What’s the first thing you think of when you think of Wisconsin?
Us too. As self proclaimed cheese-lovers, a state known for its cheese curds sounds quite heavenly. We couldn’t wait to explore! There’s no denying that Madison, Wisconsin is home to some of the most delicious cheesy dishes in the US. Places like The Statehouse, The Old Fashioned, Fromagination, and The Tipsy Cow have the most mouth-watering cheese curds we’ve ever tried. But what really caught our attention is how varied and impressive the foodie scene in Madison is in general! Because after awhile, even cheese fanatics like us tend to say “Cut the cheese!” (get it?), and desire a change of flavor. Here are a few of our Must-Try spots the next time you’re in Madison!
Anyone else love summer camp as much as we did? The games, the bonfires, the quirky counselors and the Capri Suns… Can we go back?! Well, probably not. But you can go to Camp Trippalindee, where those stories and memories can be relived! Grab a seat at their outdoor bonfire, wrap yourself in a blanket, make s’mores and sing camp songs (optional). Or sit at the bar inside, chat with the friendly bartenders and dine on juicy burgers and hearty sweet potato fries. Wash it all down with a Boozy Capri (an adult version of a Capri Sun) and play a round (or three) of Jenga! Those nostalgic summer camp feelings coming back yet? We thought so.
We love a brunch spot with a good view. Located across the street from the Capitol Building, with floor to ceiling windows, Graze has just that! Pair the view with tantalizing brunch options like the sticky bun, chilaquiles, or the loaded breakfast sandwich, and you’ve got the recipe for a perfect Saturday morning! And if that cup of coffee at brunch wasn’t enough, walk across the road to Colectivo Coffee, where you can get a strong, smooth cup of joe!
Speaking of good views, Eno Vino just might have the best one in town! This Spanish-inspired tapas and wine bar sits on the top floor of the AC Hotel in downtown Madison, and features jaw-dropping views of the Capitol Building. They have an extensive wine and craft cocktail menu, and their small bites are great for sharing. They even have a “Merienda Hour” with specials on wine, cocktails, and more - which we’re planning to hit up next time!
Madison is home to some of the best craft breweries in the US! Being there amidst the polar vortex, we weren’t able to get out to as many as we’d have liked. One of our favorites was Ale Asylum, which not only had amazing draft beers (Try their Hopalicious or Velveteen Habit), but also some solid pub grub too! We recommend their Honey Mustard Brisket, Hummus Plate, and Chips with their IPA Cheese Sauce. (OK, we know. More cheese. But it’s SO GOOD!) We also loved the beer at Karben4 Brewery - try their Fantasy Factory or Tokyo Sauna!
Mexican food in Wisconsin? That’s a thing? We were just as surprised as you are! We were even more surprised that it’s actually really tasty and authentic. Canteen is a trendy, modern Mexican cantina that serves affordable street tacos with a twist. And they even make a mean margarita! Go at happy hour, when Pacifico Pints and Signature Margaritas are half off!
We always have to find a good pizza place. Thankfully, Madison did not disappoint in this department. Ian’s is a pizza-by-the-slice shop known for it’s creative pies. Seriously, have you ever had slices like these… Mac-N-Cheese, Portabello Pesto, Macho Nacho, Cheesy Potato with Ranch, or Smoked Brisket and Tots? They look, smell, and taste incredible! Unfortunately our stomachs didn’t have room to try them all!
Are you hungry yet? Good - us too. Those are just a handful of dining options in Madison. Whether you’re cheese-crazed or lactose intolerant, there’s plenty of epic culinary adventures yet to be had in this up and coming town. Leave a comment and let us know what spots we should check out next time we’re there!