Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About L'Etoile Restaurant
L'Etoile is a fine dining restaurant on the Capitol Square that focuses on local and sustainably sourced ingredients. Our menu is influenced by numerous culinary traditions and seasonality. Inquire about our monthly wine dinners and tasting menus. Full bar service available.
Madison, WI 53703
Contemporary American, European
Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Friday: 5:30pm - 9:30pm, Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
$50 and over
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Our parking lot is located on the corner of East Washington and Webster Street, behind the American Exchange Bank. Alternate Parking may be found at the Tenney Street parking ramp, located on the corner of Webster and Main Street. Street parking is also available on the Capitol Square most days after 6 P.M.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
L'Etoile Restaurant Ratings and Reviews
Top-flight grace, service, craft, creativity, and sense of place. Delicious flavors and textures, beautifully and thoughtfully presented on the plate, paired with spot-on wines both interesting and engaging. A world class restaurant from a world class chef, embracing this beautiful, bountiful part of the country.
I have been raving about our dining experience at L'Etoile, and I will definitely return for another special occasion. The food, service, wine and overall experience are among the best dining experiences we have had. Our home city is Chicago, so that's saying a lot. Two in our party had the tasting menu, while the other two ordered from the a la carte side of the menu. Everything on the tasting menu was outstanding. The a la carte stand outs were the rabbit first course and the sea scallops second course. Our server and the sommelier were attentive, informative and friendly rather than overly formal. We had wine pairings and were extremely impressed with the offerings. This was truly a superb way to celebrate an anniversary. Kudos to the chefs and everyone on the L'Etoile team.
The seven course chef's tasting and wine pairing was excellent. Portion size[s] were French continental cuisine consistent. Service, course timing, wine, and food presentation were all top notch. Great restaurant for special remembrances and occasions. My wife loved the scallops which were perfect in preparation and taste.... obviously a meal with someone special is a tremendous sharing opportunity!
We had been anticipating a return after many years, but were disappointed. So much time went into the descriptions of the ingredients and preparation, but the outcome for the price was missed. The dishes were beautifully presented. The servers were efficient and knowledgeable. The tiny bite extras were cute, tasty, and unusual, but did not fill in completely for the overall main entrees. The pork was so rare that it cooled too rapidly. It was questionable what part the hay played. Another dish had excelllent scallops, but the rhubarb was unable to be sliced or eaten. Overall, the food was fussy, but not exceptional. The wines were pricey, but good. We probably would not return.
This restaurant is a national gem! The food is amazing! Please be sure to listen when the server explains what you are eating and ask questions regarding how things are made. The amount of time, energy and brain power Chef Tory uses to create these food items needs to be understood. It makes your experience even more amazing!
I don't want to forget to acknowledge the dining room staff. Courteous, engaging, incredibly helpful and knowledgeable. They were the cherry on top of an incredible night!
Had a romantic dinner here for a "big" birthday. Drove 3.5 hours to get here. Everyone (maitre d, waiter, server) acknowledged the birthday and we were given special birthday menus to take home. The photo is of my entree: Fried green tomatoes with cheese grits, Tuscan kale, pickled tomatoes, cored jalapenos, and egg yolk....it was superb! We both started with tempura-style squash blossoms (so sorry we forgot to photograph them...they were gorgeous!) served with goats cheese, risotto, and peekytoe crab -- heavenly! My husband also enjoyed his halibut with flowering fava, radish & pine nuts. We shared panna cotta with crispy rhubarb, buckwheat and celery for dessert...outstanding! The view of the capitol building is very romantic, too. I first went to L'Etoile the year it opened (1976) and it remains right at the top of my "special restaurant" list. Bravo!
OMG, this is probably the best restaurant I've dined in for 5 years or more, and I traveled extensively for business! The reservation indicated that we were celebrating a birthday, so our menus said "Happy Birthday" printed at the top! We order the "tasting menu," i.e. small portions of 7 courses, many of items that you might not normally select for a meal. Each was delectable, and by the time we were done, our hungry appetites were satisfied. Wine pairings are also available, and we opted to buy 1 wine pairing and have it split for the 2 of us, since I don't hold my liquor well. That was a great option for us, and highly recommended -- each wine went beautifully with the paired dish. The price tag is not for the faint of heart, though. But if you can afford it, drop some cash here and enjoy yourselves! (The service was exceedingly good, too.)
We were 7 for our daughter's graduation. They had a fantastic Tasting Menu, rightly sized for each course, and absolutely well thought of dishes, inventive and extremely tasty. Every time we visit our children in Madison, we go to L'Etoile, and we are never disappointed. This time again, regardless of the large table of 7 people, the service was impeccable. Our waiter whom we had had before, was again so knowledgeable about the food and both waiters were incredible with their service. The sommelier suggested 2 great wines for our meal. Having traveled extensively throughout the world and having lived in Europe, L'Etoile is in my view at the same level as some restaurants in France for example, or restaurants such as Daniel in NY or and better that Le Cirque in NY, or Marcel in DC. I love it and Madison is very lucky to have such a great restaurant. Cecile Wilde
We've celebrated our anniversary at L'Etoile four of the last five years and we've never been disappointed. The menu is creative and delightful, the service impeccable, and the wine list and pairings spot on. We look forward to dining there each year and very much worth every dollar spent.
L'Etoile has, once again, gone above and beyond. I asked them to write a message in chocolate on my sister's desert for our special occasion. Since their pastry chef was not satisfied with how the writing looked (though I'm sure it was great), they printed special menus for us with the message on them, AND provided us with complimentary champagne. In addition, each server who interacted with us offered up their congratulations and wished her good luck on her medical exam. Truly the pinnacle of service and attention to detail. This goes to prove that L'Etoile does not let anything they deem substandard leave their kitchen. And sincerely, they are perfectionists.
Food was good. Seemed to take a long time between completion of one course and the next coming out.
Also if you aren't a "foodie" some of the descriptions were very hard to follow. We order the Black Forest Cake and when it arrived there was no cake. Now it tasted quite good however, the description and the expecation were way off.
Fine dining is somewhat of a hobby for us! We have dined all over the US with our notable favorites being Benu in SF and Eleven Madison Park in NYC - just to name a few. We have enjoyed coming to Madison occasionally over the past 3 years as it is just a 3 hour drive from home and it is such a fun little city. We ALWAYS hit L'Etoile when we're in town. Tuesday night we were treated to a spring menu that literally had no weak spots. Usually in a tasting menu, we've found that at least one course misses the mark. Not so with this one! The wine pairings were generous and spot on. I can't wait to travel here again- hoping to get in on the fabulous farmers market sometime this summer!
Incredible! The food, service, and drinks were all well above and beyond expectations. Everyone from the maître d to the waitstaff to the bartenders were extremely friendly, professional, and attentive. Our server Frank provided impressive descriptions of all the menu offerings; his descriptions and perfectly attentive service were only rivaled by the food itself! We tried the spring soup, burrata, Alaskan halibut, Peterson ribeye, French cruller, and the prix fixe menu -- every bite was amazing! Especially recommend the halibut and ribeye, but I would get every single item again. For drinks I tried the French Antique (or something similar to that name, first cocktail on the menu), which had a lovely light lilac flavor, and the Strawberry Sidecar, which was more sweet but with a spicy undertone that I loved. In addition, the atmosphere here was wonderful! We will definitely be going back, we were very impressed by the quality of the atmosphere, service, staff, and food.
L'Etoile is our favorite special occasion restaurant in Madison. It is a sensory experience. The food looks beautiful, smells great, and tastes wonderful. The ingredients are combined in very creative ways. Service is excellent. I would urge you to ask MIchael, the sommelier, for wine recommendations; we have always been pleased with his guidance. Also, he does a great with the wine pairings if you decide to go that route. The wait staff is attentive , helpful and friendly. At our recent visit, we were celebrating a friend's birthday. We all had a first course and loved what we had. I was especially pleased with the burrata. For entrees, two of our party ordered snapper and the other person ordered halibut. The fish was perfectly cooked in all cases. It was a lovely evening at a perfect place for a celebration.
Absolutely amazing. We were treated like royalty. Excellent food. Super chef. Loved our wait staff. Can't give enough accolades. We were celebrating 2 anniversaries and it exceeded our expectations. We'd do it again in a heartbeat. Expensive... so maybe save for our and our friends anniversaries again.
L'Etoile continues to be our first choice - amazing, world-class dining in Madison, WI. I think the food is just getting better and better. This time, we were joined by our friend from Buffalo, whom I think visits us partly to dine at this restaurant. We all agreed that the beautiful presentations were equaled in every way by the food selections, preparation and flavors of each dish. Bravo, L'Etoile!
It was a big disappointment and we would never go back or recommend it to anyone. Our waiter completely ignored us after our food arrived at the table coming back only ONCE to ask how our food was and this was just moments after it had arrived-I hadn't even tried my $56.00 ribeye which was very tough! He did not come back after that (through the entire meal) and did not see if we needed anything else. My companion was wanting some wine after finishing his martini and while our waiter was doting on his other tables, never once stopped back at our table to see if either needed anything else. The hostess was the ONLY attentive person in the restaurant supplying us with water and removing our plates when we were finished. At the end of the meal, we just wanted to leave and my companion told the waiter, who stopped to ask if I wanted desert, to cancel his dessert he had ordered with the initial order but someone brought it anyway. The waiter was busy chatting at another table and we told this person that we canceled dessert, after asking the waiter about the situation, our waiter came back and just said "oh yeh, that' right" and quickly left our table! Then, the manager came to our table and said the dessert was "on the house". We shared the dessert, paid for our meal (and our waiter just said "thank you"-and nothing else), and then we left. We did not complain during our meal and certainly were not rude so we decided we would NEVER go back and NEVER recommend the restaurant. We drove from Milwaukee for our special occasion and ended up getting stiffed on what we were expecting as a great evening out!
L'Etoile is a total dining experience. Ingredients are locally sourced, crafted into fantastic dishes and served by knowledgeable, enthusiastic and attentive staff. Taste is fresh, flavorful and unique. Yes, it is expensive, which makes it a wonderful treat for a special occasion and worth every penny. I took my daughter to L'Etoile to celebrate her upcoming birthday. Treat for me too.
I had very much been looking forward to dining at L'Etoile but the food arrived cold and bland, there was an issue opening my wine and rather than give me an option, it was brought back to the table 15 minutes later already in a decanter that I was told they had put through cheesecloth to remove cork particles. While I understand this and would have done the same myself at home I certainly would not have expected this to be the practice at a restaurant I am paying several hundred dollars for dinner for two.
Given that this was a Saturday night I am fairly certain the "B" team would not have been on so it is unlikely I will go back.
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