Sunday, January 4, 2015

Madison's best kept secret is a bar.

I must start by saying that is my 100th blog post! Hot damn.

When I was little, two friends and I had a secret club. We held meetings in a shed, took notes, tracked our money, and didn't tell anyone about it.

I think I've found adulthood's answer to the secret club: an under-the-radar bar in a quasi industrial wasteland in Madison. Meet the Old Sugar Distillery: a nondescript bar a few blocks from downtown. Signage is small, hours are limited (Thursday-Saturday), and the surroundings are fellow nondescript buildings. Offices? Factories? Haven't figured it out yet, but that place where a lot of buses park is within sight. The bar itself can be tough to spot, but it's worth discovering.

It's a small local business at its finest. All of the Old Sugar Distillery's liquors are made in-house and aged in Minnesota oak barrels, which line the bar like low-key wallpaper:
Booze barrels!
The atmosphere is friendly and the drinks are top notch. My favorite is the Honey Cap: muddled lime, honey, lime juice, soda water, and the in-house honey liqueur.
My honey cap: perfection!
It's everything I want in a bar, really: a delicious drink menu, locally made snacks, and a mellow place to have a good conversation. The 3-day-a-week exclusivity just makes it more special. It's my secret club, and I like it that way.