Jordandal Cookhouse is tucked into a very unassuming strip mall in Verona.
The petite, humble farm to table establishment opened at 600 W. Verona Ave., in August of 2012, offering take-away fare. In November 2014, they added an expanded dining area to allow customers to enjoy their meals of farm-raised meat, wild-caught fish and small-batch, housemade sides.
All of the meat served at the restaurant is sourced from Jordandal Farms near Argyle and Darlington. Bread, cheese, coffee, vegetables and fish are all sourced from local suppliers including Madison Sourdough, Batch Bakehouse, Just Coffee Cooperative, Ancora Coffee Roasters and Dane County Farmers’ Market vendors.
The Cubano ($9.50 with a side) is one of Jordandal’s specialties, featuring slow roasted pork and ham, with Swiss cheese, pickles and mustard, served on a hoagie roll. The meat is tender and flavorful, the cheese would satisfy the most discerning of Wisconsinites and the pickles provide just the right the right amount of texture and crunch to the sandwich.
Other featured sandwiches include a patty melt ($9 with a side, which features bacon aioli, smoked cheddar and caramelized onion) and a meatball sandwich ($9 with a side, made of house-made meatballs and marinara).
There’s also a tempting Banh Mi sandwich ($9.50 with a side, made with Jordandal ham and spicy sausage, pate, pickled vegetable, cucumber, jalapeno, spicy mayo and cilantro on a hoagie), but I went with the walnut and black bean burger ($9.50 with a side, made with a housemade walnut and black bean patty, red onion, greens and avocado-citrus sauce on a hoagie).
The flavor of the walnut and black bean burger was pleasing, but the patty was a bit crumbly. The side of greens was fresh and crisp.
Jordandal also offers two varieties of taco for lunch: pork ($9.50) and grilled fish ($11). The toppings on the grilled fish tacos – bacon, pickled onions and peppers, cabbage, orange parsley crema and cilantro – were fresh and tasty, but the combination, which featured baked wild caught cod, was a little dry.
A personal favorite was the white cheddar mac ($8.50 vegetarian, add fried polish sausage, pulled pork or roasted veggies for $2).
The mac was rich and creamy, but not too heavy and not overloaded with salt or spice. The roasted veggies provided a great flavor complement.
Dinner options at Jordandal, which are served daily after 4 p.m., include a curried beef kabob ($13.50, featuring marinated ribeye, Brussels sprouts, red onions, bell pepper, Tzatziki chickpea salad and rice pilaf) and apple cider braised pork chop ($13.50 for a bone-in pork chop, smashed garlic sweet potatoes, wilted spinach, caramelized apple and onion).
I went with the beef and pork meatloaf ($12.50), which is served with a house BBQ sauce, garlic mashed potato and roasted vegetables. The meatloaf was perfectly seasoned, with a hint of spice, giving the three patties, presented well next to heaping portions of potato and veggies, a pleasant kick. The garlic mashed potato wasn’t overwhelmed with garlic, but definitely had a strong enough flavor to please those keen on garlic-featuring fare.
The turkey and waffles ($11) featured two delicious pieces of turkey, with perfectly-cooked, juicy meat practically falling off the bone, seasoned with Korean chili sauce. The flavor of the sauce was slight, but enjoyable. The buttermilk waffles were crisp, but not overdone. A crisp sweet ginger slaw complemented both main dishes.
Jordandal also serves a Saturday breakfast, which features morning variations of the turkey and waffles: bacon and apple waffles ($7.50), which are served with bacon, carmelized apple, butter, fresh whipped cream and maple syrup, and PB&J waffles ($7.50), which are served with whipped peanut butter and jelly cream cheese, fresh whipped cream, house granola and maple syrup.
Other breakfast dishes include the loaded breakfast chili ($7.50, a bowl of Jordandal’s house chili, topped with a fried egg, avocado, red onion, bacon and crema, served with cornbread) and breakfast enchiladas ($8.50 for two corn tortillas filled with chorizo pork sausage, scrambled eggs, onion, poblano pepper, jack cheese and crema, served with a choice of rice or a side potato).
Dessert options rotate at the restaurant and, whether customers are partaking in breakfast, lunch or dinner, they’re a worthy indulgence. The baked apple cupcake with maple frosting ($3) was rich, sweet and fluffy. The double chocolate lava cake ($2.50) was thick and rich, almost like a cheesecake, and the butterscotch pudding ($2.50) didn’t have an overwhelming flavor, but had nice, buttery notes and was topped with a delicious, airy whipped cream.
So go ahead and order dessert with your loaded breakfast chili — we won’t judge. ￼