THIENSVILLE - The Cheel uses flames to make Nepalese, Burmese and Tibetan food while Milwaukee Blacksmith uses flames to forge metal into unique pieces of art.
The local blacksmithing shop, which was recently featured in a show on The History Channel, created a flame-inspired obelisk for The Cheel, a Nepalese restaurant in Thiensville, which was unveiled March 8.
Jesse Daily and his wife, Barkha Limbu Daily, owners of The Cheel, 105 S. Main St,, got in contact with the Knapp family, who own Milwaukee Blacksmith, 518 E Erie St.
Saying the work seen on the Milwaukee Blacksmith show was "kind of cool," the Dailys contracted for a forged obelisk of their logo combined with a small flame sculpture they have inside their restaurant. Barkha Limbu Daily said she was excited to see their logo created in three dimensions.
"We wanted to resonate The Cheel logo with the dynamic of the sculpture," Jesse Daily said.
Milwaukee Blacksmith owner Kent Knapp said this was the first project to come out of the shop that he didn't touch. His daughter, Zoey Rae, the shop foreman, was in control and made the templates.
Zoey Rae Knapp said the project did have its challenges — such as some pieces coming out warped at first. Overall, she said the project took just less than two weeks to make with the help of her brothers, Miles, Birdie and Ozzie.
Village of Thiensville President Van Mobley said he was excited to see what had been created.
"Anything Jesse and Barkha do is a great addition to the village," Mobley said.
Jesse Daily said he and his wife already try and highlight local artists throughout the restaurant and this is an element that will be highlighted outside. He said the new four-sided obelisk lights up red at the base and will replace flaming torches outside, which cost about $17 per day to run.
Future of Milwaukee Blacksmith
Kent Knapp said he and the family were signed on for one season on The History Channel. He is working on preproduction for a similar project locally.
"Dad is a teacher," Zoey Rae Knapp said.
Additionally, the shop where Milwaukee Blacksmith has been housed for about five years and where the show was filmed has been sold for development, Kent Knapp said. He said while it is sad, they ran out of space about halfway through the show with some projects requiring more height.
The family is looking for a new location in the area, saying "you can't take Milwaukee Blacksmith out of Milwaukee." According to Kent Knapp, there are a handful of possibilities in a few areas, including Walker's Point and Bay View to name a few. He said since there was a lot of industry in the Milwaukee area at one time there are a lot of viable options.
Kent Knapp said they are running a fundraiser through Kickstarter called "Moving Milwaukee Blacksmith" until March 17 to help with the cost to move all their heavy equipment. They're looking to raise $25,000 with more than $20,000 raised thus far.
Knapp jokingly added that also he's looking for anyone interested to bring "their pick-up and their muscles" on moving day.