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Batch Bakehouse

In a word: Good for Madison’s bread basket.

The specs: #0503  
Address, hours & details via Isthmus; reviews at Isthmus, Yelp77 Square, Fearful Symmetries, Outside the Line, Espresso in Madison, TDPF, official web site, Batch Bakehouse on Urbanspoon

Latest Batch Bakehouse news and reviews

Morning bun and vanilla rollJM ate the bacon and cheese biscuit and part of a vanilla croissant.
Nichole ate the rest of the vanilla croissant and most of a morning bun with pecans and a coffee.
Ross ate the ham and gruyere croissant.
Samantha ate the ginger lemon muffin and a coffee.
We got a bag of dog treats, too.
The bill was $22, or $5.50/person, plus tip.
JM gave Batch Bakehouse a B+; Nichole gave Batch Bakehouse an A- (see our grading rubric).

We're always excited to hear about new patisseries in Madison. Always. It's not that we don't have love for C's, Cafe Soleil, Clasen's, Greenbush, Ironworks, La Baguette, La Concha, Lane's, Madison Sourdough, Manna, and People's, but for a city Madison's size we wish it were a little easier to get to a good loaf of bread, preferably on foot.

That said, the timing of our visit before a road trip meant we only tried Batch's breakfast pastry, coffee, and dog treats (woof!). The bread we saw was beautiful. The Intelligentsia coffee was good, hot, and very necessary at 8 AM.

Bacon and cheese biscuit

Back in the car, the sturdy, filling morning bun was tricky to deal with but so worth a few crumbs. It even stuck to the back of your teeth, which is either high praise or  a word of caution. JM found the bacon and cheese biscuit a titch dry, but that's nothing a bottle of milk (coming soon to Batch's cooler) couldn't have fixed. The vanilla croissant was a good recommendation, and probably the best of the, uh..., batch. The bottom layer was caramelized to perfection and the vanilla sugar did hold its own between the layers of flaky dough.

Samantha reported that the ginger muffin was great - the top's edge was like a gingerbread cookie with a good citrus glaze. Every now and then a bite would have a bit of orange zest or real ginger. Ross's ham and gruyere croissant was both triumphantly photogenic and scrumptious. Every pastry was buttery, moist, and full of flavor.

Ham and cheese croissant

The people behind Batch were both friendly and passionate about their work. This showed in the way we were given a detailed tour of the whole pastry case on request. It was also pretty special to ask about the dog treats on the counter and hear the answer, "I baked those yesterday." We don't like to anthropomorphize but the lucky dog was clearly more keyed up about getting a Batch treat than a regular Milk Bone.

We'd go Batch.


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I'll try Batch if you try Scott's on University at Branch.

I can't help but wish for expanded hours, especially since I'm not a Willy St. resident anymore. But I understand the tough hours of running any sort of bakery, much less one with substantial risk/cost up-front (see also: La Baguette).

The vanilla swirl bun is indeed great, as is the little pizza dough knot with ham and cheese--although the last one I had was so crusty it actually gave me a decent cut in my mouth. Still, a great little place.

Chris: Alphabetical! Come on!

Ooh! Ooh! There's a new B that just opened in Middleton: Bloom Bakeshop. I think it has weird hours, but if you ever want to go there together, I'm game!

Overall, pretty good stuff. Probably currently a respectable third in quality behind L'Etoile bakery and Madison Sourdough.

This business is located way too close to my resident for my waistline. But the staff is the nicest of any place I've visited in Madison, incredibly patient and passionate about their product without any of the fake perkyness you get at other places on a Sunday morning.

The Pain au Chocolat is amazing. I've never gotten to try the various loaves for sandwiches as the bread never makes it to lunchtime in my household.

Why is everything a B+ or A-? I love your reviews but it would be more useful if a "C" was average and was the most given grade.

You're right. We do suffer from some grade inflation, me more than JM. :)

Grades are so subjective that we're sure not to please everyone, so we try to at least please ourselves and be clear about what our grades mean to us. Have you read the explanation?

At the end of each letter, JM averages our grades to further help readers understand what the scale is like. For that history, see the "reflections" posts.

Just visited on Saturday morning. I tried the almond croissant and bought a vanilla swirl for later. Also tried a bite of my friend's pesto gruyere pastry. For couple of years I've been addicted to the Oakhouse Bakery almond croissant, but now I may convert. This marzipan filling in this one is a little lighter and less candy-lke. I definitely recommend it. The vanilla swirl was also very nice, but I wouldn't have minded something a little less sweet. Still, I've never had anything quite like it before. It reminded me of a cinnamon roll, but smooth and silky.

Highly recommend this bakery. Next time I visit Madison, I'll probably be going back.

I asked if they'd be doing the farmer's market next year. They said they'd like to, but are still working on getting a solid clientel at their current location. They have, however, started selling their stuff at Willy St Coop. I'll be sure to pick it up there.

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Listen to The Corner Table podcast "Remembering Restaurants," aired December 24, 2020, where Chris and Lindsay talk with us "about the menus and memories left behind when restaurants go away."

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