Further update, 12/8/2014: Luckenbooth is closed.
Update: Luckenbooth has moved to Black Earth.
In a word: Stands in an Arena by itself.
JM ate the French toast, sausage biscuits and gravy with an apple juice.
Nichole ate 2 eggs easy with Lorne sausage, soda bread, and a coffee.
We split a piece of raspberry swirl pie.
The bill was $19, or $9.50/person, plus tip.
JM gave Luckenbooth Restaurant an A-; Nichole gave Luckenbooth Restaurant an A (see our grading rubric).
Latest Luckenbooth news and reviews
If you're going west on Hwy 14 and you pass the fiberglass mouse outside Arena Cheese, you've missed Luckenbooth Restaurant, "the best little restaurant tucked behind a gas station." While it is a bit of a drive (at least $5 in gas), Luckenbooth would be a fine stop on a trip to American Players Theatre or the Shoe Box, for example.
Quiet, cozy, and full of good baking aromas, the restaurant is decorated in bright yellows and blues, with holiday lights on trellises, fresh flowers on the tables, and an art show in progress.
This sleepy Saturday morning seemed the perfect time to start with dessert. The pies on offer included caramel apple, butterscotch, coconut creme, and raspberry swirl. Our ever-indulgent server helped us decide by describing each in detail, which is how we ended up with this gorgeous slice of raspberry swirl.
The pie was as good as it looked. An extraordinarily delicate graham cracker crust held up a layer of not-too-sweet whipped, sugared cream cheese, and then a similar layer whipped with raspberries, all topped with whipped cream and chocolate syrup. It went well with decent cup of coffee (Nichole passed on the special "cappuccino," guessing by the flavors offered - flavors? - that it might be of the canned powder variety.)
Breakfast arrived hot on the heels of pie. JM's standard biscuits and gravy order was decent without including anything heroically biscuity. The flavor of the sausage base was merely adequate. But the French toast was the star of the show. The rich and deep flavor held its own against toppings (butter & syrup) and never surrendered.
Who knew 2 eggs, choice of meat and toast would be such a feast? When she saw the buttered and grilled soda bread, Nichole was thrilled that she'd managed to order raisin toast without even trying. The bread was biscuitlike as soda bread should be, but included caraway seeds and raisins, an interesting combination.
The Lorne sausage patties, made of seasoned pork and beef, had character as well. According to our server, the restaurant has the local Piggly Wiggly make their Lorne and Cumberland (link) sausages from traditional Scottish recipes. Which we can totally believe, since we heard at least one lilting Scots accent coming from the kitchen.
This kind of breakfast can be found within the confines of Madison proper and Dane County generally, but if you're close don't pass Luckenbooth by.