Tag Archives: italian food

167. Francesca’s

Every once in a while you stumble upon a restaurant that blows away any expectation you may have had. You are introduced to new dishes, a new way of dining. Francesca’s is one of those places.

I recently went to Francesca’s with a few friends on a Friday night. Any old Friday night you can find us dining at one of the great restaurants here in town, but tonight was special. Tonight, the weather was perfect. There was no rain, no humdity, no snow (!!!). We were set on dining outdoors, a kickoff to the summer weather and obviously to enjoy some good company.

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When I was guided outside by our hostess to the outdoor patio at Francesca’s I was completely blown away. It was this large, romantic space with a wall of vines and candles and lights and grass and a fire pit…it was a game changer.

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We sat at our table, unaware that we were even in Syracuse, NY. It felt like we were in a bustling city, we kept saying that tt’s not every day you find something like this in Syracuse. And on my quest to find the best patio, Francesca’s wins hands down best outdoor dining experience in Syracuse. Without a doubt. I think if you’ve got a space to utilize, you should take a page from Francesca’s book…they’re doing everything right with their patio.

The menu is unreal, their stuffed peppers, utica greens, stuffed olives, seafood chowder, scallops, chicken parm…all of it, was just brilliant. Not to mention, the desserts are to die for. The Italian cuisine is authentic, you can’t go wrong with any of it! It was one of the best meals I’ve had all year, and I’ve been frequenting a lot of restaurants in the area because of this blog…so I’ve had a lot of meals.

I strongly recommend going to Francesca’s for a meal one of these nights…if you can, go during the summer months so you can enjoy the patio! Head out to celebrate an anniversary, a birthday, friendship, love…make any excuse you can and go there. They are open throughout the week, until 10pm and closed on Sunday.

Tip: Reservations are strongly recommended. Their outdoor patio is one of the highlights of the dining experience and on the weekends it’s a long wait for a table. Get there early and enjoy a drink at the bar.

location: Little Italy, 545 North Salina Street

117. Asti Caffe

Every once in a while it’s nice to have some delicious and authentic Italian Food. If you’re interested in having some authentic, delicious, made-with-love Italian food, you need to go to Asti’s asap.

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With things on the menu like, Lobster Pasta and homemade Lasagna, you’re going to need to be rolled out to your car at the end of your meal. My roommate recently went there, and after having a delicious and wonderful dining experience brought home some leftover Lobster Risotto…it.was.divine.

Tip: Call for Reservations, it gets pretty busy on the weekends.

location: 411 North Salina Street

49. Downtown Dining Week — Anthony’s

Last summer, after having moved closer towards downtown I quickly began to discover the over abundance of great (great) food here in Syracuse. There are so many places downtown where you can stop in for a quick lunch, or sit on a patio and enjoy the summer air, or if you want to have a nice sit-down dinner…they’re everywhere, you just have to be willing to try it out!

I think it’s safe to say that Anthony’s is one of those finer hidden gems downtown. It’s located in Hanover Square, so a little (but not far) off the beaten path of Armory Square. It’s just quiet enough to escape the hustle and bustle of Armory Square but close enough to be in the center of everything. I also think I’m pretty fortunate when it comes to my friends and their willingness to try new restaurants, all the time. However, once we found out about Anthony’s we were sold.

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This week during Downtown Dining Week, Anthony’s is doing something special. They’re basically featuring their entire menu. For just $25 you can enjoy their famous Utica Greens, Chicken Riggies, Fettuccine Alfredo and so much more. For that price, my friends and I could not resist checking it out. Saturday evening, Anthony’s was packed. With the plethora of options on their dining week menu, we all left feeling very stuffed. Our waiter was super friendly and did everything he could to make sure our experience was good.

Anthony’s is also connected to The Elbow Room, which is more of a bar-like experience than restaurant. With pool, darts, and a TV if you’re looking for something low-key The Elbow Room is where you should go. Every day around 4:30pm, for happy hour, they have free food for patrons. The food, is essentially a sample of the Anthony’s menu. Each day it’s a bit different with samples of the pizzas, chicken riggies, etc…

Tip: Reservations are suggested, and if you show up early stop by Elbow Room and try one (or two…) of the 25 beers on tap.

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