Da Trollway-- Da Mustard-- Da Q-- Da Pack--Da Pasty
Last week, the wife and I took our annual trip out to see Da Eagles on Da Mississippi. On the way, we went through some interesting Wisconsin towns.
We took US-12 northwest to Madison, and then US-18/151 to Mount Horeb, the home of the Trollway. About 14 wooden trolls are located along Main Street to honor the town's Scandinavian/Norse heritage. Had some excellent Norwegian meatballs at Shubert's.
Then went into the Mustard Museum located down the street. Only in Wisconsin. We were warned that a search might be necessary to make sure we weren't smuggling any contaband inside like ketchup and mayonnaise. We sang several rousing fight songs for Poupon U and looked at the extensive collection of school related items for sale. You've heard of wine tasting, but guess what they have here.
Drove to Dodgeville, and checked into the Don Q Inn; not your normal motel. We first found out about this place when we drove by it. It's hard to miss that giant plane parked out front, that actually landed there 30 years ago. The lobby is a three and a half story, heavily wooden beamed affair with about 18 old barber chairs surrounding a huge circular fireplace.
The Don Q is noted for their Fanta-Suites, but we stayed in a regular room, not bad at $60.
Went downtown to three bars across the street from the 1840s courthouse, the oldest operating one in Wisconsin. Nothing like watching Da Pack play, than in a bar full of diehard Cheeseheads. Sure was a disaster for the first 5 minutes, but Da Pack sure came back.
Fun and Games in Wisconsin. --RoadDog
I thought I'd written my own review of the Mustard museum, after I visited it about a year ago, but I can't seem to find it anywhere.
[Editor's Note: There was a reference to it made in this thread in April, 2006, another one in July, 2007, but I couldn't find any review of it either....]
It certainly is an interesting place, worth spending an hour or two. Its great that the place is free, but I don't know if anyone can get out of their without buying something. Afterall, its not everyday that you can find Sun-Dried Tomato and Cranberry flavored mustard.
The Trollway is also a nice touch to this little town. The Grumpy Troll restaurant also tries to play off the fun, although I haven't yet stopped to eat there. The roundabout in the middle of town was almost a tourist attraction in its own right a couple years ago, although there have been alot more of them going up around here lately.
One more idea if you are in the area is to stop at Cave of the Mounds, which is a nice place to explore for a little while. And with a constant temperature around 50 degrees, its a great place to warm up in the winter and cool off in the summer!
Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 01-21-2008 at 08:32 PM.
Do I live where it's boring?
All the fun tacky tourist traps, museums of oddities, and strange and unusual festivals all seem to be everywhere but here. Or am I just used to our own oddities? :)
My husband is a mustard freak. He would love this place. Thank goodness they have an online store. Any suggestions of strange and unusual mustards you've loved?
Tried a Couple
I tried a couple of good mustards, but don't remember the names.
There are now about five roundabouts coming into town from the east. I HATE roundabouts. You just don't know who is going to hit you from where.
We highly recommend Shubert's as a place to eat. They also have really goood rosettes.
Another roundabout hater here!
A small city about an hour east of us has put in quite a few of 'em. Some are easier to navigate than others. There are some big ones where I have gotten lost and taken the wrong turnout so I'm going the wrong way. Very confusing. Especially if there is a lot of traffic. Oy veh! I have two friends who have been up there and gotten in fender-benders in 'em, too. Nasty things. I'd rather sit at a light for awhile.
It is true that American drivers have never seemed to get the "hang" of using them. There several of them in the Las Vegas area and every time I enter one, my defensive driving situation awareness skills go on "high alert" -- it can get darn exciting. But still I enjoy the challenge!
Originally Posted by RoadDog
Really Scary Roundabouts
The worst roundabout I was ever in was by Boston. No mercy was shown by the other drivers and we ended up going around several times before I could get over to where we could get off where we wanted.
Driver Fatigue and Traffic Circles
One memorable drive, I reached Washington, DC at 6:45 am on a Monday after driving from LA (non-stop -- a true speed run). Even with the discipline of sleeping every six hours, I was severely sleep-deprived and had to drop my co-driver off at his job -- located in the consulate area -- and I got stuck on one of those traffic circles -- with very aggressive beltway drivers -- I was beginning to think I would never get out of it... A real spin-cycle of serious proportions -- we made it -- but, whew! It still gives me "nightmares".
Continuing the Ethnic Tour
When we left Dodgeville, we drove to Mineral Point, so named for the mineral deposits found here.
Many people from Cornwall, England came and settled here. Much of the architecture of the buildings is Cornish. Of course, I just had to have a Cornish pasty (rhymes with nasty). The last one I'd had was at Land's End in England. My wife wasn't on the trip, so I thought it'd be great if she had the opportunity to sample one.
Stopped at the Red Rooster Cafe which has a sign out front advertising fresst pasties every day. I told her it tasted somewhat like a pot pit. She found them to be good, but a bit on the dry side.
A pasty was a staple of the diet of Cornish miners in the past. It could be eaten without silverware and came with a little fold in the crust where the miner could grip with his dirty fingers. That would be thrown out at the meal's completion.
Several years back, my mother and sister took a trip around Lake Michigan and found them there as well.
Wisconsin now has a state historical site at several of the original Cornish cottages in an area called Shake Rag, so named for the sound rags made that were shaken by the Cornish wives to signal their men that supper was ready. It is called Pendarvis.
From Mount Horeb to Mineral Point is only about a hundred miles, but definitely an ethnic trip.
Keep on Down that Two Lane Highway. --RoadDog