Living in Madison is absolutely fantastic, and even more so when some of my favorite people come to visit me! There is nothing I love more than spending time with my family and my brother.
If you’ve ever been to Madison, you will know how beautiful it is– especially in the summer time. There are so many fun things to see and do and places to eat. Though we only had a weekend, we literally crammed it with good food and tons of exploring.
The Dane County Farmer’s Market is definitely one of my favorite things about Madison. There are so many unique stands (including cheesy bread, spring rolls the size of your head, fresh fruits and veggies, and tons of baked goods)– but I hope to give your more info on that at a later date! And to top it all off, the market is held on the Square, directly surrounding Madison’s State Capitol building. If you haven’t ever been, it’s definitely a place to check out. It’s absolutely gorgeous inside and out, and open to the public (I think most of the time anyways?)
Anyways, the market and State Street offer tons of great spots for a bite, whether it be just quickly or a place to sit down and hang out. The place that we chose it just a couple of minutes outside of downtown, located in a shopping area called Hilldale. Hilldale boasts shops, restaurants, a CycleBar, and even a Target!
Cafe Hollander is the perfect spot for shoppers, as well as anyone looking for a fantastic place to eat. The brews are supposed to be awesome as well, but we didn’t save any room for a beverage this day! On top of the great food and drinks, the set up is absolutely beautiful. There is a rooftop, an outdoor patio, and indoor seating that can be both opened or closed, allowing for an insanely beautiful spot on a nice sunny day in the summer. Honestly, the set up in Cafe Hollander is just as impressive as the food.
Speaking of the food… The menu is sure to keep you busy for at least ten minutes while you struggle to make a decision. Every item on the menu sounds absolutely delicious. Cafe Hollander offers both “traditional Wisconsin food” (aka cheese curds) as well as some fancier dishes such as Dutch Quarter Jambalaya or Roasted Tomato Squash Noodles.
Of course, our food ended up being insanely delicious. Since this spot is so close to me for the remainder of the summer, I can’t wait to go back again!
I appreciate restaurants that do things a little bit differently! If they add their own spin, I think it makes it a little bit extra fun! For example, Owen’s burger had fried pickles and CHEESE CURDS– topped with a pretzel bun. I love that it isn’t the traditional bun! Same thing with my Mom’s sandwich. Instead of the standard sandwich bread, her sandwich was on ciabatta, which is a true step above just a normal chicken sandwich on a bun. Not to mention– my Mom is the sweetest gem and got sweet potato fries (and let me snag a few) which is major. 🙂
As for my salad, obviously was delicious. I am (and always have been) the type of person who orders a salad when they go out to eat. I don’t think it ever really started, I just have always been a salad person. The bleu cheese was my favorite, but I also really appreciated the ranch dressing because it was unique, and seemed to be homemade. Not to mention, there was avocado (one of my favorite foods on the planet), a hard boiled egg– which is another one of my favorite salad toppings, as well as some delicious lime chicken. So for anyone who is like me and enjoyed salads at restaurants, this is definitely a safe bet!
Cafe Hollander is an absolutely adorable spot to enjoy with guests from out of town, or friends from the area. Fantastic setting, plenty of options, and delicious food! I would highly recommend if you’re ever looking to grab a solid bite to eat a little bit outside of downtown Madison.