Sunday, December 5, 2010

Tranquil Bar & Bistro

Name: Tranquil Bar/Bistro
Location: 36 Pine St., Binghamton, NY 13901
Phone: (607) 723-0495
Cuisine: French/American
Price: $75+ for two

Tranquil Bar/Bistro represents the closest thing to a French fine dining experience in the Binghamton area. If you are a "foodie" like me and have never been to Tranquil, stop whatever you're doing right now and make a reservation. I guarantee you will find something to your liking.

Tranquil is located at the intersection of Pine and Fayette Streets in Downtown Binghamton, one block away from NYSEG Stadium, home of the Binghamton Mets. The restaurant occupies the former Player's Club Bar, an establishment I'd never been to, but it's an excellent spot for a restaurant, an older brick building that has a distinctly European-cafe feel inside. The space is divided fairly evenly into a bar and a dining room. We were seated quickly upon our arrival and we each order a glass of wine to begin the experience, along with the Spicy Cream Mussels appetizer. I elected to order Chicken and Andouille Sausage Jambalaya while Megan opted for the Shrimp and Wild Mushroom Risotto, hoping for a better risotto dish than that she had a couple weeks ago at Grotta in Vestal. We were presented with a small loaf of French bread ("authentic" according to Megan, who lived in Paris for five months last year) with a delicious sweet-cream butter. This was a fine start to what would become an excellent meal.

The mussels appetizer arrived after a short wait and were completely delicious. I was stunned at how tender the mussels were and how easy they were to pluck from the shells. The spicy cream sauce did indeed have a nice kick to it. I sat there trying to figure out the ingredients in the sauce....besides the obvious cream and butter, I am guessing either crushed red pepper or cayenne was what provided the heat, but there were lots of subtle flavors. Megan normally does not care for bivalves, but she was quickly converted by these mussels and ate half the generous portion with ease and enthusiasm. Next visit, I'll try the Mussels Vermouth to see how they compare.

Our entrees were next to arrive, and both were quite good. Megan's risotto was delicious and had a perfect consistency. As I've said before, risotto is a somewhat challenging dish. If undercooked, it's practically inedible, because who wants to eat crunchy rice? If overcooked, it's a gummy, starchy mess. This was spot on, perfectly seasoned and topped with fresh grated parmesan cheese. Megan was happy with the dish and is pretty jazzed about having the leftovers for lunch today.

My jambalaya was very tasty also, though it was perhaps a little too spicy for my liking. Don't get me wrong, I love spicy food of all varieties, but when I took a bite of this jambalaya, I initially found the heat to overwhelm the other flavors in the dish. With bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, chicken, andouille sausage served over Creole rice and topped with fresh scallions, this was a fine dish with lots of nice flavors once I got beyond the heat up front. I would order it again for sure, but on my next visit, I am excited about trying something different.

Time for dessert, and there was no way I was going to pass up the opportunity to have the British Style Toffee Pudding, which I had on my first visit to Tranquil a while ago, and have said on a few occasions is my absolute favorite thing I've eaten in the area. Well, it was no disappointment on this occasion either. This English pudding is very much unlike what most Americans would think of as "pudding," and has more of a cake-like consistency. Whatever it is, it's completely delicious, and I highly recommend trying it out if you go to Tranquil. Megan got the chocolate pudding (also British Style) which was delicious, too. But I highly recommend the toffee.

I would be remiss in my duties if I did not mention the service at Tranquil, which I feel many people would perceive as "slow." In my opinion, there is a distinct difference between slow service and "paced" service, and I think that Tranquil tries to offer a complete dining experience rather than just trying to get people in and out the door. If you need to eat in a hurry, this place is not for you. I found that our waiter provided a nice pace to the meal and provided good recommendations.

Tranquil is the best restaurant in the City of Binghamton, if not the entire area. The atmosphere is nice and appropriate for the food that's served. The food was excellent from start to finish, with my only criticism being the slightly overly spicy jambalaya, but that is an extremely minor quibble. The Toffee Pudding dessert deserves special mention as a totally awesome dish and an excellent way to end the meal. As I said, service is not quick, but with an experience like the one offered at Tranquil, who really wants it to end, anyway?

Grade: A

Tranquil Bar/Bistro on Urbanspoon

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Crepe Heaven

Name: Crepe Heaven
Location: 217 Main St., Binghamton, NY 13905
Phone: (607) 217-7188
Cuisine: Crepes/Coffee
Price: Less than $10 per person

For years, I have been interested in trying Crepe Heaven, but getting the wife to go always proved a challenge. You see, she'd been there once a few years back, around the time the place opened, and liked it, but found it to be more of a dessert place rather than a place to head for a substantial breakfast or lunch. Thus, we often passed right by Crepe Heaven en route to other dining locales downtown. The other day, I finally got Megan to agree to go there for a late-breakfast/early-lunch. We arrived at the restaurant, located near the Price Chopper Plaza on Binghamton's West Side, around 11:00 AM, and I hoped that Crepe Heaven would live up to its name.

I was surprised by the ambiance, decor, and size of the restaurant, which carries a European-cafe vibe (with far more room between the tables than you'd find in Europe, for sure). It's a charming and classy space that stands out by comparison to most area restaurants. We ordered drinks (a french press for me, a cafe au lait for Megan) and took a look at the menu, which featured a wide selection of sweet crepes, savory crepes, and some other specialty items like chevapi (Bosnian grilled beef served with onions and sour cream on a roll).

For those unfamiliar with crepes, a crepe is basically a very thin pancake, rolled up with various fillings inside. Sweet crepes have fillings like jelly, jam, Nutella spread, honey, and fruit fillings, while savory crepes feature meats, cheeses, and vegetables and are similar to omelets. Crepes are considered a French national dish, and I had the pleasure of enjoying a crepe when I visited Paris last year while Megan was living there. In Paris, it's most common to see crepes offered as street food, akin to an American hot dog stand. Thus, I was expecting Crepe Heaven to offer more of a fast food experience; I was pleasantly surprised that this was not the case. At any rate, I ordered a ham, egg, and cheese crepe, while Megan went the sweet route and got the Nutella crepe with strawberries.

Ten minutes later, we had our crepes. I admired the presentation of the dishes and was ready to dig in. Sure enough, my crepe was pretty excellent. Served with sour cream on the side, it was a great combination of flavors. I think it's best described as a more delicate version of an omelet, but definitely tastier than any omelet I could get at an area diner. I tried Megan's Nutella crepe, drizzled with chocolate sauce, which was also delicious. Our coffee drinks were an excellent complement for the crepes, and the $16 check did not exactly break the bank either.

My trip to Crepe Heaven was thankfully a far cry from purgatory. The restaurant offers a refined dining experience in a classy environment with delicious, well-presented food at an inexpensive price. Service was friendly and efficient. I regret not going to Crepe Heaven much sooner. This is easily one of Binghamton's best restaurants, and I look forward to going back to try more crepes in the near future.

Grade: A

Crepe Heaven on Urbanspoon

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Grotta Restaurant

Name: Grotta Restaurant
Location: 126 Front St., Vestal, NY 13850
Phone: (607) 785-0222
Cuisine: Italian
Price: $10-$15 per person

Grotta is located at the southwestern tip of the Four Corners in Vestal, near Vestal High School. It's a pretty good location for a restaurant given that there's not much competition in the immediate vicinity. We have slowly but surely been winding our way through the area's Italian restaurants and I believe this one is one of the last we'd yet to visit. We noticed their menu in the latest phone book and were impressed with its variety, particularly a number of different risotto dishes and some more uncommon entrees like Fettucine alla Matriciana. Hence, when it came time for dinner tonight, Grotta is where we headed.

The restaurant is a medium-sized space with ample decor and natural lighting. As we entered we were greeted by a grandmotherly Italian woman who looked to be the restaurant's only employee throughout our visit. We were instructed to sit anywhere, and soon after we placed our orders.

I decided to try a slice of cheese pizza as an appetizer, as I always like to try the pizza in any new Italian restaurants I go to. For my entree I was told that the aforementioned Fettucine alla Matriciana was not an option today, as they didn't have all the ingredients for it. So I went with Fettucine Carbonara, another favorite of mine when done well (it is known for being a dish that is difficult to execute perfectly). When done improperly, it's basically pasta covered in scrambled eggs which can be a little gross. I was hopeful that Grotta could successfully pull it off. Megan ordered the Risotto alla Grotta, a risotto dish with chicken and fresh parmesan. Each dinner came with complimentary garlic knots and a house salad.

The pizza arrived first and was clearly not fresh. It was reheated and who knows how many hours old. I can't really assess its flavor because it just tasted kind of like cardboard with a hint of tomato sauce on it.

The garlic knots and house salad were the next arrivals. The salad was pretty standard, with a house Italian vinaigrette dressing and the usual vegetable contents. The garlic knots were quite large, but in my estimation were a bit too doughy and lacking in the garlicky and buttery flavor that I love in a good garlic knot.

Next would come the entrees, and each had a major problem. Megan's risotto was terrible. It had all the flavors you'd expect of a great risotto dish, and thus had so much potential, but the risotto was undercooked to the point of being literally crunchy as you took a bite. We know how complex risotto can be, and how time-consuming it can be to make: Megan makes risotto at home often. It requires constant stirring and lots of time to develop the desirable creamy consistency. This risotto did not have that consistency at all, rendering the dish practically inedible. I think the waitress thought we were in some kind of hurry or something (though we did absolutely nothing to give that impression and even encouraged her to take her time with our entrees since we knew they were both challenging dishes). But that is absolutely no excuse: when we go out, the #1 thing we care about is our food being cooked well. This risotto was an absolute failure. A shame, since we both agreed that given ten more minutes of stirring would have resulted in a very good entree. You win some, you lose some.

The Fettucine Carbonara was closer to a win, but still had its share of problems. For those unfamiliar with the dish, it consists of egg, pancetta or bacon, and pecorino or parmesan cheese tossed with pasta. If the chef is not careful when adding the pasta, the eggs will scramble and the consistency of the dish will be pretty disgusting. Unfortunately, I got scrambled eggs this time around. The meat was most certainly prosciutto ham instead of the usual pancetta (not a problem in my eyes but I think others would see this as a bit of a faux pas). The dish had some nice flavors with its fresh parmesan and al dente pasta and I was able to eat it (unlike Megan with her risotto), but I have certainly seen better attempts at carbonara than what I got this time.

Overall, I feel bad to give such a bad review. Service at Grotta was pleasant and friendly and the restaurant itself offers a comfortable environment. The menu is diverse, and the dishes certainly had potential. But from our perspective, the execution of our entrees was awful, to the point where we certainly will never go back. Maybe it was just a bad day, but based on this experience, I'd advise others to steer clear of this restaurant as well.

Grade: D

Friday, November 19, 2010

Moxie Grill

Name: Moxie Grill
Location: 998 Conklin Rd., Conklin, NY 13903
Phone: (607) 237-0779
Cuisine: American eclectic
Price: Likely $30+ per person

After long last, the Tasting Binghamton crew amassed an army of our loyal followers and made the trek out to Conklin to check out the fabled Moxie Grill, a restaurant we'd heard a lot about in the last few years, but had never made a priority to check out. I've read a lot about the restaurant and realize that many consider it one of the finest restaurants in the Binghamton area. Naturally, I was extremely excited to give it a shot, and so we made reservations for a party of eight, left the city lights of the South Side behind, and headed an extra few miles out to Conklin.

Upon our arrival we were seated promptly on the lower floor of the two-tier restaurant. It immediately struck me as one of the nicest-looking restaurants in the area, with its attractive color scheme of golds, beiges, and browns and hardwood tables giving the restaurant an arresting look. Unlike some of the area's other fine dining establishments like Number 5 and P.S., which are somewhat stuffy and mannered, Moxie is hipper and more likely to appeal to a younger crowd. But I came to chew the food, not the scenery, so on to more important matters...

We ordered drinks, and I was happy to find an impressive beer list which included various choices from Cooperstown's Ommegang Brewery and Chimay Blue Trappist Ale. For wine drinkers, there's an equally impressive list to make a choice from. We put in some orders for appetizers while waiting for one of our late-arriving friends. Megan and I decided to try out the Blue Cheese Fries, with crumbly Danish blue cheese, applewood smoked bacon, and scallions. The fries were pretty tasty and hit the spot, with the marriage of the creamy cheese, smoky bacon, and well-seasoned fries providing a good first impression. Our friend Jaime opted for the Fried Calamari, served with a slightly spicy marinara sauce and a neat presentation. I got to try some and was impressed with what I had. Neither of these appetizers was mind-blowing, but both were impressive enough for me to want to order them again.

When it came time to order the main course, I was torn, since so many of the entrees on the menu looked to be up my alley. Tender Kobe beef would call my name one minute, and tasty-sounding variations on wood-fired pizza the next. In the end, I decided to go neither route and instead ordered the Paella, in part because it was listed as a "signature dish" and in no small part due to the fact that I am unlikely to find it on another area menu. Served with a salad, I got the house salad with a Thai peanut dressing. Megan opted for the Delmonico steak, cooked medium well (grrr...) with a side of polenta and the Chicago iceberg wedge salad.

The house salad was interesting, with field greens, kalamata olives, and peppers doused in the peanut dressing I had chosen. Normally I am not such a fan of my salad being drenched in dressing, but I can make an exception this time because it was quite delicious. Did it pair well with the olives and peppers? Not especially, but here I go again, going on and on about salad...let's move on to the main course.

The paella was a good choice, well-prepared with quality ingredients. This dish included shelled clams and mussels, shrimp, scallops, chicken, and chorizo sausage served over risotto. There are aspects to the dish I liked more than others. The scallops, for example, were perfectly cooked, and if I had it to do over again, I might just order scallops as a entree. Some of the other parts of the dish, like the chorizo sausage (usually a dominant, bold flavor), were buried a little too much in the mix. Overall, this was a good dish that I liked, but did not love. On a future trip to Moxie, I am likely to try something different.

Megan's Delmonico was overcooked. Granted, she did order it medium well (to my chagrin...I am a medium rare guy, myself), but there was no trace of pink to the meat at all. It was charred and tough, which detracted from her enjoyment of the experience. There's no doubt in my mind that it was a quality piece of meat, but at a steep $26, it should probably be cooked how you want it. On the plus side, her side of polenta was pretty tasty, rich and slightly cheesy and a nice addition to what I believe to be a good, diverse menu.

The Almond Joy Cheesecake was our dessert of choice, and was probably the best part of the whole meal. It tasted exactly like the name suggests: an Almond Joy candy bar (almonds, chocolate, and coconut) in a rich, New York-style cheesecake. Very nice.

The service at Moxie was friendly and well-paced. Our waiter, Drew, was attentive without being overbearing, and was patient with us even when one member of our party was more than a half hour late. I also appreciated the fact that they allowed us to split the check six ways, which was probably a major pain in the butt from the waiter's perspective, but made our lives much easier.

I was not blown away by Moxie, but there were many positives about the experience. For starters, the atmosphere is one of the best in the area. The beverage list is unquestionably top-notch, and the food was generally solid, with the major faux pas occurring with the overcooked steak. Is Moxie one of the area's best restaurants? I'd have to say the jury's still out on that one. Would I go back in a heartbeat if I had $100 burning a hole through my wallet? Without a doubt.

Grade: B

Moxie Grill on Urbanspoon

Turkish Restaurant

Name: Turkish Restaurant
Location: 258 Main St., Johnson City, NY 13790
Phone: (607) 644-9030
Cuisine: Turkish
Price: Around $20 per person

I was driving through Johnson City yesterday on the way to pick up some Thai take-out from Sabaidee and noticed a new sign in the location of the former Green Owl Diner. The sign simply read "Turkish Restaurant," and I recalled quickly that Megan had seen the place a few weeks back and was looking forward to trying it out. Today, we decided to do exactly that.

I must admit that I am relatively inexperienced when it comes to the world of Turkish cuisine, and Middle Eastern food in general. I've had my share of hummus, had a delicious falafel wrap while I was in Paris, and am pretty well versed in Greek food (a staple throughout this area), but I'm not sure I'd ever eaten food specifically designated as Turkish until today. Let's just say that my first Turkish meal certainly will not be my last.

The Turkish Restaurant is located right in the heart of downtown Johnson City across the block from the Red Robin Diner. It's a good location with ample parking on the adjacent side streets and in a larger lot one block behind. The restaurant itself retains many of the diner-like qualities that the Green Owl likely had (can't say I ever made it there while they were open). It's a long, narrow restaurant with a coffee counter in the front which widens to a larger dining room space toward the back with booths on both sides. The old, wooden booths are not exactly the most comfortable in the world, but they get the job done.

We were seated quickly and took a long look at the menu. Admittedly, many of the dishes were not all that familiar to us, and Megan was disappointed that they didn't have falafel, one of her personal favorites. No big deal though. We ordered the hummus appetizer, and I went with the Doner Kebab entree while Megan elected to try out the Doner Wrap. For those unfamiliar, doner is sliced meat cooked on a vertical spit and is one of the signature staples of Turkish cuisine. I also decided to try out a Turkish coffee, as I've always been kind of interested in what those tiny cups would taste like.

The hummus, served with freshly-baked pita bread, came out first. And it was by far the best hummus I have ever had--rich, creamy, garlicky, and flat-out awesome. I am not usually too crazy about hummus, but this stuff won me over in one bite. The pita bread was warm, soft, and flavorful and was the perfect complement to the hummus. Had the meal ended with this appetizer, I would have been more than pleased.

But soon enough, the main course would arrive, and I admired the presentation of my kebab entree. Served with rice and a salad of lettuce, tomato, and sliced onion on the side, the doner was a fine choice of entree which I enjoyed immensely. The beef was well-seasoned and tender. The side salad and rice didn't do much for me, but this is certainly a dish I would order again. The Turkish coffee was tasty and served in the usual miniature cup. Not something I would order regularly, but for my inaugural visit to a Turkish restaurant, it was something I couldn't resist.

Megan's doner wrap was quite similar in appearance and taste to the Greek gyro and in my opinion was superior to any gyro/souvlaki sandwiches I've had in the area. The yogurt/tzatziki sauce was light and refreshing and not overpowering like it sometimes can be, and the doner meat was, again, of a very high quality. Thumbs up from me on the wrap.

When it came time for dessert, it's impossible for Megan and me to say no to baklava, so that's what we ordered. We were presented with three healthy-sized squares of the delectable pastry and were instructed by the waiter not to eat it with a fork, but to eat it with our hands and to turn it upside-down before taking a bite so that we could really get a good taste of the sweet honey. Better advice has never been given. I love a great piece of baklava, and this was some of the best I've ever had. Sweet but not syrupy, and not too brittle and flaky like some baklava can be, this dessert was right on the money.

Service at the Turkish Restaurant was phenomenal, and I was left with the impression that they really care about making great quality food and sharing their love for their cuisine with those who might not have experienced it before. A hostess took the time to explain all the various dishes to us before we placed our order, and our waiter, a well-dressed and well-mannered younger gentleman, was absolutely superb, helpful and attentive from start to finish.

I'd have to say that Johnson City's new Turkish Restaurant is a huge hit. Do not expect to be blown away by the ambiance, but the food is excellent and the friendly service is second-to-none. With its easy accessibility by bus, I could see this restaurant being a popular place among Binghamton University students, particularly the Turkish students who come to study at BU as part of the Dual Diploma exchange program. Frankly, I am surprised it has taken so long for a Turkish restaurant to make it to Binghamton given the large Turkish population on campus. But now is as good a time as any, and I am hopeful that this restaurant will make a go of it for a long time, because based on today's experience, I have no doubt that Megan and I will be regular patrons until our Binghamton days come to an end. I eagerly anticipate trying out all of their other offerings.

Grade: A

Sultan Sofrasi Turkish Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Whole in the Wall

Name: Whole in the Wall
Location: 43 S. Washington St., Binghamton, NY 13903
Phone: (607) 722-5138
Cuisine: Organic/Vegetarian
Price: $20-$25 per person

I have to admit, before I went to Whole in the Wall, I was not too excited about the prospects of eating at a "health food" restaurant. When I go out to eat, I want a hearty meal, I want decadence, I want to indulge. I expected Whole in the Wall, one of Binghamton's most well-known and well-loved eateries, to provide none of those things.

Well, I was wrong, because Whole in the Wall proves that an organic meal can be just as sumptuous as any other.

On my first visit to Whole in the Wall, I ordered the Roasted Red Pepper pesto entree and thought it to be just OK and not deserving of the "Best Pesto in the Universe" praise that the restaurant has received over the years. Megan ordered the Mideast Platter, which included falafel, baba ghanouj, and hummus with sliced pita bread. Neither of us were too impressed with that dish and found the tzatziki sauce on the side to have an off-putting taste. In the end it was an expensive meal that neither of us was really that pleased with so we weren't really in a rush to go back.

Big mistake. Visit #2 would prove to be much better.

Last Saturday we made our second visit to Whole in the Wall, a charming little restaurant with a quaint dining room that includes a piano and local artwork for sale hanging on the walls. When we arrived we were the only patrons there, although as time went on, others eventually filtered in. The lack of other customers helped in the sense that we received mostly excellent service throughout our meal.

Both of us ordered entrees from the list of daily specials. I decided to give the pesto a second chance, opting for the Spinach Parmesan on my friend Tom's recommendation. Megan ordered a dish called the Indian Summer Lasagna, featuring bell peppers, whole wheat pasta, and various cheeses. Both of us tried out the Creamy Mushroom Soup and a house salad as starters. My pesto dish came with a complimentary Garlic Ball, an absolutely delicious whole wheat bread bowl style concoction doused in buttery garlic.

The soup came out first and was pretty awesome. I'm not typically that big a fan of mushrooms, but this was quite tasty. It's a very thick, cream-based soup that both of us enjoyed immensely. We would order it again in a heartbeat. Salads would follow, but the thing that interested me most was the main course.

The Spinach Parmesan pesto was good. Again, not great. I was expecting (and would have preferred) a creamier pesto with the emphasis on the parmesan rather than the spinach. Presentation was nice with the greenness of the pesto being offset by some half-slices of cherry tomato. I'm still not convinced this is the best pesto in the universe, but I did like it, and ate it up in short order.

Megan's lasagna was a little less successful in our opinion. We both found it to be a little on the bland side, with a butternut cream sauce providing the most dominating flavor (and not a flavor typically associated with lasagna). In the end, I am still not 100% pleased with Whole in the Wall's main courses, but the best was yet to come.

We made sure to save room for dessert and decided to split the Raspberry Brownie a la Mode. Served with fresh raspberry topping, ice cream, and whipped cream, this was incredibly decadent and insanely delicious. Definitely one of the best desserts I've had in the area and when we make it back to Whole in the Wall for another visit, this dessert will be part of the agenda for sure. Hard to believe that a dessert this good is made from organic ingredients.

Overall, this was a much better visit than our first, and I look forward to heading over to Binghamton's South Side again soon for a third visit. I still have some reservations about the main courses since neither of us were blown away, but I think this is a case of simply not having found the entree I'm destined to love. After all, the soup was great, the garlic ball was delicious, and the dessert was heavenly, so obviously this is a restaurant capable of delivering excellent food. Service was top-notch and ambiance is charming. And once again, if you have reservations about trying out a "vegetarian" restaurant such as this (they do have several entrees with meat, by the way), toss those concerns aside and give it a chance: you may be pleasantly surprised by what you find.

Grade: B+

Whole In the Wall on Urbanspoon

Delgado's Cafe

Name: Delgado's Cafe
Location: 119 Harry L Dr., Johnson City, NY 13790
Phone: (607) 798-7306
Cuisine: Mexican
Price: $15-$20 per person

Megan and I used to go to Delgado's quite often. Mexican food is one of our favorites, and its nearby location made it very convenient for us. Then came the day that we found Los Tapatios, superior in quality and much cheaper in price. This rendered Delgado's pretty much obsolete in our minds.

But we are trying to be complete in our food-blogging duties, so we paid a visit to Delgado's last night for dinner. I was curious to see how things had evolved in the several years since we had last been there. We arrived around 4:30 PM on a Friday and were surprised to find very few spots available in the parking lot at such an early time. We entered through the rear (the restaurant entrance--the bar entrance is in the front) and seated ourselves in one of their spacious wooden booths. The restaurant is a large, well-decorated space with a big dining room in back and a long bar in front. Delgado's provides a low-key, comfortable atmosphere and seems to be a popular place for the after-work crowd to have a few beverages.

We were presented with menus, tortilla chips, and two different dips. The first was the standard salsa, which I found to be pale by comparison to Los Tapatios' equivalent, while the second was a much tastier bean dip. The menu is rather extensive and includes pretty much any standard Mexican dish you can imagine, available in various combinations. One of their most popular items are the wings, which I have had many times in the past. I didn't get any wings on this visit, but I can attest that the honey garlic and the spicy BBQ wings are rather tasty and a little bit different, sauce-wise, from most other wings I've had. Megan ordered the Fajitas a la Carte (around $13 with no extras) while I went with the Ranchero-style Beef Enchiladas dinner ($16), which came with albondiga (meatball) soup, and sides of beans and rice.

The albondiga soup was a pretty good start to the meal. Featuring tiny meatballs with various vegetables in a beef broth, I would describe it as the Mexican equivalent of Italian wedding soup. Not bad, but nothing particularly memorable.

I was reasonably happy with my enchilada dinner. The enchiladas were pretty tasty but were covered in ranchero sauce, which I found to be kind of oddly thick, gravy-like, and maybe a little bit cheesy in taste. Whatever it was, I found it to be mildly off-putting. But I did enjoy the seasoning of the ground beef filling and the Mexican rice and refried beans contributed to make this a mostly satisfying meal. Although I was kind of thinking to myself the entire time that I could get the same exact meal more authentically for half the price at Los Tapatios.

Megan's fajitas were decent, but were definitely different from any other fajitas we've had before. Served with the usual sauteed peppers and onions and a side plate of lettuce, tomato, cheese, and sour cream, the chicken is marinaded in some kind of garlicky sauce vaguely reminiscent of soy sauce. Perhaps a little bit weird, but not bad. Megan was reasonably pleased but she lamented that the entree does not come with any sides unless you order the full dinner for $3-$4 more. Sorry, but beans and rice are not worth $3-$4.

Overall, our visit to Delgado's reconfirmed what I knew all along, that Los Tapatios is the better of the two restaurants in both quality and value. That said, I wasn't displeased or disappointed with my meal. I don't know if or when we'll make it back to Delgado's again, but I can see why others may like it. It has a laid-back atmosphere and would be a fine place to hang out with friends, eat some wings, and have a couple margaritas. If you like Mexican food, you owe it to yourself to try Delgado's, but it pales in comparison to the area's best.

Grade: B-

Delgado's Cafe on Urbanspoon

Friday, November 5, 2010

Hurricane Rylie's Cafe

Name: Hurricane Rylie's Cafe
Location: 113 Nanticoke Ave., Endicott, NY 13760
Phone: (607) 754-2999
Cuisine: Sandwiches/Burgers/Wraps/Bar Food
Price: Around $10 per person

We headed to Hurricane Rylie's, located near the corner of Main and Nanticoke in Endicott, for dinner on a Wednesday night with no real expectations in mind. Armed with a coupon for "buy one, get one free" burgers, sandwiches, or wraps (thanks Kyle!), we figured it would be a low cost opportunity to check out a place we'd never been. We arrived around 7:00 PM and gave it a shot.

Rylie's is a deceptively large restaurant, with some seating available in a front room that includes the bar, and a dining room in the back. We quickly noted the ambiance, which was tropical in nature and vaguely reminiscent of Cosmo's Tiki Bar in Johnson City.

A quick perusal of the menu left me feeling uninspired by its combination of bar food (the usual suspects: fries, wings, mozzarella sticks, onion rings, etc.) and various sandwiches and wraps. Since Hurricane Rylie's doubles as a bar, I noted its beer selection (as is my wont to do) and found it to be equally lackluster. Megan elected to try out the Chicken Club Wrap with their side of the day, a Mexican pasta salad. I went for the Blackened Chicken Wrap, featuring chicken, roasted red peppers, lettuce, and ranch dressing, and got fries on the side.

Service was relatively quick as we got our meals just a few minutes later. I have to say, I was not impressed with my wrap. On first bite it was OK, but there were a few grisly strips of chicken in there and the warmed-over ranch dressing was mildly nauseating. It was edible, but nothing I'd order again. The fries were the shoestring variety and inferior to those you'd get at Mickey D's. Megan had somewhat similar feelings about her meal, which she thought was OK but nothing to get excited about.

In the end, Hurricane Rylie's was pretty much the definition of average. The food was passable but nothing more. The ambiance was light, fun, and slightly tacky in their attempt to milk the "hurricane" theme as much as they can, and service was quick at first, but it took us a while to get our check at meal's end. With the coupon the check came to a mere $10, and honestly, I wouldn't want to have paid more for such mediocrity.

Grade: C

Hurricane Rylie's Cafe on Urbanspoon

Friday, October 29, 2010

Joey's Pizzeria

Name: Joey's Pizzeria and Delicatessen
Location: 200 Oak Hill Ave., Endicott, NY 13760
Phone: (607) 484-9716
Cuisine: Pizza/Sandwiches
Price: Pizzas around $10/Sandwiches around $7-$8

Joey's is another restaurant vying for the area's "Best Pizza" crown. Operating in the "Little Italy" neighborhood of Endicott that includes Oaks Inn and Consol's Family Kitchen, Joey's serves up wood-fired pizza, gourmet deli sandwiches, and their own Italian ice.

I first went to Joey's a few months back to try out their sandwiches. Actually, I had planned to get a couple of slices of pizza, but quickly realized that they don't sell by the slice, so I opted for a sandwich instead. This was a wise decision, as the sandwich I had (the "Sicilian") was fantastic. A generous portion of Italian meats and cheeses topped with marinaded artichoke hearts, served on fresh bread and accompanied by panzarotti (cheesy mashed potato balls) and pasta salad, the sandwich was among the best I've had in the area and easily rivaled neighboring Vincenzo's. I decided to forgo a review at that point in time until I got around to sampling the pizza.

Today was the day we finally got around to heading over to Joey's, and we ordered a large pizza (half cheese, half homemade sausage) to see how it measured up. Given the quality of the sandwich I had a couple months ago, I had high hopes for the pizza, and it didn't disappoint. The slight charring on the bottom of the crust yielded a welcome smokiness to the flavor, while the slightly bitter sauce complemented the crust well. I was disappointed by the sausage topping, which was ground, crumbled sausage rather than sliced and somewhat lacking in seasoning. But all things considered, this was a very solid pizza.

The atmosphere at Joey's for customers who choose to eat there (as we did) is nice, with spacious, comfortable booths with wooden tables and the typical Italian posters, memorabilia, and trinkets lining the walls. It's certainly not a large dining area, but we found it to be relaxing. The restaurant staff was accommodating and friendly throughout our visit.

Joey's is yet another reason to believe that this small section of North Endicott is the area's premier epicurean haven. With Consol's (much loved by many), Oaks Inn (much loved by us), Vincenzo's (one of the area's best-kept secrets), and Joey's all providing different and mostly positive experiences, there's no shortage in quality eateries. Joey's pizza may not have been the best I've had in the area, but it certainly belongs in the conversation. Between the pizza, sandwiches, and low-key charming ambiance, Joey's is a restaurant very much worthy of your patronage.

Grade: B+

Joey's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Friday, October 15, 2010

Cortese Restaurant

Name: Cortese Restaurant
Location: 117 Robinson St., Binghamton, NY 13904
Phone: (607) 723-6477
Cuisine: Italian
Price: $50+ for two for dinner

Cortese is one of Binghamton's longest-operating restaurants, a mainstay on Binghamton's East Side and a place well-loved by many. Their location on Robinson St. with not many other sit-down dining options nearby makes Cortese a popular spot for locals, and their tradition of excellence brings patrons through their doors from all over the Triple Cities and beyond.

It was just a matter of time until Megan and I got around to visiting Cortese for a review. We'd been there on two prior occasions. The first time, we went for pizza after hearing that it was the area's best. While pretty decent, it was nothing to get too excited about. On our second visit, we went in search of a good "surf & turf" meal and we ended up shelling out $90 for one of the worst meals we've ever had in a restaurant. Several things about the meal were positively disgusting, capped off by a seafood pasta entree I ordered that was literally swimming in salt water. Yuck. At the time, we swore the place off and promised never to speak its name again. Well, I reckon today was the dawn of a new era since we elected to give the restaurant another fair shot.

Cortese is a large restaurant with ample parking adjacent. Upon entering there's a dining area straight ahead, a bar room to the right, and yet another room beyond that. It's a cozy restaurant with candlelit tables and dark wooden decor. I am fond of the restaurant's appearance and find it to be somewhat similar to Endicott's Oaks Inn in that regard. Unfortunately for Cortese, that is where the comparisons end.

We arrived around 5:00 PM and were seated quickly and placed drink orders: for Megan, a glass of Riesling, for me, a pint of Smithwick's. The diverse menu features a wide array of Chicken, Veal, Pasta, Steak, and Seafood specialties. I elected to try the Chicken Soltimbocca [sic], featuring chicken breast sauteed in butter and garlic, topped with prosciutto and cheese, and served in a buttery sherry sauce. Entrees come with the standard soup or salad, choice of side (potato, rice, pasta), and complimentary bread and butter; I ordered the soup (ham and bean) and pasta. Megan went with the Chicken Parmigiana with salad and pasta.

The ham and bean soup was a fine start to the meal--nothing to write home about, but pretty good nonetheless with a generous quantity of beans and vegetables. Megan seemed reasonably happy with her salad. Both of us were eagerly awaiting our entrees in hopes of erasing the bad taste in our mouths (quite literally) from our last Cortese experience.

Soon enough, our entrees did arrive, and I can't say that the Chicken Soltimbocca was any good at all. A dried-out piece of chicken breast coated in a weird-tasting, greasy pit of garlicky butter, it was simply not good. Let it be said that this entree, when done well (such as at the aforementioned Oaks Inn), is one of my personal favorites. Here, I didn't care for it at all. It had a bitter, salty taste like that of soy sauce and lacked the velvety richness that other, better variants of the dish can have. Disappointing, and at $17.50, a ripoff. As if things couldn't get worse, the side of pasta was served in its own separate bowl and tasted like Spaghetti-O's. Epic fail.

On the plus side, Megan really liked her Chicken Parmigiana. She admired its crispy texture and enjoyed the red sauce on top. I tried a bite and would agree that it was pretty good and certainly better than what was on my plate. But in the end, I did not feel it was anything special, and certainly not worth the $16.25 they charge for a dish obtainable at other (better) restaurants for five fewer dollars.

In one last ditch effort to salvage some worth out of this meal, we opted to try dessert. Megan got the homemade strawberry cheesecake, while the Kentucky Bourbon Pecan Pie intrigued me. Served warm, the Pecan Pie was the first part of the meal that I truly enjoyed, with its slight hint of bourbon and soft crumb crust. Megan seemed to like the cheesecake well enough--at the very least, she devoured it with no complaints!

Service was a major plus at Cortese. Our waiter was an older gentleman who paced the meal nicely and who was a consummate professional in every way. Certainly this was not an experience without some positive attributes.

Ambiance and service may be solid components of what Cortese has to offer, but at the end of the day, I was once again greatly disappointed with the food. In an area full of quality Italian dining options, despite what the locals say, this is not one of the best places around and, in fact, I find it to be one of the worst. Our first two visits yielded feeble swings and misses. On the third visit there was little joy to be found on Binghamton's East Side: mighty Cortese has struck out.

Grade: C-

Cortese Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Flan Club to close....well, kind of

It's with much regret that I pass along the knowledge that The Flan Club will be closing up shop in October. The Latino-Caribbean restaurant was a real asset to Downtown Binghamton and a personal favorite of mine. They will be refocusing their efforts on catering from here on out, so they'll still be cooking their great, authentic food in some capacity for the masses to enjoy. I sincerely wish the ladies of The Flan Club the best of luck with their future culinary endeavors.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Binghamton Restaurant Week Preview

Just a reminder to all...Binghamton Restaurant Week (v. 2.0) is just around the corner. As the extremely unofficial voice of all things Binghamton-food-related I figured we'd take some time to discuss each of the restaurants participating in the festivities, taking place from September 21 through September 30! Here we go...alphabetically:

Crepe Heaven: Believe it or not, I've never been to Crepe Heaven, located on Binghamton's West Side near the Price Chopper, in the same small plaza as Nirchi's Pizza. I remind Megan of this fact every single time we drive past it (quite often). She has been there before, but not since around the time it opened, and I'm pretty sure she liked it. The small cafe offers an array of sweet and savory crepes and many coffee beverages. It's a place I am excited to try out!

Downtown Cabana: This is the new restaurant located inside Boscov's, owned by the same folks who operate Nassy's Cabana in Endicott. Having just opened over the summer, we haven't made it there yet, but my understanding is that they offer a mix of Greek and American favorites. Should we go there, I'll be sure to give a full report.

The Flan Club: What more needs to be said about The Flan Club? This is one of my favorite places to eat in Binghamton. Check the archives for my full review of The Flan Club, Binghamton's premier Latino-Caribbean restaurant. Don't go expecting quick service but do expect mouth-watering food served by friendly folks.

Grande's Bella Cucina: I haven't been to this location of Grande's (Megan has, and she enjoyed it) but the big thing to try out at Grande's is their pizza. We often get take-out from their location on Upper Front St. and it is consistently the best New York-style pizza in Binghamton. Highly recommended.

Holiday Inn: Admittedly, I have nothing to offer up regarding the Holiday Inn's food. Has anyone been? What's it like? Any good? Not a whole lot of information on these interwebs regarding the restaurant there!

Little Venice: Binghamton's oldest Italian eatery is a beautiful restaurant that doubles as a sort of art gallery, with authentic paintings lining just about every inch of wall space! Their pasta is phenomenal and that red sauce is simply legendary. Great desserts, too. If you've never been, you owe it to yourself to try out Little Venice. If you have, now would be a fine time for another visit!

Lost Dog Cafe: "The Dog" has evolved from humble coffeehouse beginnings to become one of Binghamton's premier dining destinations. It's a place with great atmosphere and would not be out of place in a big city. The Vodka Rigatoni is the best I've had, anywhere, and I highly recommend the desserts, particularly the Geisha (fried cheesecake bites with various dipping sauces). It's a fun place that also has strong appeal to vegetarians and vegans. Certainly it's one of the best restaurants in Binghamton!

Mad Moose Saloon: I have not had much luck at the Mad Moose, food-wise. I did not care for their Pork BBQ, and their much-ballyhooed wood-fired pizza was tragically average when I tried it out. Still, its atmosphere is one of the best in the area, a huge space and a fun place to hang out if State St. isn't your thing.

Nezuntoz: I think Nezuntoz is one of the best lunch spots in Binghamton, reminiscent of the sorts of places you'd find 50 miles to the northwest in the hippie haven known as Ithaca. Offering a wide selection of sandwiches, wraps, bagels (fresh every day courtesy of Ithaca Bakery), and gourmet coffee beverages, Nezuntoz is one of the best places I've found since I started Tasting Binghamton!

Number 5: Number 5, ahhh. This is a place we've been to a number of times, but have not reviewed yet. It's a pricey place that we usually reserve for special occasions. The Stuffed Greek Tenderloin is quite possibly the best steak dinner you're going to find in Binghamton. This is truly a fine dining experience the likes of which you won't find at too many places in the area.

Sake-Tumi: Offering very good sushi in a swanky environment at pretty reasonable prices, sake-tumi is a great addition to Downtown Binghamton. Expect slow service, but impeccably-crafted, good-quality sushi rolls. I haven't tried any of their Asian-fusion entrees, but some of them look very interesting. Perhaps I'll need to make another visit soon...

Tranquil Bar & Bistro: Another place we've been to but haven't yet reviewed, I absolutely loved Tranquil on my first visit there. Lo and behold, it's a real French restaurant in Binghamton, with perfectly prepared entrees with truly memorable presentation. The bone-in pork chop was excellent, but the English Toffee Pudding I had for dessert was probably the single best thing I've had to eat in Binghamton. Absolutely delicious. This might be Binghamton's best restaurant.

Whole In The Wall: Appealing to herbivores and health-minded carnivores alike, Whole In The Wall offers an array of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean fare. Honestly, I didn't care for it on my only visit there. It was just OK. But the Garlic Ball appetizer was positively awesome, and their pesto dishes are definitely worth trying out (even if they don't deserve the "best in the world" distinction). It's certainly a place I'd like to try again, but admittedly it's not tremendously high on my priority list.

And so there we have it: your 2010 Binghamton Restaurant Week participants! $8 for 3-course lunch, $20 for 3-course dinner. Tough to beat those prices at some of these places! Happy eating and I'm sure we'll make it to at least one of these destinations that week ourselves!

Website: Binghamton Restaurant Week

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The Beef

Name: The Beef Restaurant
Location: 62 Leroy St., Binghamton NY 13905
Phone: (607) 722-9732
Cuisine: American Steakhouse
Price: $60+ for two for dinner

Formerly known by the clever name "What's Your Beef?" the newly revamped "The Beef Restaurant" (new owner, new menu, renovated space) is located on Binghamton's lovely west side on Leroy street on small commercial strip that includes the infamous Leroy Package Store as well as a few other small businesses. Dan and I had visited this restaurant years ago when it was under its former moniker and while we enjoyed our meal, we had not been back since due to the fact that we often forget that it is there. Usually we associate restaurants with what other restaurants are nearby and since there is really nothing else near The Beef, it gets neglected. However, while discussing dinner plans yesterday afternoon, my desire for steak brought it back into our minds and we decided to go back to see what changes had been made.

The first thing you notice when you walk into The Beef is that you are faced with a choice between two doors. The one to your right takes you into the small bar area and the one to your left will take you into the dining room. One small issue with the set up is that there is no proper hostess stand to check into and wait at - granted the dining room is small enough that someone will see you and seat you quickly, but there are still a few awkward moments when you are left standing around not knowing what to do. We were seated and given a menu and wine list to peruse. This was a bit tough because it was very dark inside - so much so that we were not able to take any pictures of our meal. Bummer, but I think most people can visualize a steak. The wine menu runs the gamut from dry rieslings to more bold fare. I actually broke my usual white wine precedent and opted for a red since I knew I would be getting a steak. Who wants to go to a place called "The Beef" and order chicken? Not me. Dan went with an Ithaca ale and we were both very happy with our drink selections. For our meals, I went with the house cut (9 oz) delmonico with baked potato and a house salad while Dan opted for the house cut prime rib with house potatoes and a bowl of french onion soup. Each dinner comes with bread, a choice of soup or salad and a choice of side. I should note that there were other options besides steak which included chicken, pasta, and other dishes which I'm sure are all good.

While we waited, I noted the dining room. It was on the small side, but did not feel crowded. Each table had lit candles and some soothing music (think unplugged versions of popular songs) played in the background. As I said, it was dark, which made the reading of the menu difficult, but which I didn't mind as much during the meal. It is a nice little space, very open and not at all stuffy. You could tell that it had been updated with new tables and wall decorations as I remember it being a bit more weathered looking the last time I was there.

We did not have to wait long to receive our salad, soup and a small loaf of bread with butter. The salad was a salad - I got the house italian and it was nothing special, certainly not as awesome as the house italian at Cacciatores. Dan enjoyed his french onion soup although it was extremely hot and probably should have sat for a few minutes before being brought out. He also noted that it was not your standard french onion soup - the onions were different and it didn't look as if the cheese had been baked over the top of the bowl. At any rate, I think we were both happy with our starters but not blown away.

A short time later we received our beef. Mine was perfectly cooked (medium well) and had far less fat than other delmonico steaks that I have had at other places. My baked potato was served with sour cream and it complimented the steak. One issue I had was the absence of a vegetable - yes, I realize that potatoes are vegetables, but they usually do not serve as such - usually one can get a potato AND a vegetable, preferably a green one to add some color to the plate. The waiter had told us that the vegetable of the day was green beans and I was stoked because they are my favorite. So, I was a smidge disappointed to see only meat and potato on my plate. A minor point, but one worth commenting on.

Dan's prime rib was cooked to his specifications (medium rare) and looked very juicy - a little too juicy for the plate as it turned out. The plate was not deep enough to accommodate the prime rib juice, so Dan had to take extra care when cutting to avoid being splashed. The house potatoes he received were baked slices that had been sprinkled with seasoning and were also served with sour cream. Overall, I think we were both pleased with our steaks - he also noted that his prime rib had far less fat than he expected.

For dessert, we split a slice of cheesecake - made on the premises. It was very good, not too heavy, but rich and the right note to end the meal on. Our waiter was really good - attentive without hovering and he paced the meal perfectly - never did we feel rushed or wait too long for anything. It was a very nice meal that Dan and I were pleased with.

At the end of the day, did The Beef deliver the best steak I've ever had? No. Was it the best piece of beef that I have had in Binghamton? No - that honor goes to the greek tenderloin at Number 5/Lampy's. However, The Beef delivered a nice steak and potato dinner in a nice, comfortable space with a nice waiter serving us at a nice pace. It was not a cheap meal - $70 for the two of us with drinks, dinner, dessert, tax and tip, but I would not say that it was overpriced. All in all, I would definitely go back to The Beef anytime for a laid back steak dinner.

Grade: B+

What's Your Beef on Urbanspoon

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Tony's Italian Grill

Name: Tony's Italian Grill
Location: 2315 E Main St., Endicott, NY 13760
Phone: (607) 785-3750
Cuisine: Italian
Price: Usually $40-$60 for two. Could be much cheaper or much more expensive depending on your order.

It's amazing to me that we haven't yet taken the time to review Tony's Italian Grill, seeing as it's one of the area's restaurants we've visited most often. Located on Main St. in Endwell, Tony's is quite literally the "brother" restaurant to Nick's in Endicott. While Nick's is a much smaller restaurant that in my opinion is most notable for its pizza, Tony's is a spacious eatery with a huge, beautiful dining room, a separate bar area, and even a porch available for outdoor seating while the weather is accommodating. On looks alone, Tony's has long been one of our favorites.

The menu consists of all the usual, traditional Italian options, in addition to some other less common ones (Bucatini all amatriciana, Penne Rustica to name a couple). They have a long list of appetizers, several different soups and salads, and pizza available both by the slice and by the pie. Certainly there's something on the menu that would appeal to everyone.

We decided to head to Tony's yesterday for lunch. During lunch, Tony's has a bit of an abbreviated menu, but the portions you get are exactly the same as those you get for dinner. Being in a particularly gluttonous mood, I elected to start with the Fried Calamari appetizer, opted to try a slice of their meatball pizza, and went with the Penne Rustica as my entree. Megan went with one of the entree-sized salads, the Insalata Milanese.

The calamari is, in my opinion, one of the best items you can get at Tony's. Served with red sauce and light buttermilk breading, this was a top-notch way to start the meal. It's worth noting that this appetizer will easily feed four or more, and if you really like calamari, you might even be happy with this as your entree. Yesterday, I felt like there was a little bit of a salt issue, as some of the calamari pieces were significantly more or less salted than others. But this is an appetizer I can certainly recommend wholeheartedly.

In perusing the menu yesterday, I was surprised I'd never tried the pizza before yesterday, and my choice of a meatball slice was a pretty good selection. This was a standard NY-style slice and, not too surprisingly, was reminiscent of the pizza at Nick's. It didn't blow me away or anything, but it was pretty good pizza and probably a notch above-average for the area.

The Penne Rustica was a good choice for an entree. Featuring grilled chicken and fresh broccoli florets in a garlic cream sauce served over al dente penne, it was pretty tasty. I expected the garlic cream sauce to be rich and overpowering, like an alfredo sauce is often prone to being, but it was refreshingly light yet flavorful. One thing the dish was lacking was a savory component. It's my understanding that Penne Rustica often is made with pancetta, which I think would have made a fantastic complement to the flavors inherent in this dish. But, as seems to be the case with every visit to Tony's, in the end I found an entree that I liked quite a bit, but did not love.

Megan's salad was somewhat less impressive. Its components (grilled chicken, Italian greens, walnuts) were good, but she commented that it was overly drenched in its oil-and-vinegar based dressing.

According to Urbanspoon, Tony's Italian Grill is listed as the #1 restaurant in the Greater Binghamton area. At first, I have to admit this was somewhat surprising, but after some thought, it made perfect sense. On Urbanspoon, restaurants are rated based solely on whether a patron liked it or disliked it. In my estimation, it's nearly impossible to dislike Tony's. Aesthetically, it's one of the nicest places around. It's a versatile place where you could easily eat for under $20 if you just come for pizza, while also serving as a destination for special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries. Service is good, if somewhat unremarkable. (It's worth noting that Megan was mildly peeved about being carded when she ordered a glass of wine yesterday. We aren't that old, but come on, do we really look 20 or younger? ) And there's no doubt that the food is good: I have never had a meal at Tony's that I've disliked.

But the problem with Tony's, if there is one, is that while the food is always good, it's never great. I've probably eaten my way through about half the menu at this point, and quite simply, there's nothing I've ordered that I crave, that I would absolutely have to get again on a future visit. For that reason, Tony's takes a backseat in my mind to some of the area's other Italian restaurants. Don't get me wrong, Tony's is a good restaurant, and a fine place to grab lunch or dinner. We have done so many times and will inevitably do so again. But the best restaurant in Binghamton? Sorry, Urbanspoon, methinks not.

Grade: B

Tony's Italian Grill on Urbanspoon
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