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place to eat after the races? saratoga

I'm going to the races for the first time this summer, and i want to follow it up with some GREAT food.. any suggestions? I dont mind spending money, but i want something that will knock my socks off. I also wouldn't mind knowing about the local dives for drinks or diners for good old fashioned breakfast.

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  1. I haven't been there in quite some time, but if The Parting Glass is still around, it used to be a lot of fun esp. if you like darts!

    1. Beekman St. bistro is excellent market cuisine; Mouzon House is comfortable, Creole food; Siro's is the place to be seen during the racing season; Chianti is another sceney restaurant; good northern Italian food, no reservations, so be prepared to wait in the bar.

      1 Reply
      1. re: PSZaas

        Take out a new mortgage if you plan to dine at Siro's. Mouzon's food is quite good, but the portions are small.

      2. Parting Glass is still around, lot's of beer selections, but somewhat clubby if you are not a regular. Better choice is the real brewery on Excelsior Avenue, which has a tasting room open from 5 to 10 weeknights. PInts cost $2.00, selection of their fresh made beers is extensive, and a very homey place. Locals can tell you how to get there.

        As far as food. Here you go.

        Breakfast: First recommendation would be the Corner Cafe (two locations, one
        just off Broadway, and one in a more obscure location (Most locals can tell
        you how to get there.) Other breakfast locations are Shirleys Diner, on West
        Avenue, and Comptons, on Broadway. All of the above are good, and not expensive.

        Lunch: Toscano Forno across from the City Center is very Art Deco, very
        trendy, and has great wood fired pizza and Italian specialities, very very
        inexpensive prices. $10 to $12 bucks will get you out of there with money in
        your pocket.

        Dinner: If you're a carnivore, Cliffs Country Inn on Route 9P, south of the
        city, is the place to go. Prime Rib, steaks, red meat. Not all that expensive,
        and most everybody in town can tell you how to get there.

        Big bucks meals: 43 Phila, Chez Sophie. My personal favorite is Chez Sophie,
        now located downtown in the big hotel

        You also cant go wrong on Everglades (BBQ), the Ripe Tomato, the Public House,
        or Bentleys (good basic Italian at Bentleys). Avoid PJ's BBQ, heavily advertised, but not as good as Everglades

        Wherever you are staying, they can tell you how to get to all of these places.
        Many have web sites; just Google them.

        Enjoy my home town.

        15 Replies
        1. re: trakman

          I can't wait for the meet to start. The Parting Glass is pub/tavern food. Very good burgers IMO, I like the place. It's a great Irish pub.

          The breakfast spot trakman is talking about is the Country Corner Cafe. The newer, second location is on High Rock Avenue. Very easy to get to -- just take Circular to the end (heading North). Compton's is a real breakfast "joint" -- one of those breakfast/luncheonette type places. I like it and go there often.

          Don't worry about lunch -- you'll be at the races, LOL.

          For after the races -- first, stop by Siro's right after the races for a drink -- or two. It is "the place" after the races, considering you can walk out the gate and be there in about 10 seconds.

          For dinner, since you said you don't mind spending money -- knocking your socks off is relative; hey, they're your socks, LOL. I would try Chez Sophie, One Caroline, or Mare. 43 Phila would have been a selection of mine, however, I am sorry to say they are closed now. If you want to look further, check out Dine, Tiznow and The Wine Bar, they might appeal to you. Chez Sophie is more fine dining, while One Caroline is a more casual. Both are excellent. Mare is very trendy, chic. Kind of South Beach'ish, LOL. There is a place that knocks my socks off, but it's a good 45 minute or so ride from Saratoga. It's called The Grist Mill, and it's in Warrensburg (Exit 23, I think).

          Good luck and enjoy! Eric

          1. re: ELA

            all of the suggestions sound great.. we're staying at a place called "bacon hill inn" i guess the owner also is chef at 'roadhouse 29'. anyone heard anything about that?? I went to skidmore, but all i can remember about the food there is comptons (of course after a lot of LATE nights) and the sandwich place down town.. is the brew pub still operational? they've got pool tables right?? darts, pool tables those are the sort of things by boyfriend wants to find at some 'dives' im looking more for good food! what sort of stuff at the grist mill??? sounds GREAT!

            1. re: Tupelohoney44

              Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but the Original Saratoga Springs Brew Pub is no more. Changed hands, became a place called OCallaghans, and went belly up in about a year. Ticked me off big time, since my geezer gang were regulars at the Brew Pub for years. Roadhouse29 is getting some great reviews in the local press, but cannot vouch for it personally Havent been there yet. Here's the link to their web site. http://www.roadhouse29.com/

              1. re: trakman

                Roadhouse 29 is already closed. How long were they open, a month?

          2. re: trakman

            43 Phila has been closed for about 6 months.

            1. re: amateurfoodie

              Sorry, can't help you on the inn or the roadhouse. Are they both in Saratoga? The Saratoga "Brew Pub" -- am I talking about the same place -- what street was that on? Was that the name? I am thinking of the place that was on Phila, across the street from Ravenous -- is that the place? I was disappointed to learn about 43 Phila. I learned about it here, on another thread. I don't know if they were open year round, although I think I remember going there once, not during the meet, however, this was a very nice place.

              Does anyone know why they closed? I hear the building was for sale and put on the market, but did that mean the place had to close? Any details? Enjoy the trip. Eric

              1. re: ELA

                Hi,

                I've spent a lot of time in Saratoga and can agree with the recommendations here. Chez Sophie is a great restaurant and the owners are very nice people.

                If you are looking for a late night quick bite try Esperanto. I'm pretty sure it is on Phila Street and their food is quick, cheap and pretty tasty.

                ~C

              1. re: trakman

                PJ's BBQ is not only not as good as Everglade, IMHO it is not good at all and probably never was. A thorough disappointment.

                1. re: feelinpeckish

                  Odd, we've dined at PJ's many times but had never heard of Everglades - and I used to live in Interlaken. Heck, we were visiting a friend in one of those nice houses across from Interlaken, and they had never heard of it either. So, we visited Everglades last Saturday for lunch. Hands down, Everglades is WAY better than PJ's. The smoked ribs and chicken were moist and tasty, the alligator appetizer very good. Everglades looks a bit rough from the outside and may scare away some (new) customers, albeit the interior is a little better. Overall the food was excellent, reasonably priced, and friendly / quick service. My apologies to our friends who own PJ's. The one advantage PJ's has though, is that it's much better located for SPAC and horse racing traffic. Everglades is a bit out of the way, several miles north of Saratoga Springs on route 9. Worth the drive though, if yearning for bbq'd stuff.

                  1. re: trakman

                    Country cafe is not expensive? I ate there Saturday morning (Church street location) and could not have been more dissapointed. Two eggs, homefries, bacon toast and coffee for 8:15 before tip is expensive. As if price alone is enough to skip the place, the food was pretty poor. The eggs were, well, eggs, and I had a problem with erverything else. Bacon was flat as a pancake and brittle as could be, in addition to tasting only of salt. Why not use a higher quality product and cook it fresh, it was 8:00 saturday morning. Home fries were a disaster. I said well done, twice, and got big chunks practically uncooked in the middle with virtually nothing about them well done. I paid extra for onion homefries, a sin in itself , and got practically raw onions thrown in for a few seconds on the grill, they appeared to be barely cooked. Toast was good but I got one slice and was told it would be extra for another slice. Coffee was weak. Stay clear of this place.

                    1. re: stuartlafonda

                      I couldn't agree more about Country Cafe! This place is terrible. They list on the menu (and charge accordingly for) "fresh squeezed orange juice - you'll taste the difference". As I know what fresh squeezed tastes like and this was not it, I asked the waitress. Her reply? "We order it in and its called fresh squeezed." Huh???!!!??? You can't "order in" fresh squeezed - it doesn't mean squeezed, frozen and then defrosted! Manager clarified that it was "unpasteurized". Well, that's great, but its not fresh and you CANNOT taste the difference between this and Tropicana. Home fries were terrible and only are included with specials - so if you order any omelette off the menu you have to get and pay for a side of home fries separately. We found this place listed as "best breakfast in Saratoga" on chowhound and it is such a disaster. Bad, overpriced diner food - not even the good, greasy spoon kind of bad. Just poor ingredients, not fresh, unseasoned, undercooked, overpriced kind of bad.

                      1. re: angelaf

                        Country cafe is way over priced and you leave feeling ripped off. The food is not terrible but it isn't good, either. I have never in my life of travels been to a breakfast place that doesn't give you two slices of toast. Come on! If you read their menu you get the feeling they'll do anything to squeeze more out of your wallet. The other thing that bothers me about that place is that it's rare you get a refill cup of coffee.

                  2. Try Springwater Bistro on Union Ave...in fact the chef will be appearing on food network tv show called "Dinner Impossible" on May 16th.

                    Also try Tiznow's on Henry street.

                    1. We had a great meal at Beekman St. Bistro last year. I checked with my parents, who live right on Caroline St. and have really good taste about food, and my mom had these suggestions:

                      Scallions, which used to be in another location (Broadway?), is reopening for lunch and dinner, across from the Parting Glass.

                      Thai Sushi on Phila.

                      Gaffney's and Sperry's (that's two restaurants--you might even remember them from your Skidmore days) are both good on Caroline St.

                      For breakfast, try Saratoga Fair Trade Coffee, which is on B'way next to Soave Fair.

                      Near the Wine Bar, there's a gelato place that also has lunch.

                      If you'd like to drive a bit, try Lakeridge in Round Lake. You'll need a dinner reservation anywhere in August, but Lakeridge won't be as crowded and noisy as place right in town.

                      1. How about the Olde Bryan Inn? Not trendy, but I've had some very good meals there. And it's off the beaten track, so it may be possible to get into during track season.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: NYchowcook

                          If not too late to add suggestions--I would try Chianti il Ristorante on South Broadway for dinner. They have outdoor seating and the food is always impecable. My husband and I (foodie machines) had stayed away thinking it was too expensive--because it just looks like it would be expensive. But it wasn't at all. The first time we went, a couple seated next to us didn't like their wine by the glass and the owner / manager (?not sure) gave them a bottle on the house of something else. So--service & "customer service" old school is good. They don't take reservations but seem to kill themselves to accomodate guests.

                          We also LOVE Beekman Street Bistro--fresh, organic, good food. Gotcha's next store has yummy fennel fries. The food, in my opinion, at the Parting Glass is hideous. Years ago under very differnet management, it was classic, solid pub food. Now it's just greasy crap. (just my opinion). Beer is good, though.

                          Chez Sophie in The Saratoga hotel has a great bruch. Their food is impecable but it's just really expensive.

                          1. re: paige vg

                            Definitely try Mrs. London's Bake Shop on Broadway. World-class patisserie right here in Saratoga. Bkfst or lunch. Decent new Indian restaurant on Caroline-Karavalli's. Here's the link for 29 Roadhouse-not far from where you are staying and might beat some of the in-town crowdedness: http://www.roadhouse29.com/
                            Scallions has reopened on Lake Ave.-down from the Parting Glass-closer to Broadway; attractive setting, nice menu. If you have a few people to go with and you want to gorge on classic red-sauce Italian (dishes are served family-style and will feed a number of people)- you might want to consider Augie's in nearby Ballston Spa: http://www.augiesrestaurant.com/

                            1. re: markabauman

                              Mrs London's, now there is an awesome idea. After my nightmare on Saturday morning at Country Cafe I went to Mrs London's on Sunday morning. Sat at a little table outside on a cool morning and enjoyed a huge breakfast. Started with a large cup of Capp with a croque misour made on pan de mie and grilled to perfection. I then half a pecan round and half of a cinnamon roll. I managed to not try the almond croissant as I was supposed to bring back all the pastries, intact, to my sleeping family at the Gideon Putnam .Don't get me started on breakfast at the G-P, I love sitting outside but breakfast is a triple threat, slow service, sky high prices and mediocre food.

                              1. re: stuartlafonda

                                You may have noticed the construction going on next door to Mrs. London's. Unfortunately, it won't be ready for the racing season, but possibly this fall- there will be a new restaurant to be opened by the London's very talented chef son Max. Some of you may remember him from a few years back as the chef at Eartha's over on Court St. All local foodies are anxiously awaiting the opening.

                        2. The best place that I have eaten in Saratoga after the races is the Wishing Well. It is just north of town about three miles. The atmosphere is horsey and the food is great. If you like lamb chops...they have the best! Also, they have a really nice wine list.

                          1. Sperry's is always consistently good.

                            1. In addition to the regular menu, Chez Sophie does tasting menus that are an incredible value for the price. They start at $75/person for food and wine for the chef's daily tasting menu, but you can spend as much as you're inclined and get a personalized menu if you contact them in advance. They even print the menu up on pretty vellum scrolls.

                              As an example, this is what my husband and I had for my birthday dinner last night. This dinner was $300 total for two.
                              Food:
                              Diver scallops with tomato broth
                              Ahi tuna with truffled English pea puree
                              Grilled quail with blueberries, pecorino cheese, baby arugula and aged balsamic vinegar
                              Wannabea Farm rabbit loin stuffed with foie gras (the menu doesn’t mention but this was on some kind of whipped potatoes with carrots and an amazing sauce)
                              Elk with morels, fava beans and black-eyed peas
                              Cheese course - La Vache de Chalais, Lazy Lady Farm La Petite Tomme, and Jasper Hill Farm Constant Bliss (with a variety of accompaniments – poire moutarde, fresh strawberries, some kind of poached cherries and….can’t remember, but it was a nice array)
                              Peach melba

                              Drink:
                              ½ bottle Pierre Gimmonet champagne, Cuis Premier Cru Brut
                              ½ bottle Chambolle-Musigny Domaine de Village Antonin Guyon 2004
                              ½ bottle Chateau La Grave a Pomerol Trigant de Boisset 2002
                              A-pear-a-tif (a pear liqueur drink they recently devised)

                              Not something we can do all the time, but the food and wine holds its own with some of the best experiences we've had in larger markets, and as someone else mentioned, Paul and Cheryl are delightful.