Sunday, July 30, 2006

The Italian Community Center

Some time ago I did a post on Italian restaurants in Albany. In that post I forgot to mention the Italian American Community Center (IACC) on Washington Avenue Extension. Now that it's next door to our new office, I go there at least twice a month. I also just joined as a "Friend of Italy" member. I have travelled in Italy and have Italian-American neighbors, so that seems fair.

The restaurant used to be called "Le Caravelle", but they've dropped that name and the restaurant is now run by Mallozzi's, which is a restaurant operation out of Rotterdam. I think Mallozzi's also runs the food at the Western Turnpike Golf Course (Town of Guilderland).

Anyway, I've been eating at the IACC a lot recently. One key thing to mention is the Greens & Beans. This is a very healthy dish (escarole, beans, and garlic, I'm guessing with olive oil), that happens to taste great. A number of places get this dish wrong, so it's nice to have it right.

They have a good variety on the menu. The lunch menu has less on it, but there's still a lot of choices. I've been getting the an eggplant dish lately (I forget the name, but it's something about rollatini or gondola). I'm also the kind of person who will sometimes order off-menu. If I'm in a particularly health-conscious mood, I'll order pasta with vegetables in olive oil. The IACC handles this without skipping a beat.

The thing about a place like this is their clientele is heavily Italian, so they have to get it right. They consistently deliver good food with the right flavors. And I keep going back.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Provence in Stuyvesant Plaza

My wife and I went to Provence in Stuyvesant Plaza for lunch maybe a week ago. It was not cheap, but it was worth it. We were able to sit outside, which is a nice touch. More places should offer this.

The food was simply excellent. We went overboard. Besides getting soup for me and a salad for her, we also got a cheese platter and then ordered entrees.

The cheese platter thing is a really nice touch. You don't see that at many places. They come out with three or four different cheeses and some bread. We're not talking cheddar and muenster. Stuff you probably wouldn't try unless you go to a place like this.

My soup was fantastic and Heather's salad was nice. Sorry to say I don't remember our entrees, but we were kinda stuffed by the time we got to them. I remember they were good, but can't say more than that.

We will definitely be going back here, though for budgetary reasons it won't be more than once a month.

99 - Western Avenue

My wife and I went to 99 on Western Avenue a couple weeks ago. They had some pictures on the wall from Guilderland High School yearbooks from my year and a few years around my year. That was neat.

The food wasn't bad, but it wasn't that good either. Not sure if we'll go back. Probably not. I don't have much more in depth to say about it. Not a terribly thorough review, I know.