« PaintBar | Main | Papa Jimmy's Pizzeria »


In a word: Tikaled our fancy.

The specs: #01003   
5906 Hwy 51, McFarland 53558
Details at Yelp

Latest Palenque news and reviews

JM ate the combo plate 11 (burrito, taco, enchilada with queso) and a lemonade.
Nichole ate the carnitas with an horchata.
The bill was $25, or $12ish/person, plus tip.
JM gave Palenque an A; Nichole gave Palenque an A- (see our grading rubric).

This location in McFarland has been home to some very unfortunate Mexican places. So let's say that our hopes were not high as we walked in. After perusing the menu, we thought the fare seemed to be fairly standard Mexican-American with a couple of twists. 

Now, briefly, the negatives of Palenque:

  1. There is no anteroom to catch cold air, so if you sit by the door during winter you get to feel cold every 4 minutes.
  2. There's a salon next door, and their scents are noticeable.

There was nothing not to like about the food, which was all at the top of the comfort food game.

Nichole got a carnitas plate which was like movie popcorn in a good way, buttery and tender.  This dish was served with the standard fajita sides of tortillas, rice & beans and a guac salad. The horchata was about the best version of it she's had in town. Not too watery nor too milky, it was loaded with cinnamon.


JM's smothered enchilada and burrito were tasty and filling, while the taco was a smallish letdown. The cheese sauce really was the star here and it's incorporated into many plates. The ground beef fillings were not larded with potatoes or needlessly heavy. 

Combo plate

Palenque's most notable Madison competition is the venerable (and venal) Laredo's (boo). Even if we're boycotting L's for a time, it is hard to imagine we'd end up at Palenque instead of Cuco's or Los Gemelos on account of distance, which explains the minus behind Nichole's A. But in its category, Palenque is great on a warm day.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The comments to this entry are closed.


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.



About Follow madisonatoz on Twitter Contact
Blogroll Ad 
Free Blog
Read our book and food tour
Dish du jour Creative Commons License subscribe to RSS Subscribe
Memo to restaurants Bloggers' Rights at EFF Quizzes
Reflections BlogWithIntegrity.com Tip jar
Banner image by Kayla Morelli, Red Wheelbarrow Design