Four course meal at Wine Bar and Bistro on Lark

wine bar and bistro larkCongrats to Erik, his comment was drawn at random!

The drawing's closed! Thanks for entering!

We love working on AOA, but today's giveaway is so good that we're almost thinking we should quit -- so that we can enter ourselves.

The Wine Bar and Bistro on Lark has generously offered a four course tasting menu meal for two to one lucky winner from the AOA crowd. The four courses will be selected by Jason Baker, the innovative new chef at the Wine Bar.

To enter the drawing, post a comment answering this question:

What is the best thing you've ever eaten?

Think broadly -- it could be the perfect apple you plucked straight from a tree, your grandmother's strawberry-rhubarb pie, mussels you once had in France -- whatever. We'll pick one winner at random from the comments.

The Wine Bar was one of AOA's first advertisers, and we greatly appreciate chef Kevin Everleth's continued support. The Wine Bar is offering a four course tasting menu on Valentine's Day and specials all that weekend. It also recently began offering Sunday brunch from 11 am to 3 pm.

Important: The four course meal that's part of the giveaway does not include beverages or tip. One entry per person. You must answer the question to be eligible. You must submit your comment by 5 pm on Friday, February 4, 2011. You must include a working email address (that you check regularly) with your comment. The winners will be notified by email by 9 am on Monday, February 7 -- and must respond by 8 pm that day.

Find It

Wine Bar and Bistro on Lark
200 Lark Street
Albany, NY 12210

(518) 463-2881


I would love to win this contest!

The best thing I have ever eaten... I'll go with simplicity here. Perfectly aged, extra sharp, (somewhat - VT) locally made cheddar cheese. A huge brick of it, which instead of cutting into slices for crackers, I cut into small bite-sized cubes that melted in my mouth. Absolute perfection - especially when accompanied with a sip of a good Pinot Grigio. So good that I still think about it.

spaghettios with meatballs. My wife and I dont get out much.

my grandmother's homemade mac and cheese. YUM!

Grilled Halloumi sandwich on the beach in Cyprus after swimming in the Mediterranean.

In my favorite food memories, a meal at the Bistro 120 in Schuylerville (R.I.P.) comes to mind.

Chef Jason Baker was there for a stint (yes, same Baker as W.B.) and while we certainly ordered straight from the menu, the food itself was transcendent of its description.

Highlight? Lavender Filet.

Clam Chowda from Captain Parkers in Cape Cod!! So rich and creamy. I crave it all year until we go to the cape in the summer..

I tried this chocolate wineberry fudge one time at a local event and that taste is still a tough one to beat.

My mothers Zucchini bread. It's so good, I have a cousin in Arizona that requests her to bake it and mail it to her!

Best thing I've ever eaten was this grilled lobster tail & duck breast from Fore Street in Portland Maine. The lobster literally melted in my mouth and the duck tasted like the best steak I've ever eaten in my life.

PS- pick me!

A flourless chocolate torte from an amazing bakery in Providence called Pastiche.

Peaches and gorgonzola appetizer at a local Albany restaurant. Peaches must be in season so you can only get it in August or September and, even then, it's not always on the menu. But it is amazing!

Porterhouse drizzled with crab meat sauce at Del Frisco's in NYC.

It doesn't sound like much, but in looking back, the best thing I've ever eaten was Nutella, on freshly toasted homemade bread, at a bed and breakfast I stayed at in Rome in college. I'd never had Nutella before, and the bread was amazing, and the setting was mind-blowing, and the combination made for one of my best food memories - funny, thinking about all the "fancy" things I've tried since.

Butternut squash risotto with maple-smoked bacon, green onions, and parmesan cheese. Mmmmm.

Can't pick just one best thing but the best thing I know of on a local menu, that I find myself craving at odd moments, is the lobster and avocado tart at Creo. This is one dish where all the elements are in perfect harmony and you can go and order it whenever they're open. I was craving it last night and very very sad to get to Stuyvesant Plaza only to find they were closed due to the Snowpocalypse.

Sweatbreads at Bocuse. Organs as art.

I live near Lark Street now, but I grew up on 8 acres of land outside of Altamont. Wild strawberries would grow in our field. When I was a kid, I would go out back, pick a bowl full of them, and then head inside and eat 'em. It was a lot of work for such little things, but those are the kinds of things you can do when you're a kid. Maybe I should head up to the country home one weekend in the spring and see if I can still find any of those wild strawberries.

The best thing I've ever eaten? For someone who loves to eat as much as I do, that's a tough question. If pressed, I have to say the truffle pizza at La Madia in Chicago. Yes, it's an almost $30 pizza, but it has truffle cream, freshly shaved truffles and a drizzle of truffle oil. It was so good, we went back again the next night to eat it once more.

Home made rye bread.

The Buche de Noel from Mrs. London's in Saratoga.

Peruvian-style guacamole at a fab restaurant in Manhattan called Bar Paya. The guac had shrimp and lobster in it, and was served with plantain chips for dipping. Simply ridiculous.

Very hopeful here :).

Easy question, actually: a dish at Manresa (restaurant in Los Gatos, CA that I rate as the best in the US right now) called 'from the garden' - that morning's microgreens, paired w/ intensely roasted grain 'dirt' and some eggs, roasted potatoes.

Second would be an amuse at Blue Hill Stone Barns that was a pea soup and tasted as though 'fresh' had been distilled into the shot glass. Mmm.

Like many, the best thing I've ever eaten is a simple meal my my dad would make when I visited him as a kid. A few meatballs made of fresh ground beef, parsley, garlic and other herbs, inside of which he would hide a nut of salted butter. Don't overcook it. When you finally reach the center of the ball, the butter is there, half-melting, and you can use it to finish the meatball. That would blow my mind every time.

The best thing I've eaten at the Wine Bar? So many things, the best is not on the menu anymore, but the Linguine with Lamb Bolognese and Shaved Parmesan has a nice kick, like it a lot.

A dark and very heavy and most perfectly ripe--I mean exactly perfectly the right amount of ripeness--pomegranate. It was January 2005 and I remember the exact moment, what I was doing, and how delicious every single aril tasted.

Easy: A heated pecan pie at a restaurant in the Middleofnowhere, ME. It was on the St. Croix river and my boyfriend's mom ordered it, so I got only one bite, but that one bite still was amazing.

That's such a hard one since I find the food is ultimately wrapped into the experience at the same that being said, Zak's on the Rocks up in Jay, VT (now closed) and their tournados with bearnaise very rare, the wonderful bread and a Jay Peak sundae to end. I miss Zak (although for anyone who knows it, he is still alive but unfortunately suffering from dementia but otherwise healthy with a few moments of lucidity from time to time)

It was lamb fettucini in a cafe in San Francisco. It was the last night of our honeymoon and I'd never had lamb before. It was the most amazing thing I'd ever had and I'd never had lamb before. The guilt was worth it.

Thai-Italian Love at New World Bistro is heaven on earth!

My dad's homemade sauerbraten and dumplings!

Dulce de Leche Creme Brulee at Pacifico in Port Chester, NY

The first time I ever had brie, all melty with a raspberry mustard sauce at a restaurant in Wilmington, NC called the Pilot House. I was about 8. It was wonderful.

My wife's vegetarian chili, delicious anytime of the year :)

my grandmother's gooey chocolate pudding cake

My husband's belgium waffles!

Lobster, spinach and feta cheese white pizza at a restaurant called the Hurricane in Kennebunkport, Maine when I was about 11.

I went out a limb ordering something that wasn't typical and normal for me (at the time, I was obsessed with fried shrimp, and ordered it every single time we went out). That pizza was so good that it made me a more adventurous eater. Nearly 20 years later, I'm a total odd-food junkie, and I credit it all to that pizza.

Fresh cedar-plank grilled salmon with lemon and dill.

The best thing I ever ate was the potato pancakes at a small restaurant called the Royal Mountain Inn - sadly, it's now closed.

My first gyro. 1982. Had never seen or heard of them. A little place near the Grand Place, Brussels, Belgium. It was unbelievable.

Hot Italian Roast beef with melted cheese sandwich in an onion pocket waiting for me when I got off the bus from school!

This goes back to my honeymoon exactly 12 years ago. Marbella Spain and at dinner one night I ordered the avocado-leek pate as an appetizer. It was an afterthought and 12 years later it is still the main food item I remember eating. It was that good and to this day I have never seen it listed on any menu anywhere. I literally have dreams about it at least once a week.

In-season Rhode Island peach picked straight from the tree. My friend and co-From Scratch Club member, Sarah, brought me back a bushel. I am enjoying them again now, in the middle of winter, in the ginger peach jam I preserved of the summer. AAAAAAAAmazing.

Outside of everything I had in Germany, the very best food I've ever had is sugar on snow, prepared by my twin aunts in VT. If you've never had it, it's best during the sugaring season, when the sap is flowing and maple syrup is being made. It'll sound gross, but is really yummy. They serve it with fresh made (plain) donuts and dill pickles. Better than Yumm-O!!!

Freshly baked Pastéis de Belém with a little dash of cinnamon on top at a bakery outside of Lisbon Porgual called the Antiga Confeitaria de Belém.

BTW, I just moved to Albany a few weeks ago and would be lost with AOA!

Hmmm... I have a toss up between my mom's spaghetti and broccoli that she makes or last spring I bought these massive dive scallops from Cardona's and I only cooked them in a little bit of butter with paprika and black pepper. They were the most tender, tastiest scallops. So good.

Best food was an Oahu pig roast done the traditional way of the islands at sunset. Epic evening and the food was killer. Good people, good booze and food.

In recent memory, it would be my boyfriend's beer marinated grilled chicken and spinach that we inhaled after a day of taking down trees and brush at his cabin.

It's a tossup for me. One option is a bowl of seafood chowder, a big hunk of brown bread, and a tall pint of Beamish Red Ale (RIP, damn InBev) at a dirty, crowded little pub in Cork, Ireland. The other is a pastrami on rye from the East 53rd Street Deli, drunk, at 3 in the morning after a rock show in NYC.

My grandmother's homemade canolis

Squid ink and lobster risotto at a restaurant called Canalonni in Las Vegas. It looks weird because it's black, but so delicious!

The missus and I were in Virginia for a wedding back in the late '90s (her best friend from high school) and had to grab a late dinner the evening before the event. There was this little Italian place that shared a parking lot with the hotel at which we were staying and it was there I had the greatest veal rollatini ever.

It still remains the only time I've ever asked to leave with a copy of a restaurant's menu so I would have physical evidence that the whole thing wasn't a dream.

My favorite meal: Beef Wellington at the Francis Scott Key Hotel in Frederick Md. The dish was excellent, but the circumstances made it more. I My family and I (Mom, Dad, younger sister) were coming back from a Florida vacation and with us was my father's aunt. She'd been making the highway trip since the 50's and was keeping us in stitches with tales of old time travel- Speed Traps, Roadside Hotels (good and bad) and driving through TWO Hurricanes. Best of all, she was in an expansive mood and spilled every bit of family gossip- including a few particularly juicy tales about her sister (my Grandmother, who no one could get along with). I've never enjoyed a long auto trip so much.

When we went to Iceland a few years back, we read that we must try the pylsurs - hot dogs- with the works. I had a lot of memorable meals on that trip, but the meal that kept us coming back to the same little shack on the warf were those hot dogs with raw onions, fried onions, ketchup, sweet mustard, and a mayonnaise-relish roumelade. The hot dogs themselves (the only thing one could consider a bargain in the entire country) were just fantastic tasting with beef pork and lamb (we were told) and even though normally, I would never touch 3/4 of the condiments they put on them, nor consider a hot dog to be my first choice in fine foreign cuisine, they were the best.

Ohhhh I hope I win!

Best thing I ever ate was a peanut butter and jelly cheesecake from Machismo in Albany.

Wow...the best thing I've EVER eaten??? Well, what recently comes to mind is the Jam 'n Brie bagel sandwich from the Midtown Tap & Tea Room. Usually when I go out to eat I get something new each time, but almost every time I go there I get that sandwich. It's perfection. Amazing raspberry jam with fresh brie on a homemade bagel. Life doesn't get better than bagels, unless there is cheese involved. Then it gets better.

best thing... argh! sometimes the best thing is the best because things are perfect WHEN you are eating it - sometimes it's because it fills your mouth with joy...

so i am combing through moments trying to recall when i was really blown away...

but i am blown away alot. i like to eat.

what comes to mind right now is this ice cream i have made a few time - vanilla ice cream with red wine caramel apple pie chunks. it is so good - i had to stop making it. i was just reading the recipe and thinking about it the other day though - so i may have to get it together soon.

Real Peking duck in Beijing -- I still dream about it!

My dad makes this amazing stuffed shells stuffed with spinach and several types of cheeses. So delicious!

My great-grandmother's borscht straight from the old-country.

Pear pie (preferably in Paris).

growing up my mom and i would stop at a "farm" - basically this guys house. he grew tomatos. he had a million different kinds it seemed, but only tomatos.
best thing i ever ate was his summer-ripe, fresh from the vine, still warm from the sun, tomatos. i would eat them like apples. yum.

A cheese biali from Zabar's. Incomparable combination of chewy-crusty bread and tangy cheese.

A perfectly-cooked filet mignon topped with gorgonzola cream in a burgundy reduction with garlic mashed potatoes at a fancy restaurant in Cape May on a perfect night, paired with an amazing wine, and with great company.

I still crave the amazing garlic soup that I had in Lofer, Austria when I was 15 years old! Just creamy, simple, garlic perfection!

Mom's rice pudding.

Wait a minute. I think it'd be a tie between the Zabar's bialy and the chicken parm at Cate's Italian Garden in Bolton Landing. As I recall, I hummed with delight through the entire meal. In any case, both meals were created by New Yorkers!

one of the easiest questions ever, my dad's homemade french onion soup with french bread and at least 3 types of cheese melted on top. I love french onion soup and order it often, but nothing comes close to that.

a white peach my great uncle smuggled in from Italy on a visit here.

My grandmother's blueberry crumb coffee cake. Absolute perfection. The entire family wishes we had the foresight to ask for the recipe.

Jeez, how do I choose? I could say it's my mom's thanksgiving dinner (she rocks), or the blue cheese dressing at the barnsider, or my own beef stew. Yikes, I don't know how to choose!! I guess I'd have to go with mom.

Hmm, tough choice since I've been fortunate enough to taste a lot of delicious food. However, one dish that I've had many times and it's mouthwatering is called AJIACO. It's a typical soup from my native Colombia. I know soup for most sounds boring, but this one is unlike any soup you'll ever had. It has a creamy consistency and it's made with chicken, potatoes and a lot of other stuff that i can't remember right now, but one essential ingredient are these leaves called "guascas," which give the soup a very special flavor. The best ones I've had have been cooked by my mom! :)

This is a really tough question. I'm going to have to go with the first time my husband and I shared the special mango roll at Hana several years ago for an anniversary dinner. We've tried it since they added it to the regular menu, and something must have changed, because subsequent tastings were just not as good.

Mom's warm crispy golden Yorkshire pudding drizzled in roast beef juices...simply the best taste on earth

the best thing i ever ate was a ham, cheese, and tomato panini that i bought at (believe it or not) a train station when i was in eighth grade and on vacation with my family.

I'm struggling. In true Richard Christy fashion I can't pick a favorite - I have so many, I'd have to say my favorite is the seafood alfredo at Barcelona in Albany. My other faaavorite is the curry eggs benedict from the Madison Cafe. My other faaavorite is home made biscuits and sausage gravy my girlfriend makes.

My mother's homemade butterscotch oatmeal cookies

Anything with truffle oil - beef carpacio with truffle oil and gorg. cheese drizzle at Chianti is immediately coming to mind.

Hungarian Stuffed Cabbage. So simple, so reminiscent of my grandmother and huge family gatherings, so easily made vegetarian and healthy!!

I might answer differently on a different day, but there is nothing like freshly baked bread. Homemade, hand-kneaded challah straight out of the oven, steaming when you tear it open.

My Mother's homemade sandwich bread, fresh out the oven, with salted butter.

Tough question! I've had a lot of truly great food over the years, but a dish that stands out is a simple penne with artichokes I had years ago at La Capannina in Amalfi.

I've had many wonderful dishes at many wonderful places but one that sticks out was the panko crusted Ahi Tuna from Creo with a soy mustard vinaigrette and shoestring potatoes. So simple but so perfectly prepared.

You reminded me of the best strawberry I've ever eaten. I think it was my 2nd or 3rd birthday, and there was a big, fat strawberry on top of a whipped cream covered cake. I threw a fit until I was allowed to eat it. The cake might have been a little less perfect looking, but hot damn that strawberry was worth it.

You've also reminded me I need to get over to the wine bar and try it out pronto!

Welll... I know what food I think about most often, that's probably a good indication of it being my favorite. There's two things, actually: my grandma's pancakes (or they're more like crepes, really), and Finnish rye bread. The bread situation is so sad here...

When I was in grade school way back in the day the cafeteria ladies made apple betty at least that is what they called it, I loved it the cinnamon, brown sugar, butter crumb topping was the best. I could never replicate the same taste.

Sometimes simple tastes are the best! Right now I'm thinking of summer peaches at a Northern California Farmers Market...

Mom's homemade chocolate chip cookies right out of the oven with a tall, cold glass of milk delivered from Stanton's Farm. Purely delicious.

While visiting Rome, a bowl of pasta carbonara. A simple dish, but this one was perfect on a perfect day.

My Mom's yeasty, sweet rolls she'd make for Thanksgiving. They always smelled wonderful while baking and tasted great!

The best thing I've eaten are fresh made profiteroles in a restaurant in Paris. The shell was light and fluffy but crisp at the same time, they were filled with whipped cream that was chilled and the whole thing was topped with warm dark chocolate fudge sauce. Magnifique!

Best meal I've ever eaten? Today it's the one I just had- fresh fish tacos, sipping on a Key West Sunset Ale, on a park bench facing palms, pelicans, and water in Big Pine Key, Florida.
But the best part about thus meal? I won't have to "pine" for it forever- their summer home is Warren Street!!!

Lobster Bisque while on vacation in Maine as a child. It was the first time I ever had it and I couldn't believe how wonderful it was.

I have to thank Sandor for this experience...

In addition to being a good friend, he is a tremendous food guy.

One day, he sent out an e-mail to a bunch of us letting us know that he picked up a bushel of oysters and he was shucking and serving them at the Lionheart.

It was a perfect early summer late afternoon, with wonderful oysters, incredibly hopped Dogfish Head 90 minute IPA, and some of the best people ever.

That afternoon sits in my memory as one of my favorite days of the last two years.

Ever is tough, but I think mine would be a local meal I did last summer with some friends. I was working in Argyle, NY and living in Troy, NY so my commute consisted of an hour long, 40 mile trip up Route 40. I would pass several farm stands along the way and realized how much food was grown along my path to work every day. Towards the end of the summer, when I could get a good selection of foods, I got all the food I needed by venturing no more than about 2 miles off my drive home.

I have a google map of all the places I got food:,-73.530121&spn=0.714758,1.229095&z=10

The meal consisted of 4 courses (how appropriate):
- hors d'ouvers of tri-colored cherry tomatoes
- a bruschetta type appetizer with freshly baked bread that we toasted a bit, zebra tomatoes, fresh mozzeralla, and basil leaves
- a grass fed beef steak a side of diced potatoes with garlic
- beer for the main course was a growler of the brown's porter
- deserts of vanilla ice cream topped with peach and blueberry compotes and watermelon

There are pictures for those who want their mouths to water:

I hope this meal is good enough to win. PLUS, my birthday is this monday, so receiving an email informing me that I have won a 4 course meal for me and my girlfriend would be an EXCELLENT birthday present.

My mom's pierogis. They're not perfectly authentic, but I grew up with them.

Best thing EVER is a tough one but the first thing that comes to mind is Bison Short Ribs at Fourquet Fourchette in Montreal.

Wow. Tough question for a hardcore foodie, but, since I still talk about it over 25 years later, I guess it has to be the breast of pheasant in congac sauce that was our appetizer on the opening night of the Trillium at the Sagamore. It was so good we ordered a second round, but that also might have been elevated in my memory by the copius quantities of poully fusse we were consuming with it.

This is an easy one. The best thing I have ever eaten was a carnitas burrito from a taco truck in Watsonville, CA, just off of HWY 1. The truck was operated by a Latina woman, who did not speak English, but made everything from scratch - the tortillas, all of the sauces, the salsa, you name it. Mouth watering just thinking about it.

At Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, I had the best meal of my life at the China Grill. We got the tasting menu for 2 and had the most incredible trio of ceasar, calamari, and chicken salads; pork dumplings, lobster pancakes, szechuan beef, garlic shrimp, crispy spinach, and wasabi mashed potatoes.

The portions were huge but we couldn't help but finish them, and left feeling way too full but very very happy.

The best thing I've ever eaten was a plate of hummus, made by a Palestinian family in the old city in Jerusalem. If there is going to be peace in the Middle East sharing a little food and winewith your neighbors would be a great place to start.

When I was in Tuscany this past October I enjoyed wonderful boar raised that was raised on the farm together with a nice glass of Chianti Classico from that farm's vineyard--all on an outside patio overlooking the farm on a beautiful, crisp autumn day.

Ripe peaches, warm from the sun and fresh off the tree! Oh how I love that...

My Aunt Judy's homemade cheesecake. It's sublime, light and creamy.

Easily the home made pear and Gorgonzola ravioli my wife makes.

The best thing I ever ate was really anything at Avenue A. Damn I miss that place :(

When I lived in Chile there was a shop that had homemade ice cream. There was a flavor called Merengue Lucuma which had kind of a fig flavor. It was SO delicious! I miss it alot!

Hmm, hard question.

Right this moment I can think of two: A fab guacamole I tried down in the city, it had shrimp and lobster, delicious!!, and a dessert made of passion fruit that I use to have back in Colombia.

An ex-boyfriend's gramma's manicotti. Good lord.

Oh my god, pick me!!! The cassoulet I had there a couple of weeks ago is the best thing I can think of.

My Mom's homemade Shredded Chicken Dip w/ hot sauce. Staple at all football games with Nachos.

chocolate anything.

I'm sure I would answer this differently depending on when I was asked. But for today, my answer is my very first bacon and bleu cheese-stuffed green olive. After it had been soaking in my vodka martini for a bit, of course.

Papa Pomodoro... At a restaurant overlooking Florence called Omero.

Without a doubt it is my parents' stuffed artichokes that they make me when I go home to visit for Easter.

I love the peanut butter chocolate pie that my fiance makes. It may be the best thing I've eaten.

I can't pick just one food. That's like asking me which of my kids I love best. I've had cave-aged Gruyère that was jaw-dropping amazing. I've had a goat cheese-stuffed bison burger that almost made me cry. I've had a summer citrus salad with a vinaigrette that was sublime. I could name at least a dozen (likely many more) foods that unquestionably impressed me. So many foods, so many cuisines, so little time...

A Greek salad made in Greece by Greek friends. :)

Chateaubriand at The Bears Steakhouse. Hands down.

My dad's garlic-infused lamb roast.

Jalapeno Cream Cheese. Who would have thought jalapeno's would be good on a bagel????

either that or mom's meatballs

Company can make the most basic meal the most memorable. For many weekends as a child, my fathers sisters were a staple at our home for sleepovers, homecooked meals, and talks of their childhood memories. My favorite meal they would make was chicken and dumplings w/homemade mashed potatoes. 8 of us gathered around the tiny table, Aunt Charlene and my father at the heads, w/full plates of an American staple and lots of laughter. Even when they tried to trick my sister and I into eating turnips by mixing them w/the mashed potatoes and calling them "turn-downs", it was still the best.

Beef carpaccio drizzled in olive oil at a rehearsal dinner in Cartagena, Colombia. It was magnificent in its quality and simplicity.

After a long drive across the country, I ate vegetarian duck with homemade fat rice noodles at a Thai restaurant in Ithaca. Something about it was seasoned and fried so perfectly and I've never been able to find anything that tasted like it and returning to Ithaca this year couldn't find the restaurant again. Now that I'm a meat eater, I'm afraid to try real duck because it could never compare to this dish.

Delicious kale that I grew myself from seed, just picked and cooked with butter and garlic (that my farmgrew). Mmmm MMMM!!

I swear, one of the best & most consistently delicious meals around is the vegetable korma from LaZeez. It's incredibly flavorful and the ultimate comfort food. But I am right around the corner from the Wine Bar and would love to sample more of their menu :)

The carrot cake from Phillip's European Restaurant in Rochester, NY. Absolutely divine. My friends and I have concluded that God must work in their kitchen.

My foot. Many, many times.

I've eaten some amazingly fancy meals, but the one that I keep coming back to is my boyfriend's father's garlic-studded lamb roast. I had it close to ten years ago, when I was visiting his brother, and I still remember it. The best part is,my boyfriend's dad agreed to make it for me for my birthday next week.

Ahhh years ago my girlfriend's family took me to dinner at The Whitney in Detroit, it's a beautiful converted mansion, and one of the most elegant restaurants I've ever been to. Food was sublime, but the highlight was their Filet Mignon. Amazing.

I recently went to Panama, and while I was in Boquete (a northern region) I had the most incredible pineapple I've ever had and probably will ever have again unless I go back.

Best thing I've ever eaten was an heirloom tomato from my garden that I grew from the seeds that I saved the year before, warmed by the sun with a sprinkle of coarse salt.

The first perfect tomato from my garden with a sprinkle of salt.

Spit roasted rabbit. IT WAS THE BEST!! Also the quail starter was fantastic.

I would have to say the best thing I've ever The best thing I've ever eaten would have to be baked sweet potatoes -- winter street food in China at it's best.

I once had a meal at Craft Steak at the MGM in Las Vegas. It is a Tom Collicchio restaurant, and it lived up to the hype! We had a wine pairing with each course, and the diver scallop with fennel was the most amazing dish!

The summer I was thirteen, my family drove to North Carolina from my grandfather's farm in Virginia. We were to attend a family reunion.
The day before we left, I tried a peach from the orchard. Under the hot Virginia sun I ate every single peach off that tree, and got into the car the next morning with peach juice still running down my chin.
There is no restaurant in the world that could match that.
Still, I'd sure like to try the Wine Bar!

My girlfriend and I went to WD-50 a few months back, and had the 5 course dessert tasting. Best. Thing. Ever.

Quite possibly the Maiz con Aioli at a restaurant named Toro in Boston's south end.

The best thing I ever ate was a taste of the first strawberry jam I ever made. It was the first jam I ever made of any kind, actually. No spoon, straight off the finger- it was amazing. The feeling of pride coupled with the taste of those cooked down, sweetened berries that I picked myself ...I can still remember that feeling and it still makes me feel good.

oo this is a tough one! i'll have to go with my aunt's homemade chicken noodle soup. sitting out on her porch in the middle of the woods in oregon, a cool sunset, and a big old bowl of that is probably my perfect moment.

My best friends mom would always make lasagna for her birthday every year. Even though it's vegetarian (and I'm not), its still my favorite food.

In Roviano, Rome Provence, Italy- a perfect fig that I reached up and plucked from its tree. I had never had a fresh fig before and won't ever have one again (except from there). I can hardly say that I 'bit' into it because it was the lightest juciest fruit I'd ever experienced- to the point that I closed my eyes while I finished it. The image of the light green color with teeny black seeds and the feeling of such smooth texture and mild flavor. Mmmmm.

The best thing I have ever eaten is probably Irish bread and butter pudding. It was the most delicious dessert I have ever tasted!

my great grandmother would make these little veal rollups stuffed with breadcrumbs, garlic, olive oil and romano cheese, and baked in a dish with onion and bay leaves and a ton of butter. they absolutely melt in your mouth. she called them 'veal spidini' but every spidini recipe i have found involves skewers. i have no idea what the origin was. (she said they were italian peasant food, but everything was peasant food to her). i make them for myself maybe once or twice a year. delish!

Wild Blueberries at the top of a mountain after a long hike up.

The best thing I ever ate was Kiamaki Ice Cream in a cave in Greece with my new wife...

There used to be a canned food of the gods called chicken fricassee. It was creamy, chickeny goodness that my mother would pour over bread and feed to us kids. A big helping of that at dinner time, and I would find myself in some kind of poultry heaven.

My grandmother's Green Bean and Ham soup.

My first bite of warm butter drenched lobster...mmm.

My favorite dish would have to be my grandmother's homemade Tomato Vegetable Soup. Fresh tomatoes, okra, corn, some fresh collard greens, the works. It goes with literally ANY meat you make. They say mothers cooking is at the top, but what outranks that is GRANDmother's cooking.

The best thing that I've ever eat is easily, hands down, the Oysters and Pearls at Per Se. "Sabayon" of Pearl Tapioca with Island Creek Oysters and Sterling White Sturgeon Caviar.

Toss up between champagne flavored gelato at a Whole Foods in Massachusetts or, on a completely different note, cooked roast beef slices rolled up over mozzarella cheese and string beans. When taken out of the oven it's all melted over each other.

It's hard to pick just one thing, of course, but my list would definitely include the spicy shrimp soup I had at a Bolivian restaurant near Pike Place Market in Seattle. It's also one of the spiciest things I've ever eaten! Another favorite is the chocolate ganache at the old Shipyard on Everett Road. I can't remember exactly what they called this wonderful dessert, but it was heaven.

This one is easy- my mom's chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream. I get one each year for my birthday!

Grape Leaves from a little Mediterranean restaurant in London

A steak and cheese sub from the pizza joint across the street from my high school. I would not be kidding to describe that sub as orgasmic- it was mucho delicious.

A garbage plate from Fairport Hots after a night out with friends!

Price's hot fried chicken in Nashville, TN. The spiciest fried chicken that you will ever eat. It may not sound that special, but not only do I have some of the best memories attached to this dish, there is also such a rich history to this food. It's one of those things that just bring all kinds of different people together and puts a (very spicy laden and tearful) smile on their face.

white chocolate and raspberry bread pudding - the dessert that the Stockade Inn served during Schenectady Restaurant week 2010. It was the first time I ever had bread pudding (the idea of it is so mushy) but omg, it was the most unexpected deliciousness ever.

Peanut butter and jelly after hiking.

Home-made ice cream on a freezing cold snow day!

I had the best pizza ever in Dharamsala, India, cooked by a Nepalese chef. Who knew

Those late night last minute dinners are always the best in my opinion. Just open up the fridge and throw together some eggs, cheese, beans, or whatever and you have a meal you can happily go to bed after.

Mom's lasagna. I make my own, but it's still not as good.

On our honeymoon to Montreal, my wife and I shared a pasta with truffle oil appetizer at "Bice" that we're still talking about years later. I still haven't tasted anything quite like it. The meal was a little out of our ballpark in terms of price so I remember savoring each bite.

Recently I went to New York City and had Banh Mi for the first time. I don't think any other food will taste as good again.

Good beef carpaccio! A bad version of the same might be on the worst things ever eaten list.

Ah, that's an easy one. The first-married-year Valentine's Dinner with my husband Carle at The American Hotel in Sharon Springs. Miraculously tender beef tenderloin elegantly dressed in lobster sauce, the most amazing shiraz to accompany it, and smooches between courses for an amuse-bouche (Garth and Doug are always smart enough to tuck us in the corner with the table that isn't in public view!).

It has become our annual tradition. The kisses especially.

Homemade New England Clam Chowder, made during a snowstorm with my college roommates

It was a tart with perfectly ripe raspberries in the middle of a cold and snowy December.

My geandfather's homemade sourdough bread. He always had starter on the counter ready to go.

Best ever: Grilled peppered shrimp over a slaw of fennel with avacado and grapefruit, dressed in lime juice...perfect and easily replicated at home, grilled on a salt block. Adding slices of tomatillo or substituting pummelo changes the texture or flavor a little for some variety - pretty color combination too. Maybe the WB will do something like this one day...we visit regularly!

This is a hard one for me, too. I've enjoyed so much delicious food since vegetarianism forced me years ago to stop being so picky. And the company is always a key ingredient. But I'm a sucker for a free meal, so I'll choose:
This summer, a good friend who couldn't believe I had never tried Ethiopian food brought me to a tiny place in Greenwich Village. We shared the vegetarian entree, which was a tray covered with injera bread (very large, thinnish, soft, spongy bread) topped with 8 or 10 piles of different vegetable and/or bean concoctions. You eat it with your hands by tearing off pieces of the bread. It was so delicious!

Clams in their own broth in a styrofoam cup, in the fog, just off the ferry on an island near Seattle. I was 10 and my sister was 8 and we have been food-obsessed ever since.

The best thing I ever ate was a four course tasting menu meal for two at the Wine Bar and Bistro on Lark. What are the odds!

When I was little, all I ever liked to eat was a salad, but it had to have grapes and blue cheese in it. Weird combo for a little kid in replacement for typical kids desserts - but this still is something I will sit down after a bad day and it just puts such a smile on my face. My perfect awkward comfort food.

Sometimes the appeal of the food is determined as much by the timing as by the item itself. After having surgery and being allowed to eat again, all I wanted was a chocolate Fribble from Friendly's. Not exactly gourmet....but very much enjoyed!

Gelato in Florence!

A cannoli from Brooklyn!

a freshly laid goose egg, still warm from the goose's nest, soft boiled for exactly 7 1/2 minutes, cut open and served with toasted miche (whole wheat sourdough). The yolk (like a chicken egg in shape, but so much fattier) had a consistency like a softly set pudding, never soaking the bread, but rather clinging to the surface of the bread in an obscene shade of bright yellow-orange. The only seasoning was a little sea salt and fresh ground pepper, but it was a sensuous breakfast I'll never forget.

The best thing I ever ate was a homemade pizza my girlfriend and I made after a night of skiing..we were starving.

The toppings were: tomato sauce, bleu cheese, leftover taco meat, red onion and tons of mozzarella!

We loved it and ate it at midnight.

My boyfriend got me an awesome "surprise" birthday cake last year from Emack & Bolio's ... It was 'bean town crunch' and some chocolate and peanutbutter cup ice cream separated by chocolate crumbs and covered in awesome frosting. It was the best ice cream cake I ever had!!! :-) We still talk about it!

vegan french onion soup in madrid

Homemade applesauce hot off the stove covered with plain cream top yogurt.

tomato sandwich...fresh tomato from the garden on toast with a little mayo, salt and pepper! delish :)

My friend Jack and I were having bagels and lox at the old Bagel Bite one summer Saturday when the Cloisters (the one in Manhattan) came up in conversation. He said "a sunny day like today is the best time to see the art." I said "let's go." and we did.

In one of the cloisters overlooking the Hudson there is a quince tree next to a medieval well head. There was some fruit lying on top of the well head, and Jack took it.

The following Tuesday, I came over for dinner after a long day. He had made lasagna with bechamel sauce and quince tart for dessert.

Easily the best meal I ever had.

My mom's slow-cooked pulled pork -- Sorry Dinosaur BBQ

Oh please pick me! I'm a hungry college student (of legal drinking age - don't think you will miss out on a beverage sale!) who appreciates excellent food. Of all the local blog giveaways, I've never wanted one as much as this.

I've drooled over the Wine Bar and Bistro's menu many times, but so far have only been able to experience some of their outstanding wine list.

The best thing I've ever eaten was bone marrow. I had it for the first time last year and I'm obsessed. I finally understand why pho and osso bucco taste so good - it's that delicious bone marrow!

If I ever find a grocery store that sells bones (and figure out how to cut them after roasting them), I will need to buy larger pants.

My Aunt Jean's creamed potatoes!!!!! Have made them myself, but they just never seem quite right! :(
She's got the magic touch!!!

Fresh cooked duck-a-bobs after a day of duck hunting!

Once I walked for hours without food or water in rough dusty terrain in 110 degree airless weather. The first thing I did upon reaching civilization was drink water. The second thing was gorge upon a simple homecooked meal of rice and yams courtesy a kind villager. That was the best meal I ever had. And I hate yams.

Sun warmed tomato picked off the vine in my garden.

My grandmother's eggplant parmesan. I've been craving it for 17 years. My family has tried to recreate it many times using her recipe, but it's never quite the same.

Something called Kaddo, a pan-fried then baked baby pumpkin seasoned with sugar and served on yogurt garlic sauce, topped with ground beef sauce. It sounds strange, I know, and I generally HATE pumpkin. Can't stand pumpkin pie even. Tried this at the Helmand afghan restaurant in Cambridge, MA and fell in love - A-MA-ZING!

I have eaten many delicious foods, from simple to divinely complicated. But, this past November I ate the most remarkable thing to have ever crossed my lips. In the most unassuming rural town in the middle of nowhere southern Arizona, we ate at a Mexican restaurant that looked like it hadn't been updated in 30 years. After an awesome dinner, I treated myself to fried ice cream, a childhood favorite.
Well, this friend ice-cream was battered perfectly with the addition of panko breadcrumbs, filled with homemade philly style vanilla ice cream, and topped with locally made organic lavender honey. $4 bought me a ticket to heaven. I can still taste it...

Best thing I ever ate? Tough call.

Probably, a burger on vacation in Gibraltar. Basically, a Full-English Breakfast served on top of a burger. Totally awesome!

I'll never forget the Shepherd's Pie that my grandmother used to make when I was a kid. She was born in Scotland and she'd been taught to make it by her own mother. While it may not have been the most culinarily sophisticated or expertly executed food I've ever had, it was homemade comfort food like no other.

The best thing I have ever eaten is the annual Past Commodores Dinner for 4 past commodores from the Pointe Claire Yacht Club in Montreal. The Saturday night is a done to perfection Roast Beef Dinner with Luc Vachon's famous Scissor salad and great company. It is held on Thanksgiving every year at Sleepy Bear Hollow in Jay Peak.

Easily a four-way tie running the gamut;
Coconut Layer Cake from Comfort's Cafe in San Rafael, CA
Home-grown tomato sandwich w/ Hellman's mayo on homemade white bread. The tomato was still warm from the sun.
Tasting Menu dinner at the French Laundry in Napa--beyond description
The seafood chowder at (the now long-closed) Thompson's Clam Bar (the original) on Cape Cod.

anything my wife cooks!! truly.

In Nova Scotia, Lobsters steamed on the boat by the captain within minutes after the traps were hauled into the vessel served with nothing more than drawn butter and lemon. Doesn't get much fresher than that.

So hard to decide. But I'll go with something simple, but which I haven't been able to replicate (and not for lack of trying): mango and sticky rice from a market in southern Thailand. The best ever -- perfectly ripe mangos, perfectly done rice, and super-fresh coconut milk. Yum.

@kmr - The Wine Bar has been featuring a bone marrow dish on their menu recently. They're roasted and served with coarse salt and grill Placid Baked bread. Yum!

One of the most amazing things I've eaten in recent memory is the coconut cream pie at Capital Grille on Newbury Street in Boston. The coconut is toasted, the pie isn't overly sweet and the crust is exceptional. Delicious!

Wow, gettin in a little late on this one! :-)

Best meal I can remember was a fish dish I had at a little restaurant in Key West called Jamaican Me Crazy (I think...). Super tasty all around.


Pancakes from Ship's Chow Hall in Maine... slathered in real maple syrup and butter with a glass of cold milk. :)

I'm easy to please.
I like the homemade chicken paninis that my wife makes with the George F. Grill

Campbell's tomato soup with crushed up Ritz crackers and a P and J sammy.

My mother's thanksgiving day spread - I look forward to it every year and she always delivers!

A lunch of roasted leeks, mulato isleno peppers, green salad and quiche, all made from things I helped grow and nurture, served on a big wooden table surrounded by laughing friends, and finished off by hand-ground coffee with a dollop of vanilla ice cream. Then, a nap.

A succulent platypus from Australia...yum yum..tastes like chicken

Porterhouse steak from Wolfgang's in NYC.

This is far, far afield, but Hickory Park in Ames, Iowa makes an other-wordly burger and fries. Even better: the ice cream sundae. Order and eat that first because you can't put ice cream in a take-home box.

Reading this whole list before my lunch of a frozen lean cuisine is torture....

My husband's penne a la vodka with hot turkey sausage is my favorite food that I can eat upon request.

Fresh guacamole and ceviche with yucca chips from an open air cafe not far from the beach in Montezuma, Costa Rica is the food I dream of and cannot recreate. I agree, I think timing of the food means so much - where you were, how you felt, who you were with - can make ordinary meals be impossible to recreate.

Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia has every kind of food you can imagine so everything I've ever had there is amazing but my favorite is Thanksgiving on a sandwich from "The Orginal Turkey." It's freshly carved turkey breast, stuffing, and cranberry sauce on any type of bread you want and served with a pickle. Heaven on bread!

My dad's chicken cutlets - so salty and garlicky, it comes out your pores the next day.

Anything made with a fresh chicken from Sap Bush Hollow Farms in Cobleskill. My cat goes batsh*t crazy when I serve anything with that chicken, so I know it's the best thing I've eaten. Best thing I've ever eaten in a restaurant was anything by Dale Miller, especially when he was at the now defunct Stone Ends.

The green tea creme brulee at Harvest & Hearth, Pizza Place in Saratoga Springs. It was so simple,light green tea flavor and a delicious hard crackle on the sugar top.

Stewed baby octopus in capers; Osteria degli Artisti, Roma.

My mother's cinnamon bread fresh from the oven - sliced and slathered with butter.

This is probably mostly nostalgia talking, but I will never again taste anything as wonderful as the tempeh reuben from Shades of Green.

A huge Ghiradelli's hot fudge sundae at their original location on Fisherman's Wharf in San Fran!

The one thing that is coming to mind and something I still think about planning a vacation around, in part, to have it again. Blue Crap Dip with fresh tortilla chips from this little restaurant in Apalachicola, FL. Delicious!

I especially like my daughters homemade Turkey Chili.

I was traveling in Prague and had about 4 euros left to my name. I bought a tall cold local beer and a can of sardines and sat on the side of the Vltava river in glorious sunshine. Delicious.

The peanut butter pie at Dinosaur BBQ.

Beignets at Cafe Du Monde.

The best thing I've ever eaten was a mushroom bruschetta at Mario Batali's restaurant "Po." The mushrooms were perfectly cooked and it was drizzled with truffle oil. Yum Yum Yum!

I think I'll have to go with the graavlax my father makes every year at Christmas. On rye bread with mayonnaise, eggs and capers it's simply wonderful, but even better than that - and what has yet to be matched by any gourmet delicacy I've encountered - is the tradition that it represents.

Bife de lomo in buenos aires

Hot wings and Hawaiian pizza at Beff's. First date meal with my husband.

A few weeks ago I had a bagel for breakfast on the beach in Aruba. Best bagel ever.

Fresh Snapper Fish in Turks and Caicos!! WIth a side of sunshine and flavored by the ocean breeze.. Yum!

The best thing? Very hard to name one but for simplicity at it's finest - a ripe tomato warm, from my garden with some sea salt sprinkled on it.

I consider one entire meal the best thing I've ever eaten: It began with two quick shots of tequila from the chef's (a good friend) recent trip; a NY Strip, medium-rare, w/ chimichurri drizzled on top; almond rice and asparagus as sides.. and a few glasses of Cristalino. Then I went out on a date with my dream girl!! The chef makes a meal. A meal makes a night. Great night!

The Guinea Hen at Casa Mono. That was 5 years ago. I still dream about it some days. Especially now, when the highlight of my week is pizza and salad for dinner.

This is really tough because I adore many types of food, and can remember a number of times when I have had an absolutely divine meal. I have to say, the Eggs Argyle I had at the Wine Bar a couple weeks ago are up there! :) But, as for the best thing? Probably the now-defunct chipotle mashed potatoes at Jose Malone's. My MIL makes paprika mashers, but they don't have quite the same kick to them. I wish they still made these as a side!

I know I'm disqualified, but I just want to go public with my answer.

It was the garnish on my steak at Masa's in San Francisco. It was a well seasoned, breaded and deep-fried piece of bone marrow. To this day I have no idea how they were able to do this without the marrow melting to liquid.

The best part was that I was there with my boss and he ordered the steak too. Since he was watching his cholesterol, I got to eat his garnish too.

It was an unforgettable delight.

I was spending the night at a friends house on Lake George. In the middle of night, starving, we got out of bed and raided his fridge. A relative of his, who was the chef at a restaurant in the village, had dropped off crabcakes earlier that night.
We sat on the floor and ate them cold, with our hands, by the light of the refrigerator....mmm

best meal is Little Spot chili dogs in North White Plains. You can not beat them. book it, done.

Oysters at Moran's Oyster Cottage, The Weir, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway with, of course, Guinness.

Charcuterie plate at the Ginger Man circa 2005, seated outside, a warm summer night, and an ice cold bottle of prosecco. One of those nights where the company and the mood is just perfect.

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For a decade All Over Albany was a place for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. It was kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who could help you find out what's up. AOA stopped publishing at the end of 2018.

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