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Jan 22, 2014 01:19 PM

Is there ANY good ethnic restaurant food in Albany?

I'm looking for good Middle-Eastern or Asian and we'll be going for a lunch. It can be just some oustanding dish or buffet at a restaurant.

I've eaten at Mamoun's which was kind of disappointing (compared to it's NY location).

Though I checked out Google and Yelp reviews, there's nowhere that appears obvious to go to, and clearly most reviews are by people who have had little experience with that type of food. I'm hoping for a recommendation from someone who really knows the cuisine.


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  1. You might want to do a search of this Board.

    This is a thread on Thai:

    Chinese (there is another thread with the best Chinese in Albany . . .only a few):

    I believe Ocean Palace has changed their name.

    Phoenicians (Lebanese) on Central Avenue if that's not too far from downtown Albany for you. I have not been recently so I defer to others for more recent experiences:

    1. Karavalli for Indian is great. Ala Shanghai for Chinese.

      3 Replies
      1. re: faith

        I absolutely agree with faith and will also add the new Hong Kong Bistro and Bakery on Wolf Rd (at the bottom near Central). Also Taiwan Noodle on Central. If you don't mind going to Troy, try Ali Baba for middle eastern (Turkish actually). And in Schenectady go to Tara Kitchen for amazing Moroccan.

          1. re: AmyH

            Ali Baba gets a lot of love on this Board. I can't believe I still haven't been . . .

        1. If you want to schlepp to Clifton Park, Saigon Spring. The Yelp perspective:

          In Albany for Vietnamese there is Van's or My Linh's.

          5 Replies
          1. re: financialdistrictresident

            My Linh's is not open for lunch. But the same folks own Pho Yum on Central Av just west of I 87 and it is open for lunch.

            Ocean Palace is correct as the current name for the Chinese restaurant at 68 Central Av.

            If you can judge the quality of an ethnic restaurant by the number of ethnics eating there, then you might want to try Kinnaree Asian on Lark St. Primarily Thai and Korean dishes.

            Mingle on Delaware Av serves Korean fusion.

            If you have the opportunity to travel out of Albany for lunch, I second Ala Shanghai in Latham as a good choice.

            1. re: Roger K

              Thanks, Roger K. I thought I read somewhere that Ocean Palace changed their name. Still Ocean Palace on their Facebook page :)

              1. re: financialdistrictresident

                I believe what you are recalling, FDR, is when Peter Chan left CCK to take over Manhattan Fish Fry and subsequently renamed it to Ocean Palace, the name of the restaurant he operated before CCK. Simple to understand the confusion. ;-)

              2. re: Roger K

                There's also Seoul Korean restaurant in Latham at the Peter Harris Plaza.

                1. re: Roger K

                  Mingle on Delaware Av has just announced it is closed as of 4/26/15. The Chef will now be at the Mingle on the Avenue location in Saratoga Springs where Korean dishes will still be prepared.

              3. Isn't there an Indonesian restaurant tucked away in a hotel in Albany?

                2 Replies
                1. re: BuildingMyBento

                  Yes, it's called Yono's at 25 Chapel St. in the Hampton Inn & Suites. Expensive and usually not open for lunch.

                  1. re: Roger K

                    DP (Yono's more casual restaurant) is open for lunch:


                    There's an Indonesian salad and a noodle dish.

                2. I've not been there in a while but I always liked Mamoun's. Very authentic Lebanese/Syrian food.