chow in northcentral wiscon
Hey, Dan, I see you haven't had many replies for 3 weeks or so now. Not surprising, as there are really few exceptional dining spots that I know of around north central Wisconsin. Stay away, especially, from Wausau; the town will not even support an Olive Garden or Red Lobster--too exotic for the locals. They are thrilled, however, with the relatively recent addition of an Applebee's. (I should also relate here perhaps one of the greatest culinary disasters I have experienced: I went to a local supper club, and saw that spaghetti with red clam sauce was on special; upon being served the dish--I am not making this up, I swear--I found huge clots of ground beef floating around with my clams. It appeared that someone was trying to "stretch" the old meat sauce by dumping in a can of clams.) Also in Wausau: The dogs at Minos have the audacity of serving up tired old pre-frozen, breaded veal patties in their supposedly Italian dishes, and they charge extortianate prices for it. Their red sauce seems to come, unadorned whatsoever, out of a can--totally lacking in any flavor or spiciness. In Wausau, you could do a little better at Iozzo's. Steer clear of the pre-frozen ravioli, but at least they seem to use real (not pre-fab) veal. I've heard that the Silver Coach in Steven's Point (mainly Cajun) is good, but have not checked it out myself--they are open only after suppertime, not for lunch. And in Manitowish Waters, there is another Cajun place, Blue Bayou, expensive but exquisitely good for this area, and opened, unfortunately, only during the summer. Lastly, if you head east to Appleton, try Victoria's for Italian food (actually run by a Mexican gentleman). They take a few liberties (use of jalapeno peppers in some dishes!!!), but they have very extensive selection, portions are huge, and the prices are so good you'd think they were running a money-laundering operation. Also, very economical lunch-time menu.
Let me know if you want some insight on Chinese places around Wausau/Merrill.
Bon Appetit. --Bruce
It's a ways northeast of Madison, and I can't say it is fine eats, but it is certainly an experience - look for the Pyramid. It's a--- Pyramid -- in the middle of a cornfield. Good juicy King Tut burgers and an interesting Wisconsin relish tray on Oklahoma-made Frankhoma pottery in the Mayan pattern, with waitresses in Swiss outfits (thought the last time I was there it was an egyptian patterned fabric) Just follow the King Tut road signs. A friend & I found it quite by accident on our way to Door county and couldn't resist. I hope it is still there. Kind of an "only in Wisconsin" experience.