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The Mariner's Inn
The Mariner's Inn

The Mariner's Inn Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://marinersmadison.com
  • Phone: (608) 246-3120
  • Hours of Operation:

    Bar Open Nightly at 4:30; Happy Hour M - F 4:30 - 6:00
    Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 4:30pm - 10:00pm, Sunday: 4:30pm - 9:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: American, Seafood, Steak
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, View, Wine
  • Catering: We now cater off-site events. For outstanding food and memorable hospitality, please contact us in person at any of our restaurants or call/email us regarding your next event.
  • Private Party Facilities: We now can accommodate private groups from 2 to 400 guests. We have three private dining rooms as well as our beautiful outside waterfront lawn area available. Make your Mariner’s event even more unique by packaging it with a cruise on Betty Lou Cruises. Please ask the manager for details on how to make your next business, social or holiday gathering a memorable one.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Westport Road
  • Parking: Private Lot
A word from The Mariner's Inn
When Bill and Betty Von Rutenberg opened The Mariner’s Inn in 1966, they set out to provide a steak and seafood dining experience like none other. Mouth watering, delicious steaks aged to perfection and an assortment of seafood from lobster to the famous Friday Fish Fry.



Bill and Betty’s sons, Bill, Jack, and Robert, along with their crew, now carry on the tradition of outstanding hospitality of von Rutenberg Ventures. Waterfront dining on the patio and a sunset over the marina make dinner at Mariner’s an evening to remember.Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerScenic View
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Diner Reviews
  • "Food and overall restaurant needs updating. Service was good. Prices are crazy for what you get as far as food goes."
    Dined on 8/30/2014
  • "Our waiter was excellent, sadly our food was just OK. Actually, for the price, it really wasn't even OK. I am not shy about spending good money for great food but did not find the food much above average although dinner for two was 130.00. There wasn't anything particularly wrong to complain about. But, there wasn't much particularly right about it either. We felt they used quality ingredients but cooked them inexpertly. Maybe it was the chef's night off? Not likely on a Saturday. We won't try again anytime soon. There are many other restaurants in Madison to choose from that have that special something that makes for a great meal."
    Dined on 8/23/2014
  • "We had reservations for a party of 7 with a special request for a table out of the main thoroughfare. Our request was honored and they were ready to seat us when all arrived. The view of the lake added much to the atmosphere. Our party had a smattering of different choices on the menu including the New York Strip steak (done to perfection and flavorful) and deep fried shrimp (generous portion, light golden batter) . But the crowning glory was our server, who was knowledgeable, friendly, and anticipated our every whim without hovering. The party near us was celebrating a birthday, and our server obliged them by singing "Happy Birthday" in Italian, no less! Her melodic and beautiful voice only added to the uniqueness of the visit."
    Dined on 8/22/2014
  • "The vegetarian pasta was good, but it needed more vegetables than peppers and onions.the walleye was exceptional. My mother-in-law order steak medium rare,but it was medium well when it arrived. She could neither cut nor eat her steak."
    Dined on 8/3/2014
  • "Great steaks and onion rings. Service excellent. Fantastic ambiance. A bit expensive but very nice for special dinners which is why we were there."
    Dined on 8/1/2014
  • "The steak is outstanding, at a reasonable price. We were celebrating a birthday and appreciated the attention. Great waiter. Thanks!"
    Dined on 7/28/2014
  • "Great food and service. We went there for restaurant week. Everyone very pleasant and accommodating."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "Great dining experience! Atmosphere was great. Food was very good. It was restaurant week and we were not informed prior to attending."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "Hey mates, there by nothin' like the whiff of a dark moody room to set the mood at this maritime disaster. Your timbers will be all a shiver when you sail across the worn, uneven carpet to dock alongside a sticky table. Bring your treasure chest to pay for the overpriced, meager portions. Cast off your worries about saving room for desert. My cheesecakes was so small I thought it was a sample for me to approve before the actual slice was presented."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "Poor choice for Restaurant Week!! We were more than disappointed in out food."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "The food and the service were very good. Best clam chowder I've ever had! Will definitely return!"
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "We always visit the Mariner's Inn during restaurant week! Surf & Turf is top-notch, and the service is always great. Also, it is very cool that it is a family-run operation, and the owner has always greeted us on our way in and when we leave. VRV does the dining experience correctly!"
    Dined on 7/23/2014
  • "We had really bad service and I didn't consider the food the best of quality. My steak was okay, but my friends steak was non flavorful and wanted steak sauce and the waiter never came back to see how we were and baked potato's came at the end of the dinner."
    Dined on 7/23/2014
  • "A traditional favorite restaurant for generations continues today what Mother and Father started. We were some of the lucky ones to receive our menu from Betty--verbally! Nobody else could do it like she did it. The family clearly continues what the parents started....and with the same high level of standards. It is more on the pricey side but if it is a special ocassion, The Mariner's Inn staff will show you that you made the right choice. Dont't forget the hash browns. They are a must."
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "We had an awesome dining experience at Mariner's Inn last night. The scenic view of the lake along with the great service and food made the evening a very pleasurable experience. Even though it was Restaurant Week the food was prepared perfectly and served on a timely basis. The wait staff were all friendly, accommodating, and knowledgeable of the food and wine."
    Dined on 7/21/2014
  • "We always enjoy the Mariner and did again. The waiter and outdoor dining made everything click. Food was great and the service was outstanding. Thank you!"
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "This was our second trip to Mariner's this summer. This time we went to Mariner's for Restaurant week. Didn't disappoint. Food was fantastic, view was great, service was awesome. Will indeed go back!"
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "Great dining for "that special event"..... Families can enjoy the outdoor view with the freedom to roam. Food is of good choices with a cocktail that sets the mood!"
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "Expensive food that can be found cheaper, with equal quality, at other restaurants. Drinks were quite expensive for the amount we got. Bottles of wine were almost triple the cost if you bought it at a winery or store. My order was wrong but the correct order was out pretty quickly. Had a fellow singing and playing guitar on the patio which was nice. Waitstaff were very friendly. Nice but not overly impressive. Glad our meal and drinks were covered by a gift certificate."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "The food, service, and the view was great. Not to mention the hash browns."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Went to Mariner's for my birthday, enjoyed excellent service and the best steak in town. The clam chowder was also amazing."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "we had a group of 3 generations celebrating 2 birthdays. everyone loved the nautical atmosphere,the drinks were fantastic, the steaks were done to perfection and the seafood was wonderfully delicious and healthful. the young adults loved the 'included' salad and vegetable and the steaks were sizzling hot. the hash brown potatoes were devoured by us all ..and were as wonderful as we had all hoped they would be. staff was extremely attentive and knowledgeable. we arrived by boat and had a reservation for our 'odd' number of guests. overall one of the BEST birthday dinners ever. this is our 'go-to' steak restaurant ..for all occasions//anywhere in the Madison area."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "This is what shrimp should taste like when you go out. I was so pleasantly surprised....I would make the trip just for that but the rest of the meal was very enjoyable. Service and surroundings capped off a wonderful dinner out!!"
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "8 of us to celebrate anniversaries. Felt welcome from the time we entered. Waitress excellent. Food superb!"
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "For $33 you received a steak, salad and potato. Nothing special about the steak, although it was a good sized portion. The hashbrowns were delicious as advertised. Nice location and dinner, but won't return often due to the price."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "As much as we enjoy going to The Mariner's Inn, we always seem to get a table close to the large party room on the end, which can be very noisy, as it was that evening. It also took our server a long time to get to us because she was also waiting on the party in that room. But as always, the meal was excellent!"
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "Great food and service. The staff always made sure we had water, rolls or anythind else we needed."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "Mariner's Inn has been a good place to go for special occasions, if you are not too concerned about price vrs. quality. The wait staff are always friendly and you can't beat the view of the marina ... very enjoyable patio overlooking the water. Food prices seem a bit high for the quantity and quality of food you receive. Drink prices are reasonable. As far as ambiance and furnishings, it is much like stepping back into a typical Wisconsin supper club ... seems to not have been updated in decades."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "A great dinner, don't know how it could have been better."
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "We have celebrated many birthdays and anniversaries over the years at Mariner's Inn. Love the friendly people that greet us and the always wonderful food."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "The Mariner's Inn is consistent QUALITY - for us it is close to home, accessible for my wife's mobility scooter & they make you feel like they really appreciate your business. We have heard complaints & parts of the building are a bit dated, but for us it is just the best. A local "supper club" that you just know will be a good dining experience. Far more enjoyable than the national chain locations."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "The quality of food, service and ambiance has been consistently strong for generations! We hadn't been here in a while and asked ourselves, why not?! The service was slow for some reason on this visit, but apologies and comp desserts were offered without a need for us to mention it. There's something very special about a family-owned tradition!"
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "We arrived exactly on time for the 6:30 reservation we had. We waited for quite awhile to be seated. I spoke to the hostess a second time asking why others were seated before us when they knew our total party was there. They did seat us shortly there after. We all ordered the "famous" hash browns but were disappointed that they were not very special. The decor needs to be updated…. It is basically the same as when I dined at Mariners 20 years ago."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "We always enjoy the Mariner's. The staff and service are most pleasant and accommodating. Also, very efficient service. The food -we had the shrimp - the best. I am so glad that they now offer a half size of 3 shrimp because they are very large and the best we have in the area. They area also known for their hash brown potatoes served family style."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "We dined outside and it was extremely pleasant except for the Mosquitos which attacked our ankles."
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "good atmosphere. good view of boat docks & water. casual dining atmosphere. Skip the broiled walleye. French fries were excellent Haddock was excellent. Cole slaw serving was very small. For an excellent Friday night dinner, go to THE CAPRI, in Columbus,WI. "
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "I have eaten at Mariners Inn several times and every time I am expecting it to live up to the hype that is made over it. Every time I continue to be disappointed. Once again, the food I ordered was just average. It wasn't bad, other than the shrimp being overcooked. When I go to a restaurant and spend on average $50/person, I just expect everything to be much better than what it ever has been when I've gone to Mariners Inn. I would not return to this restaurant unless someone else was taking me. There are several places I have been to that have far exceeded my experience at Mariners and some of them have been at a more reasonable price point too."
    Dined on 5/30/2014
  • "Meal was good but service was very slow. Waitress friendly and engaging so not sure if it was the kitchen that was making service slow or the waitress. "
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "After reading other reviews on-line and deciding to come to The Mariner's Inn for an anniversary dinner, I was hopeful we would not be in the notable percentile of reviews that had an unfavorable experience. Unfortunately for us, we ended up with poor service (the waiter had the attention span of a fish out of water as he ran from table to table). The food was mediocre at best. Walleye had no flavor, the salads were wilted, the calamari was rubber, and the steaks were ok (but not for the price). Unfortunately, we left unsatisfied with the experience and probably will not return even though it is one of the few restaurants we can access by water on the lake."
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "We were lucky to have gorgeous weather, no bugs and to sit outside looking over the river and docks. Lightly breaded walleye was done perfectly and we rated it more highly than the deep fried haddock. The haddock was good, but deep fried and, as expected, a bit heavier. We added a clam chowder and it was well worth it. With the chowder add-on, the portions were more than ample and left no room for dessert. [We felt the hash browns were a bit greasy and not as "special" as advertised.]"
    Dined on 5/23/2014