Ok, there are people who like restaurant week, people who run from it, and then there are people like myself, who use this as an opportunity to try a few different places over the course of the 2-ish weeks of restaurant week.

Hudson Valley Restaurant Week is back! This is fabulous because to me it is a sign that things are starting to return a little bit to the way it was pre-pandemic. Restaurant week will take place May 10 - May 23, 2021, at multiple restaurants throughout the 7 county area.

There are two things that you should probably bring with you to each restaurant that you visit? What are those two things? Keep reading.

Why could people possibly not like restaurant week? At its best, it is an opportunity for a restaurant to get people into their places who have never visited, wanted to visit or never even heard of the place. As a person who worked in restaurants during these special weeks, I know that it is a challenge for the staff, both front of the house and the kitchen. There will be different menus, the kitchen will have to order in advance to be able to have the items on the special menu, and the service staff will be a tad unfamiliar with the preparation of the new items.

People, who are a restaurant's regular customers, often feel slighted, because they might not get the normal attention that they usually do from the service staff because they are just in general busier than they had been. The key to enjoying the experience is patience. Remember that restaurants have not had it easy over the course of the last year, there are many items that their suppliers have been out of, it has been super challenging for a place to get staff right now, and then until recently, their operating hours were maxed out by a state mandate.

Ok, that is enough negative about restaurant week. Here are the details:

  • According to the Valley Table, which sponsors HVRW, there will be more than 100 restaurants participating in 7 counties.
  • Restaurants will have the option of a three-course lunch or dinner (or both). The dinner will cost $35.95, the lunch $25.95. These prices do not include tax, tip, or beverages.
  • New this year, some of the three-course options will be available for take-out. This is at the discretion of the restaurant, thus not all are doing that.
  • Do you need to make reservations? I always encourage you to make reservations during any type of restaurant week, but with the limited capacity, it is even more imperative that you do so. You can always ask to be a walk-in, but you are gambling with actually getting a seat. Contact the specific restaurant that you would like to dine at, ask if they are taking reservations, and if you can make them via the phone or if you need to do it online.
  • I think that I already mentioned being patient, but a second suggestion would be for you to bring a bit of flexibility with you as well. For instance, with the shortages of ketchup, cheese, and bacon, the kitchen might have a menu item that uses one or more ingredients that all of the sudden was out of stock at their supplier. Thus, a last-minute menu change. 

Go ahead, take a shot on a new place during restaurant week. Share with us your food photos and suggestions of where we should dine out next.

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