3 Bs: Borland's, Bucky, and Beautiful Weather

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What a week. Work has been absolutely crazy; didn't have much time to do anything all week, so when Friday came along, no one had to twist my arm to lead the way to a fish fry.

Decided to head down to Belleville to check out Borland's Tavern. I had been to Borland's about 15 years ago and really enjoyed it; I hoped it would be as good as the 'ole memory bank made it out to be. Belleville is about 15 miles south of Madison - about half way to New Glarus, and aside from Borland's, there isn't much else in the town, so if the fish wasn't decent, we'd be hiking it back toward Madison for dinner.

After the short drive south, we hit Main Street Belleville and there she was - the familiar Borland's sign. Shining like a beacon, beckoning us to come on in and sample the fish.


We walked in and everything was exactly as remembered - the bar with the old fashioned stools, the fluorescent lights, paper placemat/menus, the paneling; this place had all of the ingredients to be fantastic!

The Borland's menu is fairly limited - it's first and foremost a bar - we didn't see any cheese curds on the menu, so we ordered an Old Fashioned Sour and the fish. Borland's offers one type of fish: deep fried cod. Take it or leave it, thankyouverymuch.

The Old Fashioned arrived and it was...... well, a good effort.


Can you spot what's wrong with the Old Fashioned? That's right - no muddling, no cherries, too light on the bitters, and far too heavy on the whiskey. They did use Squirt, so the potential was there. Thankfully it was only $2.50.

Shortly after we finished sampling the Old Fashioned our plates arrived. I was starving, as I didn't have a chance to eat anything at all on Friday (thanks to work being ridiculously busy), so I went with the "double order" of fish.


What you're seeing here is: six pieces of fish, a huge side of coleslaw, some bread, and an order of fries. But you came here for the review, so let's get on with it. The fish was absolutely great (or at least my plate was). Yes, it was breaded (loses points), but the breading was light and crisp and didn't overpower the fish. The fish itself was excellent - light, flaky, moist - all of the things you'd expect or want from great fish. My only complaint is that it wasn't all you could eat, although that's probably for the best - I would've probably run them out of business if it was.

I skipped the slaw (I'm not a slaw fan), so nothing to report there. The bread was great - most likely homemade, very soft, slightly chewy, and delicious. The fries were excellent as well - I have a feeling Borland's knows their way around the fryer because the fries were perfect.

With the belly full of fish, it was time to call it a night.

Saturday night brought a Badger hockey game - found some tickets via Craigslist and ventured over to the Kohl Center to watch Bucky do battle with the Colorado College Tigers. The seats were pretty phenomenal - right behind the goal.


During the warm-ups, the players rifle the pucks toward the goal and a lot of them miss, which results in the loudest "WHACK!" noise you've ever heard as the puck flies into the plexiglass barriers at about 100mph. It was a bit unnerving to say the least, but sitting a few rows from the ice made the flinching worthwhile. Here's the Zamboni in action:


The game started and it was pretty cool - the action, the speed, the tenacity of the game - it's quite a fun time. Got to see a few scuffles, including this little tiff... I wish I knew hockey rules a little better - the game would've made more sense.


Here's Bucky during one of the "halftimes" - I'm not even sure what they call the downtime that takes place between the three periods.


The Badgers wound-up tying the Tigers: 1 to 1. The game was a lot of fun, though - there'll definitely be more hockey games in the future!

Rather than fight the masses that were leaving the Kohl Center, it sounded like a good idea to hit the local watering hole for a beverage. Nothing to really report from here, other than I saw my first "stein" - check out this monster:


That's a 5-liter stein, next to a "normal" 1-liter stein. There was a group of guys that staggered in to the bar and wanted to order a boot, but because the bar was so busy, they were out of boots and suggested the stein. All I can say is - WOW. The thing is massive. I'm not even sure how they picked it up, since it's ceramic and had to weigh 20 pounds empty!

Finally, had a chance to ride the bike outside today; the weather was gorgeous, if not windy. It was sunny, in the low 40s, and a perfect day to hit the road. 2 minutes on the trainer seems like an eternity; 2 hours on the road, on the other hand, feels like 2 minutes, even when it is cold and windy. I'm not sure how many more opportunities there will be to ride outdoors... and that makes me a bit sad.

So there you have it - not a bad little weekend. Oh, and for those scoring at home - there were actually 4 Bs (if you count the beer in the stein).

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