We have the need… the need for beads. Today is Mardi Gras — also known as “Fat Tuesday,” which is the direct translation from French. Famously known in the US as a major event in New Orleans, it’s a celebration of indulgence on the eve of Lent, featuring fabulous food + flying jewelry. ⚜️
Don’t sweat it if you didn’t make it down to the bayou — you can celebrate right here, 1,000 miles away from the French Quarter. These Madison spots have plenty of Big Easy flair to spare, with traditional desserts, tunes, and much more. Laissez les bons temps rouler. 🎉
Have your King Cake + eat it, too. 👑
- Lane’s Bakery, 2304 S. Park St. | Available on March 1 | 6 a.m.-2 p.m. | $49+ | This Madison favorite bakery is rolling out its take on the classic and colorful King Cake that feeds between 8-12 people + feast on 8 flavors of Paczki available as singles and dozens.
All that jazz 🎷
- Cafe Coda, 1224 Williamson St. | 7 p.m. | Tues., March 1 | $10 | Join Coda for a re-opening celebration on Fat Tuesday as the cafe partners with BlueStem Jazz to host Madison’s own Panchromatic Steel — a 12-piece band playing South Caribbean fusion.
N’awlins-style cocktails + dishes 🍹
- Liliana’s, 2951 Triverton Pike Dr., Fitchburg | Tues.-Sat., 4-8 p.m. | A 608 eatery bringing the French Quarter a whole lot closer through po’boys, shrimp and grits + a killer Vieux Carré. Why, yes, we will try the Shrimp and Crawfish Étouffée, and pronounce it correctly.
Pro tip: Want to create even more local flavor this Mardi Gras? Use Stateline Distillery light and dark rum to concoct a potent Hurricane, topped with the traditional orange slices, cherry + fruit from Willy Street Co-op. Now you have a Madison Storm.