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Category Archives: local business

No Ambition, But a Couple of Shout-Outs

My only ambition right now is to NOT be making my Thursday blog post on Friday morning.  I can just hear one of you say, “So your ambition is to make your blog post now.”  However, that is not strictly accurate.  Let us not quibble over semantics.  Let us see what kind of a blog post I can make with this very low amount of ambition.

Give that skeleton a cup of coffee!

I threw in a picture to pep things up.  It is from October 2016, the month I started putting pictures in the blog (I have been blogging since 2011) (Wow! Has it been that long?).  It is from the So Sweet Candy Shoppe, originally called the So Sweet Candy Cafe, at 531 Varick St. in Utica, NY.  I have not been there in a while.  I must make my way to Utica one day soon (preview of coming attractions).

My favorite shirt!

Continuing the theme of throwback, and shout-out to local businesses, here is a shot from December 2016:  Original Herkimer Cheese, 2745 State Route 51 in Ilion, NY.  I bought that shirt and wear it a lot.  I need to go to the outlet soon and get some Chutter: cheese that spreads like butter.

Ooh, look, I got myself over 200 words. Score! Let’s see if tomorrow I can make my Lame Post Friday post on Friday.  No promises.

 

Yet Another Late Post About Good Music

Once you make one late post, it is so easy to make another!  Is that what they refer to as a “slippery slope” (whoever “they” is)?  Oh well, I am often late with my Wednesday posts, due to coming home lazy after a good meal and great music at Fratello’s Pizzeria in Frankfort, NY.  Never mind, here is my almost weekly shout-out to one of my favorite places.

He is so talented!

I saw on Facebook that Mark Nanni would be performing.  He is so fun to watch, because he plays keyboard, guitar and accordion.  The other reason I wanted to go out was to order a salad, so I would have leftovers to bring for my lunch Thursday and Friday.  Lately if I eat anything but salad for lunch, I get so bloated.  Sorry, didn’t mean to over-share (even though that is what I usually do).

My husband, Steve, and I mostly wanted to hear some good local music to cheer ourselves up, and Nanni did not disappoint.  We did not get to hear him play the accordion last night, but the keyboard and guitar (sometimes both during the same song) were excellent.  We applauded loudly.

Back home, just like last week, we watched a DVR’d episode of Reasonable Doubt.  I can’t seem to live without my true crime fix.

Just to have another illustration.

Fratello’s Pizzeria is located at 158 Main St., Frankfort, NY, phone number 315-894-8484.  You can Like them on Facebook to find out what musician they will feature next.

 

In My Defense, Music!

This is a late Wuss-out Wednesday Post. In my defense, we went to Fratello’s Pizzeria in Frankfort, NY for food and music, one of our favorite things to do.  In my accusation (I never did figure out a good word for the opposite of “defense” in these situations), when we came home we watched a DVR’d episode of Reasonable Doubt, another of my favorite things.

I have other pictures to share, but this popped up when I hit “Add Media.”

Steven got a Shrimp Basket while I had a Chicken Wing Wrap, only with grilled instead of fried chicken. Yum!  Steven did not recognize the musician and asked his name.  The bartender said, “Jonathan.”  I remembered seeing him before and later looked him up in one of my adventure books (that is my fancy name for blank books or notebooks I carry around with me to make notes), Jonathan Minter.

Very talented guy.

I was not familiar with most of the tunes he played, but I sure dug the acoustic guitar.  We were also delighted when my niece Kimi and her boyfriend, Matt, showed up.  Fratello’s gets the best clientele!

Cute couple!

Back home, we paused in our true crime viewing to admire a rainbow.  I took a picture which does not do it justice.

I pointed it out to a couple of passersby. I feel the need to share beauty.

It was altogether a very enjoyable evening, with the result that I overslept this morning. A small price to pay.

 

Cool Music on a Hot Night

Yesterday I noticed that Phil Arcuri was playing at Fratello’s Pizzeria in Frankfort, NY.  While waiting to punch out after work, I called my husband, Steve.  The answering machine picked up.

“Hi, honey, I just wanted to put this in your mind before I get home…”

“Get your ass in the shower, we’re going out!”  my work friend Rick shouted behind me.  Steve picked up the phone at that point.  He had not heard Rick’s interjection, so I filled him in on that.  The current heat wave has drained up both of energy (yes, I KNOW other parts of the country have it worse, at least we have fans, we are just big babies, oh, shut up), but we decided it would be nice to go sit somewhere air conditioned, eat some good food and hear some music from one of our favorites.

Oh no, my computer is doing the thing where I add the picture and it does not let me type anything below it.  When I try to the cursor jumps back up here.  Well I don’t have time to futz with it now.  I’ll just leave the picture at the end of the post.  It is not a current picture anyways.  I did not bring my Tablet, because I forgot to charge it.  I took one picture with my phone, which I immediately shared on Facebook, in case any local friends might like to hurry out and join us, but right now my phone is charging.  This is all by the way.  Let’s get back to the post.

Steve and I agree that nobody seems to have more joy in music and living than Phil Arcuri.  It is always a pleasure to hear him play.  Additionally, he includes the setting and audience in his songs.  In “Margaritaville,” he said his “brand new tattoo” is “a Fratello’s cutie,” and in one chorus it was “all Geno’s fault.”  Geno is a member of Fratello’s excellent staff.

Speaking of staff, we had a new bartender, Savannah.  She was new to Fratello’s, too.  I asked her what the Cali sauce was like in the Cali Chicken, available as a sandwich or wrap.  She said it was barbecue and spicy, but not too spicy.  I decided to try it, as a wrap, only with grilled instead of fried chicken.  Geno once suggested that substitution to me, when I wanted the chicken wing salad but hesitated, because deep fried does not always agree with me (although I confess I love it).  It was a delicious sandwich.  Steven contented himself with a salad.

We had not been to Fratello’s for food and music in a while, because I usually have rehearsal for Love’s Labour’s Lost in Little Falls (perhaps you read a few of by blog posts about that).  We were delighted to have the opportunity to go last night.  It made a nice break from hunkering down in front of fans at our house (YES, I am grateful I have fans! Sheesh!)

He always has a great time, and makes sure everybody else does, too!

Fun with Friends at Salvatore’s

I missed making my Tired Tuesday Post for a good reason. We were meeting friends for dinner. Oh, OK, I could have come home and made a blog post before bed. I did not. Judge me if you are so inclined.

Our good friends Bonnie and Marty were up from Florida. They attended a wedding elsewhere in the state and took the opportunity to visit other family and friends, including us. Yay! We were happy to introduce them to one of our favorite places, Salvatore’s Pizzeria and Restaurant in Herkimer, NY.

We were invited to sit where we liked. We selected a table near the window but almost immediately switched to one across the room, more in the shade.

“They will not mind if we switch tables,” I said. They did not.

On looking at the Specials board, I had immediately decided on the Chicken Wrappini with spinach, feta, and raspberry vinaigrette. It was as delicious as I had hoped. Bonnie got a calzone, which I may have to get next time. Marty had a Meat Lover’s Pizza, which also looked good. Steve had chicken tenders. I may eat his leftovers.

We enjoyed catching up while we ate, and we had a lot of laughs. I love taking my far away friends to our local treasures!

Salvatore’s Pizzeria and Restaurant is located at 650 1/2 W. German St., Herkimer, NY, phone number 315-866-2600. They are open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Another Good Place to Eat

We’ve driven by Dibbles Inn in Middleville, NY many times. Our friend, Phil Arcuri, a talented local musician, plays there on occasion. One day recently, we decided to stop for a weeknight dinner. There was no music, but we had a fun time and an excellent meal.

It was a lovely May evening, and several people were sitting at outdoor tables. I was highly amused to see half a mannequin sporting brightly patterned leggings.

We opted to go inside and sit at the bar. We admired the rustic decor (why is my computer underlining “decor”? That is so a word!): lots of wood, a few humorous signs, and another half mannequin with similar leggings. There are also a lot of windows, letting in the bright sunlight, which to me is a lovely thing.

In addition to the regular menu, several specials were available. I was tempted by Taco Tuesday but opted for a Black and Bleu Burger. Steve got clam strips from the appetizer menu. The bartender warned hi that it was not very big, but Steve has a light appetite these days (as an added note, my computer did NOT underline the typos “stirps” and “ut.” What’s that all about, computer?).

While we ate we enjoyed a little conversation with other patrons. I love it when that happens. A man we didn’t know won some money on Instant Lottery and bought the bar a round. We were so pleased he included us. He could have just bought drinks for his friends and we wouldn’t have thought anything of it. We made sure to thank him.

When we left, another patron we had never met encouraged us to come again. We will!

Dibbles Inn is located at 25 Bridge St., Middleville, NY, phone number 315-891-7789.

Yes, Wednesday is Still a Thing

So I had a true Wuss-out Wednesday yesterday and did not post at all. These things happen, of course. What happened was this:

I came home from work and said to my husband, Steve, “Four words: Phil Arcuri at Fratello’s.” That was all it took to get him off the loveseat and into respectable clothes.

Since the music would not start till six, I took the time to go for a run. At no time do I run either very far or very fast, but yesterday was even worse than expected. For one reason, I had underestimated the wind chill and not dressed appropriately. Yikes! But I persevered for what I considered the bare minimum. Then I showered and put on a cute outfit. It was time for fun!

We found a handy parking space and seats on the bar. Phil came over and said hello. He is such a great guy! The bartender, Gino, took good care of us. Steve got popcorn chicken and we split a 12-inch garlic bread with mozzarella. I hesitated over which chicken salad I wanted.

“Grilled chicken is more sensible,” I said, “but the Buffalo chicken is so delicious.” Gino suggested I get the Buffalo Chicken Salad with grilled chicken. Genius! I added black olives and asked for parmesan-peppercorn dressing. The beauty part is I would have leftover salad for lunch on Thursday and Friday.

We did not have long to wait for the music to start, and did we ever enjoy it! We chair danced, sang along, and applauded each number. Phil sang hits from Jimmy Buffet, Johnny Cash, the Beatles and more. I was delighted when Gino requested “Mustang Sally,” one of my favorites.

Sing it, Phil!

I suppose I only could have written this last night, but when we got home I watched Dateline instead. Sue me.

Fratello’s Pizzeria is located at 158 E. Main St., Frankfort, NY, phone number 315-894-8484. They are open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 1 to p.m. Sunday. You can follow them on Facebook to find out their music schedule. It’s not just on Wednesdays!

More Mid-week Music

At work yesterday a co-worker told me that Matt Grainger was playing at Fratello’s. I guess my Wednesday night thing has become pretty well known, at least in my immediate circle. Yes, my husband, Steve, and I went out and enjoyed food and music. We had a great time.

He’s awesome!

This picture is from a previous performance (no, I have not yet upgraded my WordPress site to allow new images; I really should get on that). We rocked out to the tunes, mostly chair dancing. However, at one point I was dancing my way back from the ladies’ room, and a woman got up and danced with me till the end of the song..

While we listened, we enjoyed good food. Steve got the shrimp basket he had been hungry for since I came home and mentioned Fratello’s. I decided on antipasto salad. I have leftovers for my lunch today. Yum! We also indulged in a glass of wine.

Fratello’s is located at 158 E. Main St., Frankfort, NY, phone number 315-894-8484. They are open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 1 to p.m. Sunday. You can follow them on Facebook to keep updated on their food and music.

Yes! More Music!

It is a week of returns! Tonight my husband, Steve, and I returned to our favorite Wednesday night thing of going to Fratello’s Pizzeria in Frankfort, NY for food and music!

I had a cheeseburger, adding sauteed mushrooms and onions. Steven enjoyed a shrimp basket. And we grooved to the tunes of Mark Nanni!

He is multi-talented.

Full disclosure: this is a picture from a previous night when we heard Nanni. He plays guitar, keyboard, and accordion. We were loving it!

On previous Wednesdays we have been waited on by our favorite bartender, Toni. Tonight we had Kayla, who was also a delightful server. I admired her butterfly pen. She said she was into fun pens, and I said Toni was, too.

“She has a llama pen,” Kayla said.

“We gave it to her!” I said. I mentioned Toni’s mermaid tail pen.

“She stole it from me!” Kayla said. Now the truth comes out! Oh well, I have been known to filch a writing implement or two in my time.

We had a wonderful time. I was happy we returned to our favorite Wednesday night thing.

Fratello’s Pizzeria is located at 158 E. Main St., Frankfort, NY, phone number 315-894-8484. They are open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 1 to p.m. Sunday.

Shopping for Steve

I missed a chance to give a shout-out to a local business last week. The reason was I had shopped there for my husband, Steve’s birthday and did not want to spoil the surprise. Now I can repair that omission and blog about the Rose Quartz Stand in Herkimer, NY.

I love those animals! The skulls are nice, too.

I wanted to get Steve a little stone animal. We have a small collection which I add to little by little. We keep them on a shelf surrounding the two boxes containing the ashes of our much missed dogs.

Of course I walked all around the store looking at all the items. Stones, crystals and minerals, both raw and carved, as well as other items.

Sometimes I walk up and down the aisles several times.

I picked out a tiger with red eyes. Then I selected a small angel. When I was at the register paying for them, I impulsively added a little gold bell.

I like the shiny ones best.

Full disclosure: these pictures are from my Media Library, July 2020. I still have not upgraded my WordPress site to allow new photos. However, the shop looks remarkably similar now to what it did then. I highly recommend you stop in and check it out.

The Rose Quartz Stand is located at 105 Mohawk St., Herkimer, NY. They are open Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday and Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; closed Sunday and Monday.