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WAKE UP With food from the Dane County Farmers Market Breakfast

Inside: dining at dlux

Mug Brownies


The best new restaurant you haven’t heard of.

Have you made one yet?

We review Madison’s latest brewery. | Spring 2013

Cover 9

Photo by Jennifer Beth

Baked Organic Blue Potato Fries

24 44

Diversifying Your Taste Buds the Shabu Shabu Way


The Dish | Spring 2013

Managing the Biggest Birthday Bar in Madison

Table of Contents 03

A peek inside

no reservations food for thought

04 The dish staff List

17 33 Grubbing At the Buck Farmers Market


Letter from the Editor-In-Chief

in the kitchen

07 Power Munch Mix 09 Baked Organic Blue Potato Fries

& Badger Northwoods Breakfast Lodge

20 Karben


Sweet Victory

14 Color Your Spring:

Avocado Goat Cheese Sandwich

15 Roasted Sunchokes

Freshmen Foods

Brewery: An Essential Element for Beer Lovers An Afternoon at the Slow Food CafĂŠ 4

22 Diversifying Your

taste Buds the shabu shabu way


40 Tea: Thinking OUtside of the Cup

25 41 A Taste of Taqueria Chewy Earl Grey Sabor Queretano

10 Five Green Foods You 28 Time to Rustle Up Should Never Stop Eating


Some Grub at The Corral Room

30 Dining at DLUX

Oatmeal Cookies Recipe

42 The Impact of Food Documentaries

44 I heard it Through the Grapevine

46 Managing the Biggest Birthday Bar in Madison

The Dish | Spring 2013


Jennifer Beth

Brittany Johnson



Megan McDowell Sarah Dreifke

Katie Van Dam

Isabel Harner





Lauren West

Jessy Stamer

Chapin Blanchard

Pakou Vang





Marketing Assistants In The Kitchen Writers Taylor Laabs Ali Krolicki Jessica Brostowicz Brianna Woller

Christiania Hittner Emily Wessing Jenni Wolf Elyse Guizzetti

Photographers No Reservation Writers Francesca Bonifacio Madi Fair Fangdi Pan Pati Mo

Copy Editing Assistants Carisa Voss Sabina Badola

Katie Unger Sam Smith Sam Zipper Jared LeBlanc Allie Johnson Colin Martindale Lexie Winiecke

Food for Thought Writers Jane Roberts Katherine Helbig Nathaniel Scharping


The Dish | Spring 2013

INTRODUCING THE SECOND ANNUAL PRINT ISSUE OF “THE DISH” Dearest readers, When The Dish first launched in August 2011, our goal as a team of Badger foodies was to inspire our readers to expand their palates and engage in Madison’s eclectic culinary scene. As young foodies and thinkers, this mission challenged, educated, and energized us. The more we learn about Madison’s culinary community, the more we want to share it with our fellow Badgers. This spring, The Dish invites you to celebrate the junction of Wisconsin tradition and Madison modernity. Wisconsin’s food culture is defined by many classics: cheese, beer, cranberries, Door County cherries, Friday fish fry, and the brandy Old Fashioned. In Madison, though, creativity and a fresh perspective challenge these traditions. Our beloved city has created its own food culture that is not afraid to venture outside of the cookbook. We hope that our Spring 2013 issue inspires you to do the same. The next time you’re at your favorite restaurant, order something different. When you and your roommates are walking up and down State Street looking for dinner, walk into a new set of doors. Whether it’s the new Northwoods-themed Buck & Badger or you want to experience a whole new culture outside of the Midwest at Soga Shabu Shabu, Madison’s creative culinary thrill is waiting to share its energy with you. Until Later Foodies, Happy Eating!

Megan McDowell Editor-In-Chief

The Dish | Spring 2013


In the Kitchen

A word from

Dearest readers, Spring has sprung here in Madison, and with it comes a plethora of new sights, smells and life. The flowers begin to bloom, the grass starts to green and slowly Madison comes alive after its long winter slumber. As the warm weather continues to creep in, students settle in for that quintessential rush towards finals week – summer right around the corner. In this issue, In the Kitchen covers a little bit of everything – from a quick and healthy snack to a hearty meal for one, each one relating to the rejuvenation of nature we see during this time of year. For those long hours spent in the library, our writers have provided easy and satisfying recipes to keep you going throughout your day. Whether it’s a powerful mix of nuts and snacks or green foods packed with nutrients, each provides you with that extra boost to study strong. With the arrival of spring brings the return of local farmers’ markets. Berries, squash, tomatoes – all peak with flavor. In the Kitchen writers prove you don’t need a lot of ingredients or even a fancy kitchen to enjoy the fresh flavors of spring. Lastly, what better way to rejuvenate than with some tasty treats? Our easy blue potato fries or nobake cookie recipes are simple, guiltless and delicious. So whether you’re busy cramming for exams or are simply looking for a way to celebrate the beauty of spring; take a little time to enjoy these recipes we have put together for you. Happy eating, Sarah Dreifke In The Kitchen Editor


The Dish | Spring 2013



t’s that time of year again. Winter break was joyous, but now classes are in full swing and it seems as if the Mondays, and Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, and…well, you get the point…just drag on and on. I find myself struggling to stay conscious during my afternoon, back-to-back power lectures. Now I’m not sure if it’s just me, but there is something about those two and a half hours of being talked at that makes it nearly impossible for me to pay attention. But have no fear, for I have good news. A solution that may possibly solve both of our midday grogginess forever: a snack. Now you may be thinking, “A snack? Now that’s nothing new.” But this is something new: trail mix. Okay, now you’re really thinking this is old news. But this is not just any old, regular, boring trail mix of peanuts, raisins, and M&Ms. Oh no, this mix is a combination of the tastiest, trendiest, and healthiest morsels out there. This mix will not only tantalize your taste buds with a fresh, new group of flavors and textures, but it will also energize

you and keep your stomach and brain content through even the longest and most monotonous lectures. This version of trail mix uses edamame (immature or young soybeans), natural (unroasted and unsalted) almonds, and pumpkin seeds as its base. These are both a great source of protein and healthy fats, which will serve to boost your brainpower and keep you both energized and satisfied. Pretzels and fibrous bran cereal round out the mix, giving it bulk and substance allowing you to munch all through lecture. All natural dried fruits sweeten up this mix in place of sugary chocolate candies, which can leave you in a downward sugar spiral soon after class. This delicious snacking combination is one you can rely on for big taste and nutrition to get you through even the longest of days. Tip: If you have an especially busy schedule that runs you straight through lunch, pair a handful of baby carrots and a container of Greek yogurt or a cheese stick with this mix to create an easy on-the-go meal. Check out the recipe on the next page. n The Dish | Spring 2013


In the Kitchen POWER MUNCH MIX

Power Munch Mix Recipe




Ingredients: ½ cup dried, lightly salted edamame (sold at most grocery stores and bulk markets) 4 tablespoons pumpkin seeds, with shells on ¼ cup natural almonds ¼ cup mini pretzel twists ¼ cup Fiber One all-bran cereal ¼ cup dried cranberries, no sugar added ¼ cup chopped dried mango, papaya, or apricot, no sugar added



Directions: 1. Mix edamame, pumpkin seeds, almonds, pretzels, and cereal in a small cup or bowl. Stir in dried fruit. Yields two servings.





The Dish | Spring 2013

BAKED ORGANIC BLUE POTATO FRIES Ingredients: 3-4 small organic blue potatoes Drizzle of olive oil Dash of sea salt


Preheat oven to 400°F.


Scrub potatoes thoroughly with soap and water. Rinse when done.


Cut potatoes in your favorite fry shape - thin, wedges, etc.


Place sliced potatoes on baking tray and drizzle with a light coat of olive oil. Bake for 10 minutes and flip potatoes with a spatula.


Bake for about 10 more minutes or until golden brown and crisp.

How to: Blue Fries Story and Photos by Christiania Hittner I recently got some organic blue potatoes from a local farmer near my home in central Wisconsin. I was really excited to get my hands on these baby blues. First, because they’re blue potatoes (how cool is that?). And secondly, because they’re organic. Potatoes have a “dirty” reputation. Have you heard about the Environmental Working Group’s “Dirty Dozen” list? It’s a list of the top twelve produce items that are doused with chemicals and pesticides—and potatoes are on that list. I know it’s expensive to eat organic all the time. I can’t walk into Whole Foods without spending at least fifty bucks, but when it comes to the Dirty Dozen, I’m willing to splurge on organic potatoes. These baked fries came together quickly for an easy, healthy and chemical-free treat. n

The Dish | Spring 2013


In the Kitchen

FIVE GREEN FOODS YOU SHOULD NEVER STOP EATING Story by Emily Wessing / Photos by Fangdi Pan


f we want to exist efficiently and give our bodies what they crave, we need to drop out of the McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Burger King and Dairy Queen fast-food world of today. Green foods can provide us with the nutrients we need to keep our bodies in tiptop shape. My five favorite green foods of all time are as follows: broccoli, asparagus, lettuce, peas and green beans. These fab five foods not only taste good, but they’re also good for you. By incorporating one or all five into your diet, the effects will be long-lasting, and your body will thank you in the long run. Let’s get the green train rolling by talking about broccoli. Broccoli is a source of protein, vitamins E, A, C, K and B6, calcium, iron, potassium, riboflavin, thiamin, magnesium and phosphorus. All of these components have essential roles within the body. The vitamins act as an antioxidant


The Dish | Spring 2013

(vitamin E) and also work to improve eyesight (vitamin A), protect from illness (vitamin C), and absorb proteins and carbohydrates (vitamin B6). The minerals build up bones and teeth (calcium), improve muscle function (iron), and repair cells (magnesium). Without green vegetables, these vitamins and minerals can sometimes be hard to find in other foods, so the consumption of these green vegetables is worth your time. Asparagus, another of my favorites, is another good source of potassium, thiamin, vitamin B6, fiber and one other important thing folic acid. Folic acid helps us forms blood cells and helps us grow - especially when we’re young. So kids, eat up! Lettuce is easy to access and full of nutritional value. You can find it in salads, sandwiches, wraps or any meal where you’d like to add an extra “crunch.” Lettuce contains protein, fiber, calcium, potassium, vitamins C and K and more. Grab some at the salad bar... You won’t regret it! Peas and green beans are the final two green foods in my personal Green Food Hall of Fame. Like the others, they contain many of the

vitamins and minerals we need to survive. Peas contain protein, riboflavin, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and vitamins B6, A, C and K, to name a few. Green beans contain protein, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper and vitamin B6, A, C and K. Whew! If this laundry list hasn’t convinced you yet, I don’t know what will! The important thing to remember when it comes to your diet is to eat in moderation and consume intelligently. I personally love green foods because they’re yummy raw or cooked, you don’t have to break the bank to add them to your

diet, they’re full of vitamins and minerals, and they will have a positive impact on your health. Our bodies aren’t wired for an everyday McDonald’s diet. Do yourself a favor, and eat green today. n

I personally love green foods because they’re yummy raw or cooked, you don’t have to break the bank to add them to your diet, they’re full of vitamins and minerals, and they will have a positive impact on your health. Our bodies aren’t wired for an everyday McDonald’s diet.

The Dish | Spring 2013


In the Kitchen


ifteen seconds left on the play clock. It’s fourth and inches. The quarterback sets up the line and eyes down the opposing defense. The snap goes back – he looks left, he looks right. The throw is off and it connects with a receiver for a first down. First and goal! As the clock ticks down to only seconds left, the offense hurries to the line of scrimmage. There is enough time for one more play. The ball goes back, the quarterback aims, fires and TOUCHDOWN! The home crowd erupts into celebration as the team revels in the moment. Sweet victory. Coming down from that team victory is a rush we’ve become very acquainted with here in Madison. But while you’re busy belting out the chorus to “Swing Town” or jumping around just remember: your taste buds also need a reason to celebrate. Not only are these simple cookies delicious and perfect for a tailgating treat, they


The Dish | Spring 2013

are also packed with fiber and protein – making them a tasty, yet guilt-free indulgence. Make them your own by substituting chocolate chips, oats, nuts – whatever your taste buds desire. These quick and easy no-bake cookies will keep you out of the kitchen and get you back out there celebrating that team win. n






No-Bake Peanut Butter Graham Cookies Recipe Ingredients: HONEY

8 whole-wheat graham crackers, finely ground 1/2 cup raisins 1/2 cup smooth natural peanut butter 1/4 cup honey 2 tablespoon unsweetened coconut

Directions: COCONUT

1. Combine ground whole-wheat graham crackers, raisins, peanut butter and honey in a small bowl. 2. Pat into small balls and press lightly in coconut. 3. Enjoy! The Dish | Spring 2013


In the Kitchen

Color your spring: Avocado Goat Cheese sandwich Story and Photo by Christiania Hittner

Avocado Goat Cheese Sandwich Recipe Ingredients: 1 whole wheat English muffin 1/2 avocado, peeled and pitted 2 tablespoons goat cheese 4 slices yellow pepper Dash of salt and pepper

Directions: 1. Toast English muffin. 2. Slice and slightly mash avocado. Spread on toasted English muffin. 3. Sprinkle avocado mash with salt and pepper. 4. Crumble one tablespoon of goat cheese on each English muffin half. 5. Top each half with two slices of yellow pepper. 6. Optional: Serve with kiwi fruit and carrot slices as a tasty, healthy side dish. 7. Let cool, and enjoy!


The Dish | Spring 2013



hen I was staring out the window at the gloomy weather last week, I decided that a colorful lunch would be the best way to brighten the dismal day. After scrounging around the kitchen for a few minutes, I put together a perfectly delicious (and simple!) recipe to get me out of my lunchtime rut. The combination of tangy goat cheese, creamy avocado and crisp yellow peppers on a toasted whole-wheat English muffin awoke my taste buds from their mid-winter slumber. Are you yearning for some color in your life too? Here’s a fresh and colorful recipe to brighten up your lunchtime routine. n

ROASTED SUNCHOKES Ingredients: 1/2 cup sunchokes (washed) 1 tablespoon olive oil Dash of sea salt


Slice sunchokes into one-inch cubes.


Place sunchokes on baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.


Sprinkle sea salt on top.


Bake at 425˚F for 15 to 20 minutes.

How to: Sunchokes Story and Photos by Christiania Hittner You might be thinking, “What in the world are sunchokes?” I wondered the same thing when I discovered them at the grocery store. However, my lack of sunchoke knowledge didn’t stop me from tossing a few into my grocery basket on my way through the produce aisle. I’m always up for a challenge, especially when it involves a new-to-me produce item. When I got home, I got down to business and researched this curious vegetable. Here’s what you need to know: Sunchokes are also known as Jerusalem Artichokes, but they aren’t from Jerusalem and they’re not artichokes. They’re actually native to North America and related to sunflowers (confusing, eh?). Sunchokes are an odd, knobby looking vegetable that resembles ginger root. The crisp texture and slight sweetness remind me of a cross between a potato and a water chestnut. Sunchokes can be eaten raw or cooked; I decided to roast my sunchokes. If you can get your hands on some sunchokes, give them a chance! Try this simple recipe to bring out their natural flavor. n

The Dish | Spring 2013


No Reservations


reservations Dearest readers, I never thought I’d say this, but it seems like spring has finally arrived in Madison. Before we know it, the parkas will be put away, the colorful terrace chairs will make their reappearance, and winter will be nothing but a distant memory. I don’t know about you, but spring has made me more excited than ever to explore Madison’s vibrant restaurant scene. As the sun comes out and the ice melts, I’d encourage all of you to explore the many unique restaurants Madison has to offer. If you find yourself craving a cold drink on a warm spring day, follow writer Colin Martindale to Karben4, one of Madison’s coolest new breweries. If you’re looking to have a more elegant evening, allow writer Jared LeBlanc to introduce you to the Corral Room. Your trip to the retrostyle bar will be filled with cocktails and class. Craving dessert? I know just the place. DLUX on Capitol Square has a variety of milkshakes that will satisfy your sweet tooth. To sample some unique cuisine, follow Sam Smith to Soga Shabu Shabu. The Asian-fusion restaurant will be sure to give you a meal that you won’t forget. For a classic Wisconsin experience, follow Lexie Winiecke to Buck & Badger. The restaurant’s cozy log cabin atmosphere will make it hard to leave. If you’re a guacamole lover like me, then you’re in luck. Taco expert Sam Zipper believes he has found some of the best guacamole in Madison at Taqueria Sabor Queretano, a Mexican restaurant located on E. Washington Ave. There you have it, Badgers. Madison is booming with restaurants just waiting to be explored. So enjoy the spring weather, take a study break, and sample some of the delicious food our beautiful city has to offer. Happy Eating, Badgers! Katie Van Dam No Reservations Editor


The Dish | Spring 2013

Grubbing at the Buck & Badger Northwoods Lodge Story by Lexie Winiecke / Photos by Francesca Bonifacio

The Dish | Spring 2013


No Reservations


The Dish | Spring 2013


any students associate Capitol Square with fancy, upscale restaurants that are perfect for both dates and large get-togethers, so I decided to venture to that side of campus to check out one of Madison’s newest restaurants, Buck & Badger. This month, I wanted to reflect on Wisconsin and what it means to be a true Wisconsinite. Luckily for me, Buck & Badger, located at 115 State Street, embodies the Wisconsin culture I’ve come to love so much. Having numerous relatives outside of the state, I often get asked what it means to be a Wisconsinite. The answer is quite simple: loving the Packers, cheese, and beer. When my editor told me about a lodge restaurant opening in the area, I had to check it out for myself to see whether or not it fit the “Wisconsin” experience. Sure enough, the inside of Buck & Badger has the feel of a log cabin. Dragging a friend with me, I naturally left it up to her to decide where to sit, and was delighted to find myself sitting by a warm rustic fire. Even though it was a Thursday evening, we were seated right away without having to wait in line. Being worn out from the week, we decided to have something light for dinner, smiling at the “burger” portion of the menu. Along with burgers, the restaurant also serves soups, salads, sandwiches, and even pot pies. Our waitress was prompt at providing us with menus and our meal was ready within 20 minutes. Buck & Badger also has a wide selection of tap beer and various wines to choose from. To guys who are looking for a place to have a good time with a date or girlfriend, Buck & Badger should definitely be on your list. The log cabin feel combined

with the lighting and the fire definitely creates the romantic mood. Feeling spontaneous, I decided to order s’mores for dessert. A simple, campfire treat brought into the meal is a brilliant way to remind guests of the simulated Wisconsin atmosphere. Not being able to travel out to the scenic areas of the state will make any college student appreciative of this “cottage” within a reasonable walking distance.

This being said, I encourage you all to check out Buck & Badger. Every UW student deserves to have a quintessential Wisconsin experience. n

Buck & Badger

Address: 115 State St., Madison WI Telephone: (608) 230-7999 Hours: Sun-Wed 11:00 a.m.-12:00 a.m., Thurs 11:00 a.m.-2:00 a.m., Fri-Sat 11:00 a.m.-2:30 a.m.

To guys who are looking for a place to have a good time with a date or girlfriend, Buck & Badger should definitely be on your list. The log cabin feel combined with the lighting and the fire definitely creates the romantic mood.

The Dish | Spring 2013


No Reservations

Karben4 Brewery

An Essential Element for Beer Lovers


Story by Colin Martindale / Photos by Jennifer Beth

llow me to introduce you to my new favorite beer spot. Karben4 is a new brewery in Madison that opened in January run by four Appleton natives: Alex Evans, Zak Koga, Ryan Koga, and Tom Kowalke. The four partners have crashed the brew scene at young ages, all in their 20’s or early 30’s. As hometown friends, they started working on this project in late 2011, managing to acquire their new space in October 2012 from Ale Asylum whom most Madison residents are already familiar with. Despite a formable task, they have certainly flourished in the face of the challenge. The tap house itself is a nice open room surrounding an L shaped bar. Co-owner Alex Evans describes the space as neutral, making the beer the focal point of the experience. He was very clear that they did not want it to be a bar or restaurant, and as such it should not resemble one. The tap house interior is mostly dark grey and green, with paintings hanging on the walls that correlate with each of their five flagship beers. Tom, Karben4’s creative director,


The Dish | Spring 2013

made each of these in only a day. There are no TVs on the walls, nor any other distractions or gimmicks in the tap house. This creates a much livelier atmosphere centered on beer and conversation. Moreover, the bar staff was friendly and helpful, making it welcoming to anyone ready to enjoy themselves. The beers are what take center stage at Karben4. These are malt centric balanced ales rather than the current hop heavy trend. In this way Karben4 has carved out its niche. They have five flagship beers along with a rotating seasonal IPA to cater to the “hopheads.” These five staples are: session ale, amber ale, American pale ale, Irish red, and a smoked porter (named Undercover, Block Party, SamuRyePA, Lady Luck, and Nightcall respectively). My personal favorite was the Lady Luck Irish Red, an incredibly smooth beer perfect for relaxing after a long day. For food options, Karben4 has paired with Underground Food Collective in order to provide local organic dishes. They offer choices from grilled cheese, polish, or pulled pork sandwiches to deviled eggs and a meat plate with cheese

and vegetable spread. The dishes are simple but delightful, a perfect compliment to the Karben4 beers. Like the beers, there are not too many choices, ensuring that what you do order will be done well. Karben4 currently self-distributes their beer to several restaurants in Madison including Graze, Brocach, and the Tornado Steak House. With such a great start I would not be surprised to see Karben4 beers all over Madison sooner rather than later. Down the road they even hope to begin bottling. However, they’re in no hurry to do so, and with a tap house like theirs, why would they be? Karben4 is a great spot, one you could easily end up spending more time at than you planned. As a UW student I can understand the reluctance to make the trek over to the East side, but trust me, it is well worth the pilgrimage. Once you arrive you’ll be greeted with good beer and a smile, just be prepared to relax and enjoy yourself. n

Karben4 Brewery

Address: 3698 Kinsman Blvd., Madison WI Telephone: (608) 241-4811 Hours: Mon-Wed 3 p.m.-10 p.m., Thurs 3 p.m.-12 a.m., Fri 3 p.m.-2 a.m., Sat 11 a.m.-2 a.m., Closed Sun

The Dish | Spring 2013


Diversifying your taste buds the shabu shabu way

No Reservations

Story by Sam Smith / Photos by Madi Fair




The Dish | Spring 2013

few weeks ago, I found myself confronted with a challenge: to find a unique place to take someone on a first date. My friend recommended Soga Shabu Shabu, an Asian-fusion restaurant located on State Street right next to Forever Yogurt. Being the extremely uninformed and assuming foodie that I am, I invited my date to a “casual, hip, sushi place on State.” Needless to say, we were both surprised to find that sushi was not even on the menu. We discovered that Soga was a restaurant that specialized in Shabu Shabu style dining, which can be described in plain terms as an Asian take on fondue. There were a few items on the menu that I recognized from past experiences with Asian restaurants, but I was feeling adventurous that night and wanted to try the “hot pot,” which is the main entrée of Shabu Shabu dining. I had the waitress, who did a great job putting up with my barrage of questions, pick out two appetizers and a main dish for both of us (a “hot pot” typically serves 2-3). She picked out her favorites, most of which I had never heard of before. We had taro and lotus root as appetizers, and a fish ball variety plate for the main dish. After a short wait, the waitress brought out a metal pot and filled it with broth, and then explained how to use it to cook our food. That was our second surprise of the night. We would be in charge of cooking our meal. This turned out to be a blessing, however, as

preparing the soup provided us with a really fun, hands-on experience that didn’t require any prior experience. Along with the plate of fish came a variety of ingredients that we could add to the soup for additional flavor, including vegetables, sauces, and rice noodles. We began to throw in everything that we could manage to pick up with our chopsticks. After letting it cook in the broth for a few minutes, we ladled some of the soup into our bowls. The flavor was incredibly delicious, and there was more than enough to go around. I tried out the lotus root first, and was extremely satisfied with its faintly sweet taste and perfect textural balance between crisp and tender. We continued to add more ingredients, making the soup thicker and more flavorful with every addition. We ate until we were full, and even then there was a good amount left. The entire meal cost under $25 (including tip) for both of us, which I felt was a pretty reasonable price. In addition to their specialty hot pot, Soga also serves a variety of “clay pot” style meals. Another unique food dish served by Soga, all meals under this category are served in a clay pot and steam cooked. The result is not only delicious but nutritious as well, as steamed foods retain the

Soga Shabu Shabu Address: 508 State St., Madison WI Telephone: (608) 819-6780 Hours: Mon-Wed, 11:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m., Thurs-Sat 11:00 a.m.-2:30 a.m., Sun 11:00 a.m.-9:30 p.m. most nutritional content. Soga is the perfect spot if you are interested, but hesitant, to try out something new and foreign. The menu has enough variety to please a foreign food enthusiast at any stage of their journey. Coming from a student who has spent a majority of his time eating at Qdoba and Noodles & Company, I was very satisfied with all of the flavors and textures that I experienced at Soga. It fits in perfectly with the rest of the ethnic food restaurants on State Street, and provides customers with a new and memorable experience. Every Badger should try out Soga to escape the monotony of the typical college dining experiences – it is perfect for a group of friends, a meal with your parents, or even a first date. n

The Dish | Spring 2013


No Reservations


The Dish | Spring 2013

The Taco Column

A Taste of Taqueria Sabor Queretano Story and Photos By Sam Zipper


s part of a romantic Valentine’s Day evening, my business associate, Erin, and I took a trip to a delicious-looking taqueria a ways out on East Washington Avenue called Sabor Queretano. Unfortunately, SQ was out of al pastor for the evening. Our waiter/chef was very apologetic, and we placed orders for tacos of other varieties. I requested two tacos (chorizo, carnitas) and one gordita (asada), while Erin ordered one taco (carnitas) and one torta (chorizo). Also, it being a special occasion, we ordered chips and guacamole and grabbed a couple Jarritos out of the cooler. We watched our host quickly make the guacamole in the back and bring it out to us. It was a superb and expertly seasoned blend of ripe avocados, chopped onion, tomato, and cilantro. Overall, it ranks as some of the best guacamole in the history of It came with four large, thick “chips,” which may have doubled as tostada shells. The chips were easily broken up and dipped into the

guacamole, which was more than enough for the two of us. After another few minutes, which involved watching our chef grill up some fresh chorizo, we received our orders. Sabor Queretano’s portions are tremendous. The torta was approximately the size of a human head. The tacos were also ridiculously large. The meat on my two tacos was equal in size to at least five tacos at many other taco spots around town. The tacos were topped with onions, cilantro, light cheese, avocado, and a mysterious white creamy sauce, which was delicious. Both of us got a small container of special salsa verde on the side. While the quantity wasn’t large, the salsa was spicy enough that a little bit went a long way. I ended up drizzling a small amount over the tops of both tacos and my gordita, and still had some left over to take home at the end. Taco-wise, I started out with the chorizo. The meat was, as mentioned, voluminous, and dominated the experience. The Dish | Spring 2013


No Reservations The chorizo was crumbly and fried, giving it a variable texture, ranging from slightly chewy to pleasantly crispy. It also had a dominantly salty chorizo flavor. This was excellent, and even for a salt-lover such as myself, the chorizo was on the edge of my capacities as a human. It was well complemented by the mild mystery white sauce and avocado topping. My second taco was the carnitas. In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that I only finished half of the taco in the restaurant. After the guacamole and chorizo mega-taco, I simply couldn’t handle both another whole taco and a whole gordita, so I ate half of each. However, I had enough carnitas to declare it completely delicious. It was mild shredded pork with a very light smoky flavor, which was accented well by the salsa verde. Despite the bulk of the tacos, the tortillas did an admirable job holding everything together, though there was

obviously some inevitable spillover during the eating process. I finished up with half the steak gordita (also delicious) and brought the rest home as leftovers, which were wonderful the next day. n

tano e r e u q r o b a s ia r e u q ta ting: 95 Official Ra e., Address: 4512 E. Washington Av Madison WI Telephone: (608) 249-0877 p.m. Hours: Mon-Sun 9:00 a.m. - 9:00


The Dish | Spring 2013

Carnitas Tacos at Taqueria sabor queretano

Sabor Queretano’s portions are tremendous. The torta was approximately the size of a human head. The tacos were also ridiculously large. The meat on my two tacos was equal in size to at least five tacos at many other taco spots around town.

The Dish | Spring 2013


No Reservations


Time to rustle up Some Grub aT

Story by Jared LeBlanc / Photos by Tornado Steak House

hen one imagines Madison’s bar scene, a very clear picture may come to mind. Overcrowded bar rooms filled with frat boys wearing Badger gear, spilling beer all over the already sticky floor, and dancing with scantily clad young women to the latest song to sweep the Top 40 hits. However, not every college student is necessarily interested in games of beer pong and flip cup. Many students in Madison may prefer a more quaint and intimate setting where they can spend a weekend evening casually drinking with friends. If you’re an individual who enjoys a classic and elegant locale over the raucous and rowdy crowds of State Street’s most infamous bars, then continue reading on. The Corral Room just might be the perfect spot for you. Located on South Hamilton Street, just off the western corner of the Capitol Square, the Corral Room is a bar that is housed in the basement of the well-known restaurant, the Tornado Steak House. Due to its secretive location, the Corral Room is a hidden treasure of


The Dish | Spring 2013

Madison’s bar scene. After entering the Tornado Steak House, you must find the hidden staircase that leads to the basement of the building. Upon finding this room, you are greeted with a retroinspired seating area that truly sets the bar for a level of sophistication among the other bars in downtown Madison. Sporting classic white booths that are both comfortable and stylish, the Corral Room echoes a time long past when flappers danced to uproarious jazz music and mobsters sold moonshine by the barrel in elegant and entertaining nightclubs. In fact, the mere location of the Corral Room, in the basement of another establishment, further recalls the secretive and secluded nightclubs of the 1920s Prohibition era. The walls of the Corral Room are lined with beautiful vintage maps of various places around the globe, which provides a splendid contrast with the white booths and silver tabletops to create a metallic and polished ambiance that is the definition of trendy and old-school elegance. Furthermore, the bar (located at the head of the room, maintaining a remarkable resemblance to retro bars from the early 20th century) is decorated with slinky, silvery curtains that are

softly draped around a mountain of bottles containing every kind of liquor one could imagine. The sophisticated décor of the bar and seating area is echoed in the food and drink options offered at the Corral Room. While the menu is the same as the one that is offered to patrons of the upstairs Tornado Steak House, the Corral Room’s exceptional creation of a truly retro ambiance makes every individual who orders a Movie Star (an outstanding cocktail that combines vodka, cherry juice, and an orange slice in the most delightful way) feel like a true icon of a bygone age of Hollywood glamour. In addition to being a hot nightspot for the aspiring socialite or for the future Chicago actress among us, the Corral Room is also a fantastic joint for large group parties and special occasions. When questioned about the reservation policy at the Corral Room, Elisse Tarlo, the manager-on-duty and hostess for the restaurant, said, “We take groups of basically any size during the week; on weekends, we only take parties of up to twenty [people]…During the week, the most we’ve done is up to forty-five.” Tarlo also explained the menu available for group events. “We do the normal menu and normal drinks [for group events and large parties]. They can have limited menu, if they want,” she said. While the Corral Room is only open to the general public after nine p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, it is available seven nights a week for reserved private parties and special events. Whether you are a student looking to celebrate your birthday, an anniversary with a significant other, or your long-awaited graduation from the university, the Corral Room provides a fun and casual, yet elegant, setting to mark your big day. However, if you’re simply a student who wants to have a classic and intimate space to spend a cultured evening on the town, then check out this underground nightspot. I assure you that you will not be disappointed. n

Located below Tornado Steak House Address: 116 N. Hamilton, Madison WI Telephone: (608) 256-3570 Hours: Open to the public Friday & Saturday nights starting at 9 p.m., also available seven nights a week for private parties.


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No Reservations

Story by Katie Van Dam / Photos by Chris Hynes

the DLUX burger, which consisted of port wineonion marmalade, blue cheese and arugula. The flavor combination was unique and delicious, and I soon came to realize that my dining experience at DLUX was not one that I’d easily forget. When DLUX opened on Capitol Square six months ago, General Manager Tom Ray was determined to create a place that was both upscale and affordable. With its $8 burgers and trendy atmosphere, it seems that Ray was able to make his vision a reality. “We designed DLUX to be a fun and energetic place with a retro-modern theme,” he or many college kids, the craving said. “When you step into DLUX you often feel like for a burger, fries and a milkshake is you aren’t in Madison anymore and also not in a hard to suppress. Luckily for Madison place that serves $8 burgers. We really wanted to students, DLUX has mastered the capture that playfulness in a space that was hip art of putting a new twist on classic American favorites. With its retro vibe, unique burgers and vast array of milkshake options, the restaurant has proven itself to be an excellent addition to the dining options on Capitol Square. Located at 117 Martin Luther King Blvd., DLUX’s bold sign makes it hard to miss. The glowing red walls and abstract murals help create the restaurant’s hip vibe, and on weekend nights it’s nearly impossible to find a table. After hearing all the buzz about the new trendy burger place by the Capitol, my curiosity got the best of me. I was determined to see what DLUX was all about, so I decided to brave the crowds and head over to the restaurant on a busy Saturday night. Out of pure luck, my friends and I were able to snag a barstool at a table by the window. As I sipped my Toasted Marshmallow milkshake and listened to a Lumineers song blaring in the background, I couldn’t seem to wipe the smile off my face. I decided to order



The Dish | Spring 2013


Address: 117 Martin Luther King Blvd., Ma dison WI Telephone: (608) 467-3130 Hours: Mon-Tues 11:00 a.m.-12:00 a.m., Wed-Fri 11:00 a.m.-2:00 a.m., Sat 10:00 a.m.-2:00 a.m., Sun 10:00 a.m.-12:00 a.m. and original.” While DLUX capitalizes on serving the classic burger and fries combination, the menu is not afraid to step outside the box. The restaurant has eight burger options with a variety of different toppings, ranging everywhere from fried eggs to bell pepper jelly. It also offers its ‘DLUX dips’ as appetizers, so we decided to order the Alsum Farm Spicy Sweet Corn Dip and Fritos for a starter. The combination was unusual yet strangely addicting. Ray admits that coming up with the menu for DLUX was one of his favorite parts of opening up the restaurant. It was an extensive process, but the end result was something Ray could be excited about. With the help of Foodfight Restaurant Group and chefs from other restaurants, Ray was able to come up with a final menu that is truly unique. “I think we tried over 100 different types of buns and over 50 different patty sizes and beef blends,” Ray said. “Once we had those picked out the fun really began.” In addition to the burgers, DLUX’s drink options are hard to pass up.The shakes are made

with Sassy Cow ice cream, and the two most popular options are the Red Velvet and Salted Caramel and Pecan. I find myself constantly craving the Toasted Marshmallow milkshake. The flavors brought me back to the days of smores and summer campfires- memories I was happily reminded of in the midst of my winter blues. Along with the milkshakes, DLUX features four kegged cocktails and eight draft beer selections. According to Ray, all of the cocktails are made from scratch. “We wanted to play on the craft cocktail scene with quality ingredients and well thought out flavor profiles without our drink menu becoming too unapproachable for the average customer,” he said. Bold, trendy, and one-of-a-kind, DLUX is a restaurant that should not be ignored. If you are looking for an exciting dining experience that won’t burn a hole in your pocket, I encourage you to check it out. If you are anything like me, you’ll take one big bite out of a gourmet burger and find yourself coming back for more. n

The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought

A word from

Dear readers, The first signs of spring are popping up, our favorite foods are back in season and people in Madison are ready to get up, get out, and try something new. Madison has so much to offer the food culture, and writers in this issue explored Madison food gems that you can find in Katherine Helbig’s article on Taste of the Farmers’ Market Breakfast and Nathaniel Scharping’s interview with a chef at the famous Nitty Gritty. Food for Thought is a section where you see food interact with culture and open your mind to thinking about food in unique ways. Writer Jane Roberts shares her experience in the Slow Food Café. Madison’s very active chapter of Slow Food exposes people to local foods and asks them to think about where their food comes from and the impact it may have on the environment. Katherine Helbig in “Freshman Foods” offers creative ways to cook in the dorms with only a few appliances and then finds different ways to incorporate tea into unlikely foods like cookies in “Tea: Thinking Outside of the Cup.” Lastly, Jane Roberts investigates the role of food documentaries in our attitudes towards certain foods and the food industry in “The Impact of Food Documentaries”. Food is so much more than purely fuel and I hope these articles get you thinking about what you eat in new ways. Enjoy spring and all the wonderful foods it brings with it! Chow, Isabel Harner Food for Thought Editor


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houghts of sweet potatoes and beef brisket were my only fuel as I made the trek to the Madison Senior Center just off Capitol Square. Why, might you ask, was I heading to the Senior Center in search of these delicacies? The answer to that question would be the Taste of the Farmers’ Market Breakfast. Held each Saturday from 8:30 - 11:00 a.m., a breakfast consisting of fresh produce from local farmers is prepared by a team of volunteers, including a local chef who plans and prepares the meal alongside them. The meal on this particular morning was the delicious creation of Rob Grisham from Brasserie V. The sweet potatoes I was fantasizing about earlier made up a hash that was topped with a mushroom and caramelized onion ragout and fried egg as well as beef brisket. But that, of course, was not all. On the side was a salad of springy local greens tossed with a honey vinaigrette and feta cheese. All of this was accompanied by a heavenly slice of cinnamon raisin brioche. I was able to round it all off with

a dark cup of Just Coffee Fair Trade Coffee, that took away the chill the weather had placed in my body. I opted for the half-portion at the appealing price of $5, but those with a bigger appetite can go for the full portion for $8.50. Either way, you are getting an artfully crafted meal for a great price while supporting Madison’s farmers. I was able to speak with Liz in the kitchen after my meal and we talked about how this impressive feast is put together each weekend. To start off, the chefs are chosen at the beginning of the season. About two weeks beforehand, the menu planning begins. Chefs must base their creations off what’s in season at the time and available locally. For those with minds less creative than our Madison chefs, this may pose a major challenge, but they rise to the occasion beautifully. That’s not to say there aren’t obstacles that must be dealt with. Some of the basics like butter, oils, and milk are often hard to come by locally, and must be substituted or gone without. Much of the prep for the meal is done at the respective chef’s restaurant and then finished up The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought

at the senior center. One of the market’s biggest breakfasts was that which included Tori Miller of L’Etoile and Graze fame working along with Reap food group with their Chef in the Classroom program. The breakfast has also partnered up with the UW Dietetics Club, Slow Food UW, and a few other campus groups. Working with local chefs and farmers as well as the University, are all ways the Taste of the Market Breakfasts strengthens Madison culture and economy. That, coupled with the amazing breakfast you’ll inevitably be treated to, should be more than enough of a reason to head over to the Senior Center one of these upcoming Saturdays. n

Sweet potatoes, eggs, beef brisket, salad and caramelized onions from the taste of the Farmers Market Breakfast.


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amen, Easy Mac, and peanut butter. These are the things I was told I should be ready to live on as I prepared for my new life at college. Sure, these are great to have on hand, but I usually only reach for them in the case of an emergency (well, maybe except the peanut butter). The first thing I went to inspect after unpacking in my new home was the “kitchen” in our dorm’s basement. After examining the tiny burners on the greasy oven, I realized that my microwave

would become my new best friend. With a little creativity though, that microwave, along with some other dorm-approved appliances, can help you create some truly inspired dishes. Facing the challenges of cooking in my dorm, I sought the help of some websites such as Pinterest and So, what I have for you are three recipes utilizing three different appliances, and my opinion of each completed meal. Turn the page for these easy dorm dishes. n

The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought WHITE BEAN DIP Appliance used: Magic Bullet


The original recipe for this called for parsley, but I substituted it with another leafy vegetable – spinach. Using the magic bullet proved to be a bit tricky because the contents needed to be pushed to the bottom of the container to reach the blades. What you end up with is paste on the bottom and unsliced beans on top. A few stirs between whirs can solve this dilemma though. n

Ingredients: 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed 2 cloves garlic 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 2 tablespoons olive oil 1/4 cup (loosely packed) fresh spinach Salt Pepper Dash of sweet smoked paprika

Directions: 1. Place garlic in magic bullet and mince. Add remaining ingredients and puree. It helps to shake while the motor is running, and also to stir the mixture about every 10 seconds. 2. Serve with crackers, crudites, or spread on a sandwich.


The Dish | Spring 2013

BREAKFAST SANDWICH Appliance used: Electric Tea Kettle


After some configurations, my electric teapot turned out the perfect hardboiled eggs that I would typically cook on a stove. As for this sandwich, I found it delicious in its simplicity. It kind of tastes like egg salad, with the mayo and onion and without the additional prep. n

Ingredients: 1 egg (you can make more if you want) 2 slices of whole grain bread Red onion, thinly sliced 1 tablespoon light mayonnaise 1 thick slice ripe tomato Salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste

Directions: 1. Carefully place the egg inside the electric teakettle and cover with water to 1 inch above the egg. 2. Turn the kettle on and let it come to a boil. 3. Once it switches off, let the egg sit for about 15-17 minutes, and then rinse with cold water and allow to cool. 4. Once cooled, peel and slice the hard boiled egg. 5. Spread mayo on bread and top with sliced egg. Place tomato on the other slice of bread, top with onion, salt, and pepper to taste.


MUG BROWNIE Appliance used: Microwave

Here’s a recipe that I remember blowing up all over my Pinterest page - and it’s collegekid friendly because you only need a few ingredients and a microwave. After waiting a brief minute, my floor-mates and I had a warm treat that wiped the thought of the coming Monday from our mind. n

Ingredients: A large coffee mug 4 tablespoons flour 4 tablespoons sugar 2 tablespoons cocoa powder 1 egg 3 tablespoons milk 3 tablespoons oil A splash of vanilla extract 3 tablespoons chocolate chips

Directions: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Combine dry ingredients in mug. Add the egg and stir together. Pour in the milk and oil, mix. Add the chocolate chips and vanilla extract, mix. 5. Microwave for 3 minutes. 6. Allow to cool, and tip out onto a plate.

The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought


Story and Photos by Jane Roberts

f you were to walk past The Crossing on a Wednesday afternoon, it’s quite possible that you’d be completely unaware of the magic occurring inside. Were you to catch wind of this, however, you might be inclined to open the door, walk down the basement steps, and discover the Slow Food Café. “Slow Food? Is that like fast food?”. This is a question I frequently find myself answering, so I thought I’d explain and spread the word. Slow Food is an international organization committed to supporting sustainability and local agriculture and we’re lucky enough to have a very active chapter here on campus. The dedicated student volunteers involved work to get people thinking about where their food comes from. In order to do this, they host Family Dinner Nights every Monday and cafés every Wednesday in the basement of The Crossing on University Avenue. While I have attended many FDNs over the past year and this semester, last Wednesday was my first ever Slow Food Café experience. I received the first October café menu via email and knew it was something I couldn’t miss. I mean, who can say no to Nutella stuffed


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French toast? I headed over to the café, which runs from 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., right after class. There weren’t any signs or posters outside, but I knew what awaited me inside. When I opened the door, delicious smells wafted through the air and directed me to the café. Once downstairs, I joined the line of hungry customers and filled out my order form. Homemade Nutella stuffed French toast with raspberry sauce: Check. Pumpkin yogurt with roasted pumpkin seeds: Check. Coffee: Check. At the front, I handed in my order and money and eagerly awaited my meal. Taking an order number and sitting at a table along the far wall, I noticed a lot of familiar faces. Some friends were working hard in the kitchen, while others were enjoying meals nearby. I sat with a friend I’d met last week, who ordered the veggie frittata. It looked delicious, but in a matter of minutes, my food was ready too. A volunteer carried out a generous bowl of pumpkin yogurt, accompanied by the French toast. I grabbed a mug of coffee and got down to business. The whole meal was fantastic. The yogurt tasted just like pumpkin pie and the seeds added a great, crunchy texture, while the French toast was warm and chocolate-y.

Just knowing that it was all local and homemade made the whole experience even better. If you’ve never been to Slow Food, I highly encourage you to check it out. If you’d like to attend a dinner, you’ll want to sign up for the email list to receive the weekly Doodle poll, as there are a limited number of spots. The Wednesday cafés are open to everyone, so if you’re in need of a middle-of-the-week treat, slow down and stop by! n

The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought

Tea: Thinking Outside of The Cup Story and Photos By Katherine Helbig

Photo by Brittany Johnson


or me, the thought of tea brings to mind an icy, sweating glass or a steaming, aromatic mug of the ancient drink. These methods of tea enjoyment are both amazing in their own right, but what happens when the creativity bug bites and people start getting a little more imaginative with their use of tea? Well, here in Madison we have a few businesses who have done just that. You can find locally made preserves which use tea as a key flavor component, and also bakeries offering tea infused baked goods. One of the businesses that is taking advantage of tea’s unique flavor in innovative ways is Quince and Apple. Their fruit preserves, as well as other beautifully crafted foods, can be found at a number of retailers in and near Madison, as well as online. Their two tea preserves feature Door County cherries alongside white tea and figs alongside black tea. I was able to ask one of the owners Matt Fehsenfeld, who runs Quince and Apple with his wife Clare, about the fruit preserves. The technique used for infusing the tea’s flavor into the preserves is very much like brewing


The Dish | Spring 2013

a massive pot of tea, but using the fruits as a medium for the tea flavor rather than water. The preserves at Quince and Apple are able to compliment something sweet, like a donut or pastry. Besides buying the goodies from Quince and Apple, there are other ways that you can infuse the flavor of your favorite brew into your own baking. Meandering through local bakeries has brought me to chai cupcakes, Earl Gray cookies, ginger peach scones and so many other tea flavored pastries. If you were to ask how these flavors are incorporated into the sweets you may get a variety of answers including steeping the tea in the butter or milk used in a recipe, or for chai simply using the spices that are commonly associated with chai tea like cinnamon and cloves. If you want to try your hand at creating something that will intrigue the senses more than the average cookie here’s how you can make your very own early grey oatmeal cookies. n

Chewy Earl Grey Oatmeal Cookies Recipe


Ingredients: 1/2 cup Earl Grey infused butter, softened 2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed 1 large egg 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 3/4 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 1/2 cups rolled oats




1. Make the Earl Grey butter a couple hours before starting the cookies. 2. To make the Earl Grey/Citrus-Infused Butter 1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature zest of one orange (this compliments the bergamot in the earl grey) 3 bags of your



favorite Earl Grey tea. Heat a small saucepan and melt the butter over medium-low heat. Once it begins to steam a little, place the tea bags and zest into the butter and allow to steep for 5-7 minutes. Be careful not to burn the butter. You should be able to smell the tea when it is ready. Preheat the oven to 350째F before starting to bake the cookies. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla. In another bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Combine the dry ingredients with the butter mixture. If the dough is difficult to shape, chill it for an hour or so. Once you are able to, shape the dough into small balls and place two inches apart on a cookie sheet. Lightly press to flatten them before baking. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the cookies are just golden at the edges.

Earl Grey Oatmeal Cookies

The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought The Impact of Food Documentaries Story by Jane Roberts / Photos by Food Inc.


hat is the purpose of documentary film? The answer differs greatly depending on the subject, filmmaker and audience. Some documentaries inform viewers about a subject while others seek to persuade towards a particular point of view. In general, documentaries create an artistic representation of reality. Think Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth or Michael Moore’s Bowling for Columbine. The past decade has seen an increase in documentaries focused specifically on food, ever since Morgan Spurlock’s 2004 film Super Size Me. Although food on film may be a fairly recent phenomenon, discussion about food origins and the ethics of the food industry has been occurring in the media for at least a century: most notably in Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle. Sinclair’s novel is recognized for exposing the appalling conditions of Chicago’s meatpacking industry in the 20th century. While Sinclair’s main focus was on the workers, people reacted more to what they learned about their food. Sinclair believed, as many modern filmmakers do, that change begins with informing the public. After The Jungle was published, Congress passed the Food and Drug Act,


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Most documentary film makers know that people aren’t going to make drastic changes to their lives and accordingly advocate simple, attainable goals like eating food in season and supporting local farmers.

putting new regulations regarding federal inspections and food labeling in place. Since then, further improvements regarding nutrition and food safety have been made. Revitalizing Sinclair’s investigative work, Food Inc., released in 2008, offers a look into America’s present-day food industry. Its main goal is to provide viewers with the knowledge to be conscious of their eating habits and recognize that their choices matter. Most documentary film makers know that people aren’t going to make drastic changes to their lives and accordingly advocate simple, attainable goals like eating food in season and supporting local farmers. Food documentaries focus on different issues regarding the way we eat, including health, food safety, animal welfare, the environment, and economic impacts. In 2009, BBC aired the first of a three-part documentary series called The Future of Food. It analyzes the challenges of oil-dependency, climate change, and water depletion that the world will face going forward with an ever-growing population. Some of the information presented may seem extreme, but the ultimate goal is simply to inform and spark discussion about the consequences of our food choices and possible improvements in sustainability in the future. n

The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought

I Heard it Through the Grapevine Story by Megan McDowell / Photos by Jennifer Beth


urning 21 means access to a whole new world of adulthood. Finally, I can advance past the Hagrid-sized bouncers guarding Madison’s bars and order those elusive, bright-colored drinks on the Applebees dessert menu. I’ve now been admitted into a culture defined by shameless karaoke nights, 3-for-1 rail drinks, and the youthful bliss that exists on the cusp of the “real world.” Sometime between now and obtaining my B.A. in English, I have to assimilate into a culture of wine tastings and knowing the difference between Pinot Grigio and Chardonnay. While dining at my future adult friends’ houses, I doubt it will be socially acceptable to request a strawberry daiquiri or an appletini with dinner. To prepare myself for this next phase of adulthood, I’ve taken it upon myself to develop my palate and to understand the time-honored presence of wine in dining-culture.


The Dish | Spring 2013

Turning 21 means access to a whole new world of adulthood.



hroughout the Madison area, Matt Weygandt and Finn Berge own and operate six individual Barriques stores. Each location evokes a unique ambiance, but each is equally conducive to an energizing cup of coffee or a relaxing glass of wine. When I featured Barriques last November, I focused on the former. Now, given my legal age, I want to devote some attention the latter, particularly the “Wall of 100” available at each Barriques location. “The ‘Wall of 100’ features a variety of wines that are both high in quality and low in price,” said Joshua Jackson, GM of the West Washington store. “Each bottle on the wall is under $10.” While the “Wall of 100” achieves a consumer-friendly balance of quality and price, how am I supposed to know how to pick one bottle out of 100? Turning 21 does not come with this ability, and it’s fairly overwhelming. To narrow the selection process, Joshua has given me some advice when it comes to buying a bottle of wine. If I’m buying a bottle for dinner, I should select a wine that would enhance the meal’s flavors. Joshua suggests this online winepairing tool to facilitate the selection process: Food&WinePairingTool.html. Another piece of Joshua’s advice I found useful: “You could also try drinking a glass of the same type of wine once a week for a month,” Joshua advised. “Then, switch to a different wine the following month, and see if you can notice the difference.” Finally, Joshua suggests consulting a more experienced wine-drinker. Behind each Barriques “Wall of 100,” there are knowledgeable owners and managers who have sampled each wine. n

The Dish | Spring 2013


Food for Thought

Interview With a Chef

Managing the Biggest Birthday Bar in Madison Story by Nathaniel Scharping / Photos by Brittany Johnson


he Nitty Gritty is known throughout Madison, and most of Wisconsin, as the only place worth celebrating your birthday. It has become a local tradition, but behind the novelty lies a work ethic and dedication to innovation which has sustained the Nitty’s position as the cornerstone of local dining. I spoke with Bill Bugiyne, the kitchen manager, about maintaining the restaurant’s unique energy, the birthday tradition, and the legendary Gritty sauce. According to Bugiyne, managing the kitchen at the Nitty Gritty has been the result of a career spent in the food service industry. “I started out as a dishwasher and worked my way up” Bugiyne said. From working at Halversons to Quiznos to Fresco, Bill steadily climbed his way through the kitchen. “The Nitty provided a new challenge for me, working in volume service as opposed to fine dining.” Each step of the way provided new opportunities to learn however: “You learn on your feet…it’s much different from a classroom, you can’t go and ask the professor something,” Bugiyne said. His years of cooking experience are evident in the selection of burgers that the Nitty offers. In one month, 23 different burgers of the day are offered. Everything from Gyro Burgers to Stroganoff Burgers have graced the Nitty menu, and the selection changes as new ideas are put forth.


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Bill is grateful for the changing burger menu so he can exercise his culinary creativity. “I have all the freedom in the world,” he said, “The sky is the limit.” Additionally, the Nitty Gritty runs a monthly ‘Next Top Burger’ contest, and welcomes input from the staff. A willingness to risk a bad burger has kept the Nitty ahead of its competitors and has even led to some surprising successes. “Our Gritty burger actually came from one of our employees,” Bugiyne said, referring to the restaurants signature burger. The Gritty sauce on these burgers is a tightly held secret, but a hot commodity. “We go through 15 gallons of Gritty sauce a week,” Bugiyne estimates. The sauce has expanded beyond its humble beginnings, topping everything from fries to onion rings. It’s hard to escape the fact the Nitty Gritty

has branded itself as “the official birthday place of Madison.” There is a dry erase board on the wall with the names of the days celebrants, and each is read off to the clanging of a bell and much applause and cheering. “Certainly some days, you can only hear the screams of the birthday celebrants – I think it keeps some people from coming. We even have sippy cups for toddlers, there are people in their 70’s and 80’s who have been coming here for years,” Bugiyne said. When asked about his dream job, Bill answered immediately: “I’d like to open a bistro, with seating for 85-120 people, not too big.” He sees this as the culmination of his experience as a chef. “I’d like to take the knowledge I’ve gained and open my own restaurant.” From dish-washing to managing a full kitchen, Bill Bugiyne has experienced every aspect of the food industry. n

The Gritty sauce on these burgers is a tightly held secret, but a hot commodity. “We go through 15 gallons of Gritty sauce a week,” Bugiyne estimates. The sauce has expanded beyond its humble beginnings, topping everything from fries to onion rings.


The Dish | Spring 2013






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Spring 2013 Issue  

This spring, "The Dish" invites you to celebrate the junction of Wisconsin tradition and Madison modernity. Wisconsin’s food culture is defi...

Spring 2013 Issue  

This spring, "The Dish" invites you to celebrate the junction of Wisconsin tradition and Madison modernity. Wisconsin’s food culture is defi...