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Side Door Grill and Tap

Side Door dining roomIn a word: Doors of convection.

The specs: #01048  
240 W. Gilman St., Madison 53703
Details at Yelp, official web site, Facebook, Twitter

Latest Side Door Grill and Tap news and reviews

JM ate the Korean BBQ chicken.
Jean ate the churrasco flatbread.
Nichole ate the veggie sandwich and grapefruit juice.
The bill was about$12/person, plus tip.
JM gave Side Door Grill and Tap a B+; Nichole gave Side Door Grill and Tap an A- (see our grading rubric).

JM rung out some endings with a quick stop (for the third time) at the cafe under Samba.  It is now called Side Door and it turns out to be about the most Madison thing ever.  Weary college students stumbled through, one wall is entirely covered with beer signs, the place makes fish fry and also Korean BBQ chicken. There's al fresco dining and the same interesting bathrooms. (You can read all about the building and its evolution in chapter 6 of our book.)

Nichole asked for grapefruit juice and our wonderful server brought out a veritable goblet filled with not one but two small cans' worth. Being a fan of Texsun, she was impressed. Her veggie sandwich was less impressive, but still nice and flavorful, and very Madisonny.


JM thoroughly enjoyed nomming on the special Koran BBQ chicken. It came out more as chicken strips, unbreaded and nicely prepared with a very flavorful sauce.  It might have been a little cold for his liking, but the kimchi (great leaves of faceslapping goodness) more than made up for it.  The lemonade was also close to JM's ideal. Nicely sweet & tart without being watery.

Korean BBQ chicken

We were joined by Jean who had the churrasco flatbread, which came out on a hearty wheat (and certainly puffy) crust. That said, the meal didn't quite come together as well as she'd hoped and some of the ingredients were not quite as fresh as others. Still the menu is deep and rich, and there other things that each of us would have been willing to try on a future visit.

Churrasco flatbread

Toward the end of the meal, a Madison moment happened. A student patron entered the dining room, and sticking out of said student's backpack was a rolled up paper from an oversized Post-It pad, such as the ones corporate denizens might use for brainstorming. The only readable word: "solidarity." Never stop being Madison, Side Door. Never stop.


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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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