Great food, great timeFirst time dining at merchant and it was an overall great experience! Everything from the drinks, to the appetizers, to the entrees and desserts were excellent. Definitely coming back and would recommend to anyone looking for an outstanding restaurant/spot for drinks in downtown Madison.6/6/2013 12:00:00 AMMerchant - Very Tasty!We had heard good things about Merchant and were not disappointed. Tried an appetizer, soup, a small plate (roasted beets, yum), and some pasta dishes, saving room for a creamy, dreamy chocolate custard. Oh yes, some tasty drinks. It was all fantastic. See you soon!5/25/2013 12:00:00 AMSurpriseWe went there for brunch. Wonderful food, except the biscuit dish was a little too salty. I asked for substitutions and the restaurant willingly obliged.5/18/2013 12:00:00 AMWhiskey, Whimsy, WisconsinInitially, this dinner selection was a whim for my companion and me. We got there just before the evening bar / music crowd arrived, and had some excellent cheese curds, and two entrees that we shared. The beer and drinks list was most impressive, including a lovely "white whiskey" made by a local distiller. The server was wonderful--attentive, eager to please and to inform, worried to ensure we understood unusual or surprising options. We very much appreciated the local food sourcing map: almost everything was from Wisconsin.5/16/2013 12:00:00 AMdate nightWe have been to this restaurant two successive Tuesdays on date night. It is an excellent deal: forty dollars for two entrees, a bottle of wine, and dessert. The food, wine, and dessert were all good both times we were there. I. The service was excellent. We are planning to go back on another day, besides Tuesday, and try their regular menu. Both times we were there, they had a full house and so it get can a little noisy.5/14/2013 12:00:00 AMEclectic Excellence!I tried the Merchant Burger and a cup of the pureed gapazcho soup and enjoyed everything immensely. The Merchant Burger has not only a ground beef patty, but also is topped with a grilled brisket and an egg for good measure. Coupled with the zesty soup, it was a real taste extravaganza! The setting is modern and the service congenial. Highly recommended for your Madison power lunch, or just for good, locally-sourced food.5/8/2013 12:00:00 AMMadison Craft Brew WeekStopped by for the special Three Floyds dinner and beer flight. Sat outside on the patio, so the noise was minimal. The few times inside were loud though. The beer flight and explanations were well priced and presented nicely. The food, as always, was spectacular.5/5/2013 12:00:00 AMAmazing!Great service. It didn't take long at all to get our food. The food and drinks were outstanding. I would definitely recommend Merchant to my friends and family.5/4/2013 12:00:00 AMMerchant hosted our partyMerchant hosted our party of 9. The food was really good and the drinks were better. Excellent atmosphere, though a bit loud at times. There was great energy in the room overall and we had a great time.4/23/2013 12:00:00 AMSaturday brunchStopped by after the Farmers Market, good and busy, a few empty seats so it was still okay to walk in. A lot of "bustle" always makes this place fairly noisy. Wait staff were excellent today. Had the burrito and it was excellent, the verde was a nice touch.4/20/2013 12:00:00 AMAmazing service, hip locationAmazing service, hip location and decor, food was amazing! Bar scene is apparently fabulous, great great great all around.4/20/2013 12:00:00 AMI like everything about MerchantI like everything about Merchant except the sound level which is quite loud to the extent it is difficult to hear conversation.4/19/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat Drinks! Enjoyed theGreat Drinks! Enjoyed the cheese plate an d bone marrow also.4/18/2013 12:00:00 AMI can't say enough about Merchant.I can't say enough about Merchant. We have gone there for special occasions for over 2 years now. The staff and owners remember us every time. It is the be seen place in Madison. Love is outstanding, drinks are creative and well balanced. The dining room is a bit noisy.4/14/2013 12:00:00 AMWe had the best waitress ever.We had the best waitress ever. She made our first visit unforgettable. Her food reccomdations were superb . We will definitely tell our friends and family to go there for fine food and dining.4/13/2013 12:00:00 AMJust like the YouTube videoJust like the YouTube video showed. It was a fun evening.4/13/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat "local" placeThis was a great place for my dad's birthday. There were only three of us. We got there at 5 and soon it was bustling. The one complaint, it's too noisy! Really, they might think of getting some big, thick fabric for the corners or dividing up the space in a creative and interesting way because it's so hard to hear and have a conversation without yelling across the table. That's the one drawback I've seen with this very industrial-type atmosphere. Otherwise, super service, delicious food and gorgeous atmosphere. We all commented on the awesome and brief menu. Chefs should be able to create a menu that's not overwhelming, but will still satisfy different tastes and that was what happened at Merchant!
Thanks, Merchant.4/6/2013 12:00:00 AMYou asked about noise andYou asked about noise and I did think it is too noisy in your restaurant to enjoy a conversation with someone you haven't seen for a while. I would suggest carpeting or something to help absorb sound from boucing off all the surfaces.4/2/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat atmosphere and Good food.I think my only complaint is how close we were to the tables next to us. You really could hear EVERYTHING that was being said by the tables on either side of us, but that's mostly because it's a small place. The food was delicious.3/25/2013 12:00:00 AMThis was my first time atThis was my first time at the Merchant. I heard a lot about their mixed drinks and they did not disappoint! I had their "Perch at the Merch", which was not overly fried as well as fresh and delicious. They also make their own coleslaw which was some of the best I've had. Our waitress was a true gem as well; she was very helpful with the menu and answered all the questions my Dad had (which can be quite a lot!).
The only downside was it was terribly noisy when we were first seated, I think it was because people were hanging around after Happy Hour to watch the March Madness games. But the Merchant staff were apologetic and said that it usually wasn't that noisy at 7pm on a Friday night.
An overall good experience, we will be back.3/22/2013 12:00:00 AMMy husband and I went to MerchantMy husband and I went to Merchant for our anniversary - the 25th. The staff was wonderful and the restaurant gave us a free glass of champagne and free dessert for the occasion. Everything was great....the drinks and food were superb and the waitstaff was really attentive. We will definitely go back.3/15/2013 12:00:00 AM