After nearly 40 years of service, Nau-Ti-Gal is closing

"After careful consideration of a number of factors, we have decided to not reopen Nau-Ti-Gal," the post reads.
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After nearly 40 years of serving the Madison community on Lake Mendota, Nau-Ti-Gal Waterfront Restaurant is closing.

In a Facebook post from owners Bill and Jack von Rutenberg announced the restaurant will not reopen for the 2022 season, but its other business, Mariner’s Inn will remain open.

“After careful consideration of a number of factors, we have decided to not reopen Nau-Ti-Gal. Thank you for all your support, and for your friendship. We have tremendously enjoyed serving you,” the post reads.

The owners plan to expand seating and live music at Mariner’s to accommodate the Nau-Ti-Gal customers. Any gift certificates for Nau-Ti-Gal can be used at Mariner’s.

“We are incredibly grateful for all the wonderful team members we have worked with, and for all the wonderful guests we have had the privilege to serve,” Jack von Rutenberg says.

LZ Ventures, a real estate development company, has also proposed plans to demolish the restaurant to build an apartment complex along the Yahara River, according to The Waunakee Tribune.

Since 1983, the restaurant has racked up more than 83 Best of Madison awards, and 25 of those were gold.

“Outdoor dining in Madison didn’t really exist when we first started Nau-Ti-Gal, and then we got five acres of land with the restaurant,” Jack von Rutenberg told Madison Magazine last year. “We were kind of the pioneer of true outdoor dining in the city.”

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