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Alchemy

Where are you eating and what do you think? What's opening, closing, succeeding, failing?

Postby Brainraid » Sat Jun 21, 2008 11:48 pm

HBK - how about some details on what you ordered?

3 weeks ago, 3 of us, $30 for 4 beers, dinners and an app. Ample servings and reasonably priced. More than generous portions on the kickass huge onion rings (homemade beer batter and not out of the Sysco freezer bag) plus two very tasty and contrasting sauces. I had the salad with the kalamata vinaigrette, subtle but very good. Friend had the kabobs with the hummus and house-made chimichurri. Wife had the BLT with the fried tomato and the house wedge fries which were some of the better attempts I've had of home-made fries I've had around town.

Beers on tap were a variety of the average local micros plus Rogue Dead Guy and a New Holland(I think) Kolsh, all at $3.50 each, less than you'd pay closer to downtown I would say.

It is noted that we left before the bluegrass band started up so I cannot claim to know their volume.

While I loved and frequented Wonders, the Alchemy does food right and costs less than the Weary or the Harmony. We'll be back.
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Re: Alchemy - Save you dough

Postby Mark Snowden » Sun Jun 22, 2008 12:31 am

HBK wrote:This place is nothing but a disappointment - I cannot remember which of the various Isthmus or WSJ reviewers gave it the raving review - but the issue of the quality of reviewers in this town, I think already exists on another thread.

So we went - Ear Splitting Blue Grass Music greeted us on entry.. Are you even supposed to play Blue Grass at ear splitting levels? One companion mused; does anyone even like Blue Grass? I concede that some people do and that is fine. Just not my thing.

So you look at the Menu - looks OK, perhaps a bit spendy, buy boasting local ingredients, local economy, know the farmer, etc... The food shows up. The portions seemed ridiculously small for the price. Immediately I am thinking, "rip off" (but trying to stay positive). Sample food, no flavor. How such seemingly interesting ingredients were put together in such a manner to be devoid of flavor was somewhat amusing. So again ample food, still thinking "rip off". The bill arrives, now confirmed RIPPED OFF.

I am happy to pay for quality dining experiences with quality ingredients. But the quality was lackluster, the price high, the service OK - and am not a Blue Grass guy. Will not be back – there are plenty of other lackluster places to visit that are not so loud and less expensive.

Where do you eat where you get a better sandwich and side with table service and live entertainment for less than $7.50?
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Postby TheBookPolice » Sun Jun 22, 2008 10:35 am

fennel wrote:No, I'm just being literal. (Exactly, whose home was it made in?)

Jesus. That's what we need. More obnoxious literalism.
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Postby jjoyce » Sun Jun 22, 2008 11:22 am

I wish I lived closer. As I've said before, Madisonians are nothing if not completely and angrily loyal. Alchemy isn't Wonders. To some, it's yuppier or whatever. I guess I don't understand how Wonders, a micro-brew oasis on a block full of biker joints, wasn't a yuppy bar. I mean, the place had ferns!

Alchemy serves good, local food at a really, really good price.
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Postby fennel » Sun Jun 22, 2008 12:53 pm

TheBookPolice wrote:
fennel wrote:No, I'm just being literal. (Exactly, whose home was it made in?)

Jesus. That's what we need. More obnoxious literalism.

More properly, it's an honest lack of euphemism. Say what you mean, and mean what you say, and all that.
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Postby Mark Snowden » Sun Jun 22, 2008 1:08 pm

jjoyce wrote:I wish I lived closer. As I've said before, Madisonians are nothing if not completely and angrily loyal. Alchemy isn't Wonders. To some, it's yuppier or whatever. I guess I don't understand how Wonders, a micro-brew oasis on a block full of biker joints, wasn't a yuppy bar. I mean, the place had ferns!

Alchemy serves good, local food at a really, really good price.

Thank you, voice of reason.

You know, I lived in Seattle for 12 years and I don't think I heard the term "yuppie" twice. I guess it's devolved into Midwestern slang for "someone younger than me who makes more money than I do, and is therefore the focus of my whiny jealousy." I also see the 'angry loyalty' in some of these posts, but I don't understand what they are loyal to. To "Wonder's"? The guy sold the place! There's nothing to be loyal to anymore! To some sort of non-yuppie, cheap, large-portion, no music aesthetic? I don't know, sounds to me like Denny's with wood furniture.
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Postby Madsci » Sun Jun 22, 2008 2:01 pm

jjoyce wrote:I wish I lived closer. As I've said before, Madisonians are nothing if not completely and angrily loyal. Alchemy isn't Wonders. To some, it's yuppier or whatever. I guess I don't understand how Wonders, a micro-brew oasis on a block full of biker joints, wasn't a yuppy bar. I mean, the place had ferns!

Alchemy serves good, local food at a really, really good price.


I was is Wonders twice. The first time a friend and I came in for lunch. We sat at a table for 20 minutes without seeing any employees. We went up to the bar and asked the few customers seated there if anybody was working. They shrugged and so we left. The second time was years later I went with a friend for dinner and to watch the house band. It was much different, prompt serve, good food and a good time.

My point is that one can have a bad experience one time and have a good experience another.
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Postby Stepbrother » Sun Jun 22, 2008 6:52 pm

the 'homemade' chips are made there, dumbasses. i can't believe how many absolutely insane claims of culinary knowledge are being thrown around in this thread without someone actually pointing out that just about anywhere with fresh chips takes tortillas, cuts them, and puts them in the deep fryer. no one would ever think twice about this at a mexican restaurant, but since it's alchemy, with 'kids' in their '20's' making 'hoity-toity' 'pretentious' 'yuppie' food, someone here has to insinuate that maybe the health department should check out what's going on.
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Postby steveo » Sun Jun 22, 2008 9:06 pm

Wonders did not have one fern in the place! Than you have to ask yourself what came first the biker bars or wonders?

jjoyce wrote:I wish I lived closer. As I've said before, Madisonians are nothing if not completely and angrily loyal. Alchemy isn't Wonders. To some, it's yuppier or whatever. I guess I don't understand how Wonders, a micro-brew oasis on a block full of biker joints, wasn't a yuppy bar. I mean, the place had ferns!

Alchemy serves good, local food at a really, really good price.
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Postby fennel » Sun Jun 22, 2008 9:18 pm

Stepbrother wrote:the 'homemade' chips are made there, dumbasses. i can't believe how many absolutely insane claims of culinary knowledge are being thrown around in this thread without someone actually pointing out that just about anywhere with fresh chips takes tortillas, cuts them, and puts them in the deep fryer. no one would ever think twice about this at a mexican restaurant, but since it's alchemy, with 'kids' in their '20's' making 'hoity-toity' 'pretentious' 'yuppie' food, someone here has to insinuate that maybe the health department should check out what's going on.
Sorry, but I have to ask: Can you read?
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Postby TheBookPolice » Sun Jun 22, 2008 10:07 pm

fennel wrote:Sorry, but I have to ask: Can you read?

Yes, Stepbrother, can you read?

Because fennel is insisting on defeating years upon years of colloquial use of the word "homemade," and instead advocating for a nuance-free English language wherein words are only used for their dictionary definitions and no other.
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Postby fennel » Sun Jun 22, 2008 11:02 pm

TheBookPolice wrote:
fennel wrote:Sorry, but I have to ask: Can you read?

Yes, Stepbrother, can you read?

Because fennel is insisting on defeating years upon years of colloquial use of the word "homemade," and instead advocating for a nuance-free English language wherein words are only used for their dictionary definitions and no other.

Bookie, your library credentials are hereby revoked. Perhaps you are more credulous of ad-speak than I am, but to suggest that "homemade" is not descriptive but merely suggestive of a something that just, oh I dunno, evokes wholesomeness, or some such blather, is to suggest that no one need speak clearly, directly, or honestly.

If you think colloquial nuance is a license for dishonesty, you should have a long heart-to-heart with Scott McClellan.
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Postby TheBookPolice » Sun Jun 22, 2008 11:36 pm

fennel wrote:Perhaps you are more credulous of ad-speak than I am, but to suggest that "homemade" is not descriptive but merely suggestive of a something that just, oh I dunno, evokes wholesomeness, or some such blather, is to suggest that no one need speak clearly, directly, or honestly.

When it's a corporation, I hear you completely. When it's a single-site, locally-owned business, I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. Famous Amos can't pull off "homemade" anymore; Alchemy can.

fennel wrote:Bookie, your library credentials are hereby revoked.

Ha! Shows what you know, I have none!
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Postby Stepbrother » Mon Jun 23, 2008 4:25 am

fennel wrote:
Stepbrother wrote:the 'homemade' chips are made there, dumbasses. i can't believe how many absolutely insane claims of culinary knowledge are being thrown around in this thread without someone actually pointing out that just about anywhere with fresh chips takes tortillas, cuts them, and puts them in the deep fryer. no one would ever think twice about this at a mexican restaurant, but since it's alchemy, with 'kids' in their '20's' making 'hoity-toity' 'pretentious' 'yuppie' food, someone here has to insinuate that maybe the health department should check out what's going on.
Sorry, but I have to ask: Can you read?


can you go eat a dick instead of at alchemy?
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Postby Ducatista » Mon Jun 23, 2008 6:54 am

fennel wrote:If you think colloquial nuance is a license for dishonesty...

Oh, for crying out loud. Can you even see the ground from up on that horse?
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