Revitalized Tanner Paull serves up a taste of something new - and old

New owners revamp West Allis icon

Jan. 10, 2012

West Allis - As Frank Sinatra's voice floats over the prime rib dinners and fish fries at the new-but-old Tanner Paull Restaurant, diners could swear they're in the good old 1950s.

And that's just the idea, said John Werner and James Adams, new owners of the West Allis icon establishment. They are saluting the venerable restaurant's beginnings in 1957 by recreating them and adding a few new things.

The Tanner Paull Restaurant, 6922 W. Orchard St., is part of American Legion Post 120 and is open to the public every day but Monday.

Despite its long history in the community, the restaurant actually was closed for several months last year while new owners were sought to buy and reinvent the restaurant.

Werner, who also owns Dylon's Steakhouse on Pewaukee Lake, and Adams, whose has a lifelong love of cooking and is now doing some of it at Tanner Paull, felt up to the challenge. Adams, whose background also includes 30 years in real estate, is making use of some of his recipes.

Tanner Paull just seemed to call to them, the new owners said.

"Everybody knows the place," Adams said, who views the business as a landmark. "Everyone we talked to said this building is part of their growing up."

Werner added, "Tanner Paull is like saying Coca-Cola - it speaks for itself."

So, with lots of elbow grease, the partners scrubbed the place clean and then gave it a fresh look.

But they also kept its traditions alive by bringing back the popular Friday night fish fries.

To that, they added an all-you-can-eat entrée for each night of the week.

The partners tried to keep prices affordable with sandwiches averaging $6.95 and dinners $10.95. But you can but a rib eye steak for $18.95 or prime rib on Saturday nights for $18.99.

Also new is live music. Every Thursday night now brings popular singer Red Deacon while others take over on Friday and Saturday nights offering music for all ages.

The 250-seat banquet hall has been busy from the start, said Werner, who expects things to only get better as word gets out that Tanner Paull is back in town.

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