The Fresh Blog
Be a Madison Mallards VIP this Summer from Fresh Madison Market!
May 20, 2013
You and three other friends can be VIP’s at an upcoming Madison Mallards Game! When you are a VIP, you get table-top service with great views of the action, a personal waiter/waitress, free ballpark food (all you can eat) and free drinks (limit 3 beers per person)! We are holding a fun Facebook contest RIGHT NOW to find the winner! Just click here, caption the photo and get friends to vote. The person with the most voted for caption WINS! We will have 3 other contests happening every two weeks for other games! Enjoy your summer with the Madison Mallards, Budweiser and Fresh Madison Market!
Do you want to be the hit of any party by knowing what cheeses go with which beers? Then join us for our fourth and final Goose Island Educational Class on June 6th. Classic Beer & Cheese Pairings 101 – tickets are only $15! Click here! Plus, Chef Andy will have several appetizers for you to enjoy!
Do you love Pinterest and want to see what is happening locally with the very popular photo sharing social site? Then join us Tuesday (May 21st) for “Pin-It Madison”! Bring your Pinterest boards to life and find inspiration! Tickets are available – first glass of wine is free and you’ll get plenty of tasty appetizers! It starts at 5pm at the Waunakee Village Center.Tags: Baseball, Beer, Budweiser, Cheese, Facebook Contest, Madison Mallards, Pinterest, sushi
Posted by Jeff Maurer
Big Week in Madison!
May 13, 2013
It’s a big week on campus as students hit the books harder and seniors prepare to take that next step. Fresh Madison Market wishes all of you good luck on your finals. Remember, Fresh Madison Market is open until midnight each night for those late night cramming munchies. Be sure to check out our weekly specials and this week’s coupon
And, if you are looking for gifts for friends, or anyone looking for gifts for graduates, be sure to check out our gift baskets or get a gift card! Plus, if you are planning a graduation party, or know someone who is, let us help you with our catering staff! We can take the trouble out of planning any large party coming up! Just click this link and learn more about what Fresh Madison Market offers in terms of catering, party platters, etc.
Our very popular Cooking class is this Thursday, May 16th with Fresh Madison Market’s Chef Andy in our upstairs event room. This week, we are featuring the Jan Kris Winery, a favorite of ours! Chef Andy will pair bottles with poached white fish on fennel, a wonderful Anti Pasta and seared duck! For more information and to buy tickets, click here!
Speaking of tickets, Fresh Madison Market is a proud sponsor of The Best of Second City Benefit for Gilda’s Club Madison. The show is at the Capitol Theater at Overture this Friday, May 17th. Enjoy a lot of laughter and help support the Madison cancer community. Click here for tickets and information!Tags: Chef Andy Nighbor, cooking class, Downtown Madison Grocery Store, finals week, Fresh Madison Market, Gilda's Club, graduation, Jan Kris Winery, University of Wisconsin, UW Madison, www.freshmadisonmarket.com
Posted by Jeff Maurer
A Special Day for that Special Lady!
May 6, 2013
Show that special lady in your life how much you care…and treat her to a Mother’s Day Brunch she’ll never forget! Join us next Sunday May 12th for a peaceful morning with great food prepared by Chef Andy: a 3-course meal which will include Crab Cake Benedict, Prime Rib and French toast. While it is all you can eat, the meal will not be served buffet style! Kids under 6 eat free. Make your reservation TODAY because space is limited. Click here and read more about what will be served and to make your reservations! Oh…and we forgot to mention that mimosas and wine will be flowing through the entire meal, plus there will be a Bloody Mary Bar!
In case you missed our news last week, our family is happy to announce we are expanding our urban grocery store to another Big 10 Campus. In August of 2014, we will open a new store in West Lafayette near the heart of Purdue’s Campus. We are grateful to all of you, our Madison-area
customers, who have helped us grow here so we can now serve students and residents in West Lafayette who are in need of a family-owned and independently managed grocery store. Read more about the expansion by clicking here!
Gearing up for finals? We have the perfect study food on sale this week – Chobani yogurt for only 89 cents! Plus, check out our weekly specials and this week’s coupon – Blue or Yellow Nash Brother’s Trading Company Tortilla Chips for only 99 cents (normally $3.69)!
Two last notes – take some time this Saturday and March for Babies! Support the March of Dimes by clicking here and walking with others who are working together for stronger, healthier babies. And, enjoy a night of laughter with Second City and a benefit for Gilda’s Club Madison. For information and tickets to the May 17th event, click here!Tags: Big 10, Brunch, Chobani, Gilda's Club Madison, Madison, March of Dimes, Mother's Day, Purdue, Second City
Posted by Jeff Maurer
Mother’s Day Brunch and Buy One Get One Free!
April 29, 2013
May 12th is the day for honoring Mom, and we want to help honor all Mothers out there with a very special brunch! Join us for our Mother’s Day feast that morning and let Chef Andy treat Mom and the whole family! The brunch will be all you can eat, but it will not be buffet style. And children under 6 EAT FREE! Chef Andy will have Crab Cake Benedict, Prime Rib, French Toast and a specialty omelet fit for a queen! And, Mimosas, Rose wine and Bloody Mary’s will be flowing during the entire meal! SPACE IS LIMITED!
It’s time to take a walk! We are a sponsor of the March of Dimes “March for Babies” on May 12th. We will be feeding walkers fruit, donuts and fresh squeezed juice to start the event off the right way and will offer post-walk wraps and sushi and cookies! Please take some time out of your busy schedules to help premature babies – take part in the walk by clicking here and signing up!
On May 2nd, the UW Book Store will be reopening – look for our booth from 11-7 and get coupons and treats!
Speaking of coupons and specials – Have you seen our Buy One Get One Free sale this week? Gatorade, granola bars, avocados are just a few of the more than 10 items we have this week in our BOGO sale! Stop in and save! And, don’t forget our weekly coupon! Print it and bring it in for even more savings!
And, do you want to win a Golf Bag from Leinenkugels? Head to our Facebook Page and keep an eye out for an upcoming contest!Tags: Bloody Mary's, BOGO, Fresh Madison Market, Madison, March of Dimes, Mother's Day, Mother's Day Brunch, urban grocery
Posted by Jeff Maurer
The Home Stretch on Campus!
April 22, 2013
We had a great morning Monday with the All-Campus Party and Breakfast with Bucky! We were at three locations on campus handing out “fuel” to get students going for the start of their week. Students are on the homestretch for the semester and the year…so, any motivation is helpful, right? Don’t forget to look for us this weekend at Crazylegs! We will be waiting for you at Camp Randall when you finish!
We have often talked about the concept of “urban groceries” and how there has been a huge boom with developers looking to have groceries as part of their mixed-use buildings. We found this article that offers some more insight into the push for more urban groceries and how the design is so important. Fresh Madison Market certainly took all of these things into consideration for this grocery store. It’s a very interesting read!
In store this week, $2/lb off our Mozzarella Tomato Salad made fresh daily in our deli and $3 off Leinenkugel’s beer, plus, get a free glass with a 12 pack purchase! Don’t forget the weekly coupon! And, a reminder as you head into finals prep – if you are too busy to come and shop, do it online quickly and we will deliver it to you! Save time and keep studying and we’ll keep you nourished!Tags: Crazylegs, Fresh Madison Market, Leinenkugels Beer, madison deli, urban grocery
Posted by Jeff Maurer
Stump the Chef!
April 15, 2013
It’s time to Stump the Chef!
This week’s cooking class will be a great time as we ask students to break into groups. You will be assigned a course for dinner that Chef Andy will have to make and you head into the store to get the ingredients.
Your dinner depends on your ingredients and, of course, Chef Andy’s imagination!
The photo, by the way, is what Chef Andy created for last week’s Goose Island Beer Education class. Looks tasty, right?
Saturday April 20th starts the week long All-Campus Party at the University of Wisconsin. On Monday the 22nd, join us for Breakfast with Bucky! 7:30-11:00am we will get your ready for the day! Find us at three locations-East Campus Mall, Engineering Mall and Bascom Hill! And, don’t forget to sign up for Crazy Legs! It’s Saturday April 27th. Look for us after you run triumphantly into Camp Randall!
We have Chobani on special this week. Don’t forget to check out our weekly coupon and we have two samplings today (Monday April 15th). From 3-6pm, tasty gluten-free products from Rustic Kitchen and from 4-6pm a twist to the common margarita, the Straw-ber-Rita!Tags: Breakfast With Bucky, Chobani, cooking class, Fresh Madison Market, Rustic Kitchen, Strawbeerita, University of Wisconsin
Posted by Jeff Maurer
Beer, Coconuts and Movies!
April 8, 2013
What makes a beer a Belgian or a Belgian Style ale? No…it’s not because it’s made in Belgium. This week our cooking class will be focused on Belgians with Goose Island Brewery. This is the 3rd Goose Island Beer Education class we have done and Chef Andy will prepare a dinner to go along with the different samples of Belgian Style Ales. Click here to get your tickets for the Thursday April 11th event. Check our Facebook page on Tuesday for a contest – the winner will get a free ticket to the class!
Have you heard about the benefits of coconut water but haven’t had the chance to try it out? We can help! This Tuesday at the store from 11:00am to 7:00pm, we will be offering samples of Vita Coco Pure Coconut Water and Vita Coco will be on sale this week. Stop by and check out what everyone is talking about.
The Wisconsin Film Festival starts this week, April 11th through the 18th, and we are proud to be a part of the festivities. Find out more about the films and events by clicking here. Also, we are part of Crazy Legs this year. We will have a booth at Camp Randall for the end of the race. You can sign-up by clicking here. And, we are sponsor of the Madison Mini-Marathon in August. You’ll want to sign up for that event now before a price change goes into effect. For more information, click here!Tags: cooking class, Crazy Legs, Fresh Madison Market, Goose Island, Madison Mini Marathon, Vita Coco, Wisconsin Film Festival
Posted by Jeff Maurer
Swinging Into Spring!
April 1, 2013
We have a lot happening in the coming weeks to try and ease your Spring Fever…since the weather isn’t cooperating. Our Brewers Flag Giveaway is still underway! Come in and purchase a case of Miller Products and get a Brewers Flag to show your supports of the Brew Crew for the season. But, supplies are running low!
In the next few weeks, we will be giving away Brewers Tickets to new subscribers to our emails. Watch for details on our website or on our Facebook page, and then tell your friends! If they win, make sure they take you! We will be giving away 8 pairs over the entire summer!
Crazy Legs is a few weeks away. Sign up by clicking here. We will be there, so after the race, look for our booth. We will be there to get your “refreshed” after your run!
This Thursday, April 4th, is the last public hearing before the committee deciding on the new development for the 800 Block of East Washington. Fresh Madison Market is part of the design plans for two of the 3 development proposals. To learn more about the plans, please click here.
Don’t forget to check out our weekly in-store specials this week which include Idaho baking potatoes at $.19/lb from a regular price of $.69/lb, $4.99 for Gold ‘N Plump Chicken Breast regularly priced at $7.79 and Buy One Orv’s 12 inch Ultimate Rizer Pizza and get a second one FREE!Tags: 800 Block East Washington redevelopment Madison, Crazy Legs, Downtown Madison Grocery Store, Fresh Madison Market, Grocery Store, weekly specials, www.freshmadisonmarket.com
Posted by Jeff Maurer
I Left My Heart….
March 28, 2013
Our last day in California could not have ended on a better note (no pun intended). This day was dedicated to wine country, with VIP wine tastings ready and reserved for us at Cline Cellars in Sonoma and Raymond Vineyards in Napa. It was a trip that had us completely giddy with excitement! We hopped into our rented red Volkswagen Jetta and weaved our way through morning San Francisco traffic, ultimately looking to cross the Golden Gate Bridge that would take us over the morning sunrise on the bay and guide us through the green valley hills.
We found Cline Cellars easily and as we drove up their entrance driveway, eyed the many naked but strong vines linked a great distance along the road. From their parking lot we could see the green and rolling hills beyond their property in Sonoma and the wildlife just starting to stir and say their good mornings. We were warmly greeted by the Cline staff and met Connie, our property guide. Happily agreeing to a glass of their sparkling wine for starters, we left the main building and headed outside back to the front of the vineyard. The first thing she pointed out were two huge eucalyptus trees that were flown in decades ago from Australia. The essence of the leaves from the trees steeps itself into the nearby soil which infuses the grapes with that familiar smell from the leaves. It doesn’t affect every vine that is nearby as Cline also has sprawling ancient vineyards a few miles north of the property.
Another fact we learned about the creator of this brand, Fred Cline, was there is also a background of religious inspiration behind the wine. There is a dedicated Mission museum on site that showcases replicas of numerous coastal missions that opened along the state. There was also a large erected wooden cross behind their main building that was supposed to be a mission site, but it moved to Napa instead. Every year there is an Easter service held there which is attended by hundreds of locals. Along with the religious sense of this winery, they also have two donkeys coinciding with the donkeys mentioned in the Bible. Furthermore, this is also a winery that embraces family and traditions. Since part of the Cline family heritage is Italian, they have aviaries as simply entertainment. It is home to unique and colorful pheasants, along with beautiful doves that coo and sing to each other in nearby cages.
After a quick look into their vastly huge barrel room it was time to taste the wines! Because we were VIP’s we were ushered into the Pendulum Room, which is normally only open to case club members. We met another friendly staff member, who was going to guide us through their numerous selections of wine to sample. We were able to try as many varietals as we wanted and we also had the pleasure of munching on provided breadsticks, cheese and nuts. After enjoying Zinfandels, Viogniers, Roses and Mourvedres, we narrowed down our picks to four selections that we could not find anywhere else. They were winery-only picks, which was important to us and we wanted to be inspired by new flavors and creations. We took home 2010 Oakley Eighty-Two Red, a blend of Syrah, Merlot, Barbera, Zinfandel and Alicante Bouschet. This wine took our breath away as we had never tried a red wine such as this. An amazing blend of red grapes and very forward with taste. We also grabbed a bottle of their 2011 Sonoma Zinfandel- layered with flavors of raspberry and caramel; the 2010 Los Carneros Syrah- rich in deep plum and black cherry flavors with a hint of vanilla and coffee; and finally their 2011 Late Harvest Mourvedre- it’s similar to a Port but lighter in weight and juicier!
Our next stop was a drive towards Napa to visit Raymond Vineyards. As we entered into town it was a wine lover’s (me!) dream come true; wineries were nestled right next to each other and right across the street from each other. It was amazing to drive straight through and see the beautiful vineyards at every glance: Robert Mondavi, Nickel and Nickel, BV Coastal, Turning Bull, Chandon and that’s to only scratch the surface! When we arrived at Raymond we could already see the difference between this winery and Cline’s. While Cline Cellars seemed to be more historic and homey, Raymond’s property leaned more towards eclectic, modern and plush. Once inside, we found our VIP guide, Sara, and she gave us a walking glass of Merlot to sip on as we walked around the property.
The winery is definitely trying to stay in line with the winemaking trends as well as coming up with new and innovative ways to produce organic and eco-friendly wine. They have goats and chickens to assist with their practice of composting to enrich the grape soils. Instead of using pesticides to ward away aphids they plant small ground covering flowers to attract lady bugs instead (and they take car of the nasty pests). Like Cline, Raymond was also incorporating solar panels to help with the cost of energy in making the wines. It all creates a great circle of conservation and energy efficiency.
Once we were through with the outside walk we went inside where we could get a glimpse of numerous winery rooms: winemaker for a day, French tasting rooms, the Red Room, the barrel room and even a room that housed big glass jars of all the different soils that are from around Napa Valley. We then took our seats in their Wine Library which was where we were going to have our tasting. It was just off the popular tasting room, but it was quiet, nice, and cool in the room as it was home to a floor to ceiling selection of vintage wines ranging from 1975 to about 2005. Our table had a communal dish of crackers, a variety of cheeses and preset pours of wine. We had the privilege to sample seven wines, four of which were winery- sold only. All but two were Cabernet Sauvignons and all had unique and exquisite flavors. One of the wines we decided to purchase was a 2010 Sommelier Select Cabernet. It was created by a Sommelier that competed against other people of the same profession to create a wine of the season. The winner would then have his or her wine bottled and sold at this winery. And while we don’t know the name of the 2010 winner, it was the winner of the day for us as we snatched up more than one bottle of this stuff! We enjoyed a lengthy conversation and experience with our host and left with a very exciting selection of wine to take home and enjoy….and maybe even share.
As the sun began to sink lower in the Napa sky we decided to stay in this busy town for dinner, to truly end our California journey in the right place. Andy had spotted a restaurant that he had heard about and was eager to try, Michael Chiarello’s Bottega. We were extremely lucky to get a 5:30 reservation right away at this very popular Italian restaurant. Soon after we were seated the place filled immediately. As we got settled we chose a beautiful Chianti from Italy, Folonari. It was light, very little spice with just a hint of leather on the nose. Our server also brought us this incredible olive oil and Parmesan Reggiano and Grana Padano spread for the few warm pieces of bread that was presented to us. If I could have had a bowl of this oil, I would have! The oil was a lovely shade of yellow, garlicky and the cheese were in nice little chunks. A-mazing. Shortly after that elation subsided we were given our appetizers. I had a shaved brussel sprout salad which had whole Meyer lemon dressing, toasted almonds, sieved egg and a dash of Pecorino cheese. It was plated in a haystack formation and was just the right size. The lemon dressing was a bit dominant but it was fresh and helped curb the usual bitterness the vegetable can have. Andy ordered the grilled short rib meatballs. There were three on the plate, covered in a smoky, Sicilian heirloom tomato sauce and accompanied with cool roasted eggplant passata, cucumber, grapes, and housemade ricotta. The meatballs were very rich in flavor and if paired with any other appetizer could prove to be a meal all in itself.
Next were our entree selections and for our last night I decided to shift out of my comfort zone and try the goat milk braised pork orecchiette with chanterelles, cavalo nero pesto, pine nut gremolata, savory spinach and pecorino. I was not prepared for the taste of the goat’s milk as I am not normally a fan of anything goat, but it paired well with the pesto and spinach and made the savory dish quite pleasant! Andy wanted to try the chef’s special of the evening which was a two pound Dungeness crab dish with just a small side of toast with saffron aioli. The crab came served in a covered bowl and came piping hot and steaming. The proper eating tools were awaiting Andy to take the first snap and crack into the crab and away he went! There was plenty of grilled, buttery flesh within the crab and even though I am not a fan of shellfish, I couldn’t help but want to try just a little bit. And you know what, my life changed after that one bite! My impression of crab was always one that was fishy, smelly and not appetizing in the least. This time, the crab was perfectly cooked in a wood fire oven, had the taste of salt and sea and was buttery, smooth and delicious. I am now one big, crabby believer!
To end the night at Bottega, enjoying some of the best Italian fare I have had in many years, I ordered the Tiramisu- of course! I thought, great–a tasty little layered cake was about to come my way and I am sure the ladyfingers will be all I had had before. Chef Chiarello won again as no cake was placed before me, but a glass jar! It was small, clear, and displaying the multi-layers of dream worthy cream inside. It was topped with a chocolate and espresso gelato, a part of the dessert that was like putting satin in your mouth and just letting the cool flavor of it melt away. Once that was gone, it was time to dig into the jar and find the layers of crunchy cake that were separated with mousse and cream. I think the stars aligned by the time I was finished, it was that good.
Our culinary journey through San Francisco has now come to an end. What we found was that this city really is a melting pot of so many cultures and cuisines that it is difficult to label it with one specific food trend. We experienced everything from Japanese, American comfort food, Pacific Rim and Italian. Each moment was special in its own way and opened our eyes to what a big city has to offer. We hope San Francisco will welcome us back again soon, because we know that there are still many more bites to be had..by the city by the bay…
Posted by Jeff Maurer
Day 3 in San Francisco!
March 27, 2013
After two busy days of exploring downtown San Francisco, we knew we wanted to discover more of the city and its offerings by heading down to the bay and Pier 39.
To get started we grabbed a simple bagel and fruit plate from the hotel’s Cafe Cento. Delicious and quick it worked out well as a dine and dash breakfast.
Lucky for us the walk towards the bay was all downhill and a little less strenuous than previous excursions around the downtown had proved to be. The trek took us through Chinatown, Washington Park, which was holding a Post Office employee protest, and block after block of square stucco housing. Upon reaching Pier 39 it was like reaching an amusement park; there were groups of tourists hurrying onto Golden Gate ferry boats, scuttling in and out of gift shops, and snapping photos of the infamous sea lions, who happily laid about sunbathing or talking loud to the visitors and their snapping cameras.
The mile walk to this attraction was one that worked up our appetites so we tried to find a decent restaurant among the cluster of eateries. Avoiding the touristy restaurants we decided to take our seafood craving to hanaZen, a new Japanese restaurant offering a wide variety of anything from sushi, noodle dishes, and assorted protein filled entrees. We ordered drinks first to cleanse and refresh our palate, a Sapporo beer and a Ventana Reisling from Soledad,California. As for the food a good handful of options were set in front of us and my husband satisfied his craving for sushi with three rolls: rock and roll, Spicy tuna, and Sunflower, all of which included avocado, tobiko sprinkled on top and some eel and crab filling. For myself, I wanted to try some Gyoza pork pot stickers, and was wonderfully surprised by the crisp outside and flavorful pork center; delicious and hot and gone in a few minutes! For my entree I started with a miso soup that had just the right amount of salty goodness, shreds of seaweed and chunks of tofu. Small sliced green onions added a little texture to the soup as well. Next I had the chicken teriyaki Dunburi. It was a served in a bowl with white rice with the chicken placed right on top. What was really satisfying in this dish was that the chicken had that rotisserie, fall apart tenderness and the teriyaki sauce was not thick or syrupy as some that I have had in the past. It was quite the ample portion and I think I made quite the valiant effort to finish my plate!
From there, we walked all along the waterfront with our next intended destination in mind– the Ghirardelli flagship building. All along the way we saw, and quite frankly, sidestepped the tourist traps of Ripley’s Believe It or Not, t-shirt shops and distracting panhandlers. However, we did make a quick stop in Boudin Bakery. The aroma of sour dough was intoxicating as that is what this place is notorious for baking. Conveyor belts of baskets lifted loaves of bread over-head, transporting stock from checkout to checkout. One can purchase just about anything from a traditional sourdough round to breads in the shapes of lobsters, crabs and teddy bears. I opted to purchase the one shaped like a baby turtle and a loaf of chocolate raisin bread–a dream concoction!
As we pressed forward we made it to the Ghirardelli building and we stocked up on much needed chocolate bars, some of which cannot be found in stores and some with proceeds going to help the bay Waterfront. And I made sure I stood in line to grab one more treat of cold, smooth, vanilla ice cream smothered in Ghirardelli dark chocolate sauce. It was awesome and with our dinner reservations five hours away I knew it would keep me content for a while.
Our afternoon wrapped up with a trolley ride back to the hotel. It was worth the hour plus wait to get it because otherwise it would have been all uphill. I can’t say for certain we even would have made it! After we relaxed for a few hours back in our room we just had to take an elevator ride down to the bottom level of the hotel to the much anticipated Tonga Room – a Pacific Rim comfort cuisine restaurant. The place was dark with a touch of up-lighting along the walls, tiki huts housed the diners, and flowered decorations were along every pillar. Right in the middle of the room is a pool that had a live band playing classic pop hits on board a floating covered raft. Our fabulous server took great care of us and was delighted to get us anything we needed. For starters, Andy ordered a Island Margarita and I ordered a Napa Cellars Pinot Noir which was a little dry but was pleasantly fruit forward and jammy. For dinner we really wanted to sample a lot from their menu as everything looked amazing! My husband started with a hot and sour soup with bbq pork, and our server was kind enough to bring me some so that I might try a small portion, not to be left out. Along with the bbq pork the soup was composed of a wonderful savory broth, egg, wood ear mushrooms and julienne carrots for that needed crunch.
For our entree we split the Tonga platter and Mongolian beef. The platter had bbq ribs-which were a little too sweet for both of our palates; chicken satay- 3 kabobs of roasted chicken smothered in a curried peanut sauce; coconut prawns- butterflied and perfectly deep fried and crispy; and veggie spring rolls served with a dipping sauce. The Mongolian beef plate was really special in that the beef was cubed tenderloin perfectly cooked and juicy. It had a rich sauce and was served on a bed of white rice accompanied with oyster mushrooms and crispy rice noodles.
The flavors harmonized really well and made me groove in my seat with pleasure as tunes were being sung about “ dancing in September” and dancing “all night long” (maybe it had to do with a fellow diner’s 80th birthday party!)
Another successful culinary exploration has come to an end with a very full belly, but tomorrow holds a whole new adventure waiting for us just an hour north…
Posted by Jeff Maurer