The Northern Edge: Worth the TripJun 20th, 2011 | By Guest | Category: Reviews
If you’re a little too old for the club scene, and you’re looking for a casual place to have a good meal and some drinks, the Northern Edge in Lodi is a great choice. It’s only 20 minutes from the east, west, and north sides of Madison–about what it takes to get from one side of Madison to the other on a typical night–and the drive is definitely worth it.
As you walk in through one of the 3 main entrances, you’ll be greeted by a long multi-angled bar with plenty of room to sit, and lots of corners around which to gather. On a typical night, the smell of home-made pizza and all-you-can-eat broasted chicken wings fill the room. These wings aren’t your average wings. Most places deep fry their wings, and many buy them pre-breaded. At the Edge, the wings are breaded fresh (with a light flour breading) and then broasted. This makes them wonderfully crispy and juicy without being greasy. You can get them regular or Buffalo-style, and they come with a selection of 6 different sauces.
Just off the bar is the main dining room (one of 3). The full menu is available online (and is definitely worth checking out), but the Friday and Saturday specials must be mentioned.
Friday Fish Fry
Friday night, of course, is fish fry. Everyone has a Friday fish fry, so what makes the Northern Edge stand out? First of all, it’s the quality of the fish. Where other places serve cod (or pollock), the Northern Edge has chosen to serve haddock–the highest quality fish. In addition, they serve haddock loins–the best cut. This is a difference you can really taste.
Unlike most places which offer one or two options, the Edge offers 4 styles for their fish fry:
* Beer battered The most recognized style of fish-fry. The fish is coated in a light beer batter and deep fried. The home-made batter is light and thin, with a stronger flavor.
* Breaded The fish is coated in a coarse Japanese-style panko breading. It’s thicker in texture, but lighter in taste.
* Broiled Baked fillets are placed under the broiler to give them a crisper, dryer flavor.
* Poor-man’s lobster A moist, tender, baked fillet
The best part is that they allow you to choose more than one style. And, since it’s all you can eat, you can ask for more of whatever style you want.
The dinner comes with the option of the expansive salad bar (only $2 more), and your choice of nine (yes *nine* sides): Baked potato, mashed potato, hash browns, American fries, French fries, cottage fries, sweet potato, rice pilaf, or steamed vegetables. And, of course, every table gets rolls, coleslaw, and calico beans. All this for only $9.99 ($11.99 with the salad bar).
The fish fry is all you can eat, but save a little room: Every Friday morning, they bake fresh desserts from scratch. There’s always a selection of at least two fresh-baked deserts–usually pies. Pecan pie is almost always an option. Other common pies include Dutch apple, rhubarb custard, lemon merange, key lime, cherry, blueberry, and butterscotch (made from the recipe of the owner’s grandmother). Mandarin orange and German sweet-chocolate cakes make an appearance now and then, too.
Saturday Seafood and Steak
And then there’s Saturday. Saturday offers the seafood buffet and prime rib. The full buffet menu is, again, available on their website. Some of the selections include crab legs, 3 kinds of shrimp, frog legs, fresh-made calamari, and scallops.
They offer 4 sizes of prime rib, starting with the 8-oz “petite” and going all the way up to their massive bone-in prime rib. If you’re someone who loves a good steak, this is definitely something to try. It’s a 24-oz slice of bone-in prime rib, marinated in their special seasonings, fast-cooked, grilled to order, and topped with seasoned garlic butter. That’s the photo you see up top.
Is this a “kinky” venue? No. It’s not the kind of place you walk into wearing a leash and go-go boots. But nobody’s going to look twice if you’re wearing leather pants or a discreet collar. The clientèle ranges from farmers to bikers, and tends towards a slightly older crowd (30 and up). It’s not a fancy place, though the food is better than many “fancy” restaurants, for a fraction of the cost.
If you’re looking for great food in a casual atmosphere, The Northern Edge is definitely worth checking out.
The Northern Edge is on
N1430 Hwy 113
Lodi WI, 53555