Lunch on the drive from Buffalo to Ithaca?
We're flying in to BUF on our way to a wedding in Ithaca this Friday, looking for somewhere to stop and get grub on the way.
Any cuisine is fine, something regional or unique-ish would be great. Not in a huge rush, so we could venture a few miles off the highway if there's something worth searching for (mapquest has us taking the 90 most of the way, and then the 96).
Thanks in advance!
A few suggestions:
If you get off the Rt. 390 exit for Rochester head north a couple miles and take exit 14 to Rt. 252 (Jefferson Rd.). Head east on Jefferson (a right turn) and go about one mile to Winton Rd. S, Turning left onto Winton you will see a plaza with a great Indian place, Thali of India, with a nice lunch buffet.
If you take Rt. 96 you will pass through a town called Trumansburg about 10 miles N of Ithaca. Hazelnut Kitchen on the main drag is a very nice spot for dinner (no lunches) and the Pour House has excellent bar food and a great beer selection. Gimme! Coffee also has a branch .
To add to the above:
If you don't mind going off the direct route a bit, I would strongly recommend Dano's Heuriger on Rt. 414 in Lodi (east side of Seneca Lake). Austrian style dishes (see menu: www.danosonseneca.com) in a lovely setting with lots of local ingredients and some nice wine choices. If you have the time there are some nice wineries just to the south along that stretch of 414. Another good luch spot is the Stone Cat Cafe, about 5 miles south of Dano's. When you are done, follow 414 south till Rt. 79 and take that east into Ithaca.
I did that drive, many years ago when I was in college, frequently. I actually preferred Rt 89 over Rt 96. (It's still exit 41 off the thruway).
Anyway, probably the best options will be had in Rochester, but offhand I'm having trouble thinking of anything unique that isn't more than a few miles off track. The only restaurant we venture to Henrietta (Rt 390) for is King and I (Thai food). If you got off at Rt 490 you hit a big mall with the usual chains - Biaggi's, Bonefish Grill, PF Changs, Champs. I mean, they're way better than rest stop food, but I don't love any of them.
If you want to venture into downtown Rochester (Rt 490 - exit 47, much less daunting than it sounds!) you might enjoy Dinosaur Barbecue if you like barbecue, or my favorite pasta place, Veneto Wood Fired Pasta and Pizza. You could also head to Park Avenue and eat at Sinbads (Lebanese) - it's very good.
If you take exit 45 you can head to the Village of Pittsford and check out Richardson's Canal House which offers a nice canal side dining experience (weather permitting). There are also a few nice restaurants in Schoen Place along the canal there.