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ITHACA, NY -- In Ithaca, I always admire establishments that are so popular they remain open year after year. I have been eating at the Mahogany Grill, at the same location on Aurora Street (Restaurant Row), for almost two decades. And that’s how long it has been serving quality fare in a co…

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ITHACA, NY -- Having covered the greater Ithaca dining scene for about 20 years, I have come to admire any restaurant that survives, and thrives, for a long period of time. Moosewood, still at its original site in the Dewitt Mall, has done just that. It opened in January 1973 so is now appro…

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ITHACA, NY -- The Ale House has been at the same site on Aurora Street for more than a dozen years. Ironically, the pandemic has assuaged the only concern I’ve had about the Ale House…and that’s the noise from the kitchen with the cooks loudly communicating with each other. Since the pandemi…

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Looking at the Harbor Hotel at the foot of Seneca Lake in Watkins Glen, you can almost imagine the architects straining their brains trying to figure out how to create a large stone structure with as many windows offering a lake view as possible. As a result, the hotel bends around the lake …

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Located about two miles north of the village of Trumansburg, on Route 96, sits the Brews and Brats restaurant (no relation to Brew and Brats in Bristol Springs, NY). As you might imagine from its name, this is not an establishment you’d want to visit in search of a fine dining experience. Ra…

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Taverna Banfi is the signature restaurant of the Statler Hotel located in the heart of the Cornell University campus. The word “Taverna” was officially added to its name in February 2007 after an extensive and expensive six-week remodeling that created an interior space that resembles restau…

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You can probably guess, from the name of the restaurant—actually it’s the name of four restaurants all located in the Ithaca area—that this establishment is not a fine dining, expensive operation. In fact, the most expensive item on the menu is about $12. Collegetown Bagels, or CTB as it is …

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During the two decades I’ve been writing food and wine articles and restaurant reviews for our two major local newspapers, I can’t begin to tell you how often I have been asked the same question: “What’s your favorite restaurant?” However many times I’ve been asked, I have deflected it by re…

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Based on impressions formed when I was growing up, my idea of a diner is a long and narrow railroad-car-shaped-space featuring a dominant counter and booths, each with its own jukebox and napkin dispenser. In my memory, diners served breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week with lots of…

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Other than the removal of the salad bar, there haven’t been many discernible changes to the physical structure of the former Lucatelli’s restaurant, now called Mix, located on Elmira Road opposite the Northside Shopping Center. And happily, it still features its own dedicated parking lot.