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Bryan drank the New Glarus Belgian Red.
JM ate the Doritos and drank a Sprecher root beer.
Kristine drank the Capital Brewery Wild Rice.
Kyle drank the New Glarus Belgian Red.
Nichole drank the Dark Horse raspberry ale and the extra pour of Belgian Red (thanks, Bryan!)
The bill was just $7, or $3.50/person, plus tip.
JM gave Malt House a B+; Nichole gave Malt House an A (see our grading rubric).
No, Malt House does not have food (unless you count the chips). Yes, they have quite possibly the best beer selection for a craft beer bar in Madison. The choices run several pages (we felt like beer in the headlights, rim shot) and are sorted by provenance and type. There's enough there to keep neophiles entertained for a long time, and/or regulars happily coming back. Even beer ignoramuses like Nichole are comfortable with the knowledgeable staff.
Between us all we sampled a few different tipples that tended towards the tame, but delicious. The Wild Rice is a summer specialty of reliable local Capital Brewery; the Dark Horse raspberry ale was likewise summery but not too fruity. Kyle and Bryan's New Glarus Belgian Reds were sweet and complex but drew from the peanut gallery the (probably undeserved) comparison to fruit roll ups. We were having enough fun to be lax on the notetaking, so we think there was also a Red Eye Scarlet 7 floating around, a Belgian dubbel brewed w/ caramelized Black Mission figs, but we're not sure. (Dang, guess we'll have to go back.) For the more adventuresome or bohemian, absinthe is also on the menu. What you won't find at Malt House is anything that reminds you of making love in a canoe.
By the time we left at about 6, the place was hopping with a diverse crowd. Malt House is definitely filling a niche.