Pipin’ Hot Pizza
Anyone new to Organ Piper Pizza in Brookfield, Wisconsin (Western Milwaukee Suburb) will notice two things right away…a full house and a smile on every face. It’s fun to watch them take it all in. The lights, the games, the crowd. And, then, the giant Wurlitzer pipe organ on the far side of the room. And by giant, I mean all-encompassing in a non-invasive way. The main organ chambers are located behind glass windows–to the left, right and above the organist platform. But then (and this is the hands-down best part) it extends out into the main dining room in the form of chimes, cymbals, gongs, whistles, and even a flock of mallard ducks (yes, ducks).
Drop a request for a patriotic song in the fish bowl, and one of four award-winning organists may just flip the switch that lowers a pool-sized American flag from the ceiling practically down onto the floor. The room blinks like Las Vegas at night!
Kids instinctively flock to the game room and take turns riding the mini indoor carouse wheel. One minute you are in the suburbs, and the next you step into a place where your troubles temporarily fade away. Some of the best-tasting pizza in the greater Milwaukee area certainly helps!
Organ Piper Pizza is the kind of place you go to as a kid—for birthday parties or to celebrate a good report card. Perhaps with your grandparents on a winter night in February, just because summer seems so far away. It’s still cool to show college friends, and by then you practically exist on bread and cheese anyway (And, did I mention the pitchers of beer?). Let ten years pass and you’ll be back with the kids.
I, more or less, accidentally discovered Organ Piper Pizza on a college-hunting trip many years ago. We were hungry, it was there…sometimes the Universe just interferes. To any out-of-towner, the building is rather non-descript from outside. My guess is the reputation and quality of the food offer more referrals than the sign by the road. Over thirty years old, the building seems out-of-place among neighboring strip malls and movie theaters. Still, it remains unchanged, a relic in the neighborhood.
Plan to print out a map or use your GPS system to find the location. It’s only a few minutes from two major highways passing through the city. If you want to avoid a wait, show up early or plan for a trip on Sunday or a week night. The website lists hours, the menu, and other special events. Games for the kids cost a quarter, and you may want to raid the coin jar on your way out the house. Pizza is pre-ordered and picked up near the bar and the kids can help watch for your “number” to light up on the bingo board.