Helpful ReplyHot!I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata and the Passion of the Pusty (UPDATED 06/09/18)

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SeamusD
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/03/25 22:00:23 (permalink)
I'm almost ashamed of myself... I live here and you've seemingly been to more places here than I have! Eva's is another place close to my office I haven't been to yet. My mom had lunch with a friend there a couple weeks ago and loved it though.
 
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ScreamingChicken
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/03/26 09:18:01 (permalink)
Those dishes at Eva's look outstanding!  Next time skip the dessert and get another entrée!
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billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/03/26 16:37:58 (permalink)
mar52, I'm not sure about what to drink with a Polish meal.  Maybe vodka or some type of wine?
 
MH, I know you're not one for the sweets.  I could totally see myself ordering more of those pierogis as a dessert.  They were so good!
 
SC, good thinking!
 
SeamusD, I'm always on the hunt for a new-to-me place in the Syracuse area.  I definitely have my favorites but want to branch out when I can.  I still have to make it to Niki's Quik Cup Diner, Ruston's, Nestico's Too, Pastabilities, Harrison Bakery, Di Lauro's bakery and Columbus Bakery for the "meatballs in a heel".  I was just up in March for the Tipp Hill Shamrock Run and had some Byrne Dairy Irish Mint milk, Nick's Place (in the M&T Bank Building) for a Frittata, Columbus Bakery for some bread to go with dinner, Mama Nancy's for some dessert (love their pistachio cake!) and Heid's for my hot dog and baked beans fix.  
post edited by billyboy - 2015/03/26 16:39:17
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billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 16:13:47 (permalink)
Thursday March 5, 2015 - In the next installment of this ongoing thread about Central NY, I made my way up to Syracuse, NY to run the Tipperary Hill Shamrock Run with my niece, Maddie.  We first ran it together last year and had a great time.  After my brother-in-law picked me up from the bus station, we swung by the Galeville branch of the local chain, Byrne Dairy.  This location is the biggest one I've been to and has an amazing selection of craft beers.  

 
This 150-year old building used to be a family-owned grocery store until about 2010 and from what I have read was a center of information for local residents.  I'm glad that Byrne Dairy chose to keep the building intact and the Galeville name on the front.  For more info, check out this link about the closing of the grocery store:  http://www.syracuse.com/n...galeville_grocery.html

 
Lots of local cheese sold here.  

 
I think I'll bring a cooler on my next trip and pick up some crackers as well.  That Toasted Onion Cheddar sounds just right.

 
And I love their varieties of cheese curds,  Great for snacking.

 
I posted this pic more for information than anything else.  I've seen these on sale here in the past and at the local Wegmans grocery store.  Have any CNYers ever tried the Hungarian Peppers?  SeamusD?  Cosmos?  I'd love to try them but don't want to commit to a whole jar.  Anywhere in "Cuse I can go to sample them?

 
Lots of flavors of their great ice cream from which to choose. When I first saw the "Half Moon" flavor, I almost yelled for joy, thinking that someone had finally thought to break up half moon cookies into ice cream and sell it, but no, it is just chocolate & vanilla ice cream, side by side.  

 
And my main reason for stopping here...it was Irish Mint milk season.  Love this stuff and mixed with their chocolate milk is a drink that can't be beat!  And it just seems to taste better out of a glass jar, right?

 
Friday March 6, 2015 - I got up early the next morning and borrowed my sister's car to head downtown to a local diner.  Wait, it's in a bank building, you say?  

 
Just down the hall.  Follow me, won't you?

 
To Nick's Place.  I've been reading up on local diners on the syracuse.com website and this one has been on my list for a while.  

 
The staff has been building up this collection of toys for 2 years.

 
An intimate little place and populated mostly by locals, the staff were very nice and when I told them about my hunt for the best Fretta/Frittata, they became very chatty about what other foods were great in Syracuse (and who has the best!).  I couldn't pass up the chance to sit at the U-shaped counter.  The news on everyone's mouths, in the papers and on the TV was the announcement of sanctions against the Syracuse University Orangemen basketball team for numbers violations over the past 10 years.  A sad saga, but not terribly surprising.  

 
I went with the smaller size Frittata (eggs, onions, mushrooms, peppers, potatoes, sausage, broccoli and pepperoni; I opted to have it covered in Swiss cheese) and the side of thick cut Italian toast was a sign of good things to come.  This one was more potato heavy than I've ever tried but it was a good thing.  Those potatoes were crust and well-seasoned.  The onions had a nice caramelization to them and they didn't skimp on the broccoli or pepperoni.  One of the best I've had so far.  I also picked up three HUGE portions of Mac & cheese to bring back for dinner later that night and it was quite rich!

 
After breakfast, I drove north on Salina Street and had to pull over to get shots of these signs.  I've seen ones like them on buildings along the railroad tracks on my many trips to CNY but none in such good shape as there two.  

 
I often wonder what this area was like and how people lived in the time when these products were having their heyday.

 
My next stop was for dessert at Mama Nancy's Restaurant at the Quickly Travel Center near Destiny USA (formerly Carousel Mall).  I had been here in October 2014 for their Frittata and the desserts had won me over.  

 
The ultra-pink strawberry cake was top notch on my last visit.

 
However, I don't run across pistachio cake very often.  

 
Excellent pistachio flavor and that whipped frosting was light and creamy.  While they don't make their own desserts, they do get them from Geddes Bakery, a local place that had excellent baked goods such as these cakes and pies too!

 
Saturday March 7, 2015 - I knew I wasn't really in shape for the full 4-mile Tipp Hill Run on this day.  Four miles isn't usually long for me but this one is chock full of hills, both up and down, so I opted to do the kid's run along with Maddie.  Posting with our brand new tech shirts.  It was freezing and icy on this day and we couldn't wait to get started.  

 
Showing Maddie the importance of stretching before a run.  We both finished though Maddie left me in her dust!

 
After the run, Hofmann (makers of local hot dogs) was giving out franks to the kids.  What a great idea!

 
My sis was making lasagna for dinner that night so we stopped by Columbus Bakery for some of their wonderful bread.  One of these visits I WILL have their Meatballs In A Heel!!

 
Mmmmmm....bread!

 
Sunday March 8, 2015 - Before heading out to catch my bus back to NYC, I made an early lunch stop at HEID'S.  

 
Red birch beer, baked beans, a frank and a half pickle was the perfect lunch.  

 
Except...I needed some condiments.

 
Mustard, ketchup, onions, red pepper relish and sweet pickle relish sealed the deal.

 
As I was leaving, I noticed this sweet face waiting for a hot dog or two!

 
My apologies for this low quality photo but I had to mention this.  I stopped at Wegmans on Taft Rd. in Liverpool, NY for a pair of lovely half moon cookies and they do bake a really good version.  These have a chocolate cake base.  While Holland Farms in Yorkville, NY has my personal favorite, these were no slouch.  

 
 
The 411:
 
1.)  Byrne Dairy (Galeville)
      412 Old Liverpool Road
      Liverpool, NY 13088
      Ph# 315-451-3706
      Website: http://byrnedairystores.com/StoreHome/Galeville
      
2.)  Nick's Place
      101 South Salina Street (inside the M&T Bank Building at Hanover Square)
      Syracuse, NY 13202
      Ph# 315-218-0079
      Website: http://nicksplacesyr.com
 
3.)  Mama Nancy's (at the Quickway Travel Center)
      510 State Fair Blvd
      Syracuse, NY 13204
      Ph# 315-701-4994
      Website: http://www.mamanancys.com
 
4.)  Tipperary Hill Shamrock Run
      Website: http://www.tipphillrun.com/index.html
 
5.)  Columbus Bakery
      502 Pearl Street
      Syracuse, NY 13203
      Ph# 315-422-2913
      Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Columbus-Baking-CompanyColumbus-Meats-and-Cheeses/117096361651397?fref=ts
 
6.)  HEID'S
      305 Oswego Street
      Liverpool, NY 13088
      Ph# 315-451-0786
      Website: http://heidsofliverpool.com
 
7.)  Wegmans
      4979 West Taft Road
      Liverpool, NY 13088
      Ph# 315-457-0514
      Website: http://www.wegmans.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/StoreDetailView?langId=-1&storeId=10052&catalogId=10002&productId=347851
 
 
That's it for this chapter, but another installment from June 2015 will be coming up very soon, so stay tuned...
 
"Eating is an adventure, enjoy the ride!" - billyboy, 2015
 
 
 
 
post edited by billyboy - 2015/07/23 15:29:49
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TJ Jackson
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 16:31:50 (permalink)
uhm, there's ketchup on that hot dog.......
 
a storm is coming, take shelter immediately
#65
ChiTownDiner
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 16:44:51 (permalink)
Billyboy - tell me about the green milk?  Never saw that before! 
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 16:55:54 (permalink)
I'm going to see that strawberry cake in my dreams.  Thanks for the pics.
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billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 16:58:34 (permalink)
TJ Jackson, If I was chowing down on that dog in Chi-Town, I'd be worried.  In CNY, no one really cares unless your money is no good.
 
CTD, my brother-in-law first introduced me to it in March 2014 when I had come up for the Shamrock Run that year.  He had some at the house and I loved it.  I think I went through it and had to buy more!  Byrne Dairy makes it every March to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.  The flavor is like a really good mint chip ice cream, without the chips.  It's great on its own, but mixing it with chocolate milk brings it to another level.
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leethebard
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 18:59:49 (permalink)
That hot dog looks great!!
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billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 20:44:25 (permalink)
hatteras04, my work is done here!!  
 
leethebard, love those Hofmann's franks.  The only thing I wished that HEIDs would do differently is butter and griddle the buns to shore them up.  They tend to fall apart halfway through eating.  Many places in the area do that and it makes a big difference.  I sure do love a buttery, toasty bun!  I asked and they said they don't do it as some people have gluten allergies and putting the buns upon the flat-top could expose the dogs to gluten.
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Michael Hoffman
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 20:47:16 (permalink)
Everything looks great. But you know, that sign for Uneeda Biscuits really took me back. Those were my father's favorite crackers. They named them that way because of some fine print in a federal law that allowed for something in a biscuit that wasn't OK for crackers.
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ScreamingChicken
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/16 21:45:24 (permalink)
billyboy
Saturday March 7, 2015 - I knew I wasn't really in shape for the full 4-mile Tipp Hill Run on this day.  Four miles isn't usually long for me but this one is chock full of hills, both up and down, so I opted to do the kid's run along with Maddie.
...
After the run, Hofmann (makers of local hot dogs) was giving out franks to the kids.  What a great idea!
You "weren't in shape" for the 4-mile run.  OK, Billy.  You just keep sticking with that story.
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joerogo
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 08:34:59 (permalink)
No Voss'!? 
 
BillyBoy, I will be starting a job in Cooperstown in September.  Let me know if you're around.
 
 
#73
billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 08:42:03 (permalink)
Oh Joe!  Voss' will be making an appearance in the July installment.  I'll check my calendar.  Haven't been to Cooperstown in years and I'm overdue for a visit.
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billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 13:37:46 (permalink)
Saturday June 6, 2015 - My niece, Maddie, had a choir recital that I had missed in May, however, her violin recital was coming up and I wasn't going to miss that!  Especially since she called me on my birthday in May and played "Happy Birthday" to me on her violin!  Of all the gifts I received, that one was the most special of them all!  She's getting really good!  Once again, I took the bus from NYC to Syracuse and when I arrived, my sister had picked me up at the station with Maddie and her friend, Kayla, who was staying over that night.  They were singing along to a Taylor Swift song in the car and I thought, "Maddie isn't old enough to know Taylor Swift!". She is and somedays it's hard to believe she is no longer a toddler.  Kelly (my sis) said we'd be stopping at the "Taste of Syracuse" festival.  Lots of live music and local restaurants selling some of their signature dishes as well as offering samples of their food for $1.00.  And we managed to find a parking spot at a lot across from the original Dinosaur Bar-B-Que.  Score!

 
Walking to the festival, we passed the art deco inspired Niagara Mohawk (power utility company) building.  

 
And even saw an old timey fire truck go by.

 
It was a very hot day and the festival was packed so we didn't stay too long but took in some tasty eats.

 
The first stop was the Dinosaur Bar-B-Que tent for a $1 sample of their incredible bbq beans.  

 
These were thick, rich and loaded with flavor.  Even in this small sample I found some green pepper, sausage and a shred of pulled pork,  I had added what I thought was their BBQ sauce to them but it was actually their Wango Tango habanero based BBQ sauce and it lit my mouth on fire.  So good!  Even the chalk dinosaur on the table is breathing fire when I set my sample of his belly for its close-up.

 
Next up was a sample of a local favorite dish...Chicken Riggies from Dominick's Restaurant.

 
These were pretty good though being a rib-sticking dish, perhaps not the ideal choice on a hot summer day.

 
I made sure we stopped at Eva's European Sweets for a sample of their pierogi with sautéed onions and sauerkraut.  Very comforting and delicious.  

 
After all of this filling and hearty fare, we needed to cool off and what better way than some fresh squeezed lemonade?  Getting a lemonade from a stand shaped like a lemon just feels right. 

 
Exactly what we needed!

 
While considering a late lunch, my sis suggested we head over to Dinosaur Bar-B-Que.  Okay, twist my arm!  I've haven't been to the original in years and was eager to see how it has held up.  Usually, it can take an hour or more to get a table here, but given that so many people were at the festival, there was only a 5 minute wait!  

 
As much as I love the Harlem and other locations, the Syracuse Dinosaur is a biker bar that became a restaurant (and still has that biker feel as well as a loyal biker clientele) whereas the other locations are restaurants attempting to recreate that biker vibe.  

 
Love that neon.

 
So many live music acts over the years.

 
Love that wall mural...

 
...and the miniature recreation of the Dino (though it is missing the hogs!).

 
My two meat plate of ribs and pulled pork with mac & cheese, greens and cornbread.  he ribs were tender and had a good bark on them.  The pulled pork was smoky and soft.  The mac & cheese was on point and had a hint of spice to it and the greens were limp with a hint of crunch.  Some of the other locations now serve mini corn muffins but this one still gives a block of cornbread, which I love.  Our waitress was great and when one of my fellow diners had dropped her cornbread, she went and brought back another block for her.  I've heard talk online that the food and service have fallen off here in recent years and maybe people have had bad experiences here and there, everything was just right on this day and I gave me great comfort to know that it is just as good as it had been during my youth.  

 
After dropping off the girls and some takeout Dinosaur for Dennis (my brother-in-law), Kelly and I stopped at local legendary supermarket Wegmans (West Taft Road Liverpool, NY location) to do some grocery shopping.  

 
Had to pick up some salt potatoes for dinner later this weekend.

 
Skyline Chili, anyone?  Looks like I'll never need to visit Cincinnati, right?  

 
One of my favorite racks at the store.  Hard to find candies.  Chuckles, Zagnuts, Mallo Cups, Skybars, Smoothies and Bun are just some of the ones that aren't sold in the bigger outlets.  In addition to this I can get my Spiedie and Cornell Chicken marinades (Salamida's, Lupo's, Chiavetta's) here, have a beef-on-weck for lunch and the service is always great.

 
Of course, I HAD to pick up a pair of half moons cookies, this time with a vanilla cake base.  Not sure why they are colored orange & blue.  I'm guessing for Syracuse University, though the shade of each color is off.  Nonetheless, they were both winners in my belly, uh, book.  

 
Sunday June 7, 2015 - Time to hit up a pair of places that have been on my "to-do" list for some time.  First was Harrison Bakery, a Syracuse staple since 1949.  

 
They even have outdoor seating for those who want to dine "al fresco" and take lots of pictures right after they leave the bakery (such as someone like myself!).

 
So many half moons!

 
A decent half moon but a bit too dry for my taste.  These would be perfect with a cup of coffee or a cold glass of milk.

 
Ah yes, the donuts.  They looked mighty good on their website and I knew I couldn't leave with out a few...

 
Okay, okay, a half dozen.  Clockwise, from top right: peach cobbler, headlight, peanut, Boston Cream, taillight, peanut butter & jelly.  The only one that was a bit of a letdown was the headlight.  The chocolate and cream on top were fine but the texture of the yeast donut was too dense and chewy.  Sadly, I didn't get around to trying the peach cobbler so a return visit is in order.  The others were top notch and it was a neck and neck race between the PB&J and the taillight for "best of box".  I must say that the young lady who waited on me was really great and was very helpful narrowing down my donut choices.

 
Second, was Niki's Quick Cup Diner, just a few blocks up the street.  It should have been easy to find as I had mapped it out the night before but I drove by it...twice!  I had decided to give up and pulled into the Brooklyn Pickle sandwich shop to have lunch there but I was Travelin' Manned as they were closed on Sundays.  Just as I was about to leave, a police officer pulled up only to discover the same.  I asked him if he knew where Niki's was located and he replied, "You mean the Quick Cup?  It's right there across the street."  Sure enough, this tiny nondescript diner was right there!  Easy to miss, so I told myself.  I thanked him and was on my way.

 
A tiny family run spot, I made sure to snag a seat at the counter.  I think that is the owner at the griddle and her daughter waiting on tables.  I did see other people in the back that I think may have been there owner's parents and the young girl's brother.  

 
Lots of omelets, but CASH ONLY.

 
And a good selection of Frettas.

 
I resemble these remarks!

 
"So many places have plaques commemorating "something" that happened here.  Nicki's is different.  They've got "nothing"!  It'll be great" - George Costanza

 
I went with the Loaded Fretta (Italian sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms, broccoli, peppers, ham, potatoes and eggs) and I opted for melted Swiss cheese on top.  It came with Italian toast that was generic grocery store quality bread.  The fretta was missing broccoli which I love but for some reason I didn't ask about it.  This was a HUGE plate-wide fretta, fast and very filling.  All of the ingredients came together nicely.  At $9.65 (plus $1.25) for the cheese, it was the priciest fretta I've ever had and they didn't offer a 1/2 size on the menu.  I'd come back for it again, however, there are still more on my list to try in the Syracuse area.  

 
To assuage some of my guilt at the donuts and that big breakfast, I decided to meet my friend Shawn for a run in the Old Erie Canal State Park.  We've known each other since college and reconnected through Facebook and running and I was looking forward to getting in a few miles on the trails with her today.  However, our signals got crossed and we went to different points of the Erie Canal Trail and they didn't connect so we agreed to meet up on the next visit.  

 
It's made up of different sections and was a major route of commerce in the 19th century.

 
Going from Buffalo to Albany.

 
It was a gorgeous day for a run and while there were other people on the trail, it was so peaceful and quiet.  It reminded me of the fields and trails I used to run along as a kid and the farms I ran past in Vermont at a half marathon in 2011.  A welcome respite from the noise and grittiness on NYC.  

 
I could have spent all day here.

 
The old canal.

 
The sounds of the water running by was the best soundtrack to run to.

 
I wonder how many barges came through here over the years?

 
While looking for a restroom and a place to refill my water bottle, I found this footbridge that led to a playground and picnic area.  I found the restroom but no fountains.  Luckily, a group was setting up for a big cookout and offered me a couple bottles of water.  That walk through the trees was a nice opportunity to cool down and stretch.

 
Monday June 8, 2015 - The whole family went to Maddie's violin recital.  One half was the school band performing and the other half was the string section. Maddie was great as was the whole school.  So happy to see her engaging in activities that she loves.  Her she is with the string conductor.

 
After the recital, we headed over to Vicky's Tasty Treats in Liverpool for ice cream.  I've been coming here for almost 10 years and it has been a local institution since 1972 and is still run by the same family.  Just a little seasonal soft serve shack, they dish out some great summertime treats.

 
So many kids and their families have been getting their licks here for over four decades.

 
The Mexican Sundae is pretty good though I think I may have to try the Tortuga on my next visit.

 
Today, it was all about the Boston Shake.  I had read an article recently about Central NY foods and this was on it and it piqued my curiosity.  A shake TOPPED with a hot fudge sundae?  Who's been reading my diary?!  I went with a peanut butter shake and a vanilla soft serve hot fudge sundae on top.  Very thick, rich and incredibly decadent.  Totally worth it.  I may have to try a coffee shake with a salted caramel hot fudge sundae next time.

 
Tuesday June 9, 2015 - Up and at 'em early for breakfast this morning in Jamesville at Ruston's Diner.  Located in a blue collar area just southeast of Syracuse, this little diner does a brisk business with worked at the local quarry and with many regular old timers who come in the same time each day for the same meal and to hold court with one another about the issues of the day.  Th topic of the day was the recent prison break from Dannemora in the North Country and everyone at the counter had an opinion on it.  I was, by far, the youngest guy at the counter on this particular morning.

 

 
The nearby quarry.

 
The S.U. Orangemen and many local business cards advertising their services.

 
Homemade pie?  I'm on it!

 
A pretty extensive menu.  I love the ads for local businesses in the menu and that they offer HOT Gianelli Italian sausage as a breakfast meat.  It's a great local product.

 
I went with the 1/2 Fretta, but I don't think I asked for cheese this time.  This was another good one and they didn't skimp on the broccoli or the pepperoni.  

 
For the voice of toast a homemade biscuit was one of the options and it was a doozy!  Griddled and buttered, this slightly sweet baking powder biscuit is exactly what I grew up eating as a kid.  The guy next to me had a bacon, egg and cheese on a toasted hard roll with a side of crusty looking home fries with onions.  Think I already know my order next time!

 
This "to go" slice of Strawberry Rhubarb pie was un mistakably homemade.  A bit tart and a bit sweet, it was perfect and that crust was just right with the edge being a bit more baked and had a slight crunch to it.  

 
Mom, Harold and I had lunch at Jake Hafner's Restaurant & Tavern before heading to the bus station.  

 
I've been coming here with my friend Doug for years and it's always been a reliable place for a good meal and good drinks.  

 
"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole" - Roger Caras  This was the quote of the day for me!

 
And they put out a proper beef-on-weck.  The beef is roasted in-house and I believe the buns are baked here too (not entirely certain of that second point).  It come with chips and a side of warm aus jus and lots of pungent, sinus-clearing horseradish!  And they asked how I wanted the beef.  I replied, "Medium" and this was just right.  I thought there was a bit too much caraway on the roll but a minor quibble.  

 
I couldn't pass up another piece of strawberry rhubarb pie.  I believe they get their pies from Geddes Bakery.  When in berry season...  This was alright but not in the same league as the one from Ruston's.  

 
And finally, a shot of my niece's dog, Daisy.  She is quite a sweet little playful Cavapoo (King Charles Cavalier Spaniel & Poodle mix) and love having her belly rubbed!

 
 
 
The 411:
 
1.)  Taste of Syracuse
      Website: http://www.tasteofsyracuse.com
 
2.)  Dominick's Restaurant
      1370 Burnet Avenue
      Syracuse, NY 13206
      Ph# 315-471-4262
      Website: http://www.dominicksrestaurant.net
 
3.)  Eva's European Sweets
      1305 Milton Ave
      Syracuse, NY 13204
      Ph# 315-487-2722
      Website: http://www.evaspolish.com
 
4.)  Dinosaur Bar-B-Que
      246 W Willow St
      Syracuse, NY 13202
      Ph# 315-476-4937
      Website: http://www.dinosaurbarbque.com 
 
5.)  Wegmans
      4979 West Taft Road
      Liverpool, NY 13088
      Ph# 315-457-0514
      Website: http://www.wegmans.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/StoreDetailView?langId=-1&storeId=10052&catalogId=10002&productId=347851
 
6.)  Harrison Bakery
      1306 W Genesee St
      Syracuse, NY 13204
      Ph# 315-422-1468
      Website: http://www.harrisonbakerysyracuse.com
 
7.)  Niki's Quick Cup Diner
      1513 W Genesee St
      Syracuse, NY 13204
      Ph# 315-479-5044
      No website
 
8.)  Old Erie Canal State Park
       Canalway Trail- Old Erie Canal State Park
       East Syracuse, NY 13057
       Ph# 315-446-9250
       Website: http://nysparks.com/parks/17/details.aspx
 
9.)  Vicky's Tasty Treats
      664 Old Liverpool Rd
      Liverpool, NY 13088
      Ph# 315-457-9084
      No website
 
10.)  Ruston's Diner
        6293 Jamesville Toll Rd
        Jamesville, NY 13078
        Ph# 315-469-1200
        No website
 
11.)  Jake Hafner's Restaurant & Tavern
        5224 W Taft Rd
        Syracuse, NY 13212
        Ph# 315-458-5108
        Website: https://www.jakehafners.com/ordereze/default.aspx
 
 
Don't touch that dial!  The newest episode from early July 2015 in the Utica-Rome area is coming up!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
post edited by billyboy - 2015/07/23 15:33:44
#75
ScreamingChicken
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 14:08:47 (permalink)
Quick Cup, Ruston's, and Hafner's look like my kind of places!
 
Is the Erie Canal Trail completely paved and popular with cyclists as well as runners?  It looks like a good mix of open areas and woods.
#76
ChiTownDiner
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 14:17:32 (permalink)
You are now my Fretta friend and expert on all things fretta! 
#77
leethebard
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 14:57:39 (permalink)
What a beautiful trip....and some great food....great combination!!
#78
ann peeples
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 18:07:47 (permalink)
Just love your reports, billyboy!
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mar52
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/17 20:54:01 (permalink)
Billy, as always... I love your reports!
#80
billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/18 07:49:02 (permalink)
ScreamingChicken, I definitely want to go back and work my way through Ruston's menu and I really loved the atmosphere there.  Hafner's has been a solid standby for many years and I'm so happy to have found a really good beef-on-weck there.  I imagine there aren't too many outside of Buffalo.  
The trail is made up of a number of different sections.  I'm not sure but my guess is that they are all paved and I did see a fair amount of cyclists on my run.  Had I run east that day, there were more trees and shade in that direction.  Syracuse has a lot of other great running spots including Onondaga Park, Onondaga Lake Parkway, Green Lakes Park and Beaver Lake Nature Center (my personal favorite).
 
CTD, FrettaFriends4Life!!  I have a few more stops then I plan to post a thread dedicated to the many versions in and around the "Salt City".
 
leethebard, annpeeples and mar52, thanks so much!
 
 
#81
lleechef
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/18 10:59:03 (permalink)
Great report!  I'm not touching that dial!!
#82
CajunKing
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/18 21:07:51 (permalink)
Hey CTD Dont Fretta Billyboy gots youse covered!
 
BB - I am now craving fretta in a fretta deprived land 
#83
billyboy
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/19 15:48:42 (permalink)
Friday July 10, 2015 - Time once again for the Boilermaker 15K Road Race in Utica, NY.  Doug and I drove up late Thursday night and didn't get in until 2am so he crashed at my mom's house and then drove on to Syracuse to stay with his family for the weekend.  I slept in for a bit and then headed out to Marcy, NY to check out a roadside trailer serving some regionally appropriate CNY-style BBQ.  This is Pete Mondi's Bar-B-Q.  

 
Set up on the side of the road and peppered with picnic tables and umbrellas, this is a great spot to enjoy a taste of my youth.  I ate a lot of firehouse BBQ growing up as my grandma's house was right next to a field where the local volunteer fire department would hold their annual summertime Firemen's Field Days festival and oftentimes I would be sent across the field during the summer to pick up a box of firehouse fundraising chicken BBQ dinners for the family

 
Yes, it is literally a BBQ trailer.

 
Owner Pete Mondi, at work on the grill.  I had initially walked up to the trailer and ordered a chicken dinner with side of salt potatoes and baked beans.  I brought it to one of the tables and began taking my pictures.  The three guys at the next table watched me as I snapped away so we started talking and I asked if I could sit with them.  They said, "Sure".  Turns out two of them were customers and the third one was Mr. Mondi.  We spent a lot of time talking and he has led a pretty interesting life.  He had a brick & mortar BBQ spot north of Utica in the Town of Remsen for many years until he sold the business and retired.  After about 3 years, he grew tired of being retired and bought the trailer behind him.  He said that working here is his idea of a vacation and is very happy now.  
Years ago, he was also a harness racer (a form of horse racing) in Central NY, competing in many races.  He also gets a lot of business from the corrections officers at local prisons and some times delivers what he has left at the end of the day to local Amish families that have recently moved into the area from Pennsylvania and to the COs and it is great PR for his business.  At 71, he is still going strong and loving what he does.

 
Those beautiful chickens.  Mr. Mondi's BBQ chicken is done in the Cornell style, which means that instead of a tomato based BBQ sauce, these are marinated in a egg, oil, vinegar and spices based marinade and basting sauce and then cooked directly over charcoal (or in his case, wood).  This style was pioneered by Dr. Robert Baker at Cornell University in the 1940s and is still very popular in Central NY and the Southern Tier (the Ithaca/Binghamton/Cornell area)

 
Mondi's also serves hamburger and Hofmann hot dogs.  My uncle and his girlfriend love their Friday fish fry here as well.

 
But today it was all about the chicken dinner.

 
I don't always eat chicken skin but on this bird it would almost be criminal to skip it.  Lots of flavor in the skin and right down to the bone.  There were a few strips of meat that seemed to be supercharged with the flavor of that marinade.  He boils his salt potatoes without the salt (as some of my family do as well) as they tend to be too salty for his liking but he makes sure to serve them with lots of melted butter and he said that sometimes when eating this chicken he dips it in the butter and it's like eating lobster!  
Those beans are Bush's that he doctors up withdrawn sugar and bacon and they were a classic accompaniment.  I had been wanting to come here for some time and it really was everything I could have hoped for and more.  I would like to put together a CNY Roadfood meet-up and have Mondi's as a stop on the tour. Please keep in mind that is it cash only, seasonal and only open Wed-Fri from 11am to 7pm.

 
I drove by John's Pizzeria on the way to Mondi's and noticed that they have tomato pie, greens and mushroom stew (any place in CNY that lists stew(s) on their sign, it's assumed that they mean mushroom stew).  I was hoping that they might have a slice or two that I could try but it turns out that they only sell them by the whole sheet and they must be ordered a day in advance (as is the case with a number of other places in the area).  I think I may have to stop here on my next visit for a bowl of mushroom stew and some greens.

 
Right next door to John's is Marcy Discount Beverage...

 
and they have just about every flavor of Saranac soda and beer you can imagine.  I love their root beer and cherry cream.  I thought about picking up some but the Boilermaker race sent me an online coupon for 50% off a 12-pack at the Brewery Store.  Note: I ended up not buying any there either as I didn't want to lug it back on the bus.  Note to self:  Buy a car this year!

 
Next up was my old standby, Voss BAR B Q.  No trip to CNY would be complete without at least one stop here!

 
Hamburger, hot dogs, bbq sandwiches and much more!

 
Today's order was brought to you by the number 5.  As soon as my order was ready they called out my number and I was good to go.

 
My Mexi-Dog (with homemade chili, cheese and onions) and a BBQ ham sandwich with extra homemade bbq sauce.  One bite of each and I am always brought back 25 years to my college days.

 
I often forget to take the hot dog out of the sleeve to get a shot of that buttery, toasty split-top bun.  I really hold up well against all of those toppings.  Part of the reason I came here was to check out the hot dogs.  For many years, Voss' has been using a dog called Honest John's from the local company, Smith Packing.  Word on the Facebook fan page is that they no longer use those dogs and have switched to the Rochester, NY based Zweigles brand.  I didn't talk to anyone at Voss about it but I did notice that the hot dog seemed to be smaller, it didn't have the characteristic red exterior that the Honest John's had and the taste was different.  Nonetheless, I thought it was still a great dog.

 
To wash it all down, a chocolate malt.  They offer them them up as thin or heavy.  I went with heavy and it required some extra effort on my part to get it up the straw.  The best part was finding a few undissolved nuggets of clumped up malt powder at the bottom that I scraped up and let dissolve on my tongue.  A perfect ending to a perfect meal.  

 
My third meal of the day was at the Patio Drive-In about a 5 minute drive down the same road as Voss'.  

 
The Patio has been a local institution since 1954 but it took a Trip Report from fellow Roadfooder cecif for me to take notice and I finally made my first visit here a few years ago when I tried and really liked their Ham Bar-B-Que sandwich.

 
This time around I had to order the Patio Style Hot Ham & Cheese (Spicy Hot) - as it reads on their menu.  I wasn't crazy about the side of macaroni salad.  The texture of the macaroni was good but there seemed to be too much hard boiled egg yolks in it and that taste and texture dominated the dish.

 
And the close-up.  I asked as the menu didn't really describe it.  The woman working the counter and the flat-top said it was a grilled ham and American cheese sandwich topped with their spicy hot dog chili sauce (which I believe has onions and peppers in it) and hot sauce (like Tabasco sauce).  It's not meat based and has a spicy tanginess to it.  This was definitely HOT!  The ham is a thicker cut than moist places in the area tend to use and it worked really well.  
 
Honestly, I was not crazy about this sandwich and only managed to eat half of it.  I had imagined a spicy capicola ham on a bun like most everyone else makes and in classic mistake, I was already feeling full from the meals at Mondi's and Voss' and should have packed it in after that (maybe I could have picked up some tomato pie or other snacks to take home for later).  I don't feel that I gave it a fair shot and I think that I should return and give it another go.  After having a week to reflect on it, I really feel like this was a good sandwich but one that should be eaten on a fairly empty stomach as it is a heavy hitter!
 
While talking to the ladies at the Patio, we got into a discussion of where to get the best pusties, tomato pie and half moon cookies.  I mentioned that Holland Farms had the best half moons and one of them said I HAD to try the ones at Hemstrought's Bakery.  I told her I grew up on them and that Hemstrought's retail locations had been closed for years and they now only do wholesale and supply them to local supermarkets and convenience stores.  She said that they still have a retail shop not for from the Patio.  While they both debated over the best way for me to get there, I was able to figure it out from having roasted these streets in my college days.  I thanked them and went on my way but was unable to locate it but did see an old sign from their former retail shop, leading me to believe that they had seen the sign there but had never stopped for a closer look.  I did try a Hemstroughts half moon on this trip but more on that later...

 
Right outside of the Patio parking lot was this sign.  I'm so confused!  Do I make a mental note for the next time I am driving by this light?  

 
I figured since I wasn't too far away and was foolhardy enough to get some dessert after three meals, I headed over to Bleecker Street for some pasticciotti (aka pusties) at the Roadfood reviewed Florentine Pastry Shop.  

 
They really are doing some special baking in here.  

 
I arrived here later in the day so they didn't have too many left.  Just apple, raspberry and coconut.  I wasn't a huge fan of the apple version I had tried on a previous visit so I went with a coconut (left) and raspberry (right).  I love those slightly darker edges that Florentine always manages to get on their pusties.  Nobody else seems to bake them that dark.

 
The dough was buttery and a bit crumbly, like a great pie crust and that filling was just sweet enough and had a wonderful jammy texture to it.  

 
The coconut was spot on as well.  Great dough and the creamy filling was very rich.  There is one thing that is different from last time that I noticed immediately.  The coconut on top is grated more finely than it was on a my previous visit.  Check out the photos below.  The finely grated coconut here brought me back to my high school days as it reminded exactly of the coating on a Zagnut bar!  I do like this version but I prefer the larger grate and coconut in the filling.

 
My coconut pusty from September 2011.

 
And the cross section shot, also from September 2011.  The coconut here is grated much larger than in the 2015 version and the cream appears to have visible coconut in it whereas the 2015 version doesn't seem to have it.  

 
I went home and relaxed with Mom and Harold for a while and then we headed out to dinner in Remsen, NY at The Soda Fountain.  We all love the Roadfood reviewed Teddy's Restaurant in Rome, NY but Mom said they go there all the time and was eager to mix it up a bit tonight and I had this place on my "to do" list for a while.

 
Located in a small shopping center, the drive here was very scenic that went by lots of fields and pastures.  In a somewhat less than appetizing vein (but in a very George Costanza sort of way...), we passed many areas strong with the scent of the region (of the bovine persuasion) and I gotta say, I really didn't mind it!  It smelled like home.

 
The Soda Fountain really does play up the 50s theme.

 
Boomerang pattern table tops, red & white booths and chairs, checkered floors, jukebox, waitresses in poodle skirts, check on
all counts.  As much as I do enjoy that theme I don't have any particular sense of nostalgia for it as I was born in 1971.

 
Our waitress brought us to a table in the Adirondack room.  Now you're talkin'!  The moment we entered the room I could smell the knotty pine on the walls.  It smells like spending time at my cousins' summer home when I was a kid and brings me back to so many family gatherings.

 
Love the Adirondack accents.

 
Especially the light fixtures.

 

 
Before I left NYC, I had my sights set on one day trying the Remsen Garbage Plate, their take on Nick Tahou's iconic Rochester dish.  However, my excursions earlier in the day left me little rom for such a dish so I opted for a Hofmann hot dog with their spicy Remsen Meat Sauce and a side of homemade baked beans.  I loved the split-top toasted bun though I wished they had buttered it before toasting.  The hog dog had a good snap and a nice griddle crust on it.  And that meat sauce was fantastic, with strong notes of clove and cinnamon, like a Greek-style hot dog sauce.  Those baked beans were thick and just sweet enough and really reminded me of the Grandma Brown's brand that I ate almost exclusively until I was 26 years old.  

 
And to wash it all down, a chocolate Pepsi.

 
Later that evening, Mom & Harold went to see a production of "The Addams Family Musical", which they loved, at the Capitol Theatre, a local theatre showcasing great stage productions and showing classic films, in addition to being the site of one of my early stage performances as Benvolio in William Shakespeare's "Romeo & Juliet".  I passed on the show as I found out through Facebook that some of my high school friends were at a local bar, The Palisades Hotel, and I hadn't seen them in some time.  Left to right: Mike, Danny, Lori and Eric.  I hadn't seen Eric since 11th grade math class but we're stayed in touch through FB so it was nice to have a drink with him in person.  Lori is a real cheerleader and champion of all things Rome and an all-around great gal.  Her husband, Danny, and Mike are a couple of cool guys and ran the Boilermaker as well this weekend (though they blew me off the course!).

 
Time to rock!  I hadn't been to the Palisades in years and I ended up running into a cousin of mine there as well.  They revamped their bar food menu and are now offering regional specialties such as greens, spieidies and on special occasions, Cornell-style chicken, salt potatoes and baked beans.  This may require another visit!

 
On the way back to Mom's I swung by Stewart's it pick up a half gallon of their excellent chocolate milk and a box of my beloved Freihofer's chocolate chip cookies.  Whenever I'm jonesing, Stewart's always has my Freihofer's fix!

 
 
Coming up next...Tomato Pie: to be, or not to be, that is the question!  "It's A Utica Thing!"  A great afternoon & evening and truly great food with dear friends. 
 
 
 
 
The 411: 
 
1.)  Mondi's BBQ
      9100 River Road
      Marcy, NY 
      Ph# 315-723-0057
      No website
      Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pete-Mondis-BBQ/217194071744571?fref=ts
 
2.)  John's Pizzeria
      9250 River Road
      Marcy, NY 13403
      Ph# 315-982-9536
      Website: http://johnspizzeriamarcyny.com
 
3.)  Marcy Discount Beverage Center
      9270 River Rd
      Marcy, NY 13403
      Ph# 315-736-3993
      Website: http://marcybeverage.com
 
4.)  Voss BAR B Q
      Rte 5A (aka Oriskany Blvd.) 
      Yorkville, NY 13495 
      No phone or website
 
5.)  Patio Drive-In
      1401 Oriskany Street West  
       Utica, NY 13502  
       Ph # 315-724-0136  
       No website
 
6.)  Florentine Pastry Shop
      667 Bleecker Street 
      Utica, NY 13501 
      Ph# 315-724-8032 
      No website
 
7.)  The Soda Fountain
       9698 Main St
       Remsen, NY 13438
       Ph# 315-831-8400
       Website: http://www.thesoda-fountain.com
 
8.)  Stewart's (Store #377)
      9189 Turin Road
      Rome, NY 13440
      Website: http://www.stewartsshops.com
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
post edited by billyboy - 2015/07/23 15:36:20
#84
leethebard
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/19 15:52:14 (permalink)
Freihofers makes a nice cookie!!!!
#85
CajunKing
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/19 16:25:15 (permalink)
Billy My Boy - You sir are on a roll or is that a pusty?
#86
lleechef
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/19 17:05:03 (permalink)
Chocolate Pepsi???  And exactly what are salt potatoes??  The food looks wonderful!  Let me get this straight; you ate all that in one day?  Sheesh........next you'll be making a spreadsheet. 
#87
CajunKing
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/19 17:12:29 (permalink)
He ate all that in a day and THEN got ready for a RUN.
You have heard of vanilla coke or pepsi or cherry cokes or pepsi, many soda shops have choc pepsi, IT IS DIFFERENT, but some people love them
#88
buffetbuster
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/19 17:46:24 (permalink)
Billyboy-
That Niagara Mohawk Building is one of my favorite Art Deco buildings in the country.  You have to see it in person to really appreciate it.  I drove through Syracuse just yesterday and was able to spot in from the interstate, which brought a big smile to my face.
 
Thanks for the excellent report as always.  Your enthusiasm for the subject matter really shines through!
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ScreamingChicken
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Re: I Say Fretta, You Say Frittata (or Fretatta!) and the Passion of the Pusty 2015/07/19 20:34:44 (permalink)
billyboy
I drove by John's Pizzeria on the way to Mondi's and noticed that they have tomato pie, greens and mushroom stew (any place in CNY that lists stew(s) on their sign, it's assumed that they mean mushroom stew).

I don't recall you mentioning mushroom stew in any of your previous reports, so what's the back story?  I love mushrooms so the idea of a mushroom stew is intriguing.
#90
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