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Tuesday, September 2, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 58.0° F  Partly Cloudy


Cento puts Michael Pruett's talents on display

What a relief it has been to learn that Cento " the newest venture from Food Fight, perhaps Madison's most polarizing dining entity " has been scrubbed of almost all Food Fight-ness and allowed to succeed or fail on its own merits. >More
 Mob the House celebrates Madison's craft beer bounty with a Great Taste Eve party

If you've attended a craft beer event in the Madison area over the last few years, chances are pretty good for an encounter with House of Brews founder and brewmaster Page Buchanan. The guy is everywhere, and he's always good for a quick -- or not so quick, if you get him going -- chat about his beers or any others you might wish to discuss. >More
 Showboat Saloon brings sanity to Wisconsin Dells

To call Wisconsin Dells a sensory assault should neither surprise nor offend anyone. Neon novelty T-shirts, amusement museums and ghost tours aren't the attractions of the subtle tourist destination. I admit I'm far more likely to visit the Dells for a coffee en route to the Twin Cities than I am to hit a waterpark. But eager vacationers and resigned visitors alike stand to be in need of a break sometime, and if you're a fan of craft beer, boy does Showboat Saloon deliver. >More
 There and Back with New Glarus Brewing: Wisconsin gets a taste of Sierra Nevada Beer Camp 2014

Sierra Nevada Brewing originally conceived its Beer Camp as a project for homebrewers, with a lucky few selected each summer to participate in a VIP experience at the brewery's headquarters in Chico, California. But people have been filling their camping trips, road trips and tailgating sessions with beer since time immemorial, so when Sierra Nevada announced last July that the 2014 edition of Beer Camp would be a multi-state, multi-brewer collaborative affair, it tapped into something instinctive, primordial, in the craft beer fan's psyche. >More
 The inaugural Bacon, Brew & BBQ Fest in Sun Prairie revels in its generous excess

Bacon's reign is far from over. The land is fertile for craft beer festivals. And who among us omnivores doesn't love barbecue in the summer? The organizers of the new Bacon, Brew & BBQ Fest, held Saturday in Sun Prairie, felt like it was only sporting to mash 'em all together in one big event. >More
 Rosie's Coffee Bar and Bakery scores with breakfast, fanciful cupcakes

Rosie's Coffee Bar and Bakery, which opened a little over four months ago in the former Kim's Noodle space, is an unexpectedly modern operation. Coffee (from JBC Coffee Roasters) is available brewed, yes, but also in pour-over, cold-process and siphon preparations. The point-of-sale system is Leaf, a tablet-powered system sort of like Square on steroids. >More
 The new Tip Top Tavern has a confident menu, solid beer list and classic cocktails

Almost everything you need to know about the re-minted Tip Top Tavern can be learned from the fried bologna sandwich called the Little Oscar. It does not, of course, tell the full history of this little corner bar, reminiscent of the 20th century: that the former owner was sure the smoking ban would kill the business (it didn't), or that remodeling the ramshackle space took far longer than expected. >More
 Isthmus a la Carts 2014 affirms Madison's food cart bounty

As it is with all the things we see around us every day, it's easy to take Madison's food carts for granted. We see them parked overnight, slumbering, in lots all over the city. They do business throughout the downtown and campus areas, and they're right there around the edge of the downtown farmers' market every summer Saturday. >More
 Toppling Goliath is taking over more than taps in Madison

The world of craft brewing is built on the idea -- or the hope, anyway -- that the little guys can stick it to the big guys. There are little breweries, incomparably tiny next to the big macrobreweries, that are creating a kind of brand loyalty among their devotees that's just as fierce as any Miller or Bud partisan. One such brewery has taken on a name befitting this fight: Iowa's Toppling Goliath. >More
 How to walk the line and score on ticket day for the Great Taste of the Midwest

Let's say there was an event. A beer event. One that made a limited number of tickets available at a small number of locations, selling out every year since forever. This event causes its fans to strategize, scout, and camp out at stupid o'clock in the morning just to get their two-per-person limit. If a guy had a method, a way that had yet to let him down in getting his tickets, he'd have to be a madman to write an article talking about it, for thousands of people to read, right? >More
 Brews Brothers pairs an ample tap list with big burgers

The corner bar doesn't have to look like Cheers. Heck, it doesn't even have to be on a corner. What it has to have is a welcoming vibe, staff who make an effort and at least a decent tap list. Brews Brothers has all of these things, and the big menu of burgers doesn't hurt, either. >More
 O.S.S.'s Wisconsin-centric menu goes way beyond bratwurst

There are sausage ghosts in this town. Recent wiener-centric operations " Mad Dog's, Dog Bites, Bison Jack's, Diggity's -- didn't stick around for long. So you'll excuse my initial grimness regarding the stealthy early February opening of O.S.S., an all-encased meat restaurant on Regent Street. >More
 Dawn of a homebrew winner: Monolith IPA set to pour at One Barrel Brewing

There was a point during the Isthmus Beer & Cheese Fest back in January when all of us judges in its homebrew contest -- brewers, writers, drinkers all -- gathered in a circle and ended up expressing our awe over one particular thing: the Monolith. >More
 Best bets for a midnight meal when you're not right downtown

Like luck, inspiration and fate, craving is a fickle visitor. It holds to no schedule; it respects no existing meal plans or even a decent hour of the day. Put another way: Sometimes you need -- like, need -- a stack of pancakes at one in the morning. >More
 Chicago beer fans come to Madison: Playing host to WBEZ's Strange Brews

A few weeks ago, I led a group of Chicagoans on a tour of some of the best eating and drinking the north and near-east sides of Madison have to offer. Though it could have been old classmates or visiting relatives, this particular group happened to include the hosts of Strange Brews, a podcast produced by WBEZ public radio. >More
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