Many Madison-area restaurants close each year even without a pandemic.
But COVID-19 has dealt a sucker punch to the restaurant industry. "Many have called this an extinction event,” Simon Majumdar, Food Network personality and restaurant critic for Time Out Los Angeles, told Forbes magazine.
Restaurant suffering in 2020 exceeds past years, but of the 14 best restaurants I reviewed this year all are still open.
The State Journal didn't run reviews for three months when lockdown measures were first put in place. But in late June, the paper started a carryout-only column called "Curbside."
First up was Ancho & Agave in Middleton. It was the last place I'd visited just as the virus started to spread. So, once restrictions eased a bit and carryout food proved to be low risk, I went back to the Greenway Station restaurant for takeout. And, like many places with the means to do it, Ancho & Agave made a seamless transition to online ordering and curbside carryout.
Here are 14 restaurants that got the best reviews in 2020, curbside or otherwise.
Garibaldi Mexican Restaurant
Skal Public House
FEAST Artisan Dumpling and Tea House
Ragin Cajun Seafood
Royal Indian Cuisine
Settle Down Tavern
Ru Yi Hand Pulled Noodle
Wisconsin State Journal feature writer Samara Kalk Derby writes about the arts and brings you the latest news on the Madison area's eclectic restaurant scene. She can be reached at email@example.com or 608-252-6439.