I think Madison needs a place to order up simple fondue without going overboard.
Greg Long comes to Madison from exotic Beloit. Here, he's the president of the tasting group Single Malt Society of Madison. Greg contributes to the excellent Twin Cities food blog The Heavy Table, and co-authors the Wisconsin history and culture blog More Than Curds.
Mad Town Lunch: Greg Long
Occupation: Cheesemonger and food writer
Where do you work?: Capitol Square
Foods you love: Food with a story. Sometimes that means food with a heritage that's been passed down in the family for generations, sometimes it's something completely new that the chef accidentally created late one night. I like to learn about the food and where it comes from.
Foods you prefer to avoid or won't eat: Only thing I don't care for is olives. I love olive oil, but for some reason I can't stand the taste of olives on their own, much to the chagrin of my friends when we're making pizza.
Favorite places to eat lunch in Madison: Gates & Brovi, the Old Fashioned, the Great Dane, Macha Tea House, Weary Traveler, Graze. Lunch carts are great for a quick bite -- my favorite is El Burrito Loco.
Fallback -"go-to" lunch place: The Cooper's Tavern is a solid lunch spot and my regular go-to. Great daily specials.
Favorite lunch dishes: Whitefish sandwich at Nostrano. The fish is cooked perfectly and just little bit crispy, with an amazing combination of tomato and aioli on the soft ciabatta.
Now-defunct Madison restaurant(s) you long to eat at again: I have not even lived in Madison for four years yet, but I liked Nadia's on State Street and I'm really going to miss Shish Cafe on University.
If you could eat only on one side of town, which would you pick?: Probably east side. It has the best beer, and I find myself hanging out around Schenk's Corners more and more.
What's your # 1 food desire yet-to-be-fulfilled?: Casual fondue. Sure, there's The Melting Pot, but I think Madison needs a place to order up simple fondue without going overboard.
Finally... pupusas, or arepas?: Seeing as how I've only ever had arepas, I'd have to go with those. Where can I get pupusas in town? [Editor's note: La Zacatecana, on Commercial Ave.]
Do you have a question to Isthmus readers about food? What is the most interesting vegetarian dish in town? Help me out, Madison. I want to expand my palate.