Guidebook: Ballston Spa and vicinity

Poppet
Guidebook: Ballston Spa and vicinity

Food Scene

Here is a list of some restaurants in the area. There are a few restaurants which are to be avoided. I do NOT recommend Leon's Mexican, or El Cilantro in Ballston Spa. It is difficult to get breakfast in Saratoga Springs, and the best place, the Country Corner Café, is usually very crowded on the weekends, with a line out the door. Ballston Spa has better breakfast, Saratoga is better for dinner and drinks, in general.
Excellent breakfast and lunch, waffles, until 2 pm. In Ballston Spa on Front St.
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Iron Roost
36 Front St
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Excellent breakfast and lunch, waffles, until 2 pm. In Ballston Spa on Front St.
Fantastic and delicate home made Indian food. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options, wine and beer.
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Little India
60 Court St
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Fantastic and delicate home made Indian food. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options, wine and beer.
Good healthy fare, decent sized portions, good and tasty salads, bangers and mash, etc. Overcrowded at times. On the west side of Saratoga Springs, near the Beekman St. arts district.
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The Local - Pub & Teahouse
142 Grand Ave
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Good healthy fare, decent sized portions, good and tasty salads, bangers and mash, etc. Overcrowded at times. On the west side of Saratoga Springs, near the Beekman St. arts district.
Try to make a reservation because this place is usually filled. You can park in the public lot on Phila St. before the restaurant. In Saratoga Springs near downtown.
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Sushi Thai Garden
44 Phila St
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Try to make a reservation because this place is usually filled. You can park in the public lot on Phila St. before the restaurant. In Saratoga Springs near downtown.
Often voted the best restaurant in Saratoga. Expensive fine food. Menu changes daily I think.
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Sperry's
30 1/2 Caroline St
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Often voted the best restaurant in Saratoga. Expensive fine food. Menu changes daily I think.
Large portions, great homemade Mexican food, fairly reasonable. Near the harness track in Saratoga Springs.
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Mexican Connection
41 Nelson Ave
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Large portions, great homemade Mexican food, fairly reasonable. Near the harness track in Saratoga Springs.
The Nomad Cafe is a small place in downtown Ballston Spa, which serves delicious crêpes, teas, coffees and alcoholic beverages. It is open from 7 am to 3 pm currently (pandemic hours.) They have gluten-free options, and a jukebox. It's a great hangout.
Nomad Coffee and Crepes
92 Milton Ave
The Nomad Cafe is a small place in downtown Ballston Spa, which serves delicious crêpes, teas, coffees and alcoholic beverages. It is open from 7 am to 3 pm currently (pandemic hours.) They have gluten-free options, and a jukebox. It's a great hangout.
This is definitely a 5 star restaurant, and people come from far away to dine here. The food is amazing, much of it is organic. It's a little bit dressy, sort of "smart casual." They have gluten-free options.
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Next Door Kitchen and Bar
51 Front St
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This is definitely a 5 star restaurant, and people come from far away to dine here. The food is amazing, much of it is organic. It's a little bit dressy, sort of "smart casual." They have gluten-free options.
Henry's serves typical fare, but it is well prepared. They have burgers, salads and wraps, also beer and wine. Open for lunch and dinner. There's a musician Monday nights. In downtown Ballston Spa next to the post office.
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Henry's Tavern
19 Front St
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Henry's serves typical fare, but it is well prepared. They have burgers, salads and wraps, also beer and wine. Open for lunch and dinner. There's a musician Monday nights. In downtown Ballston Spa next to the post office.
This is an excellent new restaurant, a short walk away from here! It has vegan and gluten-free options, and is open for dinner and takeout.
Nani's Indian Kitchen
256 Milton Avenue
This is an excellent new restaurant, a short walk away from here! It has vegan and gluten-free options, and is open for dinner and takeout.
This is a new restaurant right across the road, with authentic Mexican food. I recommend the tacos and bebidos (homemade beverages.)
Taqueria Guadalajara
2007 Doubleday Avenue
This is a new restaurant right across the road, with authentic Mexican food. I recommend the tacos and bebidos (homemade beverages.)
A nice rustic eatery in Ballston Lake, breakfast, pies, etc.
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Lakeside Farms
336 Schauber Rd
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A nice rustic eatery in Ballston Lake, breakfast, pies, etc.

Arts & Culture

This is also known as the Brookside Museum. It is a historic building with some simple hands-on exhibits. It is great for children who want to learn a bit of history, near downtown Ballston Spa.
Saratoga County Historical
6 Charlton St
This is also known as the Brookside Museum. It is a historic building with some simple hands-on exhibits. It is great for children who want to learn a bit of history, near downtown Ballston Spa.
History of glass making in this area. The proprietor will give you a lecture and tour. In downtown Ballston Spa, check hours.
National Bottle Museum
76 Milton Ave
History of glass making in this area. The proprietor will give you a lecture and tour. In downtown Ballston Spa, check hours.
SPAC has live music concerts, the NYC ballet, the Philadelphia Orchestra and a big jazz festival. It is a non-profit outdoor theater with tickets for either under the roof or seating or the lawn. Bring your own water ($5/bottle there) and blankets or low chairs for the lawn. I think they search coolers, because some things are prohibited. You can park at SPAC and the price for regular parking is $10. If it gets all filled for big concerts, there is then premier parking which ranges in price from $15-40. You can take a taxi, which usually costs about $10-11. However if you use uber rather than a regular local taxi you may be charged congestion pricing which can be up to $41.
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Saratoga Performing Arts Center
108 Avenue of the Pines
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SPAC has live music concerts, the NYC ballet, the Philadelphia Orchestra and a big jazz festival. It is a non-profit outdoor theater with tickets for either under the roof or seating or the lawn. Bring your own water ($5/bottle there) and blankets or low chairs for the lawn. I think they search coolers, because some things are prohibited. You can park at SPAC and the price for regular parking is $10. If it gets all filled for big concerts, there is then premier parking which ranges in price from $15-40. You can take a taxi, which usually costs about $10-11. However if you use uber rather than a regular local taxi you may be charged congestion pricing which can be up to $41.
This is a small music venue with live performers. It is best known for folk music but they also have blues, jazz, klezmer, cajun, bluegrass, classical and a capella music. Tickets must be purchased in advance for sell-out shows.
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Caffe Lena
47 Phila St
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This is a small music venue with live performers. It is best known for folk music but they also have blues, jazz, klezmer, cajun, bluegrass, classical and a capella music. Tickets must be purchased in advance for sell-out shows.

Essentials

Bring your own bags, they do not have any unless you get them from a vending machine. This small grocery store, only a two-minute walk away around the corner, has fresh vegetables and fruit as well as kefir and specialty cheeses. It is very inexpensive; I don't recommend their least expensive items.
ALDI
2008 Doubleday Ave
Bring your own bags, they do not have any unless you get them from a vending machine. This small grocery store, only a two-minute walk away around the corner, has fresh vegetables and fruit as well as kefir and specialty cheeses. It is very inexpensive; I don't recommend their least expensive items.
This store is great for shampoo, sunscreen, and any first aid needs. They also have a range of dried and bottled food, some of which is organic. They have items you may need such as beach towels, portable chairs, etc. and it is a one-minute drive from here. They don't have anything refrigerated or fresh produce. They have some gluten free food and beverages.
Ocean State Job Lot
2035 Doubleday Ave
This store is great for shampoo, sunscreen, and any first aid needs. They also have a range of dried and bottled food, some of which is organic. They have items you may need such as beach towels, portable chairs, etc. and it is a one-minute drive from here. They don't have anything refrigerated or fresh produce. They have some gluten free food and beverages.
If you need hardware, this is the place.
Allerdice Building Supply
41 Walworth St
If you need hardware, this is the place.
This is the closest large grocery store, it's on the other side of Ballston Spa, about 2.5 miles.
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Hannaford Supermarket
11 Trieble Ave
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This is the closest large grocery store, it's on the other side of Ballston Spa, about 2.5 miles.

Shopping

This place is now call Bowman Orchard, and in the fall they have lots of fresh fruit, pumpkins and vegetables, pay in cash on the honor system.
Malta Ridge Orchard and Gardens
107 Van Aernem Rd
This place is now call Bowman Orchard, and in the fall they have lots of fresh fruit, pumpkins and vegetables, pay in cash on the honor system.
This is an art supply and gift store in Saratoga which is a fun place to browse. They have lots of amusing things for children and adults both.
Soave Faire Art & Office Supplies
Broadway
This is an art supply and gift store in Saratoga which is a fun place to browse. They have lots of amusing things for children and adults both.

Entertainment & Activities

Usually is showing at least six movies, first-run movies in all genres. They have matinees. Tuesday is discount night.
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Bow Tie Cinemas
19 Railroad Pl
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Usually is showing at least six movies, first-run movies in all genres. They have matinees. Tuesday is discount night.
There are two public swimming pools in the state park. The Peerless Pool is Olympic-sized and 0-4 ft. deep. There is a sprinkler for young kids, a water slide and a playground.. It is very popular with summer camps, children and families. It has been recently renovated with the addition of more bathrooms and private changing rooms. The Victoria pool is for adults, although children are allowed. It has a restaurant where alcohol is served. It has a diving board on one end. It is 4-10 ft. deep approximately. Both pools have changing rooms and showers.
Peerless Pool
19 Roosevelt Dr
There are two public swimming pools in the state park. The Peerless Pool is Olympic-sized and 0-4 ft. deep. There is a sprinkler for young kids, a water slide and a playground.. It is very popular with summer camps, children and families. It has been recently renovated with the addition of more bathrooms and private changing rooms. The Victoria pool is for adults, although children are allowed. It has a restaurant where alcohol is served. It has a diving board on one end. It is 4-10 ft. deep approximately. Both pools have changing rooms and showers.
I do not play golf but one of the people who has stayed here recommends the Pioneer golf course. He said it is about 8 miles from here, it is an 18-hole golf course and the rates are reasonable. It opens early and he saw the sun rise there.
Pioneer Hills Golf Course
3230 Galway Rd
I do not play golf but one of the people who has stayed here recommends the Pioneer golf course. He said it is about 8 miles from here, it is an 18-hole golf course and the rates are reasonable. It opens early and he saw the sun rise there.
This is the older of the two pools in the State Park, and is geared toward adults. The shallow end is three feet deep. There is a restaurant with outdoor dining which serves alcohol. It is usually packed on hot days during the summer, but it's a very pleasant place to swim.
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Victoria Pool
Roosevelt Drive
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This is the older of the two pools in the State Park, and is geared toward adults. The shallow end is three feet deep. There is a restaurant with outdoor dining which serves alcohol. It is usually packed on hot days during the summer, but it's a very pleasant place to swim.

Parks & Nature

This is the state park where SPAC and the Peerless and Victoria Pools are located. There are many trails throughout the park for walking, biking and running. There are also tennis courts and a golf course. The Dance Museum is here, too. Parking is $4, free after 4:00 pm.
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Saratoga Spa State Park
19 Roosevelt Dr
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This is the state park where SPAC and the Peerless and Victoria Pools are located. There are many trails throughout the park for walking, biking and running. There are also tennis courts and a golf course. The Dance Museum is here, too. Parking is $4, free after 4:00 pm.
This is a nice woods which is a short drive from here. It has trails and streams and fishing with a limit of three fish. It is popular with dog walkers and nature enthusiasts.
Woods Hollow Nature Preserve
226 Northline Rd
This is a nice woods which is a short drive from here. It has trails and streams and fishing with a limit of three fish. It is popular with dog walkers and nature enthusiasts.
The Zim Smith Trail is a 9 mile biking and walking trail which runs from Ballston Spa to Halfmoon, NY. On the way is the small village of Round Lake, with charming Victorian houses and a great bakery called Leah's. Ask me for directions to the trailhead. https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/new-york/zim-smith-pedestrian-trail https://www.saratoga.com/things-to-do/hiking-and-nature-trails/zim-smith-trail/
Zim Smith Mid-County Trail
Zim Smith Mid-County Trail
The Zim Smith Trail is a 9 mile biking and walking trail which runs from Ballston Spa to Halfmoon, NY. On the way is the small village of Round Lake, with charming Victorian houses and a great bakery called Leah's. Ask me for directions to the trailhead. https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/new-york/zim-smith-pedestrian-trail https://www.saratoga.com/things-to-do/hiking-and-nature-trails/zim-smith-trail/
This is a nice place to rent one- or two-person kayaks and spend half the day on the Kayaderosseras Creek, which leads into Saratoga Lake. You may see a great blue heron! Great for children and adults. It is located east of Saratoga Springs, on the way to Schuylerville.
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Kayak Shak
251 Stafford Bridge Rd
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This is a nice place to rent one- or two-person kayaks and spend half the day on the Kayaderosseras Creek, which leads into Saratoga Lake. You may see a great blue heron! Great for children and adults. It is located east of Saratoga Springs, on the way to Schuylerville.

Drinks & Nightlife

There are many good bars and brew pubs in Saratoga Springs, but only a few in Ballston Spa.
This is a very fine dinner place which also has drinks. It is open evenings 5-10 pm or so. It is not cheap, but people tell me it's worth it, and they grow their own vegetables.
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Next Door Kitchen and Bar
51 Front St
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This is a very fine dinner place which also has drinks. It is open evenings 5-10 pm or so. It is not cheap, but people tell me it's worth it, and they grow their own vegetables.
Crêpes, strong coffee and alcoholic drinks in the evening. They also have a jukebox. Not open late during the pandemic. hours 7-3 Mon-Sat, 7-5 Sun, closed Tues.
Nomad Coffee and Crepes
92 Milton Ave
Crêpes, strong coffee and alcoholic drinks in the evening. They also have a jukebox. Not open late during the pandemic. hours 7-3 Mon-Sat, 7-5 Sun, closed Tues.