You may have noticed it's now December, and the October edition of Kyle Ate Here still hasn't posted.
(At least, I kind of hope you've noticed.)
Anyway, sorry about that. In the interest of giving you updates on the most and least satisfying restaurant experiences of October - but not, say, costumed in some sort of trick vs. treat punnery - I'll simply boil it down to quick hits. A bulleted list of sorts. Rather than giving you the full rundown of the month's outings in the comments, that'll be the body of the October post - annotated with the most noteworthy factoids. You'll still get a Best Thing for October, so if you feel the need to skip ahead, it's down there.
Ground Zero- Best thing about driving through town to work: more maple lattes.
New Orleans Take-Out (Fordem)- These po'boys do not travel well. Beans and rice with sausage, though? Yes.
Madison Sourdough Co.- Setting a calendar reminder for next year's cherry season. MSCo's chocolate cherry gateau basque rocked my October.
Blowin' Smoke BBQ- Consistently great. Carolina ham sandwich special. Both want and do not want a Blowin' Smoke storefront.
Great Dane (East)- Terrifyingly huge buffalo chicken sandwich.
Dumpling Haus- Such a comfortable, relaxing spot. The pork and tart cabbage noodle soup with a blast of hot sauce makes me very happy.
Dominos (Appleton, WI)
The Cookery (Fish Creek, WI)- Turning into an annual occurrence. Perch sandwich dropped quite a bit of good fish for what seemed a scary-high price tag.
Sergio's (Appleton, WI)- Salad bar and a corned beef and sauerkraut quesadilla, unironically? Yeah.
Papa Bear's BBQ- How have I gone this long without trying the fried chicken? Half a bird for cheap.
Isthmus Food and Wine Fest- You guys missed one hell of a pork kee mao from Weary Traveler's Joey Dunscombe. I'm disqualifying it from Best Thing consideration, but damn. Also, AJ Bombers' Mad 'Sconnie burger is significantly better as a mini-burger.
Alchemy- My wife commands that I mention that the BLFT IS FINALLY BACK ON THE MENU.
Oasis Café- No pelmeni on this visit. Wailing, gnashing of teeth, rending of garments, etc.
Takumi- I'm officially known on sight now.
The Old Fashioned- I hope more people are going here for weekday breakfast than I've seen. Tasty, cheap, and with a great old-school country soundtrack.
Thai Noodles- What a bizarre interior. Like eating in a real estate office. Business was good, though.
Buffalo Wild Wings
Bradbury's - Got a totally meatless crepe (delicata squash, blue cheese, runny egg) and didn't regret it for a second.
Osteria Papavero- Still wishing I hadn't had to send back that steak.
The best thing I ate
I really liked the Hot Ham Carolina sandwich from Blowin' Smoke, but it wasn't actually that hot -- in neither degrees nor scovilles. If the promised walnuts in my squash crepe from Bradbury's had delivered a little better, we'd probably be talking about it now. But because of the Arthurian quest it triggered, I hereby name the chocolate cherry gateau basque from Madison Sourdough as October's Best Thing. Having had it on the 4th, I was pulling a Jack from LOST for pretty much the rest of the month, trying to rediscover this magical moment in time. This somewhat obscure pastry is made with almond flour, and the cherry version is filled with, well, cherries. Just tart enough, chocolatey but still fragrant with almond, this was a bakery treat that pulled a fine disappearing trick -- DAMN IT.