Saturday July 13th, 2013
I made three trips to the Utica-Rome-Syracuse area since this past July and instead of writing a trip report for each one I decided to pack them into one extended version with lots of tasty, regional eats and new-to-me sights to talk about. I began with my annual trip to Utica-Rome for the my 4th consecutive running of the Boilermaker 15K Road Race. While checking out the local newspaper at my mom's house, I read that a local farm a few miles up the road was having a farmer's market the next morning, selling cookies, jams and FRIED PIES! I had plans to pick up my bib at the race expo but got up a bit earlier to scope out this market and score some pies. As it turned out, this is the very same place where my niece attends "farm camp" each summer for a week. She gets to work outside, care for the animals and learn about nature. She loves it and looks forward to it each year!
Sadly, I arrived too late as the pies were sold out. However, I did pick up some homemade black raspberry jam and jalapeno jelly both of which were quite good.
I didn't make it to The Garage
, but I may have to check out their "Greens" pizza on my next visit. Basically everything that goes into a plate of sauteed greens but on a pizza. I've heard good reports on it from a few of my hometown friends.
My apologies for the low quality of many of these photos. I was still using the cheapo camera I had been using in New Mexico the weekend before. I've gotten in the habit of heading over to Roma Sausage & Deli
in Utica BEFORE going to the race expo as they tend to run out of tomato pie if I wait until later. As it turns out, this was a very good idea. I snagged the last two of the day to take to the pre-race pasta party at the home of my friends Betsy & Pat.
Naturally, I had to engage in some quality assurance before bringing the pies to the dinner party and they were in top form as always. Chewy, crispy and flavorful crust, sweet & chunky tomato sauce and a liberal sprinkling of romano cheese.
It always feels real once I pick up my bib and pint glass.
And my latest headband acquisition. I have many days where this phrase plays over and over in my head.
Christmas ornaments for the runner in your family.
I love these regional food related t-shirts but I think I may be getting old because I couldn't stand seeing the sayings starting with the letter "U".
And now I know I'm getting old as I needed a teenager standing nearby to explain this t-shirt to me. Dang kids and their Internets lingo!!
Another tasty locally brewed beer. While I didn't have any on this trip I have tried it before and it's quite refreshing.
The woman in the center of this picture is Laura Skladzinski, the youngest woman to run marathons in all 50 states. Between 2008 and 2010, she a marathon in each state and all before her 25 birthday. Incredible! She was on a panel along with Kathrine Switzer (the first woman to run the Boston Marathon) and Bill Rodgers (Olympic runner and repeat winner of the Boston and New York City Marathons) among other talking about the sport of distance running. It's always comforting to hear from runners of all levels that we all go through the same ups, downs, bouts of self doubt and elation and at the end of it all we really are the same.
After the Expo, a quick trip to Holland Farms Bakery & Deli
was in order.
A Byrne Dairy chocolate milk and a much beloved "headlight" donut was just what I wanted. Difficult to find these in NYC.
Naturally, a stop at Voss BAR B-Q
just down the street was necessary.
A Mexi Dog covered in their homemade chili and a ham bbq sandwich (with extra sauce) gave me the fix I was craving! Sunday July 14th, 2013
- Coach Doug and I before the race.
Two ladies I met up with at various points during the race. The brunette had a homemade checklist written on the back of her shirt that said, Beat Cancer - (a check mark in a box next to it) Grow back hair - (a check mark in a box next to it) Finish Boilermaker 15K - (no check on this one yet and she had a friend waiting at the finish with a Sharpie). Very, very inspiring and cool.
A homemade sign from my personal cheering section - my family. They've been so great coming out to support my races over the years and this nickname goes back many years to the folk song "Billy Boy" that my family has sung to me since I can remember.
After a very muggy and tough race, Doug and I met up with our friend for a beer at the post race party behind the Saranac Brewery and then went with his family for lunch at Tom Cavallo's
in New Hartford. A plate of their always excellent Buffalo wings was in order. Meaty, crispy and with a health coating of sauce, these are just as good as they were over 20 years ago when we would come for Wing Night in college.
After trying their Chicken Parm for the first time I kept asking myself why it had taken me so long. The sauce was a nice balance of sweet and savory and they managed to keep the chicken juicy and crispy at the same time. Another winner.
I have yet to try their pizza but this looked so good that I had to snap a picture.
On the drive back to Rome I stopped at my favorite farmer's market, North Star Orchards
, for dessert
They only make these ice blueberry cookies during blueberry season and judging by the amount of plump, ripe juicy blueberries in this cookie, I knew I made the right choice. The cookie itself was pillowy soft and not too sweet. The perfect way to finish the day. Monday July 15th, 2013
- I went out for lunch at Big Daddy's Sandwiches
to satisfy a craving I'd been having. I didn't have any recent photos of their sign so I used this old one from the review I posted for Roadfood.
I've tried most of the sandwiches on the menu.
And what a treat to find Mello Yello available.
The Ruby D.
A toasted pastrami reuben sub with pastrami, kraut, swiss and thousand island dressing. I have eaten many of these since high school and it's just as good as always. I know it's not a classic Reuben but I love it. Crispy, hot and a joyous mess to eat. Definitely a multi-napkin affair!
And for dessert...
a trip to the very nondescript Ferlo's Bakery
Love those donuts and half moons.
They really do have what I feel are the best donuts in the area. I realized on this visit that I'm not so much a fan of the vanilla cake-base half moons but the chocolate cake-base are just divine.
Much more to come...!! THE 411:
1.) Roma Sausage & Deli
2029 Bleecker Street
Utica, NY 13501
Ph # 315-792-1445
2.) Holland Farms Bakery & Deli
50 Oriskany Blvd (aka Rte. 5A)
Yorkville, NY 13495
3.) Voss Bar B-Q
Rte 5A (aka Oriskany Blvd.)
Yorkville, NY 13495
No phone or website
4.) Tom Cavallo's Restaurant
40 Genesee Street
New Hartford, NY
5.) North Star Orchards
Westmoreland, NY 13490
6.) Big Daddy's Sandwich Shop
500 N. James Street
Rome, NY 13440
7.) Ferlo's Bakery
522 Floyd Avenue
Rome, NY 13440
Ph # 315-339-8874
<message edited by billyboy on Sat, 02/22/14 5:55 AM>