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  • BettyRocker
  • West Coast palette sampling East Coast restaurants. Has trekked across the U.S. and backpacked in the Middle East. Won’t say no to an adventure, or a meal. What else is there to do but eat, travel, and rock?

Alto Cinco

Located on the oh-so-trendy Westcott street, is one of the coolest restaurants in Syracuse, Alto Cinco. The location itself makes this Southwest-dining palace pretty awesome. It lies at the heart of Syracuse’s booming hipster hipstersom, with a grungy movie theatre and concert hall to its right, and the perfectly–shady-its-charming pizza joint to its left. Along with the current businesses on the street, Westcott is historically know as an activist, progressive, neighborhood. Why shouldn’t the food on the street be the same?

I’ve been to Alto Cinco just about once a year, for the four years I’ve been in Syracuse. It’s not a tradition, but more of my obstinacy to sample Mexican food that was not made in the Southwest. I had previously lived in Southern California, so my standards for Mexican food are pretty high. It’s just not the real thing, and I know Mexican food before there even was an Alto Cinco! (The pot calls the kettle black: I guess I’m being a hipster now, too.) (more…)


Categories: Asian, Casual, Eat-in, Take-away
Comments: 2 Comments
Published on: April 25, 2014

I’m going to be blunt, but truthful. Erawan is the best Thai restaurant in Syracuse. From its reasonable prices, charming menu, and friendly staff, I enjoy coming back to this awesome restaurant, located on Erie Boulevard.


Erawan is a medium sized restaurant, with pink tablecloths and napkins, and tasteful Thai decorations, much of which are elephants (which is fitting as Erawan is a mythological Elephant in Thailand). The restaurant is not quite a hole-in-the-wall, and lacks the tackiness of a chain restaurant. It is humble and prides itself on serving good food.



Categories: Asian, Casual, Eat-in, Take-away
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Published on: April 18, 2014

On top of University Hill, down a dark alley, wedged next to a bar, and down an unassuming flight of stairs, is appeThaizing. Although the location is not the easiest to get too, with limited parking and the threat of having to fight through mobs of college students to get there, appeThaizing does deliver tasty Thai food.

I have been to the restaurant on a handful of occasions, and am never disappointed, although some dishes overwhelmingly trump other ones. On my most recent visit, a friend and I decided to eat out on a Monday after our classes. We went there for dinner, around 6’oclock, walking down the alley, and then down the stairs that lead down to the restaurant. I am always surprised by how the restaurant fills up despite its humble sign outside, and rather peculiar location.


Gordon Biersch Brewery

Categories: All American, Casual, Chain, Eat-in
Comments: No Comments
Published on: April 4, 2014

I keep getting dragged back to the mall. This time it was to see a movie with two of my friends, and following the show we decided to grab a meal at Gordon Biersch Brewery for an early dinner on a rainy Friday afternoon. I had heard that the restaurant brewed its own beer and had some decent food, so I was interested in going.

After the movie, which left us in good spirits with a lot to talk about, we headed to the new wing of the mall to find dinner. Because of the deep affinity for alcohol we share, we decided on Gordon Biersch. We luckily got into the restaurant without having to wait in a line, and the hostess speedily seated us. The restaurant looked pretty full, with mall people, mostly guys with baseball caps and ladies in tracksuits, chattering happily around us. My group immediately flipped to the beer menu, which was a pretty good selection. We were feeling adventurous, as well as indecisive, so we got a beer flight each. The waiter seemed surprised, and then curtly asked us for our IDs. After he left, we raised our eyebrows at each other.


Sparky Town

Categories: All American, Casual, Eat-in
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Published on: March 30, 2014

Despite living only a jump and a skip away from Sparky Town, I hadn’t had the pleasure of visiting the restaurant.

I had heard that it had good, down-to-earth food and that it was an extension of the “gay-bourhood”, which is basically the Hawley-Green area. So when some friends asked if I wanted to join them, I gladly agreed, and we headed there for an early dinner on a Tuesday afternoon.

We got a bit lost on the way there, as it is inconspicuously located on the corners of Burnet-Catherine, and we parked across the street as they had no parking lot, and hurried inside to avoid the cold.



Categories: Eat-in, Italian
Tags: ,
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Published on: March 21, 2014

To conclude my Downtown Restaurant Week experience, a friend and I went to Pastabilities. Just for a little background information, the Syracuse Downtown Dining Week is an event where participating downtown restaurants serve a three-course meal for the price of $25. And for restaurants such as Pastabilities, this is a pretty good deal.

It’s pretty hard to screw up pasta in general, so I was counting on a good meal. I had also been to the restaurant on a few other occasions, and always left full and satisfied, though with my wallet a little lighter.

My friend and I went on a cloudy Monday night around 8 o’clock, meaning there was no battle to find a parking spot downtown, and no wait in the restaurant. The restaurant was relatively quiet, but inviting with its warm, red décor and dark wood. The bar was not large, but had an ample selection of beers and wines, and if there had been a line to wait, I wouldn’t have minded hanging out there till a table was ready.


Revolutions Entertainment

Categories: Casual, Eat-in
Tags: ,
Comments: 3 Comments
Published on: March 6, 2014

I like revolutions. I don’t like the mall. The light feels artificial, the air plastic, the people consumer zombies. In short, the place seems like a capitalist version of Dante’s nine levels of Hell, except with less levels. However, I’m here to give a restaurant review not my critique on materialism.

So back to Revolutions Entertainment, a new restaurant that opened in Destiny USA. The place is a bowling alley, restaurant, and entertainment facility. I had a bit of trouble finding the restaurant. Partially because I am directionally challenged and partially because the mall is kinda a maze that only preteens and soccer moms can navigate. I was meeting a friend there, and when I entered I was impressed by the size and vibe of the place. Rock music was playing, and a waiter quickly helped me locate my friend I had a meeting with. I spotted an impressive bar, plentiful seating, some arcade games, and the bowling alley in the back.


Lemongrass/Elephant Bistro

Categories: Asian, Diner, Eat-in, Fancy
Tags: ,
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Published on: February 28, 2014

I had heard of Lemongrass and that it was good from some co-workers older and more elegant than I. However, the thought of paying more than $10 for Asian food made my stomach hurt. Let alone a place that calls itself an ‘Asian Fusion’ steakhouse on its Facebook page makes me think it’s just a little too classy for my barbaric manners.

However, with Downtown Dining Week I decided to go. This event lasts through March and participating restaurants offer a first, second, and third course for $25 or less. Which is a pretty good deal for some of the restaurants on the list, including Lemongrass.


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