Thursday, October 27, 2011

Grazin' Diner

Last weekend Renato and I decided to take a mini-vacation and head to Cooperstown, NY for a little B & B ... that's short for beer and baseball.

Well, we started getting a little hungry after only about a hour into our drive to upstate NY. So, I quickly got out my iPhone and did a search on Yelp. Immediately I saw a place that sounded perfect: Grazin' Diner in Hudson, NY. Why perfect? Well, this burger joint didn't sound like your average burger joint. It said it was farm-to-table!

Grazin' Diner has only been open about a month and is the brainchild of the owners of Grazin' Angus Acres and their daughter and son-in-law. Nearly everything on the menu is locally sourced and organic, even biodynamic when possible. It is the first Animal Welfare Approved restaurant in the country.

The decor is 1950s diner complete with a working Wurlitzer jukebox. It's the classic shiny chrome, red vinyl booths and a counter area with stools. On the wall next to our booth were photos of Grazin' Angus Acres. With the menu is a sheet with a little bit about their food philosophy and with some background info on some of the farms that grew, raised or produced ingredients on the menu. You can also pick up pamphlets about various farms at the entrance. Without even having a bite, I was falling in love.

The menu is classic burger joint stuff, but will vary slightly depending on what's seasonally available. I decided on a burger medium-rare topped with caramelized onions and raw milk blue cheese. The husband went for a burger medium-rare topped with a fried egg and the usual burger stuff like lettuce, tomato and onion. That day you had the option of substituting fries with sauteed swiss chard or kale chips. How could I not love a place where you could substitute kale chips fresh out of the oven for fries? We both opted for the kale chips.

The burgers were cooked perfectly. I didn't even need to use the homemade organic ketchup as my burger was incredibly juicy. The kale chips were so light and crisp that they melted in your mouth. The slightly runny egg atop the juicy burger was a deliciously unique burger experience. As Renato always says, "Everything is better with an egg on top."

Seeing as how this the start of our mini-vacation, we just had to order dessert. Homemade apple pie with a scoop of ice cream - oh, yes please! This apple pie was lightly sweet with a nice cinnamon spice flavor complimenting still "al-dente" apple slices in a hearty, flaky crust. Oh and by the way, they make a nice, strong cup o' coffee to boot.

If ever there was a burger joint made just for me - Grazin' Diner in Hudson, NY is it! It was by pure luck that we stumbled upon it and boy am I glad we did. Thumbs up all the way!

Grazin' Diner
717 Warren Street
Hudson, NY 12534
They are also on Facebook and Twitter.
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