Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Little Italy Restaurant, Italian, Tupper Lake, NY

From Gouverneur, we enjoyed a picturesque drive through the Adirondacks and onto to our destination of Tupper Lake, ideally situated in the middle of the mountains and by a lake (naturally). I think we might have even snuck in an ice cream break. The little place by the side of the road served Perry's Ice Cream, which I've only seen in the New York state area. Quite good actually.

Like many of the small towns in the Adirondacks, Tupper Lake doesn’t possess a large chain hotel. Since Mr. Jose travels a lot for business, I tend to stay at Marriott or Hilton owned hotels – generally the more business friendly ones like Hampton Inn or Courtyard. And so I’ve made that a habit for personal trips as well, and Mrs. Jose likes the free breakfasts at the Hampton in particular. We typically eat light for breakfast, nothing more a bagel, coffee, juice, yogurt, fruit, maybe some cereal. And that’s what Hampton excels at. But for Tupper Lake, I needed to be creative. After searching the internet, I settled on the Tupper Lake Motel . For the first time in many years, I actually had to call the motel to make a reservation and then reaffirm prior to leaving. Once we arrived, I knew I had made the right choice. Run by a older Slovakian couple, the Tupper Lake Motel reminded me of the motels of my childhood, traveling with my Dad as a little kid. A classic 1950’s era single story motel, with a pool in the middle of the complex (see website above). Our room was nothing more than a queen size bed, a table with 2 chairs, and a tiny bathroom. All in tip-top shape, clearly having been renovated and the maids take good care of the rooms. After walking around the lake some, Mrs. Jose and I went over to a local liquor store and picked up a cold bottle of Chardonnay, made in New York’s Finger Lakes region. And we sat in our little motel room, and drained the entire bottle, with glasses provided by the proprietors – not to mention they opened the bottle for us (I gambled that their European heritage would come through on this point).

With a good buzz on, we stumbled into town via foot to the Little Italy restaurant, recommended by both the hotel owner and the liquor store owner. Of course we each promptly ordered a glass of wine! We passed on the appetizer and I settled for a good old fashioned plate of spaghetti and meatballs. Ahhh, old fashioned homemade meatballs! So yummy. Why is it so hard to find these anymore? And the pasta? Al dente, without me having to ask for it that way. Just comes natural to those that know what they’re doing. And it was still steaming hot on the last bite. Mrs. Jose went for a pasta dish loaded with broccoli and other veggies. All outstanding. The perfect fuel for our waltz back to the motel. I believe they have another location in nearby Saranac Lake, but I’m not 100% sure.

Food: 11/15 (Highest grade for only one visit. Excellent high quality old-school Italian)

Atmosphere: 3/5 (Situated in a renovated older building, the restaurant has a slightly modern look – but very comfortable)

I couldn't find another review for this fine restaurant, so we may be first!

3 comments:

Sarahb said...

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P.S.

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Anonymous said...

The Little Italy in Tupper Lake is new construction. It opened less than a year ago. The Little Italy in Saranac Lake is in a renovated building, and has a bit more "character."

Canadian Traveller said...

Just had dinner at the Little Italy restaurant. Food was average...perhaps because I live in a large urban area with a big Italian population...with superb, authentic Italian restaurants.
Anyway, service was good...however - and anyone who reads this (including the owner and/or employees I hope...) needs to keep this in mind if you before considering doing business there; they only take cash. No debit, no credit cards. This resulted in a hasty walk to a couple of ATM's in the town to get cash (and pay the service fee...).
We found this to be a serious flaw in the service of this establishment. I've NEVER been to a restaurant that does not allow it's patrons to pay using credit or debit.
There is no obvious signs indicating that it's a cash-only business and the waitress did not inform us prior to ordering.

We are staying in Tupper Lake a few more evenings...but rest assured, we won't be dinning at the Little Italy restaurant!