Skip to content

The Old Fashioned Part 2 Where Wisconsin is King-Madison, WI

What’s Up With Far-Away Foodie Friday and Meg? It’s anything that is not located in South Carolina. It was after Christmas and I was hanging around Wisconsin, again spending a few days in Madison, one of my favorite cities in the USA.  I apologize in advance because

I’ve written about this place before. One Day of Gluttony in Madison Wisconsin

But, after another visit, I decided that the cheese curds maybe, probably, likely, topped my number one pick so I need this frame of reference in my blog world. And, I just love this place.

 Here are some of the words that I wrote from that past blog. “…I could write on this subject all day long so to sum it up in 100 words or less is a tall order. There have been PBS films made about the Wisconsin fish fry and the Supper Club experience. Imagine growing up in a place that has 10,000 lakes and you have a cottage on one of them. There are campfires, marshmallows, a hometown tavern or two or twelve, and a Supper club. Maybe you didn’t have a cottage but for sure you had a tavern or two or forty,  and a supper club…”

From The Old Fashioned Website, they describe themselves as “Inspired by the traditions of Wisconsin taverns and supper clubs, The Old Fashioned exists to pay tribute to the foods and spirits that make our state famous. Here, that means so much more than beers, brats, and cheese. Don’t worry, we take all those things very seriously, but we’re equally committed to preserving the unique heritage that defines our way of life. When you walk through our doors, you’ll not only experience what Wisconsin was, you’ll taste what it always will be.”


This place completely nails the Wisconsin fish fry and bar experience from start to finish.  Walking in the door, the decor is so spot on.  The fish in the case, the deer horns from deer camp, farm seed and beer signs and calendars, and scenes from the 10,000 lakes of Wisconsin and it’s cottage life.


Lighting and art in The Old Fashioned Madison, Wis

But, it is the food that is reminiscent of the state that has been so thoughtfully thought of and brought to this experience, which makes everything pure perfection. To say it is not simply bar food is an understatement.  Words like local-regional-heritage-handcrafted-housemade were a thing before it was a thing.

For example, and stay with me here, let’s take a burger bun. Because I have moved to several of the states and spent some time in Canada, I realized quickly that there is not a place outside of Wisconsin where I have found a hamburger bun that tastes like the burger bun of my home state. There are many reasons for this and I really should write a blog just about this. First of all, there are actual bakeries. Not a bakery in a grocery store a real dang bakery. Secondly, this area was populated by Germans and Dutch and they brought the bread-making with them. A Semmel roll is a bit crunchy, a bit, on the outside and soft on the inside.  This place drives 100 miles to pick up their buns from a certain bakery. So spot on!

Pictured is The Old Fashioned House Burger-grilled over a live fire and topped with fried onions, Bavaria’s hickory-smoked bacon, aged Cheddar, garlic sauce and a soft-cooked egg on a buttered and toasted roll…..$12.95  Personally, I am not into the egg but this was about the dang bun, Bavarian bacon, and aged cheddar. Get it?


The Old Fashioned House Burger

They have killer appetizers. Among them are the cheese curds, the reason that i am writing this blog. Like that future bun blog, I need these curds documented.  Farm fresh squeaky cheddar, lightly battered and deep-fried.  Just perfect. I haven’t had such perfect cheese curds since tasting at one of the men’s club booths at The Marathon County Fair in 1922.  Haunting.


Cheese curds at The Old Fashioned in Madison Wisconsin. My first place pick for Wisconsin Curds.

Although I don’t remember beer cheese soup being served around my part of Wisconsin in the old days, it seems to be everywhere now and this place has a really delicious one, I do remember things like chicken dumpling soup, and for sure chili. Their chili is called Green Bay – Style Chili, Our secret recipe Chili slow simmered beef and red beans served over spaghetti; add shredded Cheddar, onion and sour cream at no extra charge.


Green Bay Chili at The Old Fashioned in Madison, Wisconsin.

Plump Door County cherries, Buttermilk Blue cheese, and toasted almonds tossed with mixed greens and brandy vinaigrette. You try to hustle up something more Wisconsin.


Salad at Old Fashioned with cherries and brandy because you try to top that.

Jim’s Blue Ribbon Summer Sausage, grilled and topped with Düsseldorf mustard, shaved red onions, and Muenster cheese on toasted rye bread.


Summer Sausage sandwich at The Old Fashioned.

Because some people just have to. *To note, this is a single. But that bun. Sheboygan’s Grand Champion Miesfeld Market double bratwurst with raw onions, pickles and brown mustard on a buttered Highway Bakery hard roll.


Brat Sandwich at The Old Fashioned.

For the purists in the crowd aka as Grandma, the Wisconsin Burger is just right. – Grilled over a live fire and topped with Cheddar cheese, olive oil mayonnaise & raw onion on a buttered and toasted bun.


Cheeseburger perfection at The Old Fashioned in Madison, Wisconsin

From my past blog and the dinner menu, The Beer-Battered Perch Fry with fresh bakery rye bread.

The Old Fashioned perch fry

Old Fashioned Perch Fry

And for the day drinkers in my group- The namesake.


Old Fashioned Person of the hour.

And, just in case you need some love, something pickled, cheese, sausage, or an old fashioned kit, they have you covered.


From the cold case at The Old Fashioned in Madison, WI

5 of 5 MEGastars for a Wisconsin food experience with an authentic touch. Spot on!


  1. if you visit Madison Wisconsin, do not miss this food experience. The Old Fashioned of Madison, Wisconsin





No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: