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Thread: Albany Watering Holes

  1. #1
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    Albany Watering Holes

    Headed out to Albany for the regionals this weekend. Any good places to grab a drink and a bite after the games in the Albany area?

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Jillian's is where everyone used to go to watch the other games from around the country and enjoy some food and beer.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    The bars on Lark Street by the intersection with Madison are a good time. They're a manageable walk from downtown. I also like Wolff's Beer Garden is also cool for German food/beer and peanuts, which is a bit farther and more isolated, but not more than about an $8 cab ride from downtown.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    As of two years ago, Jillians was basically the only option.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Quote Originally Posted by day310 View Post
    Headed out to Albany for the regionals this weekend. Any good places to grab a drink and a bite after the games in the Albany area?
    Lark Street is a good area for food, drink and some music. It is about a mile from the arena and up hill the first 500 yards, so a $5 cab ride is worth it.

    Closer to the arena is Savannah's at State and Pearl. Good pub food (best black bean soup around) and dozens of beers on tap.

    A couple of blocks past Jillian's (bad food) is The Albany Pump Station. It's a brew pup with great food. It's just off the Colonie Street exit of I-787.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Quote Originally Posted by kdilks View Post
    As of two years ago, Jillians was basically the only option.
    Could not be farther from the truth.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasma View Post
    Could not be farther from the truth.
    I was in Albany about 3 weeks ago on a Friday night. While in my (visiting) opinion, Downtown definitely empties out over the weekend, that doesn't mean there aren't MANY options aside from Jillian's. I've been to the Pump House, but I forgot to mention it. It's definitely a good suggestion. I still think it's worth the effort to get up to Lark (definitely worth the walk if it's nice outside as there are some cool houses along the way), out to Wolff's, or anywhere else that I'm unaware of because in my experience Downtown can be hit or miss on the weekends.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasma View Post
    Could not be farther from the truth.
    Agreed.

    Savannah's is close by.

    Pearl Street Pub is a new restaurant that took the place of the condemned Pearl restaurant.

    Maurice's is on the way to Savannah's but only serves sandwich fare and may not have TVs.

    Envy Lounge.

    Capitol House (Chinese).

    Does anybody know if Skyline is still open?

    For more upscale fare, I recommend looking up Dale Miller, 677 Prime, Marche, Yono's and the Hollywood Brown Derby. All are within walking distance.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Wolff's is the place to go for great beer. Lark Street is good for nightlife, If your looking to become friends with a drunk college age girl this weekend hit the usuals like Jillians, Envy, Bayou, basically anything on Pearl Street.
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Skyline is gone.

    For an upscale experience (more expensive but great food), dp Brasserie in the Hampton Inn is quite nice.

    Broadway Joe's just outside the TU is a watering hole that serves the purpose.

    McGeary's is an Irish Pub at the other end of Pearl Street.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Plenty of clubs and bars along Pearl Street to tickle anyone's fancy. Bayou is a favorite of folks if they don't want to end up in a dance-ish club.

    Wolff's Biergarten is a little further away on Broadway and is worth hitting for big foreign beers and German-themed goodness. Albany Pump Station is also located on Broadway but a little closer by than Wolff's and they've got plenty of their own beer and great food.

    McGeary's is also in that neighborhood, across from Palace Theater, if you want an Irish-like bar.

    If you want to get away from the Times Union Center and head up Madison Avenue towards the Lark Street area there's a lot more choices on Lark and near the intersection of Lark and Madison. There's the Lark Tavern and The Lionheart are different clientele. Lark Tavern is a bit more alternative but fun while the Lionheart can get busy and potentially annoying. It's not my favorite but... Whatever it gets the job done. Lark Street has any variety of things. Legend's Sports Bar, Bistro Wine Bar, Elda's, Hollywood Bar, Bomber's Burrito Bar... Take your pick.

    If you want to go even further away from that, you can go up to New Scotland Avenue and pick out a few of the bars along there as you head towards St. Peter's Hospital.

    Other folks have mentioned some good spots too. Savannah's on Pearl Street is a lot bigger inside and with a larger beer selection too (albeit a bit price jacked ). It's a fun bar though and just up a block from the arena.
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Hillstreet Cafe is a ~3 block walk from the TUC with excellent pub fare and a satisfactory beer selection. Right across from a free parking garage for the weekend.
    Quote Originally Posted by moe24 View Post
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    I highly recommend Wolff's and the Pump Station (which makes an excellent burger, by the way). Good variety up on Lark Street, as GLM mentioned, and if you're not up for the walk then it's a reasonably-priced cab ride if you split it with friends. (The walk back downhill is much easier, of course.) If you're really determined to go somewhere on Pearl Street, I prefer the Bayou Cafe over Jillian's, personally; the staff at Jillian's were a real pain when the team and fans tried to celebrate there after Cornell won the ECAC in 2003, and a lot of us haven't been back because of that. And Broadway Joe's is good enough if your geographic scope is extremely limited.
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Quote Originally Posted by jmh View Post
    I highly recommend Wolff's and the Pump Station (which makes an excellent burger, by the way). Good variety up on Lark Street, as GLM mentioned, and if you're not up for the walk then it's a reasonably-priced cab ride if you split it with friends. (The walk back downhill is much easier, of course.) If you're really determined to go somewhere on Pearl Street, I prefer the Bayou Cafe over Jillian's, personally; the staff at Jillian's were a real pain when the team and fans tried to celebrate there after Cornell won the ECAC in 2003, and a lot of us haven't been back because of that. And Broadway Joe's is good enough if your geographic scope is extremely limited.
    I can't emphasize enough: Do NOT go to Jillian's.

    It's not a dangerous place or anything like that, I just think it sucks. If you want to have a mediocre time in Albany and be one of the people that cries about how much Albany sucks while not going anywhere else in the city, go to Jillian's and be miserable there.
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    The Rochester Jillians had bowling and video games and stuff. Assuming Albany's is the same, seems like that might be worth it if that's what you were looking for. =)


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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Is this place still there, forget the name, but it was at the northern end of Pearl Street, around the corner I guess on Orange Street, across from a parking lot, had a gangster type name, like Capone's Hideaway, or something like that.

    Edit: Ah, i think it was called The Big House. Doesn't look like it's there anymore. Nice spot though, if there's a new place in that space, might be worth checking out.

    There was also some kind of bar/upstairs dance club place dpwn on Broadway up toward the Orange Street side, that a bunch of the Michigan group and I went to one night quite a few years ago.

    We had a good time there, but the company helped a lot in that department. Course this was quite a few years ago, and doubtful that these places are still there knowing the restaurant biz. Did like the Bayou though, too.
    Last edited by rufus; 03-23-2010 at 05:01 PM.
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    a 3 min drive from south pearl street
    is the beer garden it has the best beer
    https://www.yelp.com/biz/wolffs-biergarten-albany

    free buckets of peanuts darts and table tennis
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Quote Originally Posted by rufus View Post
    Is this place still there, forget the name, but it was at the northern end of Pearl Street, around the corner I guess on Orange Street, across from a parking lot, had a gangster type name, like Capone's Hideaway, or something like that.

    Edit: Ah, i think it was called The Big House. Doesn't look like it's there anymore. Nice spot though, if there's a new place in that space, might be worth checking out.

    There is nothing in that space anymore. Since the Big House closed, it was named the Skyline. That closed as well. They are working on a new place, which hasn't opened yet. However, if you go past the old Big House site on North Pearl, take a left at that corner and at the end of that block is a nice little bar called the Victory Cafe, its off the main drag so shouldn't be too crowded.
    Last edited by DavidSec17; 03-23-2010 at 07:23 PM.

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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    Another place to go is Red Square right near the arena.
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    Re: Albany Watering Holes

    If you're wearing a coat and tie and button down shirt to the games, a good upscale place is "Jack's" on lower State Street, not much of a walk from the TUC. Good salmon and NY strip steak as well as filet mignon. White table cloth style, and dimly lit. May not be for you if you're looking for a quick beer and burger... Food is great at a "reasonable" price. Plan on a couple of hours for dinner.
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