Schenectady Farmers Market & Rose Garden, Ale House in Troy

Why hallo! My sistah from Orange County, NY was up to see me this weekend, and on Sunday we took a trip up to see the Schenectady Farmers Market and the rose garden in Central Park. Here I am standing by the “Don’t bring your pets to the market sign”. As we were leaving a woman with a blonde dog walked in right past the sign.

Like my outfit? It’s all almost entirely from Ellsbells. Gotta love it when peeps bring over clothes they don’t want any more. And as a bonus now I don’t have to shop for new jeans!

We walked around a bit, and I was really parched, so I caved in and bought a $2 pink lemonade from Red Barn (I think that was their name). It was ok – I was really thirsty, and the decoration made it more worth the $2.

They had some live music that played a variety of songs. I liked the Schenectady market since their info booth also had something where you could use your debit card or EBT card and get tokens, so you didn’t have to scurry around trying to find an ATM.
The turnout of vendors was okay, they said usually there were more but the weather wasn’t good, so vendor turn out is lower on those days. I found it to be on par with the Troy Farmers market in terms of vendors present on this overcast day, and prices. I was really looking enviously at the peaches and nectarines, but they were $5 a container (quart?) and a bit too expensive for me.

Next my Sista and I were off to find the Rose Garden. One of the women at the farmers market actually worked there, so she gave us directions. Very helpful. It doesn’t look that big from the outside, but there are a lot of varieties to see inside.

Here’s my Sistah at the little waterfall/pool. Lots of bumblebees here, and the only spot in the garden sans roses.

Here’s a pink rose. Some of the roses had names, others were unlabeled. Sistah made her own names up for the ones without signs. All were hilarious, and only some were mildly inappropriate. That’s how we roll.

Here I am climbing some stairs/jagged rocks. There were stairs near the end of the rose garden that were in various stages of decay. Pretty cool to me. We left after hanging out there for 30-60 minutes since I couldn’t find any space in the lots and I was illegally parked on the side road behind other cars that couldn’t find space.

We had originally planned on going to Red Robin for lunch. The one down by her shut down, and I actually enjoy Red Robin’s burgers and hadn’t been there in over a year or so. So we figured what the hey, do a girl’s lunch there.

Except after the rose garden we weren’t particularly motivated to go to a chain and were feeling something random. Random. We need randomness. We crave, live, thrive off of it. We were also craving some brews, and let’s face it – Red Robin was way too cheery for us at the moment, too.
Sista left it up to me, and I decided to head over to the Ale House in Troy, NY. It’s right on River St/Route 4 and next to a fire department and McBain Electric (McBAAAAIIINNN!!! sorry, inside joke[hint= The Simpsons]). I’ve heard rave reviews from everyone who’s been, so we stopped in. It was very full in the bar on a Sunday afternoon. Sports were on TV and the bar area was packed. There’s a seated area in the back, which is where we meandered and the bartender/guy doing seemingly everything Front of House told us to sit where ever we wanted. It was pretty casual. Our bartender server was wearing sweats, which I really enjoyed. I thought it fit perfectly with this past Sunday.
I also noticed their beers on tap and got the Old Speckled Hen you see above. Sistah got a Guiness. Both were $5.

Neither of us was particularly hungry, so we split all the food you will see. A large order of some of the best fries I’ve ever eaten. $3. They were perfectly crisp on the outside, and insanely tender and fluffy on the outside. While our food was cooking you could smell the oil in the air (and maybe in the wood. This place ain’t shiny and new, it’s got character, damnit). I figured we’d get some greasey fries cooked in old oil, but was surprised at how light and tasty these were. Definitely get yourself some fries.
Large sweet potato fries were $5, and I think I will have to try them next. This portion wasn’t a bucket o’fries, but a good amount for $3.

Here’s everything we got – fries, cup of turkey gravy (homemade, $0.69, too!), 10 wings.

Holy cow, that turkey gravy was amazing. They say that it is made there, and I can’t believe it’s under $1 for the amount we got. I even saw turkey bits in it. They were great for dipping fries in. And wings. Yes, wings.

The wings! $5.99 for 10 crisp and crackly on the outside wings with tender, moist meat underneath. The Ale House really does have some excellent wings. The texture was great. I am not a fan of soggy skin on my wings and these were some of the best I’ve ever eaten. We ordered them medium and these were spicier than a lot of extra-hot wings I’ve had in the area. Very nice surprise.

They came with celery, carrots (and plenty of them), and a little blue cheese. Sista prefers ranch, so I got all the blue. Yum. It helped take the edge off of the heat a bit. There was also habenero hot sauce on our table. Sista and I couldn’t finish all the wings (wussy, I know), so we brought the remaining three home for Slick and Albany John. They both LOVED them. I also tossed some habenero sauce on the side and now we need to go back to the Ale House.
The Ale House is cash only and is also open for lunch (I think that’s a new thing). For 2 beers, 10 wings, a large order of fries and a side of turkey gravy we spent $19.86 (19 and change, you get the idea) before tip. Our bartender/server guy was surprisingly quick for all of the customers he had. A nice, casual atmosphere when we went (so it would probably be great for people with hangovers to head to), but I wonder what it’s like at night?

  1. haha! doesn't figure you were in sch'dy while i was in albany this sunday. irony ; )

    ya know every saturday, the boyfriend and i say “hey we should check out the farmers market.” and then we don't.

    in search of the perfect wing, we shall make our way to the Ale House. thanks for the tip! yr posting was cute and funny!

  2. JMP said:

    McBain Electric (McBAAAAIIINNN!!! sorry, inside joke[hint= The Simpsons]).

    You have no idea how often this happens to the boy and I. He even has a Simpsons figurine some ex gave him once.

    Oddly, despite being from Troy, Dan doesn't think the McBain Electric people are his relatives, although they may be distantly related.

  3. Grace said:

    ack–i'll bet we totally walked past each other at the farmer's market on sunday! i always stop by and stock up. and it's true–there are usually more vendors. it's a great market.

  4. phairhead – lemme know when you do! For real, I would love to grab some wings with you and Sexy Beast!

    JMP – HAHA, oh, I bet he's gotten that a lot. As it is, no one in my car can't NOT say it when we drive by.

    Grace – dangit! Well, now you know what I kind of looked like when I was walking around there đŸ™‚

  5. Anonymous said:

    Nice butt you got there Albany Jane.

  6. If I had lots of free time and money (which I don't), I would go visit all the farmer's markets. I just love walking around farmer's markets!

  7. Anon – oh, I didn't buy any food at the market, although there were stalls selling pork and beef.

    Jessica – I LOVE grocery shopping. Seriously, I can't pass one I've never seen without going in!

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