It was a fateful day for Santhosh Kochuparambil when the chef at his restaurant didn't show up for work one morning. Unwilling to turn away hungry customers, Santhosh rolled up his sleeves and began cooking the dishes himself. From that day fourth, Santhosh continued to work in the kitchen, developing a knack with the saucepan and a skill with spices. After graduating from culinary school, Santhosh took on jobs in top kitchens across India, eventually leaving his native home for restaurants in Russia and New York.
Today, Santhosh brings his years of culinary experience to his own restaurant—Karavalli Regional Cuisine of India. Deep in its kitchen, the skilled chef stirs pots of spicy curries and bakes lamb, seafood, and breads in a traditional tandoori oven. He whips up his authentic Indian dishes using only fresh herbs and fiery spices, eschewing pre-made sauces or counterfeit magic beans. When discussing his dishes with reporters from The Saratogian, Santosh maintained, "after you eat, you feel something. Your taste buds are up. Once you start eating Indian food, then you like it. Plus, the spices are very good for the health".
The self-described "beer geeks" at Growler & Gill Craft Beer Shoppe work double duty, pouring brews behind the bar and helping customers select six-packs in the retail section. Made up of certified cicerone beer servers and experienced home brewers, staff members are happy to explain the difference between a lager and an ale or a wheat beer. Visitors who decide to sample a few gills—a unit referring to a quarter-pint—can also order a bite to eat off a pub menu that includes Bavarian pretzels, Polish pierogi, and bratwurst. They also offer regular events throughout the week, such as Wednesday night trivia to free brewery tastings on Thursday. In the spring and fall, the Lower Hudson Valley Craft Beer Fest comes to Growler & Gill Craft Beer Shoppe and features beer-centric food and samples from several domestic and international breweries.
Marly and Matt, who contributed their initials to M & M Pizza Bistro, use a range of fresh ingredients, as evidenced by a large selection of daily specials based purely on the morning’s market finds. The eatery’s tables populate daily with tender gnocchi, ravioli, and tortellini in thick bolognese or creamy alfredo as well pizza draped in roasted red peppers, goat cheese, meatballs, and other toppings. Wine-infused marsala and piccata dishes steam beside fresh bruschetta and garlic knots. At the counter, guests ask the cashier about fillings for a calzone or confuse it with Cal Ripken’s treehouse, The Cal Zone.
Though BC Chicken—formerly Bonchon Chicken—may have changed its name, its menu still centers on poultry. Here, diners get their fix with crispy fried wings or drumsticks dressed in soy-garlic sauce. The Asian-inspired marinade hints at dishes included in the expanded menu, which features pot stickers stuffed with chicken or hot shrimp. Beef makes an appearance in the form of Korean-style bulgogi, which is the basis for the cheeseburger buried under kimchi coleslaw and the beef tacos with soy sauce and onions. Set to the backdrop of the bar’s 70-inch projection screen, meals are complemented by helpings of fried Oreos.
With your arm armed with a wristband, you'll be free to revel in unfettered access to all of Sam's Fun City's rides and special attractions. Start by getting your vroom-vrooms out at Kart City, a lawless land of underage driving whose mayor takes bribes of red Starburst. Children nostalgic for the simple joys of early infancy can take a trip to Yesterville and go for a spin on the Jitter Bug Swinger. For those who'd rather reminisce about the more recent past, bring back the sandwich you ate an hour ago with a ride on the Give Peace-a-Whirl tilt-a-whirl. A round of Hollywood mini-golf gives you 18 opportunities to hone your victory dance's jazz hands and pirouettes, while an indoor play area provides welcome relief from the sun's crushing gravity with two giant inflatables and a three-story play structure.