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“View of the Lake, good fish, good service, great ambience” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Captain Bill's Waterfront Restaurants

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Captain Bill's Waterfront Restaurants
2701 Century Harbor Road, Middleton, WI
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Ranked #37 of 84 Restaurants in Middleton
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: American
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Restaurant details
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Lake Street, Allen Blvd
Description: Captain Bill's waterfront restaurant features award winning seafood in a rustic, casual and fun waterfront atmosphere. Recently voted “Best Seafood Restaurant” in the Best of Madison poll, Captain Bill's diners rave about the clam chowder, crab cakes and coconut shrimp. Escape to our waterfront deck, enjoy an ice cold beverage, a mound of shrimp and oysters, crab, lobster or our Friday night fish fry. Happy hour Monday thru Friday from four to six.
Middleton, Wisconsin
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
53 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“View of the Lake, good fish, good service, great ambience”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2013

I love Captain Bill's! It's just a comfortable place with good food, good service and a cozy atmosphere whether sitting by their great firepit or on the patio in the summer months for a view of the lake and great crab cakes! It's fun - it's great for a date night and wonderful bartender's with great old fashion drinks from the past or speciality drinks that are new and fun to try. I always ask for Ali when she is availabe as she is a sweet and prompt waitress. All their servers are excellent and the management has improved the cooking a lot over the past year. I know that the restaurant needs some updating so I didn't give it a 5star but, on the otherhand, I still like it a lot and always feel good when I leave there.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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55 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Captain Bills has a super Friday Fish Fry!!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2013

It is always fun to go to Captain Bills, what ever the season may be. It is fun to get there a little early an enjoy the lake views, the cool fish aquariums, maybe sit around the rd. fireplace area in the bar, and the food, especially, the Clam Chowder, the bread and the tuna is super delicious!

Visited April 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Top Contributor
104 reviews 104 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
“Clam Chowder served to perfection from the shores of Lake Mendota”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

The Von Rutenberg family has been serving great food to those who visit Madison and locals for years - since 1993 at Captain Bills, so "when in Rome, do as the Romans" - when you visit Captain Bills you must have the Clam Chowder. Delicious. We are not "regulars" but do visit 3-4 times per year as schedule permits. She always has the pan seared scallops and as always, found them perfectly prepared and served. I tried the Cedar planked, Atlantic Salmon. It was served with a honey, brown sugar, mustard glaze that provided a nice accent with the cedar. Both dishes were nicely complimented with perfectly prepared asparagus and choice of potato or rice. Service was efficient without being obtrusive or annoying - we enjoyed our meal, the view (1st water skier of the season), and casual conversation without having to compete with typical boisterous restaurant patrons who feel they "must be heard". Captain Bill's may be "weathered" around the edges but who among us isn't...the warm hospitality and delicious food, contribute to
it's charming crab shack, harbor side atmosphere - go for the food, the charm, the service and the lake view - and I know you'll enjoy your visit, we did.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
McFarland, Wisconsin
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
65 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“Real good service, good Clam Chowder, poor kitchen”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2013

Three of us went there to celebrate a birthday. The clam chowder was delicious and the view of Lake Mendota was good. However two of us ordered steaks, one medium, one medium-well. First time they came out, they were both rare bloody messes. Waitress was very apologetic (seems she's had this problem many times) and we got them back and again they were barely medium-rare, still a lot of blood coming out. We told them to "burn the s***' out of them" and finally the third time was charm and we got one medium to medium well, and the other nearly well done. The waitress was very nice and offered us a free cocktail (which was quite strong, too, not watered down). Vegetables that came with all the meals were bland and undercooked. Dinner bread was fairly good and the fancy butters were a nice touch. Overall I don't think I'd go back, food didn't really blow me away other than maybe the Clam Chowder and for the price there's better places in the area.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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Middleton, Wisconsin
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
42 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“poor service, ok food”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2013

ordered kids meals right away, but they didn't come until we had gotten our salads, had to send steak back, wanted Medium and rare(very rare). seated in the bar, felt like we were seated there because of the kids.

Visited March 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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