Don’t let the unassuming name fool you – this is one classy little joint. The Beer Belly in Albany’s New Scotland neighborhood [281 New Scotland Ave, Albany, NY 12208 – parking lot in the rear] is jam packed with craft beers and fun food finds. There is a comfortable yet hip atmosphere here and different seating options in a pretty big space: you have the bar, tables, high tops, and stool window seats. We came here to eat after the St. Patrick’s day parade it wasn’t too rowdy, but it was packed. Young folk, old folk, folk with kids, groups, couples; everyone was having a blast here. Service kept up nicely and food came out promptly. We started with the pretzel appetizer and it is a must!
These hulking sticks were hot, perfectly soft, and really flavorful. You get a choice of dipping sauce and the cheddar chive was sinful. I would come here just for the pretzel! Jeff came to enjoy some beer too, they have a great wall wide collection of beers, some interesting ones too.
You can get a flight, a small sample, or your regular cup. He enjoyed trying a seriously sour beer along with his French dip sandwich. I got a turkey sandwich, but I had to request no peanut butter on it. What a strange thing to put on a turkey sandwich? I just wasn’t that adventurous – not the biggest peanut butter lover here. Without the spread it was delicious though; a great cut of turkey, fantastically thick toasted bread, and lovely fontina.
They add a little brown paper bag of chips to your plate, which is such a cute addition! The pasta salad is yummy and unique with a Thai twist to it. Other than sandwiches they have lots of other interesting options including a special on $1 oysters at certain times. If you’re looking for a pub with some really great food, or just to get your pretzel fix, you will find it and more at the Beer Belly!