While I’ve lived in Wisconsin all my life, I can’t say that I’ve spent much time in the Dane County Village of Mount Horeb. Lucky for me, I won a free two night stay at a beautiful VRBO close by!
Graciously included with my win was an itinerary of things to see and do during my stay. As the itinerary was curated to my interests (hiking, small plates, wine/beer, and coffee), it included several restaurant recommendations as well as a hike.
My husband and I started off the trip at the Grumpy Troll Brewpub. After the roughly hour and a half drive from the Milwaukee area, it was a great place to relax, eat and have a beer (brewed on site!). It also gave me a moment to look over the Mount Horeb Troll Map that I grabbed from a tourist display.
Turns out, Mount Horeb is known as The Troll Capital of the World!
The Troll Map details where you can find all 34 of the village’s trolls! Many of them are located on Main Street, also known as the Trollway! The trolls are all unique and make for great photo opps! Plus, they are woven among many great shops including Kella, Isaac Antiques (3 stories of treasures to look through) and Sjolinds for coffee, food and chocolate.
After strolling the Trollway, we settled in a the VRBO and spent the night relaxing and listening to the incredible sounds of nature.
The next morning, we were ready for a hike. We followed my host’s recommendation and drove a short distance to Morton Forest. The beautiful 115 acre Dane County Park showcases the geographic features typical to the Driftless area, providing steep hills, green valleys and beautiful views.
After working up an appetite during the hike, we headed back to Mount Horeb for some hard cider and delicious food at Brix. I highly recommend taking advantage of the cider flight, as well as some of their locally sourced fare, like the Gouda Grilled Cheese. They have ample indoor and outdoor seating, games to play including foosball, and live music on Sundays.
We spent the remainder of the day resting and reading. But as evening approached, we were ready to eat again so we headed to Homecoming, a restaurant roughly 15 minutes away in Spring Green.
Homecoming is a locally sourced farm-to-table restaurant located in an old white school house. Be prepared to order at the counter, then find seating inside or outside in their garden. Their seasonal and ever evolving menu includes handcrafted cocktails and mocktails, wood fire pizza, fish, steak and more. The food is brought directly to your table. I ordered the Green Pie and can honestly say it’s the best pizza I’ve ever had! I also highly recommend the Green Zone cocktail.
After another peaceful night of sleep, it was time to start the trip back home. We chose to take the scenic drive home and avoid the Beltline around Madison. It did add about 15-20 minutes to our drive back to the Waukesha County area, but was less stressful and more pastoral.
I would rate my visit to the Mount Horeb area a 10 out of 10!
While we didn’t take the children on this trip, everything we did was child friendly. The people, area, and vibe were all so welcoming. With it being such a short drive, it would make a great day trip! We will certainly be back to continue our exploration (Taliesin, Cave of the Mounds, American Players Theater) and make memories as a family.