A Foodie’s Guide to Madison, WI

Home » A Foodie’s Guide to Madison, WI

Dearest D-RAVEL Traveler,

My name is Madison (@madisonpincombe) and I am originally from/currently residing in Madison, Wisconsin. While I was not named after the capital city, it is the inspiration behind the name of my blog: Madison From Madison. Throughout the sixteen years I’ve called Madison my hometown, I’ve tried tons of different kinds of food. These are the restaurants, coffee shops, ice cream shops and more that are unique to Madison and perfect for a photo. I think I’ve crafted the perfect foodie’s guide to Madison, WI…so let’s get started!


  • DLUX has long been my family’s special occasion destination. This restaurant is right off of the capitol square and has delicious burgers, milkshakes and cocktails. Be sure to order the parmesan and truffle fries on the side!
  • Café Hollander is a perfect brunch, lunch or dinner spot. This European-style cafe has an extensive beer menu and award-winning bloody marys. Their house-made dipping sauces are an amazing addition to fries or a Wisconsin classic, cheese curds.
  • The Great Dane is a brewpub with multiple Madison locations. With tons of house-brew options and a full appetizer list (cheese curds, pretzels, nachos, wings), you’re sure to have a great meal. 
  • The Old Fashioned is a tavern located right on the capitol square. The menu is filled with Wisconsin signatures including cheese curds, a Door County cherry salad, Wisconsin beer cheese soup, Green Bay-style chili, brats and fish fry.
  • Short Stack Eatery is a go-to Madison brunch spot. Just down State Street, a line can always be found out the door on farmers’ market Saturdays. Whether you want sweet buttermilk pancakes with WI maple syrup or savory cajun biscuits and gravy, the Short Stack menu has you covered.
  • Ian’s Pizza is the place to go for a quick bite to eat or to curb your late-night cravings. Try out the best selling mac n’ cheese pizza or my favorite, the penne alfredo pizza.

Coffee Shops

A Foodie's Guide to Madison, WI | d-ravel.com
A Foodie’s Guide to Madison, WI
Grace Coffee Co.
  • Grace Coffee Co. is my recent favorite coffee spot because of its creamy coffees and Insta-worthy interior. If you’re lucky, the cutest Bernese mountain dog may greet you at the door!
  • Colectivo Coffee has locations on the capitol square and on State Street. When the weather is nice, they’ll open the garage doors to provide the perfect coffee-drinking atmosphere.

Ice Cream

  • The Daily Scoop is located in the University of Wisconsin Memorial Union as well as on its Terrace when the weather permits. You can enjoy Babcock Dairy ice cream inside throughout the year or at the lake-front throughout the summer. 
  • The Babcock Dairy Plant and Dairy Store produces signature dairy products for the University of Wisconsin – Madison. You can visit their plant to learn more about the process and test out all of their iconic flavors such as orange custard chocolate chip and union utopia.
  • The Chocolate Shoppe is a chain shop that serves Wisconsin-made ice cream. They offer over seventy six super-premium flavors as well as various non-dairy options. There is a location right on State Street.


  • The Dane County Farmers’ Market is unique in that it takes place around the four sides of the capitol and is the largest producer-only farmers’ market in the country. It’s hard not to walk away with loads of sweet treats, fresh fruits and veggies or a loaf of Stella’s cheesy bread.

There are tons of quality restaurants and shops in Madison, but these are the ones I keep returning to. Be sure to tag @the_d_ravel if you try out my Foodie’s Guide to Madison, WI!