Ian’s Pizza (Madison, Wisconsin)

And so now I am at the midpoint of my meal reports from our trip to Madison in early August and this is a report on our first non-Asian meal in the city (see my earlier reviews of Strings Ramen and Bandung). Ian’s Pizza—recommended by a commenter, Todd—was not originally on our itinerary but it was our fallback option when one of the places that had been recommended from multiple directions didn’t work out: The Old Fashioned. We’d planned to eat dinner there on this Monday evening but when we pulled up alongside we couldn’t see any sign of the outdoor seating that they were supposed to have. We called them from the car and were told they were not doing outdoor seating on account of the storm about to roll in. Now, while weather on our trip was not great, this evening actually was completely rain-free. The sky was blue, the sun was out. Indeed, after dinner we repaired to the Memorial Union Terrace at the University of Wisconsin for ice cream and sunset by the water. Far more likely is that they didn’t want to deal with staffing outdoor seating with enough people willing to eat indoors. So we ate dinner instead at Ian’s Pizza instead. And a very good dinner it was too.

Ian’s Pizza is located on State Street—well, it’s one of the locations—and if you’re trying to find it on foot using Google Maps on your phone you might find getting there a bit confusing. But find it eventually we did and were glad to see the Streatery seating out front as advertised. We got a table and I went inside to get a menu and then order. Their thing is pizza by the slice—though you can also choose to get whole pies. They have a large selection of toppings, including many that may as well have been designed to enrage pizza purists. We are not pizza purists but I can report that the crust was very good on everything we tried from a slice of the Classic Cheese to the Maui-Wowie (yes, involving ham and pineapple) and the Mac ‘n Cheese. Indeed we liked every slice we tried—the others were the Shmo (sausage and mushroom), All-Veg, the Pepperoni & Sausage and the Penne Alfredo. You can also build your own pizza if you like and you can also order salad and a few sides.

The ordering procedure is simple enough. You choose from the pizzas that are available as you’re ordering, you pay and you pick them up from a separate window inside when they’re ready. If a topping you’re interested in is not available when you’re ordering but will be soon you can also order that and they will bring it out when it’s ready—or I suppose to your table inside if that’s where you are seated. When we were there almost everyone dining had chosen to sit outside where it was quite nice indeed.

There’s not a whole lot more to say about it. It’s a large restaurant and in normal times I assume it would be a fun vibe inside. For now I’d recommend sitting outside. For a look at the place and what we ate launch the slideshow below. Scroll down for price etc. and to see what’s coming next.

We didn’t order everything at once and paid cash for some things and so I can’t tell you now exactly what our total cost was. But I can tell you it was very reasonably priced for what it was. I’d guess that in normal times the restaurant’s core clientele is university students but I think if we lived in Madison our kids would have us here quite often. A very good call at any rate if you’re in Madison with young kids. Thanks again to Todd for the recommendation and to Joe and others for the recommendation of ice cream at sunset at the Memorial Union Terrace.

Alright, just another couple of Madison reviews to go. The next one will be up in a week. Before that I’ll have a review of a Salvadoran meal in St. Paul. We’re scheduled to eat that in a few hours.



2 thoughts on “Ian’s Pizza (Madison, Wisconsin)

    • Todd, are you here in Madison too?

      I assume most readers of this blog are whisky fans, and I’m always looking to meet new whisky buddies here in town. We have a club.


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