Best Restaurants for Take-Out in Albany
Please be aware that some locations may be closed due to growing health concerns. Please consider purchasing a gift card or visiting for future events if take-out is no longer an option.
After spending the day at a car dealership, many shoppers need a good meal. We at DePaula Ford in Albany, NY, thought it would be good to mention some of Albany’s top-rated local restaurants, especially those that offer take-out options so that next time you visit us, you know just where to go on your way home. We are committed to supporting our community in any way we can, so we thought it would be fun to highlight some of our favorite restaurants and their signature dishes. Even if you are unable to grab take-out from your go-to spot, you can try to recreate a dish at home. So make a night out of it and try your hand at making one of these tasty meals. You might surprise yourself.
Everyone considers themselves a budding sous chef, right? We’re all capable of doing great things, and this is no different in the kitchen. At DePaula Ford, we know there are many proficient chefs in upstate New York, as we have gotten to know many of you in the community, so let’s take a look at some of our favorite dishes available for take-out or delivery. Then we’ll match these dishes with recipes available online so that you can surprise your loved ones with a home-cooked night on the town.
Athos is one of our favorite restaurants, as it is truly an escape to the Mediterranean. Voted as one of the top 50 Greek restaurants in America by the National Herald, this is the Capital District’s only restaurant devoted to serving Classic Greek Cuisine. Here you’ll find a relaxing
atmosphere in their Taverna area, or you can enjoy the comfort of their main dining room or private Ithaka room. Though you don’t need to dine in to experience the warmth of Greek hospitality, you can experience this baked right into their exceptional Greek cuisine. It’s true; this is food prepared for the most delicious moments in life.
In times of struggle and in times of joy, Greeks share experiences by eating and drinking in the company of family and friends. The goal at Athos has always been for you to experience “Philoxenia” or Greek hospitality. It sweetens sorrows and assuages struggles, and it is a philosophy and way of life that’s important to remember at any time. Dating back to the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the monasteries of Mount Athos have continued the tradition of hospitality for those who seek refuge, solace, and relief from the day-to-day struggles of life. Every visitor is welcomed with food, a glass of raki (home-made ouzo), and a cup of Greek coffee.
Athos Restaurant has become its own place of refuge. Here you’ll find a mixture of Turkish, Balkan, and Venetian influences, with a menu that features a variety of classic Greek dishes with a modern twist. It is hard to choose a favorite of ours, so we thought we would select a classic comfort food, one you can even enjoy cold for breakfast. They are currently offering take-out and delivery and are open every day from 1 pm–8 pm.
Moussaka: baked layers of roasted eggplant, ground beef, and sliced potatoes topped with béchamel sauce, and accompanied by vegetables of the day.
The Cuckoo’s Nest
If you happen to be looking for incredible southern-inspired food, look no further than The Cuckoo’s Nest. After spending time traveling the country, the owners of this remarkable establishment discovered a deep love of Southern Cuisine in the Capitol region, and it shows in every dish. This is genuinely down-home cooking, and perfect for you and your family, as they offer large, family-style meals as well. You’ll find the menu is a balance of comfort and innovation, with a unique and approachable take on southern cuisine.
The Times Union says of The Cuckoo’s Nest: “Our whole table obsesses over the perfection of fluffy, house-made buttermilk biscuits, but we split evenly over the honey butter that transforms wispy, steaming layers into breakfast pancake bites. For me, it’s a glorious start.” So, really, you can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, as it delights at every turn. It’s no surprise that The Cuckoo’s Nest has been voted Top 10 Best New Restaurants Times Union 2017, Top 2 Best Southern Restaurant Times Union 2017, Top 4 Best southern Times Union 2018, and listed as the number 1 restaurant in Albany on Yelp as of April 2019, as well as receiving the distinction of Top 3 Chefs Capital Region Living 2019.
Located at 217 Western Ave., The Cuckoo’s Nest’s sister restaurant is directly across the street, where you will find the best chef-driven burgers in the area. While it’s nearly impossible to choose from so many mouth-watering options, we’d recommend the Collard Melt with braised pork, collards, gruyere on sourdough. However, it’s hard to look past the Chicken and Waffles, which you can make at home if you can’t get out. Either way, you can’t go wrong. Whether you are looking for lunch, dinner for two, or dinner for the whole family, The Cuckoo’s Nest has something for everyone, and they are open for take-out.
Chicken and Waffles: half chicken, waffle, hot honey sauce, bourbon maple syrup, honey butter
Another of our favorite restaurants is Grappa ’72. Restaurateurs Armand and Tia opened the doors of Grappa ’72 in the summer of 2010 with a vision of providing affordable Italian fine-dining with an emphasis on hospitality and consistency. And they certainly have succeeded. You will not find a better ambiance and experience in Upstate New York’s capital city of Albany. They have perfected an experience rich with food, family, and excellence, and now you can take this home to share with your family.
You will find lunch and dinner offerings of both traditional Italian favorites and creative Mediterranean dishes for even the most discerning palette. Be sure also to check out their extensive selection of house-made desserts. And, of course, their unique selection of wine and grappa, which is their specialty. Grappa is made from pomace, or the remains of the winemaking process, using the distilled flavors of grape seeds, stalks and skins to create a spirit. It is a spirit born from the art of winemaking and the perfect finish to an evening of fine dining with loved ones.
With so many options to choose from, it’s hard to recommend one dish, so we’ll have to mention a couple of our favorites. And if you happen to grab a bottle of grappa, we’d recommend a book to go along with it—A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway—since grappa has been a literary inspiration for many writers and was undoubtedly an inspiration for this classic novel. Our favorite dishes are Pasta al Pesto, Risotto Capesante, and Pollo Alla Cacciatora. There’s something for everyone at Grappa ’72. If you are unable to order take-out, try one of these recipes and recreate the Italian experience at home.
Pasta al Pesto: Walnut and spinach pesto tossed with penne and spicy goat cheese
Risotto Capesante: Risotto with scallops, pancetta, asparagus and parmigiano Reggiano
Pollo Alla Cacciatora: Chicken with sausage, vinegar, and roasted peppers in a light garlic tomato sauce
Restaurants in Albany
With these restaurants and recipes, you can’t go wrong. Whether you want to escape to the Mediterranean, are in the mood for southern home-cooking or Italian fine-dining, Albany has many great restaurants to choose from, and many talented, established (and aspiring) chefs.