“Parking spot reserved for old men with fat bellies,” on a sign was the first thing I saw at Madison’s Cafe, formerly known as Madison’s Grill. While “old” and “fat” was relative, I parked in the spot next to it, because you never know if that old man would need to put his fat belly in the spot I was going to take. This was just a glimpse into the sarcastic humor the place had to offer with its creative signs and unique design.
Under new ownership, the cafe still includes the old decor and photos of regulars, which makes the place feel cozier than other eateries. While the service was slow, the night flew by fast with how much I enjoyed the atmosphere and food that Madison’s Cafe had to offer.
The barstools at the very front provided a good seat for those who might be in a hurry or just want to talk to the friendly staff. Otherwise, the dining area was filled with booths and a few large tables, but most of the other tables could only fit four people. The whole place felt like an obscure blast to the past with some standard 90s rock radio playing from the TVs by the bar. The vintage signs were a nice sight to see, but it’s definitely a unique experience to see a sign that says, “The more you run over a possum, the flatter it gets,” next to “If you are grouchy, mean or just plain irritable there will be a $10 charge for putting up with you.” And I have never seen anything that so accurately describes a place like Madison’s Cafe.
They had a very diverse selection of breakfast, lunch and dinner foods, so it was nice to see four pages of front and back options available.Whenever a place serves all-day breakfast, I can usually tell if I’m going to like the place or not, especially if the menu includes biscuits and gravy, and lucky for me, the cafe did. My lactose intolerance makes me hesitant to eat anything that includes milk that is not delicious and boy, that first bite of the slim biscuit had me forgetting about the stomach pains later. Their gravy was so smooth and creamy, filled with just the right amount of sausage flavor, it reminded me of home cooking. My three other friends who came with me all got pancakes, but one also ordered the Madison’s Cafe Skillet.
Green pepper, potatoes, country fried steak, sausage gravy, cheese and your choice of egg on top is what I tasted when I sampled the skillet. It’s safe to say the Madison’s Cafe Skillet was a jumble of flavors that worked so well together, but you couldn’t taste an individual thing. Good or bad as some people might see that fact differently, I liked the skillet overall, and it seemed to display the cafe’s ability to combine multiple flavors and make them somehow work.
As for pricing, all three of my friends and I ate a small meal for about $30. Two of my friends split a stack of pancakes, my other friend and I got full meals plus coffees and tea. So, not bad, but with the high prices on some of the items, it was hard to tell if they would be worth it. It was $4.45 for a fruit bowl as an entree. That’s a no from me, especially on my college student budget.
Overall, I really enjoyed Madison’s Cafe. I’d recommend people stop in, the small, cozy and old timey atmosphere offers something for everyone to enjoy.