Have a craving for Asian food, but can't decide between Thai, Chinese, and Japanese? Tomo Asian Bistro offers all three, making life a bit easier and more delicious. In between sushi-rolling sessions and gyoza-tossing contests, the chefs carefully slice fresh fish for sashimi and nigiri and artfully arrange veggies in special spring rolls. Whole fried flounder comes served in the restaurant?s special sauce and a half-boneless crispy duck gets a kick from ingredients such as garlic and chilies. Classic entrees of panang curry, general tso's chicken, and mongolian beef are also served, and can be paired with wonton soup, chicken satay, or one of everything.
Invoking the precision of Samurai Japanese Restaurant's warrior namesake, sushi chefs slice paper-thin pieces of sashimi within the eatery's sparkling new Colonie location. Alongside pieces of fatty tuna and oyster, chefs assemble specialty rolls such as the King California and the Fire House roll, whose shrimp tempura and spicy tuna pair with rice, seaweed, and crunch. The menu also includes cooked entrees, such as yakitori-style bamboo skewers with short ribs and broccoli, as well as hibachi-style scallops and strip steak, which chefs prepare on sizzling tabletop grills.
When Nord Brue and Mike Dressell began perfecting their bagel recipe with the help of a professional NYC bagel maker in 1983, the bagel was still an anomaly in the food world—it was geographically and culturally still isolated in New York City. Fueled by a desire to change that, the duo opened up the first Bruegger's deli with the hope of eventually introducing the rest of the country to the bagel. Brue and Dressell have since realized their dream, sharing their distinctive recipes and culinary traditions at 300 locations spread across 26 states. To this day, they oven-bake their centerless bread rolls every morning and afternoon, populating counter displays that also brim with daily made breads, Vermont cream cheese, and custom-roasted coffee.
Executive Chef Phillip Smith and his network of chefs still use the original five-ingredient recipe for their dough, which they shape into more than 20 bagel varieties. Because they draw from each region's local recipes and from dialogue and Pictionary games with local consumers, certain menu items may vary from store to store across the country. The bagels are often served with Bruegger's eclectic cream cheeses such as bacon scallion or pumpkin, or as sandwiches with meats, cheeses, and veggies often sourced from local or organic produce. Coffe gets just as much attention, with house blends of 100% arabica coffee.
Chef Mark D. Graham crafts menus at taste that showcase culinary techniques honed over more than two decades in the kitchen, including several years working as the sous chef at the Palo Alto Spago under Wolfgang Puck and Michael French. It was time well-spent?his menu presents inventive New American cuisine that led the Times Union to declare the chef's vision as being "bright, creative and precisely tuned...Graham isn't shy about crafting a menu that tempts you to try favorites of his you may have forgotten about or never sampled to begin with." Carnivores can delight in savory, slow-braised short ribs, Lover's Leap pork belly, or grilled filet mignon and the envious stares of nearby diners. Those who prefer their meals via sea can indulge in the halibut filet accented with salsa verde and summer couscous salad or salmon elegantly laced with asparagus butter.
At Wolf's 1-11 Restaurant & Games, the latter comes in myriad forms. An arcade stocks both new and older classics, from Guitar Hero to air hockey to skee-ball. Trivia tests patrons' knowledge every Tuesday, and football fans can vie for autographed photos from stars such as Joe Namath and Dan Marino on game days. In fact, every day is a game day of sorts at Wolf's, where 40 high-definition TVs and projection screens show the latest games and sports news.
Bartenders at Wolf's bar decant wines and pour 30 rotating draft beers before setting the drinks down at high-top bar tables or sending them out to the cozy leather booths and casual tables in the dining room. The dual spaces complement Wolf's menu, whose steakhouse- and pub-style meals range from 12-ounce new york strip steaks topped with housemade garlic butter to chicken wings tossed in sweet whiskey sauce.
After more than three decades in business, the owners of Sitar Indian Restaurant often see the children of their first generation of customers pass through their doors. Perhaps these customers return for the restaurant's focus on authentic Indian cuisine, especially the classic dishes of its Northern states. In all their cooking, Sitar's chefs rely on a hallmark of North Indian cuisine: the tandoor. In this clay oven, portions of chicken, lamb, and fish simmer in spiced gravies and curries. These items are joined by others ranging from vegetarian biryani rice dishes to baskets of vegetable-stuffed naan. Chefs can prepare any dish with mild, medium, or heavy spice upon request, creating meals that can tickle the tongue or quickly melt a scary-looking snowman. Throughout the day, these dishes decorate tables dressed in bright saffron tablecloths, where patrons dine surrounded by Indian tapestries and musical instruments on display.