When I was young I’d listen to conversations between my mom and grandpa about which restaurants in Upstate New York were doing well, which changed owners, which were inconsistent. They know the history of the area and my grandpa knows the restaurant business, things you can develop only through time and hours in restaurants. I love exploring the Boston food scene through reviews, recommendations, and research (and sometimes on foot), but it’s a different experience to think back on my culinary memories of a place and evaluate years later: Ravenous gives me the satisfying opportunity to do just this.
The menu is simple: crepes and pommes frites. Savory crepes are filled with well-balanced combinations of vegetables, cheeses, or meats and are served with a side salad. If you’re looking for a vegetarian crepe, I recommend the Godfather’s Garden crepe, which has plump tomatoes, lots of garlic, mozzarella, mushrooms, and basil. The flavors come together effortlessly while maintaining individual sparks of cold sweet tomato, warm creamy cheese, and woodsy mushrooms and greens.
Sweet crepes range from simple fruit to chocolate or house-made dulce de leche (all with whipped cream, of course). Pommes frites are hand-cut and served with a dipping sauce (horseradish mayo is my pick). The drink selection is also carefully selected with great options – the iced Moroccan mint tea is a must in the warmer months – and includes tea, juice, coffee, beer, wine, and hard cider.
During peak meal hours expect a bit of a wait. The five seats at the window are the best if you’re lucky, but all 25 or so seats, from the long family-style table in the center to the smaller ones against the exposed-brick wall, are intimate and airy at the same time. Small arrangements of fresh local flowers are placed throughout the room.
The timeless atmosphere, efficient and welcoming service, and consistency through not only the years, but decades, makes Ravenous my go-to place when I’m in Saratoga. I hope that if you’re in the area, even during track season, you’ll stop in to check it out.
21 Phila Street, Saratoga Springs, NY