Ric Orlando's New World Bistro Bar

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It's open!!!

By Jessica Pasko

After waiting impatiently for what seems like forever, I finally got to try Ric Orlando's new restaurant in Albany, The New World Bistro Bar, next to the Spectrum Theatre.

And, well, if last night's soft opening is any indicator, it's been worth the wait.

The old plumbing supply store has been transformed into a comfortable restaurant painted in soothing reds and oranges. But, of course, you really want to know about the food. So how is it? In a word, delicious.

Here's what we tried:

To begin:

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The CAGE Pan Blackened String Beans with Cajun remoulade - These are one of my favorites from Orlando's Saugerties restaurant and they definitely are a great way to start a meal. My friend Kim said it was the only way she's ever managed to like green beans.


A tasting portion of the menudo - The Ricky Martin jokes came free with this dish. I'd never had tripe before and although the texture's a little funky, the broth was very nicely spiced.
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My boyfriend tried the blood sausage but he ate it all before I could get a bite in.

Entrees:

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I got the ropa vieja for old time's sake. Ric perfected this dish years ago when he was the chef at Justin's. Served with sweet potato and brown rice, the meat was perfectly cooked and all the flavors blended beautifully. A classic, for sure. And despite the decent-sized portion, I managed to eat every last bit.


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My boyfriend got the roast lamb done punjabi style, served with a lentil puree, papadums, chutney and okra. Unlike many of the restaurants we've eaten at lately, the lamb was actually perfectly cooked.

And although I was stuffed, what's a meal without dessert? The tapas-sized dessert portion of the lemon curd with berry compote. It was sublime.

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Dinner for three with a few glasses of the house red, which is the Rene Barbiere came to $103 and some change.

The New World Bistro Bar officially opens tonight.


Find It

New World Bistro Bar
300 Delaware Ave.
Albany, , NY 12209

Comments

I've been in Albany for just over 7 years now and one thing I've always found lacking was a restaurant that served incredible food in a relaxed atmosphere. The NWBB finally fills that void. The food is an epicurean delight and the surroundings truly enhance the dining experience. Kudos to Scott and Annette.

i concur with perry. i have always traveled to places like hudson, the berkshires, saratoga, and of course saugerties for the restaurants that albany is clearly missing. i am so excited about the new world coming here, i might have to start a fan club

Damn, that was a good meal--and yes, the only time I've ever had green beans that I thought were actually *good!* :) Must... not... drain... wallet... food... too... good...

As a 20 year resident of the Delaware Avenue area neighborhood, I'm happy to see continued investment in this area.

I'd like to join your fan club jae...food and setting ridiculously good!! Love the neighborhood too...perfect location!

i am so freaking excited about this restaurant!

I really hope Ric decides to actually stay involved in this one. When Ric decides to play business owner and not chef, his restaurants suffer. To proudly sound like a broken record, I will probably never eat at his Saugarties restaurant again.

We;ll, thanks for the encouragement. To Ellie and everyone else. I have been and will be present and BOTH New Worlds-- I am confident in of my teams I have trained!
Hope to see y'all in the country or the city!
xox
Ric

this is great for our neighborhood. now all we need is trader joe's to open in the old rite aid storefront in the plaza where the library is now.

Amazing,
Welcome to Delaware ave!!!! Walked to dinner last night, and loved every bite of our meal. Had the cheese plate, creamy Chatham Sheep Hearders Camamberd along with the Calamari with Spicy Thai pepper sauce. I had the Curry Shrimp with wide noodles, while my friend had the Ahi Tuna done to perfection. I enjoyed my left overs for breakfast this morning. We had to try dessert, the truffle and a chocolate brownie sundae, paired with port.
The energy is so great in the restaurant, very welcoming. I love the exposed ceiling and walls. I have lived in the neighborhood for 12+ years and am so excited to have NWBB within walking distance.
Delaware avenue neighborhood is hanging tough and has been improving. Thank you for investing in our community. Please support Mr Orlando's new creation, you will not be disappointed.

Eight weeks in, am glad to have Orlando's place in AlbNY, though hasn't quite lived up to the local hype. Still better than almost anywhere currently on offer. The menu is too much all-things-to-all-people if you ask me, though I understand eclectic is 'in", or was about 15 years ago, everywhere but here.

I appreciate the idea that the stew pot of US cultures is being portrayed by this chef's food, but I don't detect a strong point of view. That's not to say his isn't a skilled hand or dishes aren't smartly seasoned. Most are. Still, the result is I ate something and wish I was where I last had the dish on which his is a riff. Ropa Vieja is a case in point. The penang spiced whatchamacallit made me prefer good Thai.

Service is interesting. It goes to two extremes, neither of which I liked. I either felt ignored, (by which I mean I waited a freaking eternity to be told my meal wasn't out of the kitchen yet; or way too solicited, by which I mean the sexy waitron bent too low and primped overmuch, then confused herself with the chef -- "I have this, I have that, today; my specials today are yadda yadda." I just hate that. I don't like tacky much anyway.

There's a good solid restaurant here, but it has some kinks to work out.

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