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“SLOW service, ok food, trendy decor”
Review of The Wise

The Wise
Ranked #606 of 990 Restaurants in Madison
Price range: $8 - $22
Cuisines: Gastropub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Bar scene
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
Description: The Wise is a great meeting place for lunch, cocktails and evening dining. We host a number of events and neighborhood gatherings each month as well serving our plated weekend brunch on Saturday and Sundays. Seasonal food and drink menus focus on area producers, farmers and ranchers. Badger fans love the view of Camp Randall stadium and the Vilas/Monroe Street area is an amazing part of town! Stop in and see us for William Hill Wednesday with LIVE music by Patrick Ferguson and $5 glasses of William Hill wine.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level 6 Contributor
146 reviews
109 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
“SLOW service, ok food, trendy decor”
Reviewed September 22, 2013

First the positive - - good location on the corner of Monroe and Regent Streets near Campus and Camp Randall. Some parking available underneath the hotel, including a valet option. Decor is trendy and the restaurant offers a spacious outdoor seating area. While the servers were nice the service itself was SLOW. We were one of two tables and it took forever to get drinks and not very complicated entrees. Perhaps the servers, all young college-aged adults were hungover from the Badger game the night before. The food itself was just okay, it certainly didn't feel like you're eating anything special as the menu and website implies, but perhaps options other than brunch could prove me wrong. The poached shrimp and crab salad was good, but on what felt like a cheap croissant. Portions are relatively small. Somewhat pricey for what you get.

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank uwred1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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41 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    24
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    1
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
San Antonio, Texas
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
“Outstanding Breakfast”
Reviewed August 12, 2013

We had breakfast at The Wise three times while staying at the Hotel Red. We had different selections each time, and they were all delicious and the right portions. The staff was very friendly, and even accommodated our request for sandwiches to-go. During our two-week vacation, which included three nights in Chicago, the breakfasts at The Wise were our top dining experience.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank TAEarly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John B, Manager at The Wise, responded to this review, August 23, 2013
TAEarly,

We are very glad to hear about your experience at The Wise! It's great to know that among such great restaurants, you chose us not once or twice, but three times! We can't wait to see you again! Enjoy your travels.

John Bauer
Executive Chef
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“It's a MUST if you are in Madison!”
Reviewed August 9, 2013

Artful environment, nestled into the lobby of Hotel Red at the corner of Regent and Monroe Streets, directly opposite UW's Camp Randall stadium.
The service is fabulous and the food outstanding! Weather permitting, dine on the lovely patio.
Many dishes are locally sourced.
For breakfast/brunch I cannot recommend the Seafood Benedict any higher. Two perfect poached eggs atop house-made seafood cakes atop tomato and lettuce and covered in a lovely sauce. Served with a cup of fruit. Add one of their bloody mary's and you have a King's brunch!

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank LarrySharp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John B, Manager at The Wise, responded to this review, August 23, 2013
Hi, Larry!

Thank you for the kind words! It's great to have people from the area coming in and visit us. Seeing them come back week after week is even better! Our Fall menu will be out soon but don't worry, the seafood Benedict isn't going anywhere!

John Bauer
Executive Chef
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level 5 Contributor
72 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Conversation, a bit, and a drink after work”
Reviewed August 7, 2013

Had been wanting to try this place for some time. The hotel itself is very sleek, modern, and Euro-styling. I had heard good things about the restaurant/bar, and stopped by after work with a friend. We sat outside and had a great evening. The small plates/appetizers are enough for dinner if you want something light or to take the edge off your drink.

I had the flat bread, which was fantastic. A light, sweet tomato sauce, basil, asparagus, and just a few dabs of fresh mozzarella. Not heavy, but very tasty. My friend had the crab cakes, which were generous and not greasy. Good crab taste and a good sauce on the side - not just some junk tarter sauce.

They have an extensive drink menu, with lots of good beers, wines, and cocktails. Happy hour runs until 7 PM, making if perfect for after-work.

For later evening, the menu features "small plates," which are meant to be shared.

The restaurant/bar is part of the lobby, and has a variety of seating options. it seems to be lively, but not the college crowd that you might expect across from the football stadium. (Of course, I was there in the summer, but it's not a cheap-beer-and-fries sort of place. A bit upscale feel, but still casual and affordable.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank WiscPedalGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John B, Manager at The Wise, responded to this review, August 23, 2013
WiscPedalGal,

Thank you for taking the time to leave us some feedback. Good or bad, we truly appreciate hearing what our guests have to say. And thank for taking advantage of our outdoor patio area! There's something about kicking back and relaxing with a beautiful view of Camp Randall in the background. And you should see it on football Saturdays! What a rush. Thanks again!

John Bauer
Executive Chef
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“The food and service were great”
Reviewed July 28, 2013

It was restaurant week and my friend and I decided to try the Wise in Hotel Red, Madison, WI. I selected the gazpacho soup, chicken salad on a croissant, and a decadent torte that tasted just like fudge. Our server, Paige, was so attentive. We really enjoyed our overall experience. Restaurant week prices are also very affordable.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank tripofthemonth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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