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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Talking about Troy

I'm feeling really hopeful about the future of Troy nowadays. Back last year when the Pioneer Co-op closed, I wasn't feeling as hopeful. I have a friend who used to shop there who now walks across the bridge to use the Watervliet Price Chopper (its not their best location). I really feel that things are looking up though, and not in a way like realtors have been saying that Long Island City in Queens has been looking up for the last ten years - where they build luxury condos assuming other businesses will follow, and they never seem to (unless you want to count the gentlemen's clubs under the subway tracks).
  • The Troy Farmer's Market is great. Next week is the first week they are going to be outside, and as a bonus they are also going to keep things going an hour later (untill 2). They are also adding a twilight market on Friday nights. Some of our favorites at the market include: Danascara Cheese, Pika's Farm Table (I really like to throw a couple of their quiches in the freezer for times when we don't have anything for dinner), and The Berry Patch (this winter I was particularly fond of the blue hubbard squash). I do have to say I've gotten a little bored of the winter market and the focus on cheese, potatoes, and snacks, so I was really excited to see some vendors advertising fiddleheads for next week. 
  • The Arts Center of the Capital Region seems like a really positive space for the community. I have a gift certificate there I have been waiting to cash in on Embroidery Basics taught by the proprietor of  Anchor 5 Boutique on a day when I'm not traveling for work. They have all sorts of classes though from memoir writing, to stained glass panel making, to Chinese cooking. My Yoko Ono Appreciator's group had a drawing we did in a show called "Text as Art". We had it set up so people could add to the drawing while it was installed in the show.

 We took the students down to do a Yoko instruction piece called "Walk on a Painting", in which we took our drawing down from the gallery, stomped on it, got the audience to stomp on it, and then hung it back up. It was a lot of fun. Also, St. Rose professor Kate Laity read some amazing poetry and talked about her piece in the show. It wasn't a huge turnout, but it was a great vibe, and the students had never been to Troy before and were really impressed.

  • We went to the Illium Cafe this weekend and really enjoyed it. They have unusual things on their menu like scallops quesadillas and pork belly and crab omelets. I also thought this high protein salad sounded really interesting: "gigante white bean salad, peppers, capers, carrots, romaine lettuce, arugula, locally produced black truffle infused cows milk cheese and crispy onions topped with a fried egg and lavender-balsamic vinaigrette". I got a breakfast sandwich with ham and swiss on a croissant, and Scott got the Parisian Omelet ("shaved ham, gruyere cheese, sauteed spinach and chevre"). We both really enjoyed what we got and couldn't believe we hadn't come sooner. Some of our friends are huge fans and others have mixed reviews, so it was great to finally try it ourselves. Jen is Green went there recently too
  • The Charles F. Lucas Confectionery & Wine Bar is fabulous. Everyone loves it. It is a fabulous space, they have Finger Lakes Riesling on tap - what more could you want? Oh great cheese and some venison on the side? They have that too. I can't wait to see the positive influence I know they are going to have on Troy in general.
  •  Some Girls is my new favorite clothing store. It is so, so well curated, and it isn't like you are going to want to buy everything in the store (although I bought quite a bit this weekend)- but you can look at pieces and imagine that there would be a person or event right for them. We talked to the owner quite a bit this weekend, and she said "Why can't Troy be as cool as Hudson?" That doesn't seem to be that high of a bar actually, but I took my friends from out of town to Hudson as a day trip and they loved it, so maybe she means something like that - a cool place with great restaurants and a happening arts scene that you can take out of town visitors for an afternoon and they won't be bored or let down or feel unsafe. 
So, I think things are looking up for Troy. There is something for me especially about loving the Confectionery so much and hearing that more and more people love it too, that makes me feel especially optimistic. I sort of like all those Uncle Sam statues too.

7 comments:

  1. I share your excitement, and would add that the local charities and nonprofits really work well and support one another in our little town. And, of course, the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall is a treasure.

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  2. Other things to add:
    - Wings & Beer: The Ruck (and also the Ale House)
    - Bread, Sandwiches & Sweets: Placid Baker, Sweet Sues, The Cookie Factory
    - Waterfront Dining: Say what you will about Dino, Fresno's was an eye sore
    - Old School Classics: DeFazio's, Famous Lunch & Bella Napoli
    - Late Night Dining: Flying Chicken & The Brown Bag
    - Frozen Treats: Snowman & Dante's
    - Other Notables: Finnbar, Carmen's, Bacchus

    There's a lot of good stuff packed into a tight urban core. And I'm sure I've missed plenty in my supplemental list above too.

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  3. Great post! I do like Troy. Petra at Anchor 5 is so much fun, you'll have a blast! Tell her I say hello.

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  4. Troy is the place to go for me, it's closer than Albany or Saratoga and has it's own sense of funk. I got Rucked this weekend and their wings surpass the Ale House...no contest.

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  5. Whoo hoo! Great post!!
    On the non-side side of things, here are some great things going on in Troy
    - Troy Bike Rescue
    - Front Parlor Series
    - Collard City Growers
    - Possible municipal composting
    - FSC Food Swaps
    - CAC Woodside
    - Tech Valley Center of Gravity
    - Troy Roller Derby
    - Pasties, Pencils, and Pints
    - Ukelele Troy
    - Troy Music Academy
    - Design It Together screen printing classes
    - South Troy Stickball

    These are some other awesome businesses that I've seen start in the last 5 years: Yoga and Pilates studios, Dance Studios, an awesome Organic Salon, a newly renovated Spa...yeah, Troy is awesome.

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  6. I believe Troy is turning around too, and I'm not just saying that as a real estate agent ;) in my opinion, the Confectionery is one of the best things to happen to Troy. Seconding everything Daniel recommends, of course. Flying Chicken is just fun (chicken waffles! The sides are fantastic too, and don't forget the cheesy horror-themed pinball machine) and Finnibar's, at least when I went soon after opening, is a vast culinary improvement over the previous Holmes & Watson. I have been in Troy about six years now, I'm downtown almost very day and what's happening right now is truly exciting.

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  7. I think Troy has so much to offer! I do wish more restaurants would stay open in the evenings (non bar food restaurants) but the city has the most amazing architecture and such a fun spirit.

    I wrote a post about it the other day here http://www.preppypinkcrocodile.com/2013/04/the-uncle-sam-project.html

    KK

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