velvet buffalo

Restaurant of the Week: Velvet Buffalo Modern Italian

Take traditional Italian classics with a contemporary flair, add in a farm-to-table approach with the freshest ingredients around and you have Velvet Buffalo Modern Italian in Downtown Beloit. Located at the bottom level of Hotel Goodwin, Velvet Buffalo serves up an elevated Old World vibe.

Velvet Buffalo offers the ideal setting for a date night or catching up with friends around the centerpiece horseshoe-shaped bar. Marvel at the colossal flower vases, glistening subway tile and elegantly worn butcher-block tables – all giving a rustic-meets-modern bistro feel. Enjoy people-watching from the restaurant’s floor-to-ceiling windows and maybe catch the sunset behind neighboring Rock River.  

Start the night with a wide selection of craft cocktails such as the light and bright Blossom & the Bee, made with gin, honey, lemon and prosecco, or the unique Pineapple Upside-Down Old Fashioned. Sip along while enjoying the complimentary house-made warm focaccia bread served with garlic-infused olive oil and cracked salt and pepper and plotting your menu moves. Might we suggest a sharable antipasti dish like the sugar melon, grilled peach and burrata? Bellissimo! This wonderfully presented dish also features cut-to-order prosciutto, ground cherries, basil and sour honey. Enjoy other options like the steamed mussels with spicy sausage, the bruschetta or the Caesar salad with jicama and pulverized croutons, giving a crunch in every bite.

Velvet Buffalo’s main dishes consist of grilled swordfish, roasted chicken, beef tenderloin and sweet corn risotto and grilled shrimp. All dishes contain as much locally sourced ingredients as possible, changing with seasonable availability. Guests can choose from a nice variety of timeless house-made pasta dishes, again, each with a twist. Think spaghetti and meatballs with pickled spicy Fresno peppers or gnocchi with chicken and garlic cream sauce with Wisconsin favorite, Nueske’s Bacon. We loved the whole-wheat pappardelle and lamb Bolognese with a hint of cinnamon spice as well as the ricotta-and-kale ravioli with peas, summer squash, corn, tomato and pecorino in a light, lemony cream sauce. Pair any of Executive Chef Jonna Froelich’s dishes with a wonderful selection of wines. Velvet Buffalo has once again been recognized for its outstanding wine list in Wine Spectator’s 2022 awards.

Enjoy a nightcap with a Godiva chocolate raspberry martini or explore dessert delights of tiramisu, lemon-basil panna cotta or myriad gelato and sorbet flavors. Strawberry-rhubarb white chocolate is a dream!

Velvet Buffalo Modern Italian is open Wednesday through Thursday, 5 to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 5 to 10 p.m.; and Sunday 5 to 9 p.m. Reservations are recommended. Velvet Buffalo also offers a take-out menu.

For more information on Velvet Buffalo Modern Italian, visit For more information on Hotel Goodwin, visit

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