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Save This Restaurant!

Where are you eating and what do you think? What's opening, closing, succeeding, failing?

Save This Restaurant!

Postby Kovalic » Sun Apr 05, 2009 2:18 am

Time Out Chicago has a great occasional series, "Save This Restaurant," on operations that are worthy of more business than they currently receive.

Every time I visit Arbat, I feel much the same way. Adore the food, love the beer selection (ex-pecially the Baltica Porter), gleeful that some dishes come with a shot of vodka, and in heaven that much of the menu is actually better than my Grandma made. Yet it's never been packed when we've been there, and often, fearfully, we've been the ONLY people there.

Are there restaurants in Madison YOU fear for? What bistros do we need to make an extra effort to make sure they succeed?
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby sydgrl » Sun Apr 05, 2009 9:09 am

I have to agree about Arbat. We try to visit every other month and most of the time it's been nearly empty. We brought some friends with us the last time we went. They'd never heard of the restaurant before and raved about the food afterward. Hopefully we brought them a couple of new regular customers.

The other restaurant that comes to mind is Curry in the Box. When we go we're often the only people there. It seems to keep hanging on, but with the economy in the dumper, I'm more worried that they may close up shop.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby LargeMarge » Sun Apr 05, 2009 9:21 am

I worry about Arbat, too. I love dumplings of all nationalities. Since Pelmeni closed, keeping Arbat open is even more important. My boyfriend and I have been the only customers in there before, too. Unfortunately, the location is not convenient to where we live or work so we don't go there often.

The restaurant I don't stop talking about is the Luckenbooth in Black Earth. They seem to have more customers in their new location so I can probably shut up now. They make homemade sourdough bread that makes the best toast. The soups and veggies burgers are also homemade. They also have pies that are only second to my mother's. My boyfriend lives in the area. The area has very few good restaurants so it is even more important that the good ones survive.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby Violet_Skye » Sun Apr 05, 2009 10:27 am

I have been curious about Arabat when I am in that area, but it is always so empty, and I am completely unfamiliar with Russian food, I have no idea what to try. What do you recommend? I would love to try it next time I am out in that neighborhood.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby white_rabbit » Sun Apr 05, 2009 12:41 pm

I'm going check out Arbat soon, the menu sounds delicious.

http://arbatrussianrestaurant.food.offi ... /menu.aspx
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby narcoleptish » Sun Apr 05, 2009 1:36 pm

I am going to try Arbat either this week or next.

I wish I would see more people in La Rocca's and Dobhan.

I'm hoping La Rocca's is doing a good delivery business but it is rare to see the place busy. It is still one of my favorite places in town.

Dobhan on atwood is another place that is too empty too often. It's worth a visit just to see the work they put into the place.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby Violet_Skye » Sun Apr 05, 2009 1:51 pm

I too recommend Dobhan. The owner is very congenial and the decor and food are both great.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby snoqueen » Sun Apr 05, 2009 5:33 pm

I'm another fan of Dobhan. When I have out of town guests (not all that often, unfortunately) it's where we go. I have never had a bad meal there, the staff is great, and the decor is wonderful especially the floor, of all things.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby beenie » Mon Apr 06, 2009 1:06 am

Chalk me up as another one worried about Arbat. I love the Zarski and the Golubtse. The borscht is perfect for a rainy day, and while I don't see it on the menu to which white_rabbit linked, their "beer snack" is great if you like a lot of garlic.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby TAsunder » Mon Apr 06, 2009 9:41 am

The decor and service at Dobhan are great indeed. But the food was just average the one time I went. Maybe I'll give it another try...
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby hecky » Mon Apr 06, 2009 12:55 pm

Flavor of India on the Square.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby wallrock » Mon Apr 06, 2009 2:19 pm

I'll throw my hat in for both Arbat and Dobhan. I've been a semi-regular at Arbat for a while now, even though it's not exactly convenient from Middleton. How they remain open has always been an item of discussion when I've gone. Dobhan - I just started going here recently but I've really enjoyed all of my experiences so far.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby Aubrey McFate » Thu Apr 09, 2009 11:02 am

hecky wrote:Flavor of India on the Square.

I had lunch there Tuesday, and my companion and I were surprised it wasn't busier. Only two or three other tables were occupied. I'd never been there before, but the buffet was pretty good.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby eriedasch » Thu Apr 09, 2009 1:15 pm

Aubrey McFate wrote:
hecky wrote:Flavor of India on the Square.

I had lunch there Tuesday, and my companion and I were surprised it wasn't busier. Only two or three other tables were occupied. I'd never been there before, but the buffet was pretty good.

Everyone was probably satisfying their Indian buffet fix at Maharini. I went there a few weeks ago and it was very busy - very good as well.

Another 2 thumbs up for Dohban.
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Re: Save This Restaurant!

Postby TAsunder » Thu Apr 09, 2009 1:37 pm

If they were all at Maharani, it's because Maharani is vastly superior. Bigger selection, better food, better service.
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