It’s hard to imagine now, but thirty years ago there were no restaurants serving authentic rustic home style Italian food anywhere in the Hudson Valley. Back then, Italian meant red sauce and pasta and more often than not what you were served were “Italian-American” dishes like garlic bread with veal or chicken parmigiana or lobster fra Diavolo, or shrimp scampi (none of which would be found in Italy). Oh, how times have changed….
If I were in real estate I would say that Global Palate is centrally located between Kingston and Highland. Located in the old roadhouse that housed Marcel’s in days of yore, the restaurant’s dining room, and the bar in particular, have always been on my list of favorites. If you had a dream about a 1960’s neighborhood bistro, this is probably what you would dream about.
In Spain, diners – at least the local diners- do not have dinner at a tapas bar. They are public gathering places to stop after work, before dinner, for a glass of wine and a snack. The theme and setting at 52 Main in Millerton seem to mimic that tradition – a place to stop on the way home to meet some friends for a bite and a glass or two of wine.
Eddie Lauria’s latest enterprise, Grano Focacceria, offers an opportunity to sample classic Italian home style baking in an informal, casual, and very inexpensive venue. Nothing fancy. Nothing complicated. Just fantastic homestyle baking the way your mother did it….if your mother was the best cook in the neighborhood….in Naples.
The Culinary Institute’s newest venue is the Bocuse Restaurant, an homage to the legendary Lyonnaise chef, Paul Bocuse. In the late 1960’s Chef Bocuse and a few of his colleagues popularized what came to be known as “Nouvelle Cuisine”, a reimagining of traditional classic French haute cuisine with a new emphasis on purity of presentation and a rejection of the laborious and elaborate recipes and sauces of “cuisine classique”. Appropriately, the restaurant is located in the space that once housed L’Escoffier Restaurant, the CIA’s temple of haute cuisine.
New Paltz newcomers Huckleberry and End Cut have more company this month. Three new restaurants opened – Schatzi’s on Main Street. Garvan’s Gastropub at the golf course, and The Parish at the Waterstreet Market. We stopped in to check them out.
You will find Huckleberry tucked away in a corner off of Church Street, across from Hokkaido. The pub is exactly that, and nothing more, and I say that in a most complimentary way. The place has the look and feel of a European village pub, but one that caters to the locals and not the tourists, where families out for a bite are as common, and as welcome, as the locals stopping in for a pint and some conversation on the way home from work.
We were sitting at the bar, perusing the menu, sipping a glass of wine. A gentleman diner sat two stools down the bar from where we were seated. “You have to try this!” he said. I looked at his plate, the contents of which were not immediately apparent. Perhaps a roasted plantain, I thought. The waitress told us it was a parsnip. A parsnip?
After years of work and the collaborative efforts of seven Hudson Valley farms along with The Hudson Valley Chef’s Network, The Hudson Valley Seed Library, Glynwood and Slow Food USA, we can now tell you the happy ending to the story of Hank’s X-tra Special Baking Bean. It begins with an invite to dinner at the Village Tea Room in New Paltz.
Lots of good news on the Hudson Valley restaurant scene, with three new openings in Poughkeepsie and Marlboro.