Picture it:  The Fourth of July, 2008.  A beautiful day, I decided to wear one of my favorite “kick-about” outfits, a strapless number I bought at Target in Florida last summer.  I did some yard work, and after the kids got picked up for their camping trip, threw on a sleeveless white button down top to wear out on errands.

My first stop was at Kwik Trip.  I got out of the car, pumped gas, went in, putzed around and browsed through their surprising selection of junk food, soda and candy, and then made my way to the Nectar of the Gods station.  (Coffee, of course.  Hawaiian Chocolate Macadamia Nut, to be exact.  Ahhhh…) As I pumped the lifeblood into my Karuba mug (CHEAP REFILLS!) I saw a clerk walk behind the station and I saw him glance at me.  I noticed his eyes lingered for a moment below my neckline, and he abruptly walked away. I looked down and WHOA, NELLY – my dress was below the bustline, and I do mean BELOW.

Fireworks went off in my  head as I tried to maintain calm, although I think I actually let out an exclamation.  I fixed the order of things, just in time to see the aforementioned clerk summon a female employee into the back room, where I heard an explosive burst of laughter.

Imagine the delight of the poor people who had to work this national holiday, as they undoubtedly gathered around the surveillance tape at shift change.

“And how many did stare?

Laugh bombs bursting in air…

Made me think of the night

that my top was still there…”

Tonight, my friends and I decided to check out Soho7, an upscale “ultra-lounge” type establishment in the Historic Third Ward of Milwaukee. 

What goes on in there...

We arrived relatively early (about 9:30) and were welcomed by well-dressed, neatly-pressed bouncers. We immediately admired the surroundings as we ordered our drinks. Particularly impressed by a floor-to-ceiling mirror, we debated exactly how large the truck was that delivered it, as well as how in the hell they got it into the place.  Large-scale, substantially framed prints of Audrey Hepburn and circular, gold-cast lighting contribute to the subdued environment.

Immediately, we were impressed by the music – an eclectic blend of “stuff we grew up with,” (okay – that’s late eighties and early nineties) as well as some older-school favorites and more modern hits.

As the night went on, the place filled up rapidly with a very interesting blend of people.  For the most part, the crowd was over thirty.  People were dressed in different attire, but for the most part a bit more dressed up than you’d typically see on Water Street. 

People were, on the whole, generally much more sober than the Water Street demographic as well.  It is true that when I went to the bar and tapped a fellow on the back, asking if I could please “get through to close out my tab,” he thought I called him “an ass.”  I quickly (and loudly and clearly) repeated my earlier statement, and was given a hearty hug.  I never caught his name, but think we are supposed to go on a date next week some time. 

The bartenders were friendly, fast and made every effort to keep things flowing at the bar. 

I give Soho7 bonus points for having an amazing W’s room as well.  Hair products, a long mirror and good lighting made it the perfect place for us ladies to run off and do “whatever it is we do in there.”  With that, I leave you with a little secret. (See photo.)

This is my first review of a local establishment.  I hereby award Soho7 FIVE stars out of five.