The 10 Best Local Restaurants In Albany, New York

Albany, New York | ©Doug Kerr/Flickr
Albany, New York | ©Doug Kerr/Flickr
Manhattan may be considered one of the liveliest places in New York, but Albany, New York State’s capital, is home to politicians and government officials. Situated along the Hudson this small bustling metropolis has a prominent culinary scene that embraces an eclectic array of traditions. We highlight a range of restaurants that offer global cuisines served in exquisite and unusual buildings.
Sushi and a cocktail at Angelo’s 677 Prime Courtesy Angelo’s 677 Prime

Angelo's 677 Prime

Restaurant, Steakhouse, $$$
Angelo’s 677 Prime is located in the theater district in downtown Albany. As the city’s signature steakhouse, 677 Prime offers the highest quality seafood, Kobe beef, and prime grade steaks as well as an extensive wine list with over 400 vintages. Their sea urchin crostini with caviar and roasted marrow bones with escargot illustrate their high-end nature and unique pairings, as well as an international sensibility. Perfect for a post-theater dinner, a family affair, or business luncheon, Angelo’s 677 Prime consistently rates highly in terms of service, food, and ambiance.
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Athos Restaurant

Athos Restaurant is the premier Greek restaurant in Albany that prides itself on offering fresh, delicious, and authentic Greek cuisine. Settle into their main dining room, fully stocked bar, or private dining area to experience the diverse flavors of Greece. Make sure you try their moussaka, baked layers of eggplant, ground beef, and sliced potatoes topped with béchamel sauce, or a traditional souvlaki sandwich. They are consistently praised for their homemade hummus and fresh Greek salad. With vegetarian and vegan options as well as a gluten-free menu and children’s dishes, Athos Restaurants offers something for everyone.

Café Capriccio

Situated on historic brownstone laden Grand Street, once Albany’s main Italian neighborhood, Café Capriccio offers the region’s only authentic Tuscan restaurant in an intimate booth setting with warm wooden interiors and 1930s Italian decorations. Voted Best Restaurant in the Capital District by Metroland Magazine from 2009-2012, Café Capriccio is owned and operated by the Rua family. Current chef Jim Rua has written two popular cookbooks and continues to further his popularity by providing exceptional Italian cuisine and hospitality. Try their duck confit risotto, the eggplant capriccioso, or the pistachio and arugula pesto with bacon and caramelized onions.

DP An American Brasserie

DP is a spacious, light-filled restaurant owned by Dominick Purnomo that specializes in comfort cuisine with French and Asian influences. They offer an array of small plates for sharing like the chicken and avocado rolls and fried Brussels sprouts with pork belly and maple gaze, while their Indonesian stir-fried noodles, Santorini lamb salad, and steak frites illustrate DP’s range of culinary influences that are expertly executed. Delicious food combined with handcrafted cocktails and attentive customer service make DP a must visit on the Albany culinary scene. Chef Yono’s culinary ability is consistently recognised in Manhattan as well.

Grappa ’72

Don’t let their off the beaten path location deter you, Grappa ’72 serves traditional Italian cuisine in a cozy setting. They offer a menu filled with Italian regional specialties and a well curated wine list complete with many grappa options. Their dimly lit dining room exudes a romantic ambiance while live music regularly augments the restaurant’s playful atmosphere. Consistently praised risottos, pastas, and melt-in-your-mouth bruschettas have earned Grappa 72 a loyal following. Try their Penne Romanoff with tomato cream, pancetta, and black peppercorn or cotoletta di vitello.

Sliders Courtesy of Reel Seafood Co.

Reel Seafood Co.

Centrally located on Wolf Road near the Albany International Airport, Colonie Center, and Crossgates Mall, Reel Seafood Co. has offered the freshest seafood in New York State’s capital for over 28 years. The newly appointed chef Alan Maki hails from 677 Prime and brings contemporary innovative twists to delicious seafood dishes with his recently instated menu, featuring fun dishes like ying yang scallops and lobster lollipops as well as wasabi pea-crusted halibut. Enjoy a meal in their recently remodeled dining room or on the outside patio while the weather is nice.

Sweet Basil

Albany’s favorite Thai restaurant Sweet Basil is a small affair that serves traditional noodle and curry dishes in a cozy atmosphere with a friendly staff. Start the meal with an appetizer or soup, such as their fresh basil spring rolls or tom yum soup, then graduate to one of their signature main dishes. While green and red curries are popular options, be adventurous and try their mango curry duck to illuminate Sweet Basil’s ability to transform authentic Thai cuisine into a unique culinary experience. Finish the meal off with some delicious Thai iced tea or coffee.

Lamb Chops Courtesy Texas De Brazil

Texas de Brazil

Geared towards meat lovers, Texas de Brazil is an authentic Brazilian-American churrascaria that offers slow, roasted and expertly seasoned cuts of meat that are carved on site at the table. A table filled with the freshest ingredients allows diners to craft their own salad while waiting for their serving of beef, pork, lamb, chicken, or sausage. An array of homemade sauces augments this fantastic dining experience. Texas de Brazil is also known for their impeccable service, which, coupled with their unique culinary experience, invariably attracts repeat customers.

The Wine Bar on Lark

Bar, Bistro, Gastropub, Restaurant, Wine Bar, American, Vegetarian
In the heart of the Lark Street neighborhood sits The Wine Bar on Lark, a small gastropub that serves deliciously inventive American cuisine with an extensive wine list and handcrafted cocktails. An outdoor patio invites guests to dine al fresco during the warmer months while wood burning fireplaces infuse the indoor space with a welcoming ambiance. Their almost entirely gluten-free menu changes regularly, but the cauliflower steak with eggplant puree and grain salad is a standout entrée that will entice meat lovers as well as vegetarians. A local Albany favorite, The Wine Bar on Lark has become a city staple due to their high quality food and service.
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Yono’s Restaurant

A staple of intimate fine dining in Albany, Yono’s was opened in 1986 by the Purnomo family. Offering contemporary American cuisine with Indonesian influences, this well-known restaurant uses locally sourced ingredients from Upstate New York. Their coconut milk polenta appetizer and pan-roasted maple leaf duck breast entrée, served with cauliflower couscous, illustrates their ability to deliciously fuse two eclectic cuisines. With a dining room that holds a mere 15 tables, expect high quality customer service and a memorable dining experience.