A trip down Gluttony Road

I'm not proud of what I'm about to share with you, friends. I have done far, far greater things in my existence than what I accomplished this weekend. As someone who prides herself on being fit and eating healthily, what I am about to show you does not reflect my entire outlook of enjoying a balanced life. Moderation went out the window, and with it, so did a little of my dignity. Follow me, will you, on a trip down Gluttony Road...

Friday night, Eric and I headed to Madison to see the Minneapolis punk band Banner Pilot. I'll write more about that show later, but as this post is dedicated to gluttony in its truest form, we'll begin at a little place called the Paradise Lounge.
The Paradise Lounge is a typical dive bar that serves a very atypical burger: The Dise Burger. The Dise Burger is hands down the best burger I have ever had - and that's saying a lot. It's greasy, oozy, savory and sweet. The lightly-toasted, buttered bun essentially disintegrates in your hands - which is why it is necessary to use a minimum of three napkins while eating.
Nearly every time we visit Madison, a trip to the Dise is a must. It's more an addiction than tradition, I'm afraid. Other things that must happen while at the Dise: You must play $5 worth of songs on the jukebox, and you must drink plenty of these:
We finished up at the Dise at about the same time all our jukebox picks ended. We had a few drinks before heading to the show. After the show, we met up with friends at a nearby bar, where we stayed until after closing. Many of the above were slugged.

We didn't get home until around 3 a.m., which, if you know me, is waaaayyy past my bedtime. And I slept until almost 10 a.m. the next morning, which also is waaaaaayyy past my wake-up time. Needless to say, my body was all sorts of out of whack, and upon my waking I immediately needed water, coffee and something big, delicious and artery-clogging for breakfast. To the Original Pancake House we went!

The Original Pancakes House, in Middleton, is your typical breakfast diner, specializing in pancakes (of course), waffles, gigantic omelets and sweet crepes. It took everything I had not to order the entire menu, but I think I narrowed it down quite well.

First up: The Three Beverages. After a night of imbibing, one beverage simply will not do for me. Coffee is standard, as is water. The third beverage is drinker's choice: either chocolate milk or orange juice. Saturday morning called for chocolate milk.
Apparently, it also called for not one, but two breakfast dishes in one. That's right, my friends, my order for the morning was the bacon waffle:
At first glance, this may just look like a standard waffle, topped with crumbled bacon pieces. Oh no, kiddos, THIS waffle had bacon pieces mixed right into the batter. It was a very special thing.

As if a breakfast dish that actually was two breakfasts in one was not enough, I added to it a side of hashbrowns, which are not pictured because I wolfed them down faster than my shutter speed could catch. The were perfect: crispy on the outside and creamy and soft in the middle. I can't decide if I liked them even moreso than my waffle.

I rolled out of the restaurant feeling completely stuffed. I'm not proud to say that I ate nearly the entire waffle with bacon (I gave Eric a fourth of the waffle) and polished off the hashbrowns, as well. I could have certainly gone the rest of the day without eating.

But, of course, I didn't.

We drove back to Milwaukee, cleaned up, relaxed for about an hour and then headed over to the Downer Theater to catch "The King's Speech." The theater was packed, especially for a 4:20 showing! Apparently, everyone wanted to squeeze this film in before the Oscars. And maybe I'm the only one who thinks this, but I was completely underwhelmed with the movie. Perhaps I went in with such high expectations after hearing from everyone how fantastic it is, but I was just mildly entertained. Colin Firth deserves the Best Actor Oscar for sure, but I'll admit, out of the six Oscar-nominated film I've seen, this is probably my least favorite, with "Black Swan" coming in at the top (I've yet to see "The Social Network," by the way).

After the movie, we walked across the street to Cafe Hollander, and apparently everyone else in the theater had the same idea - it was wall-to-wall in there, and we had to wait about 35 minutes for a table. So we killed some time taking a look at their beer list (Cafe Hollander has over 100 beers to choose from!), and we ended up choosing the same one: The Corsendonk Christmas Ale.
It was a really great beer, with hints of nutmeg and cocoa, but also slightly fruity. I was definitely glad I picked it.

I'd only ever been to Cafe Hollander once before, for brunch. Taking a look at their dinner menu, it was hard to choose! Though I'd just had a beast of a burger the night before, I couldn't turn down the Tulip Turkey Burger, which was topped with Sriracha mayo and bottomed with curried ketchup. 
It was phenomenal. The spicy mayo and curried ketchup complemented each other perfectly - both flavors were distinct, but they mixed so well. The butter-topped bun was soft, sweet and lightly toasted. I was really impressed! But can we please talk about Cafe Hollander's frites?? Ohhhhhh, the frites. A perfect crispy texture and just the right amount of salt. I don't know what they're seasoned with, but they were some of the best fries (excuse me, "frites") I've ever had. I only allowed Eric to eat three of them.
For the third time this weekend, I completely cleaned my plate, and even though I was absolutely stuffed (a recurring theme, you might've picked up), my sweet tooth got the better of me. Eric suggested we try their bread pudding, as bread pudding is one of his favorite desserts. In my nearly 26 years, I have never once tried bread pudding. After tasting the bread pudding a la mode at Cafe Hollander, I realized those 26 years were not complete. It was delicious. It tasted like Christmas drizzled with caramel.
So there you have it, gang - one weekend that probably wrecked the last 10 workouts I've done. And I have to say, it was probably worth it. But oh, how I crave tomorrow's Meatless Monday. Veggies are calling my name. But, you know, right after I polish off this hot chocolate....


  1. Great post! And my weekend was sooo similar. Instead of "Dise," insert "Krolls."

    Also, based on some of your previous posts, I thought you were a vegetarian. I am so relieved to discover that you are not. ;)

    BTW, my nephew will like your comments about Cafe Hollander - he's the manager and will soon be the manager for the new Cafe Benelux which will open in the Third Ward.

  2. Thanks Mike! No, I am not a vegetarian, though I do go meatless pretty frequently... not counting last weekend, of course. I think the only thing keeping me from going vegetarian is my affinity for BBQ pork and, of course, the Dise Burger.

    I didn't know your nephew was the manager at Cafe Hollander! I really loved it - I love the interior, the massive beer list and the food was fantastic. He's got a returning customer in me, for sure!


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