Best of Madison

Best of Madison 2012

The people have spoken -- quite loudly

By: Cara Harshman

What does Mickies Dairy Bar smell like on a chaotic Sunday morning breakfast rush? How does bath time at Waggin’ Tails Doggie Dude Ranch sound? What makes Hopalicious such a good craft brew?

These are the types of questions this year’s winners answered. Whether it’s bath time, relaxation time or chow time, the 2012 Best of Madison catches the winners at their prime. We in Madison have endless options on where to eat, drink, do yoga, and have our clothes dry cleaned and cars fixed. You can go anywhere once but what is the vibe that separates the best from the rest? Since 1981, when readers cast 1,000 ballots to vote for the likes “best skuzzy bar” and “best dressed man,” a lot and a little has transpired. The word “skuzzy” has exited our lexicon and Madison Magazine is in color. Yet 31 years later, 600 % more ballots cast (that’s right, about 60,000 ballots) and the best hamburger is still Dotty’s and Ella’s Deli is still the best place to take kids.

The people have spoken—quite loudly—and here are the winners for Best of Madison 2012. 

Best Restaurant
Nostrano
The Old Fashioned
Sardine

New Restaurant
Merchant
Buck & Honey’s
Umami

Upscale Dining
L'Etoile
Tornado Steak House
Johnny Delmonico's

Lake View
Paisan's
Sardine
The Admiralty Dining Room (at the Edgewater)

Best Ambience
Eno Vino Wine Bar and Bistro
Quivey's Grove
Weary Traveler Free House

Breakfast
Marigold Kitchen
Mickies Dairy Bar
Original Pancake House

Brunch
Great Dane
Sardine
The Old Fashioned

Neighborhood Bar
Weary Traveler Free House
Blue Moon Bar & Grill
Harmony Bar & Grill

Burger
Dotty Dumpling's Dowry
Nitty Gritty
The Old Fashioned

Outdoor Dining
Great Dane
Paisan's
Otto's

BBQ
Smoky Jon's #1 BBQ
Brickhouse BBQ
Fat Jacks Barbecue

Caribbean
Jolly Bob's
David's
Jamerica

Chinese
Imperial Garden-West
Chang Jiang
Umami

Fish Fry
The Avenue Bar
Quivey's Grove
The Old Fashioned

Greesy Spoon
Mickies Dairy Bar
Cottage Cafe
The Curve

Indian
Maharaja
Swagat India
Taste Of India

Italian
Lombardino's
Paisan's
Greenbush Bar

Japanese/Sushi
Sushi Muramoto
Restaurant Muramoto
Ginza of Tokyo

Kid-Friendly
Ella's Deli
Culver's
Roman Candle

Mediterranean
Bunky's Café
Otto's
Mediterranean Café

Mexican/Southwestern
Pasqual's
Laredo's
Eldorado Grill

Nepalese/Tibetan
Himal Chuli
Chautara
Taste of Tibet

New Orleans/Cajun
Louisianne's ETC
New Orleans Take Out
Liliana's

Pizza
Glass Nickel Pizza Co.
Ian's Pizza by the Slice
Roman Candle Pizzeria

Seafood
Ocean Grill (now closed)
The Blue Marlin
Captain Bill's

Southeast Asian
Sa Bai Thong
Lao Laan Xang
Bandung

Sports Bar
Nitty Gritty
State Street Brats
Babes Restaurant & Cocktails

Supper Club
The Old Fashioned
Tornado Steak House
Smoky's Club

Bakery
Greenbush Bakery
La Baguette
Lanes Bakery & Gift Shop

Butcher
Jacobson Bros. Quality Meats and Deli
Ken's Meats & Deli
Knoche's Butcher Shop

Brewpub
Great Dane
Ale Asylum
Vintage Brewing Co.

Craft Brew
Spotted Cow (New Glarus)
Hopalicious (Ale Asylum)
Warped Speed Scotch Ale (Lake Louie) 

Cheese
Carr Valley Cheese Company
Hook's Cheese Company
Cedar Grove Cheese

Chocolate/Candy Shop
Gail Ambrosius Chocolatier
Candinas Chocolatier
DB Infusion Chocolates

Coffee/Café
Barriques
Ancora Coffee Roasters
Java Cat

Deli/Sandwich Shop
Fraboni's
Ella's Deli
Gino's Italian Deli

Ethnic Grocery Store
Fraboni's
Asian Midway Foods
Yue-Wah Oriental Foods

Grocery Store
Metcalfe's Market
Woodman's Food Market
Willy Street Co-op

Ice Cream/Custard
Babcock Hall Dairy Store
Chocolate Shoppe
Culver's

Specialty Food Store
Brennan's Market
Willy Street Coop
Fraboni's

Art Gallery or Museum
Chazen Museum of Art
Madison Museum of Contemporary Art
Overture Galleries

Arts Group
American Players Theatre
Madison Symphony Orchestra
Children’s Theater of Madison

Live Music Venue
High Noon Saloon
Overture Center
Barrymore Theatre

Movie Theater
Sundance Cinemas
AMC Star Fitchburg
Point Cinema

Museum
Madison Children's Museum
Chazen Museum of Art
Madison Museum of Contemporary Art

Performance Venue
Overture Center
American Players Theatre
High Noon Saloon

Public Golf Course
University Ridge
Door Creek
The Oaks

Local Celebrity
Bo Ryan
Tammy Baldwin
Scott Walker

Morning Radio Team
Connie & Curtis, WZEE-Z104
Jonathan & Kitty, 105.5 Triple M
Pat O’Neill & Bob Bonner, Magic 98

Radio Personality
Sly in the Morning, WTDY 106.7 FM & 1670 AM
Vicki McKenna, 1310 WIBA AM
Fish, 93.1 Jamz

TV Personality
Charlie Shortino, NBC 15
Leigh Mills, NBC 15 and Rob Starbuck, WISC-TV3
Carleen Wild, NBC 15

TV Team Evening Anchors
Sarah Carlson, Eric Franke, Jay Wilson, Gary Cannalte, WISC-TV3
Leigh Mills, John Stofflet, David George, Robb Vogel, NBC-15
Greg Jeschke, Amber Noggle, Bob Lindmeier, Jake Zimmerman, WKOW 27

News Website
Channel3000.com
Madison.com
NBC15.com

Alterations
Mary's Tailoring
Monetti Tailoring
Binh's Tailoring

Auto Dealer
Zimbrick, Inc
Jon Lancaster
Smart Motors

Bed & Breakfast
Mansion Hill Inn
Arbor House
Speckled Hen Inn

Bike Shop
Budget Bicycle Center
Williamson Bicycle Works
Machinery Row Bicycles

Body Shop
Zimbrick Body Shop
Gates Auto Body
Smart Motors

Bookstore
Frugal Muse
University Book Store
A Room of One's Own

Caterer
Blue Plate Catering
Cranberry Creek Restaurant & Catering
Gaylord Catering Service

Clothing (Men)
Jazzman
Kohl's
Context

Clothing (Women)
Bop
A Stone's Throw
The Purple Goose

Consignment Store
Pink Poodle
ReTreads
Betty Bling

DJ For Hire
Juke Box Bandstand
Celebrations Entertainment
B Kuhl Entertainment

Dry Cleaner
Klinke Cleaners
Lake Mills Cleaners & Dryers
Best Cleaners of Madison

Fitness Center
Princeton Club
Harbor Athletic Club
Capital Fitness

Fitness Shop
Fleet Feet Sports
Moving Shoes
Endurance House

Florist
Felly's Flowers
Choles Floral
George's Flowers

Furniture/Home Accessories
The Centruy House
Rubin's
Roughing It In Style

Gift Shop/Specialty
Store Orange Tree Imports
Pop Deluxe
Little Luxuries

Hair Salon
Aniu Salon & Spa
Hair on Monroe
RZ & Company 

Hotel
The Madison Concourse Hotel
Hilton Madison Monona Terrace
The Edgewater Hotel

Jeweler
The Diamond Center
TQ Diamonds
Goodman's Jewelers

Lawn, Garden & Landscape
Bruce Company
Jung Garden Center
Johannsen's Greenhouses

Martial Arts Studio
Villari’s Martial Arts Center
Badgerland Jiu-jitsu
Infinity Martial Arts

Music Instrument Store
Ward-Brodt Music Co.
Spruce Tree Music & Repair
Guitar Center

Music Store
Strictly Discs 
Exclusive Co.
B-Side

Pet Day Care, Boarding & Pamperer
Camp K9
Ruffin ‘It Resort
Waggin’ Tails Doggie Dude Ranch and Pet Lodge

Pet Store
Mounds Pet Food Warehouse
Mad Cat Pet Supplies
Bad dog frida

Shoes
The Shoe Box
Morgan's
Cornblooms

Spa
Aniu Salon & Spa
Kneaded Relief Day Spa & Wellness
Ultimate Spa & Salon

Veterinarian
And Dogs Too
UW Veterinary Care
Spring Harbor Animal Hospital

Wine & Spirits
Steve's Wine, Beer & Spirits
Woodman's Food Market 
Barriques

Yoga/Pilates/Wellness
Dragonfly Hot Yoga
Inner Fire Yoga
Kneaded Relief Day Spa


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