Okay, so I'm waxing nostalgic again, as I prepare to set sail from Utica for a new radio adventure in Springfield, Massachusetts. And this time my taste buds are involved.

I've enjoyed a lot of great dining experiences here in Central New York during my 30 years in the area. And it's hard to narrow down a list to a Top 10. But I've never been one to shy away from a challenge. So, at the risk of offending someone, here's my Top 10 List of Favorite Central New York Restaurants.

  • The Tailor & the Cook. Owner Tim Hardiman is an artiste. The food and the atmosphere at the lower Genesee eatery in Utica are 10 out of 10.
  • Mad Co Tacos. Pride of the tiny town of Nelson, between Morrisville and Cazenovia. The fish tacos and the pulled pork and quinoa burritos are to die for.
  • Sunny. Try the drunken noodles. You won't be sorry. It's a little tough to find in Utica, unless you lock it in on your GPS--or unless you've been there a zillion times like we have.
  • The Lotus Garden. Tucked behind the Stanley Theater, in downtown Utica, it's a must-find Asian eating experience.
  • Nola. The first date for Beth and me in Clinton. Make sure you try the chef's table one night. Sit at the bar and watch Jansen prepare and serve delicious food items, one after another.
  • Minar. Stop by the Indian eatery in New Hartford or door dash our favorite entree--Chicken Tikka Masala.
  • Delmonico's. For years, I hosted The Jim Boeheim Radio Show at the Syracuse location and more recently we've been regulars at the North Utica branch. Their entrees are reliably excellent. Every. Single. Time.
  • Bella Cucina. Underrated food. Ultra-helpful staff. Great traditional Italian dining in New Hartford.
  • One Genny. Great food in a fantastic, friendly, and sporty atmosphere. You can't NOT have a good time here in South Utica.
  • Red Samurai. For owners Joe and Anna, it's a labor of love in New Hartford. And we love their sushi
  • The Grapevine. Louie and Myrna are the king and queen of Mediterranean cuisine in New Hartford.

Honorable Mention: The Ale 'n' Angus Pub. Award-winning burgers. Just ask Bruce Springsteen, who stopped by Randy Beach's downtown Syracuse institution one night.

It's tough to pick just 10, but there they are. And Springfield is only a couple of hours away. So, don't be surprised to see Beth and I eating at some of these great spots again.

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