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Sir Hobo's

Sir Hobo'sUpdate: 8/18/2014 Sir Hobo's is open again. Thanks, catwoman!
Update: 2/13/11 Sir Hobo's is closed due to fire. Thanks for the heads up, MadCityDad.

In a word:  This knight moves in mysterious ways.

The specs: #0596  
Address, hours & details via Isthmus;  reviews at Trip Advisor, Yelp, Insider Pages, City Search; listing at Eat Drink Madison; official web site, Sir Hobo's on Urbanspoon

Latest Sir Hobo's news and reviews

Brandy ate the ham and cheese omelette with hash browns.
JM ate the ribs.
Mark ate the cheeseburger.
Nichole ate the fried chicken with a decaf.
The bill was about $10/person, plus tip.
Brandy and Ethan gave Sir Hobo's an A; JM gave Sir Hobo's a B+; Nichole gave Sir Hobo's a C+ (see our grading rubric).

SpecialsOn the lighted sign out front, the eponymous Sir Hobo has a gourmet cookbook in his pack and the want ads under his arm. Inside we found a reasonably priced standard family restaurant menu and free cake.

Specials on the whiteboard included a tempting smoked pork chop. We stuck to the regular menu, which had liver and onions daily but no Monte Cristo ("I've never even heard of that!" said our server). 

Mark and Nichole each got soup. The chicken noodle was great, homemade and full of thick egg noodles and tender carrots. The French onion cut a couple corners with croutons and grated Parmesan but was beefy. A couple side salads of iceberg and Romaine with a cuke and a tomato slice were topped with Pollock-esque lashes of bright French dressing.

Soups and coffeeSalad

Lucky Ethan got the Mickey Mouse pancakes with whipped cream and loved them, calling them simply "awesome!"

Mickey Mouse pancakes

Brandy was also a fan of the breakfast for dinner theme ("brinner"?) and found her usual, the omelette, a great meal for little cost. JM ate all his ribs without much comment, saying just that the sauce was kind of boring. While these were far from meat candy, they were fine.


Mark's bacon cheeseburger was decent meat, well done by default, on a lightly toasted but unbuttered bun topped with melted American over crinkly, thin bacon. We didn't notice until later the unconventional choice to top the bacon, rather than the patty, with the cheese.

Nichole's chicken was fine and enough for leftovers, but in retrospect there are probably better menu items. The presentation, a pile of four pieces possibly from four different birds, was unpretentious to say the least.


Seasoned fries, regular fries, and hashbrowns were all fairly standard. Both dinners came with sides of veg, diced carrots, that could have stood a little longer in the microwave.

Seasoned friesAmerican fries

We were offered free slices of dessert from an impressive replica of the restaurant. Our server said the occasion was the owners' homecoming from a trip, and that the model restaurant had taken four days to make. When the staff sampled the Krispie Treat building they found it had gone stale for Art - luckily the yellow sheet cake parking lot had been the last step in the process and was fresh and moist.

Model cakeModel cake

Of course we had some, and laughed when our mouths turned dark purple. Ethan even got to keep a car, which was pretty cool.


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There are a couple things that fascinate me about Sir Hobo's.

1) The only thing I know about it is that pre-statewide ban, it was a great place to go and smoke with your meal (so says a friend).

2) The old sign, with rainbow lettering, (which can still be seen on Google Street Views) alternated yellow-orange-red-yellow-orange-red-BLUE-GREEN!, like the sign maker forgot that it was supposed to alternate all five throughout.

The funny thing about the Monte Cristo response is that their Sir Hobo sandwich basically IS a Cristo!

I just returned to Madison while working "throughout the world" over the past 25 years, don't I sound fab-not.

Anyways, love your site and love experiencing Wisconsin food again.

I am getting scared because I am becoming addicted to the Wisconsin Fish Fry-and not just on Friday's.

Love all the pics too, Gives me a good idea if I would enjoy the food.

Fried Lake Perch-yum.

Did you know you can't find Perch-either Ocean or Lake anywhere at any East Coast Restaurant. Why no love for the Perch on the East Coast?

This place is open again. Stopped by there this weekend with a friend because the Market Street Diner was too packed. We both had eggs benedict. It was nothing to write home about, but it was perfectly fine. As in, I'd go back if a friend wanted to go. It could be that breakfast is the thing to get here...

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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."

Madison Food coverInfo about our book Madison Food: A History of Capital Cuisine is here, or read it for free thanks to the library - print & ebook.



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