Commercial Drive in New Hartford is about as commercial as you can get. Sangertown Square Mall, Wally-World, Panera Bread, Barnes & Noble, Kohl’s. On and on with mostly big box stores and car dealerships.
But not far from the Red Lobster (the evil twin of Olive Garden) and in front of the Old Navy store is the tiny Cafe Del Buono. A not-so-commercial place that I have never been before.
Wife L, Daughter B, and I stopped in last Saturday and had a terrific lunch. The restaurant is known for its Utica greens, and we sampled some as an appetizer. They were terrific. We wimped out and got mild, but in no way were the greens lacking in flavor. The cafe’s version of the CNY staple was right up there with those served by Michael’s restaurant in Waterville. I’m thinking it’s a toss-up.
I had a caesar chicken wrap with bacon that I really liked, and the sweet potato fries were dynamite. My familial companions both had the fish sandwiches, and the haddock was light and tender and delicious.
Our waitress was unbelievably efficient and welcoming. Fresh drinks were right there for us without having to ask, as was the warm bread that complimented our greens. I can see where the cafe might get pretty loud when all the booths and tables are full, but I would not let that deter me from a future visit.