Steenbocks on Orchard

Steenbocks on Orchard

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.steenbocksonorchard.com/
  • Phone: 6082042733x
  • Hours of Operation:


    Lunch: Monday - Wednesday & Friday: 11:00am -2:00pm

    Dinner: Monday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Wine Bar, Gastro Pub, Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: Chris Swenson
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: Steenbock's on Orchard is the exclusive caterer for the Wisconsin Institutes For Discovery on the UW Madison Campus. Our outstanding staff and facility provide the perfect setting and experience for guests who wish to host business meetings, celebratory dinners and weddings.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Orchard & Johnson St
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Ramp Parking: Lot 17, Lot 20,

    Union South Parking-Heated unground parking
A word from Steenbocks on Orchard
Located in the beautiful Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery building, our menu is designed to highlight local and seasonal ingredients at their best. We source local meats, cheeses and vegetables. Featuring fresh daily seafood specials, unique pasta dishes. Lounge dining is offered with elevated bar snacks paired with a carefully crafted wine and beer list.
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Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGreat for Lunch
Steenbocks on Orchard reviews from OpenTable diners
15 reviews since May 19, 2014
Overall Rating4.1
  • Food4.1
    Service4.4
  • Ambiance3.7
    Noise LevelQuiet
57% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (10)great for lunch (8)special occasion (5)neighborhood gem (5)great for outdoor dining (5)good for groups (4)hot spot (4)romantic (3)great for brunch (2)late-night find (2)notable wine list (2)Show More
  • New menu, undercooked chicken
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    I came to Steenbock's with co-workers to have a nice lunch with a team member from out of town. The menu had been changed since we were last at Steenbock's, and the ingredient combinations were strange. Most found it difficult to find something we liked to order. I ordered my burger plain. Two people ordered the herbed chicken, which came out undercooked. The waitress did not charge us for the two chicken entrees, and said she'd let the chef know about the problem, which was nice, but I don't think we'll be coming back for working lunch meetings.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Wonderful ambience!
    Chris
    Dined on 7/21/2014
    Steenbock's is located in the Institutes for Discovery building on the UW-Madison campus. This beautiful public building is filled with air, light, space, ancient and modern plants, water features, and science. Lunch in the restaurant often requires reservations due to the volume of diners. I highly recommend the chutney and the risotto and anything chocolate. The staff are knowledgeable about wine and make great selections for us as they have learned what we like. An early dinner is lovely there, too.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Finally large small plates
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 6/25/2014
    I don't need large portions, but I am getting tired of overpriced small plates. Finally a place that gets it. We had two starters the gazpacho soup and the ceviche, Excellent and at half the price of anything else in town. This would have been plenty, but we had to try several of the main dishes. The scallops and the nicoise salad, both fantastic. This might be our new favorite place. Parking can be a bit tricky so plan ahead or ride your bike. Can't wait to return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, late-night find, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • not exciting
    fridolinVIP
    Dined on 6/17/2014
    The dining space is in the lobby of the building, no view, corporate ambience that could be anywhere or nowhere. I ordered the lamb rare; it came medium. They offered to redo it, but I declined. Taste was fine, but it seemed precooked sous vide and reheated, no char or maillot goodies. Others food was ok, they said. It was a weeknight, but the place was almost dead: just two other tables. Server was friendly and attentive.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Weird Experience
    MADISONIAN
    Dined on 5/29/2014
    We had previously eaten at this restaurant twice. Plating overdone for only OK food. We liked the attractive dining and returned again. Same problem; food OK, plating overdone. After a couple year break, we tried again with the new chef. When we arrived with a reservation, there was a sign "closed for a private party." Not a good sign for what was to come and certainly not welcoming. We did get in and were ushered to (what is supposed to be the now closed) original dining room. We (2 people) were put at a long table for 8-10; the only diners the entire time we were there. Our server was superb. The food was awful; plopped/slopped on a plate. The formerly attractive room, when empty, is weird as was our evening.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 10 ratings-only reviews submitted since May 19, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.6
    • Food4.5
    • Ambiance4.2
    • Service4.4
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 30 reviews are from the Steenbocks on Orchard reviews archive.
  • Great food and ambience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 5/17/2014
    we had our daughters graduation dinner here and the food and the venue were really outstanding. Only drawback was very slow, inattentive, amateur service. with food this good and such a beautiful setting, they should invest in amping up the service level.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Urban Dining delite
    theperfectdate
    Dined on 5/17/2014
    The atmosphere was nice! The white linen's in an urban setting was a nice welcome! My date and I enjoyed the atmosphere. A little on the casual side of dining but the experience as a whole was nice the service was good as was the food. Limited menu however sometimes that is nice so it is not so overwhelming and done well. Enjoyed the building history after dinner. Perfect for business lunches too!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great for group
    wowbadger
    Dined on 5/16/2014
    Graduation celebration with family. Multi-generational challenging group. Wait staff was very accommodating and attentive, room was very nice , location convenient and food excellent
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Fantastic lunch
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/15/2014
    The Udon noodles were really wonderful. What a lovely blend of spices and flavor. I will certainly try other dishes, but may come back to this one frequently.
    Special Features:
    special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • En of the semester treat
    jtar
    Dined on 5/12/2014
    A simple grilled vegetable sandwich was a very rewarding culinary experience. My guests had the lamb with pasta and were also impressed. I wanted something especial at the end of the semester and we I had it.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Cheese Board Excellent
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 5/9/2014
    We would go back for the Cheese and Fruit Board and the soup apps. The burger was so-so, couldn't taste the cheese nor the sauce. The pasta dish, Apple Walnut Campanelle, was quite good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent but limited menu.
    Tommy
    Dined on 4/21/2014
    Excellent food preparation and presentation. It was very quite on the evening we were there. It appears that they have a wonderful outdoor dining area in the nice weather.
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Great for Outdoor Dining, Neighborhood Gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Steenbocks for DInner
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 4/17/2014
    The entrees were very good, and the cheese and fruit appetizer is fantastic! Waitress was an absolute gem! Extremely helpful and very pleasant! Great experience!
    Special Features:
    special occasion, Great for Lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Comfortable and pleasant
    mamabearVIP
    Dined on 4/12/2014
    We wanted a quiet comfortable place where we could chat while we were visiting family in Madison. Steenbocks filled the bill perfectly with good food, good service, and a nice wine and beer list.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Food Excellent, Ambiance Cool
    Junebug
    Dined on 4/4/2014
    The lamb was excellent, so was the herb-roasted chicken and tenderloin beef. The waitress was warm and friendly, although hard to hear in the somewhat noisy, echoey dining room. In addition, the metallic colors used in the decor contributed to an overall cold feeling. Warm colored rugs and perhaps artwork with warmer colors would help to make the overall ambiance more inviting.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fantastic!
    Strawgate
    Dined on 3/28/2014
    Loved every part of it. The bartender (Kurt) was great, the servers were great, and the food was amazing. The gluten free options were fantastic and the overall meal was wonderful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Why do restaurants play loud music?
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 3/26/2014
    It is very hard to find a restaurant where you can converse easily with your table mates. I try to imagine why and can't come up with an answer. I can understand why bars like to play loud music -- the music creates the impression that people are having fun and encourages them to buy drinks. I don't see the same principle applying to restaurants. My above remark applies especially well to restaurants that cater to university types. Conversation is especially important for the purpose of communicating ideas.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • We Waited Too Long
    Mewsmom
    Dined on 3/17/2014
    We've been wanting to visit this restaurant for 3 years. Location was the problem. Finally found parking right across the street. Celebrated a birthday here and couldn't have been more pleased. Absolutely excellent food. Excellent! Don't miss this place--it's really worth whatever effort needed to get there.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Lamb choppin
    Pame
    Dined on 3/14/2014
    Not many restaurants in Madison that are really good at lamb. The small T-bones here were quite good. Main drawback is that they are very thick, which does keep them rare inside, but makes it difficult to cut. Thinner cuts would have a better ratio of seared outside surface to volume of inner meat. That seared and seasoned outside surface has most of the flavor. Nice selection of wines at reasonable prices, unlike many other Madison restaurants.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Steenbock's New Management
    mmcdg
    Dined on 3/11/2014
    Quite a change since I went to Steenbock's the first time, a couple of years ago. Lovely attitude from waitstaff and very nice food selection. Two of us ordered totally different meals, so we experienced a lot of things. Everything we had was very good. I will be happy to go again. I've already recommended it to several people.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, scenic view, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Food, Great Service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 3/8/2014
    This was our first visit to Steenbocks. Food was outstanding and our server Ann Marie was knowledgeable and gracious. We will definitely return for another visit.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not enough noise!
    Cathy
    Dined on 3/3/2014
    A friend and I went to Steenbocks on a Monday night at 6. When we arrived there was no one else in the restaurant. The wait staff told us that they only had one other reservation. This restaurant has two dining areas. One is in the very open space bar area. It must be able to seat 50 - 80 people. The other space is an inner room that has a more cozy feeling. We were seated in the larger, very cold feeling bar area. The wait staff was very friendly and I bet they were told to use this room. But when you only have two reservations, why not seat the ones you have in the warmer, more intimate room, which has room for many unexpected walk-ins...One couple walked in, looked at the menu and the empty room and walked out.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Disappointed
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 2/22/2014
    We made a reservation for a special occasion based on recs from people who had been there when the main dining room was still open. When we arrived, we were told that the main dining room is now open only for special events. We were seated in the "lounge area" which is now where they serve dinner as well as lunch. Menu is limited as is wine list. Food and service were okay, but not exceptional. I think they are struggling because of the location--parking is a problem and the restaurant is inside a research center. Too bad.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Decent, but some disappointments...
    Salmonhead
    Dined on 2/15/2014
    My first disappointment was that the wine list was COMPLETELY different than what I had researched on their website. Not a huge deal, but if I'm going to buy a nice bottle, I like to do a little research, especially when it turns out the waiter has no idea even what a wine varietal is. We did also have to ask the waiter multiple times for a menu for my wife. My spinach salad was good, but came out without the chevre cheese substitution I requested since I am allergic to bleu cheese (probably not the kitchen's fault). The braised lamb shank entree was certainly cooked long enough to be very tender, but very bland, without an inkling of any herbs, pepper, garlic, etc. A steak knife was also furnished for my lamb, but not my wife's steak...
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Valentine
    Monbob24
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    We had a great meal at Steenbocks on Orchard. The kale salad was tender and flavorful with just the right amount of figs, pears and bleu cheese. My husband enjoyed the pre-fix menu. The service was a bit slow, we thought perhaps the waiter was new. We will return again.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great find
    Foodie
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    The food was great, the ambience was great with the guitarist playing the entire time while we were there. Had a pleasant server that was attentive. Overall glad we found this place.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Valentines
    Moonman
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    Had a great meal off the special Valentine's menu. The cheese plate was also very good. I think the ambience might have been nicer at a table in where the bar is but they had some nice quiet music playing in the back room which helped. We will dine there again for sure and will make a point to visit the bar.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Happy with Monday night dinner
    Anne
    Dined on 2/10/2014
    Decided to try this restaurant for the first time after talking about going for months prior. Was a little worried about parking. Parking was easier than I thought. Across the St at the union was easy and a short walk. Quiet Monday night that ended up to our advantage. Amazing service and food that matched. The Ceviche was the best I have ever had. Will definitely go back
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Restaurant Week Jan 2014
    BadgerAlum
    Dined on 1/24/2014
    My mother visited for restaurant week and we dined at Steenbocks on Orchard on the last night. By 7:00 they had run out of one entree and replaced the halibut with salmon. We ended up getting the beef and potatoes, which were quite delicious and cooked to our liking. We enjoyed our server and the ambience was okay. Portions were good, which I was surprised about. When I dined at Steenbocks a couple years ago, the portions were small.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very accomidating with a family
    KMW1
    Dined on 1/24/2014
    My husband and I really wanted to partake in Restaurant Week but needed to bring out 18 month old. The staff never flinched once when they saw we had a toddler joining us, which was a concern on mine. We felt very confortable having her there because we were seated in the attrium area so the noises she made didn't travel to neighboring tables. The staff was VERY kind and accomidating even offer a small meal suggestion for her even though the menu was specific to Restaurant Week. We knew it wasn't ideal to bring out daughter with us to eat at a hight end restaurant but the people and service at Steenbock's made us feel so welcomed - we are grateful!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, kid-friendly, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Glad I went, don't need to go back
    Duplica123
    Dined on 1/23/2014
    The building it is in, the Wisconsin Discovery building, is really beautiful and new. The restaurant itself is just a sectioned off area with a half wall and plants forming a barrier. I felt like I was eating in a shopping mall food court. The staff was able to seat us earlier than our reservation time and they were polite and friendly. We went for Restaurant Week 2014 with a choice of 3 courses. There were some real winners - the Banana's Foster and the halibut. The potatoes were delicious. Some losers were my over done steak and the chocolate lava cake that tasted like one from the freezer section. Based on the disappointment overall of the food, as well as the lack of ambiance, I would say I never have to eat there again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Food, Okay Service
    pitgirl
    Dined on 1/23/2014
    I went here for restaurant week. The food was amazing! The service, however, left more to be desired. We never got drinks we ordered and when we asked for coffee with dessert, we never got that until after we were completely finished and ready to go. We received 3 bills at once - all different amounts and none of them correct. Trying to get more water during dinner was a struggle. Again, the food was amazing, though, so I would go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great service, food OK
    wewillllbebackVIP
    Dined on 1/21/2014
    Being it was restaurant week, it was an opportunity to try something new to us. The overall service, and our server, was great! While the fixed menu dishes sounded interesting enough, I thought that our dishes were a bit underwhelming. A chicken risotto was just so, nothing to make it stand out. The bacon-wrapped slab of halibut was a bit on the firm side, but was presented on a bed of ratatouille that was very flavorful and helped redeem this dish. The carrot cake dessert was the best thing about this meal, very moist and flavorful, complimented with a caramel sauce and topped with crispy carrot chips.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Restaurant Week Jan 2014
    Madgirl21
    Dined on 1/20/2014
    I had been meaning to try Steenbocks on Orchard since the Discovery Center had opened. Parking is not friendly but if you are a walker or have business on that end of campus, what a nice little place. We went on a Monday for lunch. The Lobby of the Discovery Center was full of Middle School aged children, so it was kind of loud and there were balloon popping noises occasionally. The menu for Restaurant Week was very nice. The flavors were great for most of the dishes. My Companion had the Curry Chicken. It really should have been called a Salad with Lightly Curried Chicken Chunks. It needed something more because all it really was, was a super large appeitizer. I would try this restaurant again but maybe try it in the evening.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food, frustrating night
    LouisPBadger
    Dined on 1/18/2014
    The food here was great. The restaurant is set in the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery on the UW campus. It's a spectacular building and the restaurant is a slick little addition. We happened to get seated between two tables who happened to know at least one staff member. Staff came to both tables repeatedly, just to chat, as the restaurant was not especially busy. For me, it was annoying, but did not over shadow the food quality, which was superb.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate