Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A Quick "Hop" To Madison, Wisconsin

Although I am very much a planner, sometimes it's fun to be spontaneous. Husband is that kind of person who doesn't mind mixing it up a little. He pooh-poohed all my travel books and decided where we were going as we sat in our car. (If you are a Type A personality, this kind of thinking will kill you...and makes packing impossible.) As I wrestled with what direction, north, south, east or west, we ended up in Madison, Wisconsin where we did a lot of walking, a little shopping and of course some beer sampling.

Madison is as eclectic as any other big city, but since this is also a college town, it's filled with university students too. Makes us old people feel young, heh heh.

On State Street (the main drag) we cooled down with a pint of beer called "Hopalicious" from Ale Asylum and a vanilla cupcake from a local bakery. Yum. I don't know, I kind of like beer and cupcakes!

What's also nice about Madison is that it still has that midwest charm of a smaller city, but has enough in it to entertain the tourists, like art and music venues, a variety of eateries (from traditional bratwurst to Asian-fusion dishes,) state capitol tours, shopping and of course, some really great micro-breweries.

Which is why we had to stop at the new location of Ale Asylum, a craft brewery and "tasting room," which has a tremendous local following. What I like about this brewery is its "hoppy-edge." Everything from the taste of their beer, to the cool decor, this place definitely has it's own unique style. This isn't your typical brewery. You can eat there, lounge upstairs on their couches or sit outside in their beer garden and see how their hops are growing!

Most of our friends know that Husband and I are intent on creating beer and coming up with unique food pairings. It's our thing, in fact I'm in the process of designing the invitation for our beer tasting party that we're planning right now.

So if you're ever in Wisconsin, you won't regret your stop in Madison. Whether you explore the five lakes that surround the area or go just to taste the beer, you won't be disappointed.


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