Café, Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany, 482-3677. Ice cream and
cakes, for sure, but it’s also a much-loved breakfast stop
(the Belgian waffles are towering) and a good place for tasty
sandwiches and terrific burgers. Serving Mon-Thu 8 AM-9 PM,
Fri-Sat 8 AM-9:30 PM, Sun 8-7. AE, CB, D, DC, MC, V.
A, 289 New Scotland Ave., Albany, 320-8684. The menu ranges
from Asian-inspired items like chap chae (a Korean
beef and noodle stew) and bulgokee to down-home fare
like meatloaf; many appetizers and a selection of panini and
other sandwiches provide lighter options, served in a bright,
comfortable, welcoming tavern. Serving Mon-Wed 3-10, Thu-Fri
3-midnight, Sat noon-midnight, Sun 11-5 (brunch 11-3). AE,
D, MC, V.
Lodge, 654 Saratoga Read, Burnt Hills, 384-3812. Solid
continental fare cooked from scratch and served in a handsome
Adirondack-style lodge, with talented chef-owner Cory Masten
presiding. Serving lunch & dinner Tue-Thu 11-9:30, Fri-Sat
11-10, Sun 10-8:30. AE, DC, MC, V.
Al-Baraki, 184 River St., Troy, 270-9404. Delicious Lebanese
fare for the budget minded, with many explosions of garlic
to keep the palate happy. Serving Mon-Sat 10:30-8. AE, D,
Baba, 2243 15th St., Troy, 273-1170. Enjoy a real gyro,
terrific shish kebab, and curried chicken pizza at this popular
Turkish restaurant. Serving Mon-Thu 11-11, Fri-Sat 11-midnight.
AE, MC. V.
Café, 203 River St., Troy, 266-9300. Traditional or exotic
lunch in a handsome surrounding, with Egyptian specials and
tasty baklava. Serving Tue-Sat 8-5. D, MC, V.
Toscano Bistro, 541 Broadway, Saratoga Springs, 581-2401.
Personal pizzas emerge from the wood-fired oven; salads, pasta
dishes (the carbonara is especially good) and some traditional
meaty entrées define this handsome eatery’s Tuscan style.
Serving lunch Mon-Fri 11:30-3, dinner Mon-Sat 5-9:30. AE,
677 Prime, 677 Broadway, Albany, 427-7463. Steak is the
specialty here, with a half-dozen or so cuts to choose from—and
they take it very seriously. Also seafood, veal, gourmet pizzas
and salads, an enticing assortment of starters and a la carte
sides, and sinful desserts. Serving lunch 11:30-2 Mon-Fri;
dinner 5-10 Mon-Sat; bar menu 2-10 Mon-Sat. Closed Sun. AE,
CB, D, DC, MC, V.
Italian-American Restaurant, 183 Troy Schenectady Road,
Latham, 220-9900. Friendly, accommodating place for classic
fare, with good veal and seafood dishes among the many entrées
and a lighter sandwich menu as well. Serving dinner Tue-Thu,
Sun 3-10, Fri-Sat 3-11. AE, D, DC, MC, V.
Water’s Edge Lighthouse, 2 Freeman’s Bridge Road, Scotia,
370-5300. Classic Italian dining with continental side notes,
with lots of good seafood and steaks. A light fare menu is
available as well. Serving light fare daily 11 AM-midnight,
dinner daily 5-10. AE, MC, V.