Off the Square/On the Tart

Downtown Madison will enjoy three new restaurants.Just opened is , a new venture by the team of Justin and Cory Carlisle, Daniel Almquist and Shinji Muramoto.It replaces Kushi Muramoto at 106 King Street.The Haze specializes in global barbecue.The menu is divided into two columns with ribs, pork, beef brisket, sausage and chicken prepared a choice of two ways—Asian- or American-style.There’s a long list of carefully constructed sides, traditional and seasonal—much better than you’d get at your average BBQ joint! Many of the ingredients are local and their smoker was custom made in Cross Plains. Service is do-it-yourself with seating at wooden tables or the counter.The Haze is open for lunch and dinner or carryout daily.Whether you’re a Q perfectionist (like myself), or just have a yen for some good eats, The Haze should please you.

has carved out a niche for itself, serving some of the best and most authentic Mexican food on the far Westside.The Odana Road restaurant will soon have an urban sibling when La Mestiza opens its second location at 121 E. Main Street (formerly home to Subway).

opened on North Clark Street in Chicago in 1992 and was an instant hit.The formula was contemporary Northern Italian food, casual atmosphere and friendly service. Today Francesca Restaurants operate 18 eateries around the Chicago metropolitan area.They will open their first location outside of Illinois in Madison.The Francesca will be in Block 89 (1 E. Main Street) with an entrance on Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard.

Finally, I put a put a photo on Facebook of an apple tart I made last week.I wan unprepared for the response.Since several people asked me for the recipe I will post it here.