The Clarion

Madison Restaurant Week

Madison+Restaurant+Week+offers+a+chance+to+try+new+restaurants+at+a+reduced+price.
Back to Article
Back to Article

Madison Restaurant Week

Madison Restaurant Week offers a chance to try new restaurants at a reduced price.

Madison Restaurant Week offers a chance to try new restaurants at a reduced price.

Ryan Wetley

Madison Restaurant Week offers a chance to try new restaurants at a reduced price.

Ryan Wetley

Ryan Wetley

Madison Restaurant Week offers a chance to try new restaurants at a reduced price.

Caryn Kindkeppel, Clarion Staff

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Madison Restaurant Week is a great culinary event that occurs twice a year and is presented by Madison Magazine. Restaurants offered a prix fixe (set price) three-course meal with three options for each course: $15 for lunch and $25 for dinner per person. From the Madison area, 41 restaurants participated in the Winter 2012 Restaurant Week by serving dinner, and 16 of those served lunch as well. The event ran from Jan. 22 through Jan. 27. Some restaurants extended the event through Jan. 28.

BRICKHOUSE BBQ

One lunch destination was Brickhouse BBQ, a locally owned restaurant on West Gorham Street. The restaurant features meats smoked in-house, sauces to accompany them, vegetarian entrées and Southern-inspired desserts. The interior is fittingly decorated with brick and wood, and the three stories of the building each include bars with great drink menus, altogether forming a great atmosphere.

Brickhouse nachos are a mouth-watering appetizer, and consist of a hearty plate filled with corn tortilla chips, nacho cheese, corn-poblano relish, sour cream and salsa. The nachos are served with the option of either smoked beef brisket or pulled pork. The boneless BBQ rib tip sandwich is equally huge, but the meat is disappointingly chewy and overly smoky, and is served with soggy pickle slices. Fortunately, the hot, crispy, seasoned French fries and creamy coleslaw are a tasty accompaniment.

The Southern-style sweet tea is achingly saccharine and one-dimensional, and although the carrot cake is moist and adorned with creamy frosting, it lacks spices to give it some zing. However, it’s possible that other meals at the Brickhouse would be more notable, such as the pulled pork with tangy barbeque sauces. For those looking for a large meal of smoky meat, or an extensive Bourbon list, Brickhouse BBQ is the place for you.

LILIANA’S

Another lunch venue during Restaurant Week was Liliana’s, a family-owned and operated restaurant located in Fitchburg, just off of Fish Hatchery and PD. They specialize in New Orleans-style cuisine.

The dining room is full of artistic flair, complete with wrought-iron metalwork, an indoor handcrafted pottery water fountain and a vast array of wines displayed in a soaring rack. Unfortunately though, some tables, chairs and the floor are not as clean as one would expect, possibly due to the high traffic during Restaurant Week.

The tomato bisque soup appetizer is flavorful and creamy, without being too rich. Homemade sweet corn bread and spicy biscuits with jalapeno butter are an invigorating prelude to the meal. The chicken salad po’ boy sandwich is very yummy and includes bits of bacon, red onion, celery, spices and field greens. The jambalaya is also delicious, filled with Andouille sausage, ham, lardon, tomatoes and grilled shrimp over rice. Not only do the entrées taste great, but the portions also provide enough for leftovers.

Desserts are a satisfying finish to the meal, with one being peppermint creme brulee. Although not a traditional flavoring, the peppermint is understated and the texture is spot on with a silky custard interior and bittersweet crackly-crisp top. The cherries jubilee is also tasty, with bright red cherries and juice melting into the vanilla bean ice cream.

SARDINE

Sardine, located on the shore of Lake Monona at the start of Willy Street, was one of the dinner-only options during Restaurant Week, yet was a popular dining spot.

Inside, the white walls and glowing kitchen windows contrast with the dark wooden beams supporting the high ceiling. The two chef-owners also own Marigold Kitchen near the Capitol Square, and the newer Sardine is a European-inspired bistro, with enlightened comfort foods that make one’s mouth water.

From the basket of crusty artisanal bread slices and sweet cream butter to the light and refreshing vinaigrette-dressed arugula salad appetizer, the flavors of meals are in perfect harmony with each other.

A third flavorful appetizer is the house-made country pate, a decadent slice from a loaf of cooked ham, pork shoulder, pistachio and rich, pungent duck liver, all wrapped in a blanket of bacon.

The entree of grilled Norwegian salmon is tender, succulent and served with a delicious beurre blanc (butter sauce) that perfectly compliments the delicate flavor. The cassoulet entree consists of an artfully arranged dish of braised beans and lamb, duck confit and pork sausage, and it has a delicious, complex combination of flavors and meltingly tender meat.

The grand finale is a scrumptious dessert. One choice is the indulgent chocolate hazelnut ganache tart with a surprisingly crackly crust and house-made dark caramel sauce. Each bite brings a chocolate impact requiring another bite to confirm it.

The cherry butter cake is delicious and simply flavored with a dense interior and sugary golden crust, served with cherry sauce and whipped cream. The only regrets of dining at Sardine were that the meal came to an end, and the knowledge that future meals there would definitely run higher than the Restaurant Week prix fixe of $25.

Restaurant Week provides an opportunity to dine at your favorite restaurant for a lower price, or to try one – or two, or three – new restaurants that you’ve been meaning to visit. No coupons or tickets are required.

However, due to the popularity of the event, reservations are a good idea to ensure getting into the restaurant of your choice, especially during the dinner hours. The Summer 2012 event is scheduled for July 22-27.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Navigate Left
  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    What is Culture and Climate at Madison College?

  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    Performing Arts picks family-oriented show for its season finale

  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    The music man at UW-Madison retires after 50 years

  • Arts & Culture

    ‘Annihilation’ is simply boring

  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    ‘Wargroove’ is a fun strategy game

  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    Monty’s Blue Plate Diner

  • Arts & Culture

    ‘Babes’ is a 4-star greasy spoon

  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    Bands try to impress audience, earn spot in ‘Summer Camp 2019’

  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    Portillo’s Chicago-style fast food comes to Madison

  • Madison Restaurant Week

    Arts & Culture

    Author reminds others about the importance of loving yourself

Navigate Right
The news site of Madison Area Technical College
Madison Restaurant Week