pizza was unfortunately limp and soggy and the crust itself was flavorless. We asked for Parmesan cheese to sprinkle over the top of our pizza but never got it.

OpenTable Diner (Chicago)
5.0  Dined on May 20, 2016

The pizza menu is unique and fabulous. Unfortunately, are group only had room for four choices. We must return!

Codelicious (Milwaukee)
5.0  Dined on May 20, 2016

Still my favorite neighborhood pizza place. Hands down the best pizza in the Third Ward. Wish my diet could allow me to eat here every meal.

OpenTable Diner (Milwaukee)
5.0  Dined on April 25, 2016

Great experience at Rustico! We went for a friend's birthday and it was a great time. Gluten free food was great! I am a severe celiac and got both GF pasta and pizza and felt totally fine after it. I can usually tell with just the slightest bit of cross contamination.

Lizzybeeme (Milwaukee)
4.0  Dined on April 23, 2016

Third time coming here and the experience is great each time. Were enjoying trying different selections on the menu. Anna (pronounced Onna, like the snow princess) is always very down to earth, pleasant and provides great suggestions. The Arancini appetizer is delicious!

OpenTable Diner (Milwaukee)
4.0  Dined on April 22, 2016

Delicious! So sorry to hear it's closed. I took friends from the Phillipines, and they loved it.

Thunder (Milwaukee)
5.0  Dined on April 16, 2016

had some friends in from out of town and this spot hit the spot for all involved! Very yummy apps, and pizza, and entrees!

Cathy (Cincinnati)
3.0  Dined on March 12, 2016

Lively and great food! The pizza was great, risotto light and deliscious, and the wine was perfect!

OpenTable Diner (Milwaukee)
5.0  Dined on March 11, 2016

Every time I dine hear I enjoy my time. It is a great place to enjoy a meal with company. Nothing too fancy, but a great place for good food, good service and a good time.

vipJohnny3 (Chicago)
4.0  Dined on February 26, 2016

Good place for a wide selection of pizzas and beers. They also offer pastas and various daily specials. Very casual atmosphere.

OpenTable Diner (Milwaukee)
2.0  Dined on February 14, 2016

My fiancé and I visited Rustico for Valentine's Day on a recommendation from his friend. We were excited for a casual dinner in a low lighting restaurant where we could relax with a couple of drinks for a while. It should have tipped us off when every time slot was open for a reservation on Open Table. We arrived promptly at 7:30 and we immediately taken to our table which was pre-laid out with menus and specials which was very nice. Our waitress came to take our drink orders immediately and seemed bothered when we asked for a couple more minutes to look over the beer and wine list. When we did order our drinks, we also ordered an appetizer and pizza for our meal. The bruchetta came out in no time but was definitely nothing to write home about. It was by no means bad; just mediocre. For our entree we ordered a simple margarita pizza. It seems odd to me that a restaurant flaunting it's 'pizzeria' status should serve pizzas bigger than 20 inches in circumference. The pizza itself was good, crunchy thin crust and obviously homemade crushed tomato red sauce. My only disappointment was the lack of cheese. I understand that fresh mozzarella comes in circular slices but if 3 pieces of pizza have no cheese on them, something has gone very wrong.
As we finished our meal, we decided to stay for a drink or two more. Upon clearing our plates, our waitress asked if we would like desert. After hear us debate for a moment and then say no, she promptly told us she would bring our bill. It was obvious she did not want to be there or was trying to go home and rush us out the door. Which is too bad because the atmosphere at Rustico is very nice and warm.
Although I wouldn't return for the service or even the food, it was a nice, quick, quiet meal for Valentine's Day.

OpenTable Diner (Milwaukee)
3.0  Dined on February 14, 2016

We were here on Valentine's Day. The ravioli was very good, but the portion was small. The service was not very good, as the waitress was short and snippy, and very much rushed us out. From the time we sat to the time our bill was paid was only 25 minutes. At some places this would be good, but we were not looking for fast food, we were looking for a relaxing night out. The noise level was moderate and the feel of the place was warm, and more casual than I would've expected. Overall, it was a nice place but I likely would not return.