Birthday Dinner in Hudson

Last night we celebrated Chris’ birthday by driving down to Hudson after work for dinner. Chris had Mexican on the brain and had been wanting to try Mexican Radio  for a long time!

The more I drive through the Hudson Valley the more I love it down there. It has such a different vibe than Albany, like hip-country, or something. I totally just made that term up.

But anyway, our first stop was the Spotty Dog, a bookstore-bar. Yes, you read that right.

Chris and I each got a drink, he went with a Dogfish Head and I chose the Magic Hat Wacko.

We browsed the bookshelves and sipped our drinks until it was time to head to dinner! I had made reservations for 7:30 but it turned out we did not need them, since the place was pretty empty.

I really liked the ambiance of the restaurant, it was dark and there were lots of candles lit.

Chris wanted an appteizer and chose the small nacho plate.

And when they say small, they mean small. There were literally four chips on the plate.

Now, this would be appropriate for a one-person appetizer, but for two? Too small? I had one chip and left the rest for Chris since he was starving. The chips were drenched in the cheese and sauce so they were really mushy. It definitely left something to be desired.

For my meal I decided to go with one of the specials, a $19 enchilada plate, which if I remember correctly was two corn tortillas filled with cheese, two types of mushrooms, spinach and goat cheese with a green sauce. When it arrived on the plate, I didn’t see enchiladas, but instead some lettuce, squash, zucchinis and mangos (not on the menu) on top of  two flat corn tortillas with a layer of spinach in between them, and beans and rice underneath. Either I got the wrong menu item or it was not described correctly, or my memory failed me and I read it but didn’t remember it.

Either way, there was no goat cheese or mushrooms to be found. Although, underneath the corn tortilla, there was what I thought at first bite was a piece of chicken or beef. After tasting it, I realized it didn’t have the flavor of meat, but tasted like seitan! I knew they had meat substitutes on the menu but I hadn’t asked for any. I did however ask if the entree was vegetarian, and the server said yes, it was. Hmmm. The seitan was a pleasant surprise. But the missing mushrooms and goat cheese was a bit disappointing.

Imagine if it had been beef? ACK. I couldn’t finish the bottom tortilla or the rice and beans so I gave it to Chris to finish. Chris on the other hand LOVED his fish tacos! Overall, my entree was pretty tasty, just not what I was expecting.

The meal came with a small side salad, which was surprisingly good. There was some kind of sliced vegetable on top that had a familiar flavor that I just couldn’t place.

I also ordered a white peach sangria, and delicious drink! It was very small for the price, though, which I think was around $7-9, I can’t remember exactly.

I guess I’m just used to the big ones at El Mariachi. 😉 Overall, the high prices are pretty typical for area, but we both decided we probably won’t make a trip back to Hudson to come here again. We’ll stick with our first love, El Mariachi, right in Albany.

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After we got home I gave Chris his birthday cake! I worked pretty hard baking a Guinness cake (with Mother’s Milk in place of Guinness!) for him. It came out WONDERFUL.

I filled the layers with a basic chocolate frosting and it tasted amazing.

Hope you all are having a fantastic Friday!

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Keegan Ales in Kingston

Saturday morning after our amazing dinner, Chris and I had breakfast at the Inn, which was nice! They had a pretty good spread of bagels, granola, cereal, oatmeal and fruit!

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Sadly, it was pouring when we got up and headed into the village of Woodstock (we walked from the Inn). After checking out the shops, we headed to Kingston. There’s not much in Kingston. Actually, I ran a race there last month with Heather. But Saturday we had other plans.

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We went to Keegan Ales Brewery! Chris and I each ordered a beer. I got Old Capital. It was okay–not my favorite beer, actually. Keegan Ales was the beer I had at the end of the Shamrock Run, but I couldn’t remember which one I had after the race.

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We also split Mother’s Milk. It was dark and delicious.

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We decided since we had no real plans for lunch to order something here. We got some nachos and a quesadilla to share. Not too healthy, but they sure were delish.

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While were were at the brewery, there was also a bachelor party going on. We overheard one of the brew masters talking a group of guys about chugging beer from one of the fermentation tanks. What?? Seriously? They let people DO that? The answer: yes, they do. And its quite hilarious to watch.

Each member of the bachelor party got his chance to chug Mother’s Milk from a 30 degree fermentation tank, and the guy to drink the longest won! And only one guy threw up.

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They sure are hardcore…

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Anyway, after that amusing debacle, Chris and I went off to the Hudson Valley Mall to see a movie I’ve been waiting forever to see.

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Water for Elephants!!! Since Water for Elephants was one of my favorite books, I was so excited to see the movie! And I loved it! I was worried it wouldn’t do the book justice, but it was actually great. It made me happy.

After the movie, Chris and I headed to Rhinebeck, which was only a short drive over the river from Kingston.

To be continued!

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