For not being in a major city, The Hudson Valley is a bit spoiled when it comes to the mouth watering culinary options that are available to us. We live in an area that hosts and teaches, some of the best chefs in the world (thank you Culinary Institute of America!) so it’s no surprise that there is an abundance of award winning restaurants from which we can choose to eat at and expand our culinary palettes far beyond the reaches of Ulster County, NY.
The Daily Freeman, Kingston’s news source, published an article earlier this year about uptown Kingston’s “restaurant renaissance” and how 2015’s positive year end has everyone optimistic about a successful 2016. We were inspired by the article, (and by the awesome food at these restaurants!) to compile a comprehensive guide on where you should be dining when you’re in uptown Kingston - no reservation required.
Kingston has lots of great food options all over town- stretching from uptown to the Rondout waterfront, or heading out Route 28, there are an endless amount of great places to dine. In fact, the newest Kingston culinary ‘word on the street’ is sure to leave foodies on the edge of their seats until June. The Daily Freeman has also reported that “Smorgasburgh”- a Brooklyn based open air food vendor market, is coming to Kingston’s old Hutton Brickyard this summer and will bring with it a traveling feast inspired by local products. Add this to the list of events we can’t wait to check it out this summer!
So, while we’d love to take you on a tour of all of Kingston’s delicious dining, we know that our eyes are bigger than our stomachs, so for now we better just start with the top 20 places to eat in Uptown Kingston (in no particular order)!
Kingston’s Stockade District, a 32 acre roughly 8 block area in western Kingston commonly referred to as “uptown” is full of flavor. Despite the relatively small area, Uptown Kingston is home to dozens of restaurants and eateries- and we haven’t even travelled to other parts of the city yet! Here are places to eat in uptown that locals (and non-locals!) can’t get enough of...
Our Top 20 Picks
#1: Duo Bistro
Duo Bistro’s goal is to bring inspired and creative American cuisine to the Hudson Valley with a focus on responsibility and sustainability, supporting local farmers and businesses. They are currently expanding to include a market in addition to their neighboring storefront for an even greater focus on the local products they use and love. Keep your eyes peeled for the market’s grand opening sometime this season. $$
#2: Ecce Terra
Bridget’s Ecce Terra is a quaint and highly raved over cafe in uptown Kingston with a Mediterranean flair. Their extensive lunch and dinner specials have something for everyone, whether you’re craving a fast and delicious sandwich or a more relaxing sit-down dinner with wine. Ecce Terra’s friendly and warm environment makes diners feel like at home. $$
#3: Le Canard Enchaine
Named after the oldest French Newspaper in Paris, Le Canard Enchaine has been voted the “Best French Restaurant North of Manhattan” by Zagat. Their menu consists of high quality, fancy French dishes created by chef, Jean Jacques Carquillat who hails from France and has trained and worked in some of the most popular restaurants in the world, such as Le Bernadin in New York City. $$$
** While there has been no official word on Le Canard Enchaine shutting its doors as of yet, it looks like the property is currently for sale! You can see more property sale details about 276 Fair Street and Le Canard Enchaine here. MLS #: 20160395
#4: Stella’s Italian Restaurant
Stella’s is noted as the place to go for some old school Italian food in uptown Kingston. Their traditionally Italian menu has some more Americanized cuisine options included, making it a great spot for the family to enjoy a meal out. Grab a drink and quick lunch at the bar, or sit down in their dining area for a more formal experience. $$
#5: Dominick’s Cafe
Dominick’s Italian cafe on Front Street takes you back to the sensation of eating in Grandma’s kitchen. Open for breakfast and lunch (until 5 pm most days), Dominick's is a great place to stop in a for a quick handmade sandwich or panini, breakfast sandwich, coffee or sweet treat. $
#6: Outdated, an Antique Cafe
Outdated is a specialty cafe at 314 Wall Street serves breakfast and lunch and is a vegetarian’s delight- most of the menu can be made vegan and/or gluten free. Their breakfast menu is very varied and unique, including ingredients like maple smoked tempeh and marinated ginger peanut tofu. $
This Spanish restaurant lies in the heart of the Stockade District in a narrow 1880’s storefront. Elephant’s menu focuses on tapas and wine pairings, both with unusual varieties of food and wine you wouldn’t expect to see together (chorizo and chocolate, anyone?) Their tapas tasting menu is adventurous, changes regularly and always seems to be a hit with diners. $$
#8: Cafe East
You also may hear it referred to as DMZ Kingston, Cafe East is located on Fair Street and specializes in American, Asian Fusion, Spanish Tapas and Vegetarian cuisine. East meets west in the breakfast, lunch and dinner specials at Cafe East where they describe themselves as a “Bar with really great food, or a restaurant with excellent cocktails.” $$
Boiston’s American Bistro aims to have something for everyone- whether you’d rather belly up to the bar with a beer and a burger, or enjoy a fresh and delicious raw bar with some wine. Boiston’s draws in customers with their unique and interesting speakeasy atmosphere and their Blue Plate specials: a featured, upscale dish for only $10 a plate. $$
#10: Stockade Tavern
Described as a “classic American drinking establishment” the Stockade Tavern creates traditional, well-crafted cocktails the “old school” way that you rarely find in bars these days. To match these highbrow drinks, the Stockade’s food is “sophisticated, but not complicated.” Housed in the old Singer sewing machine building, you’ll feel as if you stepped back in time when you enter, and even more so after ordering a drink with sardines in the tin to accompany. $$
#11: Chops Grille
While it’s grand opening occurred only a few months ago, Chops Grille, one of uptown Kingston’s newest eateries, is gaining rave reviews and popularity among diners. With a comfortably upscale atmosphere, likened to that of an upscale Manhattan restaurant, the American cuisine served at Chops Grille has so far been proven to be consistently delicious. $$
#12: Diego’s Taqueria
Diego’s Taqueria offers up some great, authentic Mexican street food for lunch or dinner. These kicked up tacos and tortas (toasted sandwiches), served along with some of your favorite local craft brews, will have you stopping by for tapas time and again. $
#13: Keegan Ales Restaurant & Bar
While it may have started off as a tasting room to show off their own brews, Keegan Ale’s Restaurant has been a favorite of many locals since it’s opening a few years ago. Their classically simple snacks and sandwiches menu pairs nicely with their selection of beers on tap and there is live music 5 days a week and never any cover charge. $$
#14: Terri’s Deli
Located on Emerson Street, Terri’s Deli and convenience store is your one shop stop for a great, quick lunch. Favorites include their subs and sandwiches, homemade soups, potato salads and more. $
#15: Santa Fe
The second location of the wildly popular Santa Fe located in Tivoli, NY, Santa Fe Kingston is located in the old City Hotel and serves up great Mexican dinner dishes with Tequila and other cocktails. The warm interior and U-shaped bar will make you feel at home while trying an adventurous lobster quesadilla or sweet potato taco. $$
#16: Deising’s Bakery
Deising’s Bakery has been a cornerstone of Kingston for 50 years. Their locations in uptown and midtown provide some of the best baked goods in the county, and the Hudson Valley as a whole. Breakfast and lunch are served daily, or stop in for their fresh made bakery goods and a coffee. $
#17: Dallas Hot Weiners
Chances are, if you know a little bit about popular lunch destinations in Kingston, you’ve probably heard Dallas Hot Weiners mentioned- they are another cornerstone of Kingston eats. For 85 years, and now at multiple locations, Dallas Hot Weiners has been serving up quick, affordable lunches to hungry customers for years. Their famous secret hot dog sauce is a local favorite and will keep you coming back for more. $
#18: Yum Yum Noodle Bar
With locations in Kingston and Woodstock, Yum Yum Noodle Bar is the local place to go for Asian street food and Japanese noodle dishes. Their menu changes seasonally to reflect the season’s best produce and they even have a food truck available for your catering and party needs. $$
#19: The Tappen
The Tappen is a farm to table, new world American restaurant is housed in one of the oldest buildings in Kingston’s Stockade district and survived the burning of Kingston. Today, the building has been restored by chef and owner Dan Sherman who has worked at some of the most acclaimed restaurants in the Hudson Valley and is offering up simple, delicious, modern food, in a historic home. $$$
#20: Hoffman House Restaurant and Tavern
The Hoffman House is another exquisite restaurant in an enchantingly historical circa 1700’s stone building that is registered as a National Landmark. With generous portions of American continental cuisine, diners love the cozy, fireplace filled tavern at lunch and dinner. The revolutionary period actors who frequently visit the tavern really do make you feel as if you’ve stepped back in time for some great food, drink and company! $$$
** Just as Le Canard Enchaine, while there has been no word of closing or shutting their doors as of yet, it looks like the property housing the Hoffman House Tavern is currently for sale. You can see more property sale details about 94 North Front Street here: MLS #: 20160048
BONUS PICK: The Anchor
The Anchor is one of the newer dining hotspots to make it in Kingston, sitting just on the edge of 'uptown'. While it may have a bit of a "rough around the edges" vibe about it, the Anchor is a great, family friendly place to grab a burger and beer for the adults. They boast live music almost every night of the week and have a fun and diverse burger menu that looks so good, you'll want to try them all. $$
Uptown Kingston offers such a wide array of restaurants and cuisines that there is a little bit of something for everyone, no matter what you are in the mood for. Branch out from your regular dining “rut” and try one of uptown’s diverse selections for what could become your new favorite spot.
Still hungry? Kingston and the rest of Ulster County have some amazing restaurants that every foodie needs to check out. Keep your eyes peeled as Taft Street Realty brings you more suggestions on where to dine with the locals in Ulster County!