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Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...

Come Back In

Not Rated.
Come Back InCome Back In
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

18 Reviews
Reviews: 18
Visits: 24
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: n/a
Taps: 26
Bottles: 78
Cask: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

508 E Wilson St
Madison, Wisconsin, 53703-3431
United States
phone: (608) 258-8619

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @comebackinmadis

Notes:
Place added by: cokes

No notes at this time.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 18 | Visits: 24
Photo of shbobdb
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 2.5

Located right next to the Essenhaus with access to all of there beers, PLUS three coolers filled with mircos, how could this place be anything but good? Indeed it delivers, with good beer and happy service.
I thought that the atmosphere was less rambuntious than that of the Essenhaus. Me, personally, I like a crazy bar with lots going on and I found the Come Back Inn to be rather subdued. A good place to grab a beer and chill with a friend or two, but hardly a good place to get your party on. Lots of Emokids here too. That was a major drawback for me. Not my flavor.
Ahhh, but the beer selection more than makes up for that. Lots and lots of craft brews and when they are on special (Wednesday night, I believe) many of them are actually cheaper than buying the singles at Riley's. (789 characters)

Photo of beerinator
3.95/5  rDev -4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

The Come Back Inn is a beer joint. Warning: Do not wear your Sunday Go To Meeting Jeans to this place. There is a good chance that you will smell of smoke when you leave here.

If you can get past the smoke and slightly grungy looking atmosphere (It's Character!) and start to focus on the very nice tap selection, you will realize that this is a very nice beer destination.

It's an easy walk or roll from the Great Dane or downtown.

On both of my visits here the service has been struggling. If you like beer joints with character, then you may find that the service is one of the only weak spots here.

The food, while simple, is good and very well paired with the "character" of the place. I had a reuben and some fries, which was good, but it took a long time to arrive after an even longer time of getting a server to take the order.

So, if you can catch this place on a non busy night, if you're not afraid of averting your eyes from the dim corners, and if you can get a non smoky spot to hang out, I think the Come Back Inn is a worthy beer drinking establishment. (1,086 characters)

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.09/5  rDev -1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

The Come Back Inn is just a hop skip and a jump from downtown and the Capitol. With the new MadTown laws about smoking the atmosphere continues to improve. The quality was very, very high with proper glassware when needed, but unfortunately the service lost a tick. The server was a bit slow and although apologetic it really did not get me a beer any faster. The beer on this visit only really started to flow after the good folks from Founders started a tab and from that point forward no complaints. The selection was good and everyone was having a great time.



From 11-28-03
overall: 4.06 atmosphere: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 |
That goodness this is tied into the Essen Haus. After a bad beer experience there, this was a welcomed excursion.

The selection was good and the service was quick. The atmosphere was much less smoky than the bar at the Essen Haus next door. They had quite a few beers on the menu and we even happened to see Larry Bell of Kalamazoo in there and have a quick conversation with him. I liked the Come Back Inn due to it's beer list of mainly ales when I visited.

I would definitely "Come Back"... (1,160 characters)

Photo of circuitmonkey
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I can't say enough good things about this place! And fortunitly the people who wrote review before me did a good job. I have to say I visit this play almost every time I go to madison (i think 5 or 6 times now). They have a great selection of beers that is usually in rotation with the seasonal's that alot of the local breweries carry, capital in particular. And the food is pretty cheap consitering how good it is... even if you arent hungry when you go there, at least get a 50 cent pretzle.. its well worth it. (514 characters)

Photo of longarm
4.13/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

As the step-brother to the Essen Haus (they're attached), The Come Back Inn enjoys a great selection of beers, with less of the German feel as Essen and more of a laid back bar that you might find in any Wisconsin town. A great place to saddle-up to the bar, the bartenders have always been exceptionally friendly and chatty with me. Food is decent and reasonably priced as well.

As far as atmosphere, it's not quite as interesting as the Essen Haus, but it has plenty to keep the eyes occupied, including a substantial collection of beer cans from the 60s and 70s along with tap handles and other brewiana.

For those traveling in large crowds with diverse tastes in food and beer, the Essen Haus and Come Back Inn are a solid combination, since they offer wide selections of both within very close proximity. (816 characters)

Photo of Sixpoint
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

What a great place. When you go to school at UW-Madison, this bar is known as a "grad student" bar. I can see why. Since graduate students are often even more broke than undergraduates, it seems like a proper fit. With bargain drink specials ($2 half-liters!) it's hard to pass up.

The atmosphere is classic. On one end of the bar, you have pretty nice views of Lake Monona. Also, all around the bar is memorabilia from 1950s campus scenes at the UW. It's pretty priceless.

The quality is pretty good. I've never had a bad or skunky beer, but the place does not conjure up images of cleanliness and sanitation. Maybe because it gets trashed Thursday though Saturday, year-round.

The service is impeccable, mostly because it's all young hotties who make sure your glass never goes dry.

The selection is nothing to write home about, although they do have some impressive German beers on tap, such as Kostritzer Schwarzbier and Aventinus Weizenbock.

I definitely recommend going there for brunch the following day, and look for the Florentine omelet with a bloody mary. (1,082 characters)

Photo of daledeee
4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Had been to the Essen Haus. This is adjacent to them. Stopped by here for lunch. This is more of your traditional bar. A large collection of salt and pepper shakers. Other antique memorabilia. We were the only ones not drinking!!. I finally broke down after lunch. We had some Ruebens. I have yet to find a better one. I had a Franzekaner Dark Weiss served in a weisen glass. We like the place and will return. (410 characters)

Photo of cokes
3.6/5  rDev -12.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Located adjacent to the Essen Haus, and will be generally overshadowed for that very reason. Nevertheless, it is worthwhile to step through the door and leave the Germanic surroundings for a beer or two.
Simplistic, standard barroom feel. Somewhat blue-collar and grimy.
Roughly 20 taps with plenty of top regional brews and local favorites. Well stocked self-serve coolers full of beer. Actual numbers vary considerably, but typically about 50-75 more brews in bottled form, covering a wide spectrum of origins and styles.

There is an interesting "discount cooler" which sometimes features attractive brews that haven't sold well to the masses. Some are old or just uninteresting, but there is usually a gem or two in there.

A worthy and welcome companion to the Essen Haus. Never quite as busy either. (806 characters)

Come Back In in Madison, WI
92 out of 100 based on 18 ratings.