It's obvious Utica has some of the best restaurants and eateries, but there are some restaurants that are amazingly good that not a lot of people know about. If you're looking to try something new or something different, you may want to check out one of these lesser-known (but still delicious) places in Utica.

Ambassador Restaurant

If you're looking for a delicious, amazing Italian dinner, the Ambassador Restaurant at 537 Albany Street is the place to go. The atmosphere combined with a waitstaff that is professional and really cares about your experience will have you coming back again and again. Well, that and of course the food. Why not enjoy a Central New York favorite, chicken riggies? Or try their lobster ravioli that's served in a vodka cream sauce with prosciutto and bacon. They also have many options for seafood, and their portions are huge. Visit them for dinner Tuesday through Thursday from 5pm - 9:30pm, or Saturday and Sunday from 5pm - 10:30pm. It's probably best to call ahead and make a reservation, though.

Old School Bar and Grill

Head over to 600 Culver Ave for a great meal at Old School Bar and Grill. People are raving on social media about their steak sandwiches. You can also indulge in a mouthwatering burger, which you "build your own." You get to choose what type of cheese you want and what toppings you want... Customize it the way you want. And you can wash down your delicious meal with an adult beverage. Old School Bar and Grill has quite a list of wine and bottled beer. They also have beer on draft, as well.

Homemade Chocolate Cupcake with frosting

Bite Bakery and Cafe

This is the perfect place for a nice breakfast, a light lunch, or some wonderful baked treats and sweets. Bite Bakery and Cafe has a 4.9 out of 5 star rating on Facebook, and it's easy to see why... They really are the place to go for a quick "bite." If you're heading out for breakfast, maybe try their blueberry pancakes or one of their tasty breakfast burritos (which you can pick what kind of meat, potatoes, and cheese you would like). You can also swing by for lunch and try one of their sandwiches, wraps, or salads. Bite Bakery and Cafe has plenty of options. And don't forget to pick up a special treat before you leave. Maybe grab some cookies, a lobster tail, or some cupcakes. Visit Bite Bakery and Cafe at 53 Franklin Square in Utica.

Boneyard BBQ

If good, old-fashioned barbecue is what you're craving, you're definitely in for a treat at Boneyard BBQ at 244 Roosevelt Drive. This place has amazing ribs that fall off the bone, and they also offer a Central New York staple, mushroom stew. Boneyard BBQ has huge portions and an extremely friendly and helpful staff (which is always great when you're trying a place for the first time). Of course they have all those favorite barbecue sides as well, like baked beans, corn, chili, coleslaw, salt potatoes, and macaroni and cheese. Stop by and try their brisket or their huge pulled pork sandwiches. Don't forget to try their homemade chips either, they're delicious.


Ventura's is a place that a lot of people may have heard of but never been, or have gone once or twice but it's been a while. We don't think it's getting the recognition it deserves. Try their divine chicken parm (some say it's the best you can find in CNY). Or maybe try their chicken scarp that's fried in fresh garlic and cherry peppers and finished with balsamic vinegar. They also have a variety of pasta dishes like stuffed shells, fettuccine alfredo, hats, and ravioli. Actually, they have SO many options, we suggest you take a look at the menu ahead of time (or else you may be sitting there for a while trying to decide what you want). Finish off your trip with a little dessert... Maybe some Godiva Lava Cake?? You'll find Ventura's at 787 Lansing Street in Utica.




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