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“Remind me not to eat here again”
Review of River Street Cafe

River Street Cafe
Ranked #88 of 213 Restaurants in Troy
Price range: USD 0 - USD 30
Cuisines: American, Italian, Mexican
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Local cuisine
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Reviewed 20 April 2015

My husband and I had tickets to an event at a Troy concert venue and wanted to have dinner at a restaurant within walking distance. The River Street Cafe fit the bill - an easy fifteen minute walk. I had forgotten that we had dined with friends there several years ago. But when we entered the dining room on the second floor, I remembered the location due to the rustic decor and tall windows giving a beautiful view of the Hudson River. We were the first people there and were advised not to order an appetizer since we had an 8 o’clock curtain to make. The menu had several items that caught my eye - chargrilled steak, lamb chops, duck breast. Oh, yum. My husband ordered the duck breast and I ordered the lamb steak special. Soon after ordering the other tables started filling up. The waitress brought a pasta appetizer sample for my husband. I couldn’t eat it because of celiac disease. He said it was very tasty. As was the bread, served with butter still hard from the refrigerator. We ordered red wine which came chilled, not room temperature. After a while, a generous size salad (that comes with the entree) was served. The dressing was delicious, but the lettuce looked as if it had been sitting in the dressing for to long. I should add that there was just one waitress for to long. I’m sure she was doing the best she could until the second waitress arrived. Even after the second waitress arrived, we still felt ignored. But we were correctly advised not to order an appetizer. Our entrees finally arrived with a family style plate of garlic, goat cheese mashed potatoes. The potatoes were very tasty. But the chef was overly fond of his brown butter sauce. Both duck breast and lamb were swimming the same sauce and all we could taste was the sauce. I ordered the lamb medium rare and it arrived medium to medium well. And all I could taste was the sauce which wasn’t very tasty. The duck, due to the sauce, tasted no different that the lamb. Whatever cut of lamb I had was not very tender and was filled with connective tissue which made it difficult to cut and eat.
We were finished eating after an hour and a half (slow service) and decided to take the leisurely walk to the concert venue rather than risk being late by having coffee or dessert. Two entrees, two wines and a soda later amounted to $85 (before tip). Shortly before we left, a table of 6 were just getting their entrees and they were also going to the same program as we were. I’d be surprised if they were on time.
I would not recommend this restaurant to anyone. $85 is a lot for a wilted salad with great dressing.

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3  Thank RowingMom66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (44)
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11 - 15 of 44 reviews

Reviewed 24 November 2014

Made reservations 3 weeks in advance for our Gourmet Group party of 10. Arrived on time at 6 PM on Saturday, 11/15 and were seated promptly in the upstairs dining room. When we placed our order for 2 bottles of wine and bottled water, we asked that bread be brought right away. Waitress told us when we the food order was placed the bread would be brought--and it was 45 minutes later--one slim basket for the entire table! We were told the restaurant was in the process of changing to a seasonal menu, so she recited what was available--no prices--and one of our members is deaf! No one came to our table to check on wine refills etc so we flagged down the waitress who told us that she was extremely busy as she had another party of 10 and there were only 2 waitresses for the packed restaurant. It wasn't until we pointed out to her that we were paying an 18% tip and felt we too should get some service. The salad arrived after a wait of 2 hours and was nothing more than torn romaine dripping of oil. At that point one of our members got up and left (but did comment that she enjoyed her scallops the next day). At 6 PM we were told only 2 10 oz strip steaks were left for the evening although they did have 12 oz ones available which I ordered and had too much gristle.

This is an upscale restaurant which used to be an enjoyable place for a special night out. Unfortunately, the service was so poor and the food disappointing considering that most entrees were in the $28 -$32 range that no one in our group would recommend this restaurant.

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4  Thank JudyTroy_NY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 October 2014

We had dinner on a Saturday night with a party of 4. I have to say the food was very good: I had mushroom ravioli which was really excellent, as were the complementary and ordered appetizers and the dessert. Everyone else at the table complemented the food too. However, dinner took at least 2.5 hours, which was just too long to be enjoyable. There were only 2 waitresses, and they have to bring the food upstairs from the kitchen. Even though they were working hard, they couldn't keep up. The table behind us waited so long they threatened to leave if they couldn't get their entree soon. If you go, tell the server right away that you need to be out in a reasonable time, and perhaps you'll get better service than we did.

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3  Thank Tom X
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2014

This was a decidedly schizophrenic experience. The upside was the knowledgeable and friendly waitress and the coziness of the dining room. Other than that, I would have to say it's not worth a visit. There was ONE person taking care of the whole front of the house on a Thursday night, and she was slammed. The prep cook (dirty apron and all) was delivering the food and at one point the owner/chef came into the DR and yelled at the waitress that her food was up...she had five tables going with two of them being 6+ people...with no other DR staff, what did he expect? He seemed nasty and like he was doing everyone a favor even being there.

We were the only ones who had made reservations and the two things we really wanted were sold out by 7 pm!?!? So, we ordered our second choices and were frankly underwhelmed. Presentation, flavor and quality were not even up to what I would have cooked at home. Truly sad.

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2  Thank bullettree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2014

My wife and I had dinner here during my college class reunion. I had the mushroom ravioli and she had the mahimahi with pistachio brown butter sauce. Both were very tasty. The portions were large. We ended up taking the remainders of both home for a second meal. Our waitress was very pleasant and accommodating, though the service was a bit slow. We didn't mind having a leisurely dinner though. We also had dinner salads, wines by the glass and a complimentary spaghetti appetizer. The second floor space was cozy and romantic. It was a great evening. We would recommend River Street Cafe as a very nice place to enjoy a romantic meal.

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Thank Brad145
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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