The Mariner's Inn

4.5
791 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Top Tags:
  • Waterfront
  • Scenic View
  • Worth the Drive
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.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
American, Seafood, Steak
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Hours of operation


Bar Open Nightly at 4:30; Happy Hour Tues. - Fri. 4:30 - 6:00
Dinner: Tuesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 4:30pm - 10:00pm, Sunday: 4:30pm - 9:00pm
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Phone number
(608) 246-3120
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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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.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Westport Road
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Entertainment
Live music outdoors every Saturday from June - August
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Special events & promotions
Watch out website or Facebook for our year round events such as Live Lobster Boils, Spring and Fall Wine Dinners, Beef and Bourbon, and Email Club "Thank You" Party.
Additional
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Wine
Reviews from verified diners
791 reviews
4.5 out of 5 Stars
Outstanding
69%
Very Good
17%
Good
8%
Fair
4%
Poor
2%
4.5
food
4.4
service
4.4
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Quiet
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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j
5.0Dined 5 days ago

The food at the Mariner's Inn is always of excellent quality and done the way asked for. All employees are friendly and interested in providing the best service and assuring that you are happy with your meal. Also from the past know that the employees are honest ( returned a tip that they felt was made by mistake..it had 2 20 dollar bills in it- one 20 too much). It is our family's go to place for family functions.

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UN
1.0Dined on July 13, 2018

We went for our Anniversay dinner, as we have gone for most annversaries and birthdays in the 25 plus years we have been going to this restaurant. I had asked on Open Table for a table in the smaller dining area so it would be more quiet. When we arrived the hostess told us they don’t read Open Table requests and there were no tables available in that room. After we were seated we waited 20 minutes for a waitress to stop at our table. (Wait staff walked by our table many times without stopping). The waitress who stopped told us we weren’t her table but she would take our order. (Who’s table were we?) She took our order. Ten minutes later she came back and told us what we ordered was no longer available. The host seating a table behind us clocked my son in the head with his elbow and never apologized. When my steak came it was uncooked on the inside (I had ordered it medium). I had to send it back. When it arrived back at our table some 15 minutes later it was well done, over cooked and not edible. This whole horrible dinner took almost 2 hours from the time we walked in the restaurant to the time we left. I cannot tell you how disappointed we were with this dining experience. Poorly run and they just simply didn’t care frankly that we were there. So we won’t be back. Very sad as this had been one of our favorite places to dine.

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OT
5.0Dined on July 13, 2018

Fish fry and service was great! Enjoyed a fun dinner with friends.

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OT
5.0Dined on July 12, 2018

We came here for our anniversary. Our table was ready for us when we arrived and our waiter was very kind, helpful and friendly! We ordered and everything was prepared in a very reasonable amount of time, was prepared perfectly to our specifications, and tasted fantastic! Will definitely be dining here again!

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OT
5.0Dined on July 10, 2018

Delicious spirits and fabulous food served by professionals who know what Customer Service means! Doug and Pam did a great job taking care of us! Many thanks—we’ll be back!

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OT
5.0Dined on July 7, 2018

Anniversary! Great food and service...bar service outstanding too.

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CC
5.0Dined on July 6, 2018

Has been our favorite special occasion dining place or just get together with friends place since Betty was the only waitress and the "walking menu". That has been over 40 years and it is just as good today as it was then.

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DT
4.0Dined on July 3, 2018

The place was rather quiet but it was Tuesday evening before the July 4 holiday. Started with a drink, and a great green salad and dinner rolls. Our fillet steaks were done perfectly to order, plain or with toppings, and a side of great hash browns. We were too full for dessert. Great views on the water and nice atmosphere here too.

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TO
2.0Dined on June 30, 2018

The service was ok. They ran out of the special which we didn't find out till after we ordered, our steals were all cooked wrong and didn't include what the menu said. Would not recommend for the price

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RC
5.0Dined on June 29, 2018

We recently went to Mariner's Inn to introduce my sister to an old Wisconsin tradition - the Friday night fish fry. Additionally, she had never had walleye and so we wanted to introduce her to this delightful fish. She had the walleye fish fry, I tried the lake perch fish fry and my husband had the broiled haddock. We were all delighted with our dinners and all felt as if the portions were more than generous! The cole slaw was wonderful, best I've had in a long time! Unfortunately, we had no room for dessert but we'll go back again!

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EE
5.0Dined on June 27, 2018

Excellent experience once again. We've been coming to the Mariners for over 40 years, and have never been disappointed. The family has maintained the quality and tradition for many decades. We are excited that we've moved back to WI and can return to the Mariners more often.

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B
5.0Dined on June 23, 2018

Excellent food and great service.

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CH
5.0Dined on June 23, 2018

The steak was great !! Cooked just how I like it. Love this place. Would highly recommend it.

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OT
4.0Dined on June 22, 2018

Bar was very very slow giving our waitress our drinks. But they were good when we got them. The food was good. Not spectacular. But good. The hash browns are in a class of their own. Excellent. Steak not very flavorful but it was tender. The after dinner ice cream drinks are excellent.

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OT
5.0Dined on June 22, 2018

Family all home and a family favorite for many years!

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j
4.0Dined on June 22, 2018

The service was great. Pam, our waitress, was friendly & very efficient.

Three of us had the prime rib special and all of us agreed we have had better. It was not tender and lacked in taste. The salad & “signature” potatoes were quite tasty.

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TH
5.0Dined on June 17, 2018

Amazing service by Marina, Doug is always very accomodating!

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D
5.0Dined on June 17, 2018

Celebrated a birthday with family and could not have chosen a better restaurant. Had a delicious meal while watching the sunset. Waterfront location is perfect. Staff extremely friendly and efficient. Will definitely return.

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RT
5.0Dined on June 17, 2018

Improved since last time we dined there several years ago.

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E
5.0Dined on June 16, 2018

Jack and Doug always take the time with customers to make it a very personable experience. Love that on top of the wonderful food, view outside and the wait staff. Thank you.

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L
3.0Dined on June 16, 2018

My sister and I took my father for dinner Father’s Day weekend as a special meal. Theirs were both great, we all ordered our steaks medium, but mine was rare. The waitress was very nice and offered to fix it for me but I didn’t want to watch my family eat and then have them watch me eat, so I took my steak home with me, having filled up enough on everything else. My steak was great the next day cooked with eggs but for $40 it would have been great for it to have been prepared properly.

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H
5.0Dined on June 16, 2018

We enjoyed dinner on the patio watching the boats come. Food and service great. Both of us had fish. We also enjoyed Betty Lou cruise under same management group. Great two day Madison stay. Would come back for the outdoor dining.

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LP
5.0Dined on June 7, 2018

Good food & good service!

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SK
5.0Dined on May 26, 2018

Good food and service. The haystack onion rings are awesome.

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B
5.0Dined on May 25, 2018

The Fish Fry was Delicious! Wonderful restaurant for many occasions!

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R
5.0Dined on May 22, 2018

Loved everything...the shrimp platter was awesome! Clam chowder was wonderful. And, thank you for the anniversary gift of dessert.
We were little surprised there was no house wine, and a little shocked to see that a glass of Kendall Jackson was over $11.

Other than that, it was a lovely evening. And we loved our server, Marina.

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FS
5.0Dined on May 19, 2018

Mariner's Inn provided a great meal with a nice waterfront view. The steaks were great, cooked perfectly to medium rare. Our stuffed mushroom appetizer was tasty, and the hash brown potatoes lived up to their reputation. Key lime pie for desert topped off a beautiful evening.

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OT
5.0Dined on May 19, 2018

Best restaurant in Madison! The only waterfront dining in Madison. Excellent food and service. Really cool bar.

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TC
5.0Dined on May 19, 2018

We’ve always had great food and friendly, capable service at The Mariner’s. With the gorgeous weather, we were able to take advantage of their outdoor seating, with the lake in the background. A fantastic setting for an excellent meal!

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CH
5.0Dined on May 19, 2018

Great food; excellent service. Always love this place.

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D
3.0Dined on May 18, 2018

Service was bad, new waitress. Order did not come as ordered. Drink prices at table did not match what was paid at the bar. Not a pleasant, relaxing experience.

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MM
5.0Dined on May 17, 2018

Great food and great service. The view was very nice and everyone in the place was extremely nice

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WI
5.0Dined on May 16, 2018

We ate outside on the lawn and enjoyed the company, weather, drinks and food.
Our waiter was friendly, funny and helpful with his suggestions.
Since it was a middle of the week night, there were very few other occupied tables, so it was calm and peaceful.

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DM
1.0Dined on May 13, 2018

We had reservations for 6. We got there at 550. At630 my nephew asked about the table. They said they are working on it. Other groups that came in after us were seated. Finally at 710 we were seated. Lots of empty tables They gave an excuse of the table next to us had extra guests. No apology or no comp or gift certificate. Not customer friendly. Lost a bunch of customers because there were three different families in our group

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OT
3.0Dined on May 13, 2018

Too over prices

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OT
4.0Dined on May 13, 2018

Mother’s Day

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PG
5.0Dined on May 13, 2018

Went there for Mother's Day Brunch. Was reasonably priced and tasty. We have two boys, ages 9 and 8, who had no trouble finding something to eat. My husband and I both enjoyed it as well. We'll definitely come back for brunch. (We didn't see their regular menu so I can't report on their regular offerings.)

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T
2.0Dined on May 13, 2018

We come often but never for brunch or Mother’s Day. The food was cold or luke warm and you had to wait for the buffet to be refilled each time our party visited. We told 3 different waitstaff but nothing was done. There is no space to maneuver the dessert bar and the buffet. Desserts were out when we went too. They were even out of black tea bags-really??? A Mother’s Day disaster. Has been okay for a dinner in the past.

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OT
4.0Dined on May 13, 2018

Our family had reservations for Mother’s Day brunch. Upon arrival the host notified us that they were behind schedule. Approximately 30 minutes after reservation time we were seated. We sat in the bar area while we waited and my wife enjoyed a mimosa. The bar area was very busy, but we did not have to wait long for our drinks. The food selection and buffet presentation was reminiscent of a family gathering. My 12 year-old step-daughter enjoyed many things eat. She very much enjoyed the all-you-can-eat part of the feast. She topped off her satisfying meal with ice cream complete with chocolate and cookie dough topping. My 8 year-old step son did not eat much since he already ate a big breakfast before we arrived. My wife enjoyed the buffet and commented positively on the cheesy potatoes. I had the cheesy potatoes, asparagus, and a few pieces of prime rib. The prime rib was surprisingly tasty considering the amount they likely had to prepare. Over all the Mariner provided a nice Mother’s Day Brunch. I’d suggest updating the menu a bit, but from the smiles on the guests faces I might be in the minority in this request.

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RS
3.0Dined on May 13, 2018

The Brunch is great, so is the attentive wait staff. Had to wait 15 to 20 minutes for our reservation table.
4 people in our group for Mother's day at $31.99 a person. Yet later after leaving, looking at our bill, we were charged $147.00/nothing extra ordered. ??? We tipped $25.00 on top of that. Just wonder who's bill we paid for.

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