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Wisconsin Supper Clubs: An Old-Fashioned Experience

Wisconsin Supper Clubs is a resource for and about supper clubs throughout Wisconsin that includes beautiful photographs of the unique supper club interiors, proprietors, and customers, as well as fascinating archival materials. Also recorded in this book are the regional specialties served at these clubs, ranging from popovers and fried pickles in the northern part of the state to Shrimp de Jonghe in the south. One Northwoods supper club even features fry bread, a traditional Native American dish uncommon to most any restaurant.The "supper club experience" is a tradition embodied by many long-standing restaurants scattered throughout the small towns of Wisconsin. It is based around a bygone idea that going out to dinner is an experience that lasts an entire evening. The clubs emphasizing food made from scratch, slow-paced dining, and family-run businesses. Combine this with stately dark-panel decor, complimentary relish trays, and the best brandy Old Fashioned sweet you'll ever have, and you have barely scratched the surface of the Wisconsin supper club's appeal.Author Ron Faiola is the critically acclaimed director and producer of the documentary by the same name. Supper clubs are hugely popular with Wisconsin locals and regularly frequented by all Midwestern foodies "in the know." With Wisconsin Supper Clubs as a guide, these establishments are primed to be choice summer road trip destinations for anyone looking for low-cost vacations this summer. After the successful debut of Faiola's documentary, this book is sure to be a hit throughout the region and beyond.

Hardcover: 224 pages

Publisher: Agate Midway; 1St Edition edition (April 16, 2013)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1572841427

ISBN-13: 978-1572841420

Product Dimensions: 1 x 8.8 x 11.2 inches

Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #44,067 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #10 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Regional & International > U.S. Regional > Midwest #16 in Books > Travel > United States > Midwest #26 in Books > Travel > Food, Lodging & Transportation > Dining

Don't make the same mistake I made. This book is not appropriate beditme reading material, especially if you're a meat-eater and your dinner was a little skimpy. The photos--food porn at its delicious best-- will drive you crazy and have you wondering if they deliver across state lines. Author Ron Faiola offers readers a rich and storied guide to Wisconsin's supper clubs and the people who keep them humming along. Road trip!

Here’s the second recently published book on Wisconsin, or upper Midwest, supper clubs. This is more of a picture book, than the one by Dave Hoekstra. I recommend that you buy both, if you have an interest in this fascinating subject, because they balance each other out.While Hoekstra’s The Supper Club Book has many good photos and a lengthy though poorly written text, Ron Faiola’s Wisconsin Supper Clubs has a limited text and a lot of great photos.Faiola’s book also covers more supper clubs and organizes them geographically through Wisconsin.Because I have not been to many different supper clubs, just a few many times, I have not experienced the range of types, menus and locations that Faiola chronicles. But, that could be true of most people who go to supper clubs, visiting only one or two regularly all their lives.The thing that surprised me the most in this book is the record of the variety of foods on menus, and the complexities of the presentations overall. I’ve always associated supper clubs with wholesome but not adventurous dining, solid but unimaginative food. Well, you’re not going to get postmodern cooking anywhere at these restaurants, but the range of selection and preparations is bigger than I thought.Since I’m not from Wisconsin, I’ve still never had a brandy old-fashioned, but you get a recipe and photos of 16 versions of the drink on pages 220-221.One warning about supper clubs, from my experience, if you order wine, zinfandel means pink wine, not the dark red fruity California wine you might expect

Ron Faiola's Wisconsin Supper Clubs is a gorgeous and charming must-have book, which has moved to the top of my list for Holiday Gifts this year.Captivated by the inviting photos, make certain you open this book on a full stomach. Just a quick flip through is impossible, because you will be drawn in by a photo, quickly read more of the story behind the food item or beverage and before you know it, you are planning your next road trip. Soon, you've discovered that two hours have gone past and you now have a half-dozen Supper Club destinations added to your bucket list.Or, like me, you're sure to send out an e-invite to the extended family to meet at the Supper Club closest to you for Friday Night Fish Fry Extraordinaire. Be sure to arrive early for an adult beverage--perhaps Wisconsin's famous Brandy Old Fashioned.In my house, the Hunter kin immediately commandeered the book to check out the region of Wisconsin where they hunt and made plans to incorporate several new stops on the trip to and from the Hunting Shack.With several birthdays approaching this summer for the octogenarians in the family, this book will serve as a planning guide for these special events.Even the 20-somethings in the family have been spending time with the book. Having traversed much of the state in their short lives, they now appreciate both fine dining experiences and the homey comfort and fellowship of the Wisconsin Supper Clubs. Number two nephew organized a group of couples to ride their Harley Davidson Motorcycles to a Supper Club they've heard about for years. After one read of Faiola's experience, he decided a nice spring-time ride and a good meal with good friends at a Wisconsin Supper Club was going to be a new monthly tradition this summer.Charming stories, gorgeous photos, inviting reviews and the promise of honest-to-goodness Midwestern Hospitality, Faiola has hit the mark with this book.

This book has truly caught the aura and the feelings of the Wisconsin Supper Club. After just looking at a few of the pictures, my wife said "Let's get in the car and go" And we live in Illinois.The pictures are great of both the Supper Clubs and the food. The drink recipes catch the spirit of the genre. A really fun book to have on hand.

While at times I wished the author provided more depth and details about each of the places he listed. The picture s are great and it did highlight places we have been to. As well as giving us a great bucket list of places to try.

This is my favorite go to book when traveling throughout Wisconsin. I have marked every supper club reviewed in this book on a state map. Hope to visit everyone of them. Love Wisconsin Supper Clubs especially those in the northern part of the state where the surroundings are unbeatable. My favorite so far...Pine Ridge, Stone Lake

This is a very nice cocktail table book, and it profiles a lot of Wisconsin supper clubs. The author is apparently quite well known as an expert on these clubs and has done a filmed documentary, in addition to this book.That said, I strongly suggest that you don't rely too heavily on the book's reviews. I bought it just before taking a trip up north through the state, and I tried a number of the book's rated clubs. One (The Butterfly Club in Beloit) was absolutely fantastic, but several of the other highly rated clubs in the book were average at best -- and one was pretty much a dive.So buy the book, use it as a starting point for your visits, but then make sure you double-check your choices on TripAdvisor or some other travel database. When I mentioned my bad experience to one of the innkeepers at a local B&B, he told me, "the so-and-so club used to be great, but there are new owners now, and it's not what it was."

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