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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Buffalo Wagon (Colonie, NY)

It's a great feeling when someone gets you. Knows you better than you realize they do; and at times may know you better than yourself. M gets me. He gets me... and my stomach.

Tuesday was a perfect example of this. We headed over to Colonie to do some gift shopping and take a quick look to see what's on sale (btw, there is nothing in the stores that you can't find cheaper online). We dealt with traffic, we dealt with crowds... and sure enough, the happy me was slowly turning very hangry.

We were driving down Wolf Road when M asked where I would like to eat.

"I don't care... anywhere. I'm soooooo hungry." Yes. I'm well aware I turn into a whiny brat when I get hungry.

M remained silent, and kept on driving. When we reached Macaroni Grill, he slowed down and turned onto Metro Park Rd. I wasn't really paying attention and figured it was one of those short cuts only locals know. He slowed down the car again and pulled into one of the plazas that line the road.

"Hey, what's going on?"

"Well, you're hungry so I figured we'd go eat somewhere you like."

Now I feel like such an asshat.

"Besides, someone told me that this was a good place."

Buffalo Wagon. I have no idea how long it's been there (edit: they've been open since February), but the only way you would know about it would be through word of mouth, or you just happen to be on that street. I don't think they do television ads, and I'm not sure if they have any in the local papers (edit: both the TU and Metroland have done reviews on Buffalo Wagon... and I'm guessing they've placed ads in them as well). So it's a hidden spot, possibly only known by people who work in the area.

Layout wise, it's a pretty big space with the dining area sectioned off in groups of four. Definitely roomy enough if you were considering a large dinner party. It might be a little too late, but if you still need to throw a holiday party, you may want to check them out. If you're having a quick lunch by yourself, there is more than enough space at the sushi bar. You'll find it at the front of the restaurant on the right hand side.

For their lunch menu, they offer 23 Chinese dishes, 5 Japanese lunch boxes, 10 rolls to choose from for the Maki roll special, and 2 options for sushi bar lunch. For their Pan-Asian options? The lunch menu boasts five to choose from, and they all have curry in them. Their regular menu gives you more options, but I'm sure you can order from there if you really want something curry free.

I was actually at a loss for what to pick when I saw it:

crispy. roasted. pig.

I've never tried the roasted pig at Emperor's, CCK, or the Asian Supermarket. And I've been meaning to, but something always got in the way. This time around? There was no excuse, I had to get it. If I didn't get it, it would haunt me forever. Okay, not forever... but I'd kick myself in the butt if I didn't. So crispy pig for me, vegetable tempura lunch box for M.

Chinese lunch specials come with soup (wonton, hot & sour, or egg drop) and either vegetable fried rice or white rice. The Japanese lunch boxes come with miso soup, salad, rice and either a California or cucumber roll. M was happy they gave him a fork for his salad and was surprised that his miso soup "actually has some taste to it." My hot & soup soup was just how I like it- spicy with just enough sour. And... to my surprise, it's meat free! So M may be able to have it (he always talks about some place back in Michigan that makes a vegetarian version). Not only is it meat free, but a large will only set you back three bucks. And if by large they mean quart, then BW's is cheaper than my take out place.

As for the sushi menu? Always interesting to see what different restaurants name their special rolls. Escalation roll? Predator roll? Naruto roll? lolz, BW. LOLz.

It could be the box its served in, but that's a lot of tempura, no? M finished it all, like a champ... and a couple of times mentioned that BW could possibly be up there with Okinawa (in terms of food for him). He denies it now, but when he was eating it, he was saying good things.

Crispy roasted pig! It came with a dipping sauce that unfortunately I cannot remember, but it was good. Some spicy vinegar would have been good too, but eh... that's the Filipino in me. A good portion of pork, moist for the most part (if it was dry I think would remember better). The sauce was great with it, and the rice... ooooh! I was such a happy person. I could not stop talking about it. The skin was very thin and crunchy and ohsowonderful. We tried to figure out what part of the pig it came from- M thinks its pork belly, but there was hardly any fat. I'm thinking it's pig butt. Pig rump? Pig tush? Pig yummy. I ended taking the rest back to apartment, where I crisped it up again and washed down with beer... pulutan style.

I also ordered a salmon skin roll that the staff apologized and let me know would come out after our food. No biggie for me. I think it was worth it, they must have just cooked up that skin because that first piece was warm and super crunchy. Really good. Will have to order that again.

So my crispy roasted pig? $5.95. Awesome, awesome, awesome. And lunch for under 20 bucks can't be beat.

Buffalo Wagon Pan Asian Cuisine & Sushi
Wolf Road Park
6 Metro Park Road
Colonie, NY 12205
(518) 689-0938
(518) 689-0939 fax

Monday - Thursday 11AM - 10PM
Friday & Saturday 11AM - 11PM
Sunday 12PM - 9:30PM


phairhead said...

whoa? less than 20 bucks for lunch!! yahoo :D

Chrystal said...

I just tried BW on Sunday for dinner and I had the pick two BBQ appetizer with roasted duck and bbq roast pork and it was fantastic. We also tried to order the crispy oyster roll, but it never made it to the table before we got the check and had to have them take it off. I really wanted to try it, I've never seen that anywhere. You know it must be authentic and good when 90% of the customers are Asian themselves.

Albany Jane said...

Oh. Man. You have convinced me to give them a try. All the other reviews before... eh, just didn't draw me.

M said...

PH - love cheap meals, especially when it isn't at some chain place (not that i'm hating on the chains)

C - there was a crispy oyster roll?!? holy crap, will have to try that one out. perhaps i'll put my order in when they ask for my drink

AJ - crunchy skin is where it's at! if you don't make it for their lunch, they do have the CRP listed under the appetizers.

Anonymous said...

I've been wanting to try this since Steve Barnes unceremoniously panned it in the TU:

I could tell just from reading the review that he was way off base. But I need to try it for myself.

Crispy pork is the best. I used to eat it during passover when I worked in SF's Chinatown, because it was a hearty cheap meal without any bread.

Anonymous said...

ate there yesterday for lunch and we had a food orgy...including the crispy pig, some roast duck and a salmon teriyaki..service was outstanding, food amazing, price? best deal anywhere around the Wolf Rd corridor.

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