Friday, June 8, 2018

Opening, Closing, Developing, etc.

• The latest reports from the Greater Capital Region on restaurants and food vendor openings, developments, closings, and transitions, as well as occasional entries from Vermont, the Berkshires, and the Catskills.


•  The Union Underground restaurant has opened in Manchester Center, VT, in the basement of the former Factory Point National Bank building, built in 1896, which has been redeveloped by co-owners Bill Drunsic and his son, Steve Drunsic. The main dining room seats 75, and upstairs from the bar is an outdoor terrace dining space that seats 50. The deck, currently under construction, will open in a few weeks. The main bar, newly built from Vermont Verde marble, has 22 draft lines for New England beers. Upstairs from Union Underground, is the Mystic Caf which opened last November. The Underground's address is 4928 Main Street. Phone: (802) 367-3951.

Goldenrod, a seasonal restaurant focusing on locally-sourced ingredients, is scheduled to open on Saturday at 53 Main Street in Delhi, Delaware County (about a 90-minute drive from Albany). Its creator is Carver Farrell (right), former chef-owner of the Brooklyn restaurant The Pines, which was known for featuring New York state-sourced produce and meats and a selection of all-natural wines. According to Farrell, Goldenrod "will continue in the tradition of The Pines, sourcing the main components of each dish exclusively in Delaware County," and will offer local beers, a small wine list, and cocktails built around "wild and foraged ingredients." Farrell will be joined by three chefs whose combined resumes list kitchen positions of various levels at such name NYC venues as Gramercy Tavern, Daniel, Del Posto, Prune, Le Bernadine, and Union Square Café. The menu will change nightly, based on the available local ingredients. Hours: 4 to 10:30 p.m. Thursdays through Sundays, with the kitchen opening at 5:30 p.m. Phone: 607-746-8875.


O’Briens Public House, which operated at two different Troy locations in its history, closed its doors after service on Wednesday. However, Terry and Donald O'Brien may reopen at yet another location in the future. Their latest spot was in the renovated Trojan Hotel, opened in March 2014, after moving from their original site in the city's Lansingburgh neighborhood. The Trojan Hotel at 43 Third Street has changed hands, and new owner Bedarling Properties of Rensselaerville has submitted plans to the City Planning Commission for a restaurant and hotel there.


Don't be surprised if a Salsa Fresca Mexican Grill suddenly appears in the Capital Region. The nine-year-old mini-chain will open its ninth location this Saturday, in LaGrangeville, Dutchess County. It already has lower Hudson Valley venues in Mamaroneck, Bedford Hills, Yorktown, Cross River, Peekskill, and Carmel, as well as in Danbury and New Haven, CT, plus food truck service. As part of an ambitious expansion plan, it will open a restaurant in the fall in Poughkeepsie, opposite Marist College, and co-owner Marc Miles said the company started selling franchises about two months ago for unspecified locations in New York State, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Florida.

The familiar building at One 14th Street just off the RPI campus in Troy was home to an Italian restaurant for four decades, was succeeded by another Italian restaurant that lasted barely six months, and now will become a Chinese restaurant. Han One Dynasty LLC, which has a Loudonville private-home address for the Zheng family, has purchased the former Minissale’s Wine Cellar Cafe for $260,000, according to a filing with Rensselaer County. (Could that be local multi-venue restaurateur David Zheng? I'm checking that out.) After Minissale's closed in 2017, the family sold it to Vic Christopher and Heather LaVine (of Lucas Confectionary Wine Bar and Peck's Arcade) who briefly operated it as Donna's Italian Restaurant. An agent for the new owner said the Chinese restaurant could open there as early as mid-July.

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