Welcome to our list of favorite dining destinations in New York's Hudson Valley and Adirondack regions. We visit restaurants, wineries, barbecues, and a smattering of off the beaten path culinary destinations like maple sugar shacks and fromageries. My friends and I have been dining out together weekly for over twenty years. The locations we write about are our favorite destinations. We are not claiming they are the best, just our favorites. The posts are not "reviews" in the classic sense. - we offer only our picks, not pans. We will leave the criticism to others. We are a happy blog. We much prefer a good bistro to "haute cuisine", especially if they also have a nice bar. We prefer a crock of cassoulet and a bottle of Beaujolais to just about anything else. If you enjoy simple home style rustic cooking with a decent (but not too expensive) bottle of wine, then pull up a chair and join us.
Friday, April 6, 2012
Brunetto's, Warrensburg, NY
3579 Route 9 (@ Northway Exit 23)
Warrensburg, NY 12845
(518) 623 1041 (no reservations)
Dinner: Thursday through Saturday
The menu is printed at the bottom of the post.
The restaurant traditionally closes from mid-April through mid-May.
Brunetto's is located on Route 9, just south of the Rte 87 Northway exit 23. You will know if the place is open because the parking lot will be packed with LG vanity-plated Lexi from Lake George weekenders. Its popularity is tied directly to its reputation for out-sized (think Flintstone steak) portions of traditional American fare - steaks and chops and pastas and such, at very reasonable prices. No heirloom tomatoes or spring pea shoots here; the focus will be on the slab of meat in the center of your plate. The format seems to be working; more often than not there is a line of patrons waiting for seats.We stopped in last night for dinner. It had been over a year since our last visit. We saddled up into two seats at the bar with my new favorite bartender Liz.
The couple behind us were working their way through what looked like a horse trough of steamed clams. It turned out to be an appetizer special of clams oregenato ($13), available over pasta if desired. Tempting. My inclination was to order a dish we had tried on a previous visit - steamed PEI mussels ($9), served in a garlicky white wine bath. That dish stopped the conversation when it showed up, the serving was big enough to feed a small village with leftovers. We opted for the clam special, which was not the traditional baked clams oregenato, but served in a tomato based broth, assertively seasoned with garlic and oregano. Instead of the advertised dozen, the dish contained eighteen clams, (and this is an app). We also ordered the roasted beet salad ($6), served over arugula, tossed with a very sweet orange ginger dressing and topped with crumbled goat cheese.
Choosing entree selections is problematic for us because the portions for each are just so huge. We are not big on leftovers and it is quite an (un)healthy effort to finish a dish here. On a prior visit, my table-mate wanted the trout. The entree that was listed on the menu read "two trout". (Who eats two trout?) We asked if she could have just one trout. The waitress responded that the serving size for this selection was two trout, but there was another dish on the menu that came with one trout. And a duck. I swear it's a true story. The menu now lists trout with options: One trout $12. Two trout $16. I am surprised that there is no "three trout" option.
The grilled pork chops present the same dilemma. Two 10 ounce slices of boneless pepper rubbed loin are grilled pink, and served with mashed potatoes and apple sauce. That's over a pound of pork. For $14.
Since I had just gotten my cholesterol checked on Monday and have a year until my next test, I ordered the pan roasted Delmonico, 26 - 28 ounces of boneless Black Angus rib-eye served with mashed potatoes and green beans. Mary ordered the confit of duck, which of course came with the requisite trout (one). We were also thinking of a "table vegetable" of sauteed rapini (broccoli rabe / $7). At this point the bartender said "You guys have eaten here before, right?" which translates as "You knuckleheads realize that you are ordering enough food to feed the whole bar, right?" We passed on the rapini.
The restaurant does not have a website and I could not find a menu on-line, so I will post the current menu below for your reference. The restaurant is closing April 15th (for Mud Season), and will reopen in mid-May (for Black Fly season)
Brunetto's Menu ~ April 2012
Fried Calamari $7
Steamed PEI Mussels $9
Oysters on the half shell $8
Deep Fried Oysters $8
Fried Clamstrips $5
Fried Hake Fingers $6
Baked Focaccia $6
Baked Artichoke Hearts $7
Clams Oregenata $13
Blue Crab Cake $11
Smoke Fish Sampler $11
Shrimp Cocktail $9
Chicken Liver Pate $6
Garden Salad $4
Iceberg / Bacon / Tomato $8
Tomato Caprese $8
Heart of Iceberg $4
Caesar Salad $8
Roast Beet Salad $6
NY Strip Steak (16 - 18 oz.) $26
Pan Roasted Delmonico (26 - 28 oz.) $30
Grilled Pork Chops $14
Salmon Filet $19
Poached salmon $22
Chicken Marsala $17
Chicken Picatta $17
Tortellini con Pollo $19
Fried Shrimp $17
Game Sampler (Duck / Trout) $18
Rainbow Trout 1 - $12, 2 - $16
Rack of Lamb $28
If you do stop in please let our other readers know about your visit in the comments section.
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