Posted by Rebecca Workman, Tara Lerman, Sara Gagnon and Kate Butler
Well in line with the stereotype of the impoverished and starving college student, we were looking for a good homestyle meal without having to go too far or pay too much. In a streak of good fortune, Becca saw an ad for Comfort Kitchen, which opened earlier this summer in June, and we deemed it a good affordable place to try out.
We walked down the stairs of the Saratoga Marketplace on Broadway and entered the modern but homey atmosphere of Comfort Kitchen. The friendly staff quickly informed us that the grilled cheese, made with locally sourced cheddar, fontina and gruyere, and the pesto tomato soup were favorites among customers. Naturally, we ordered both dishes, along with the french onion burger, veggie burger and the decadent four-cheese macaroni and cheese. We knew that we couldn't forget the sides, so we also tried the sweet potato chips and the homemade tater tots.
Everything at Comfort Kitchen was not only delicious, but also very fresh. The tater tots were crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. They were clearly made moments before they were placed on our plates - these were not your typical cafeteria tots. The sweet potato chips, sprinkled with rosemary-orange sea salt, had the perfect consistency and saltiness, far exceeding the quality of an average chip or sweet potato fry. If you're a burger person, be sure to try the tangy and savory french onion burger. You also can't go wrong with the perfectly textured veggie burger, made with black beans and topped with avocado, pickled red onions and a house-made chipotle mayo. For the classic comfort food, don't miss out on the creamy mac & cheese topped with homemade herb breadcrumbs, which was rich but subtle in flavor. Blended with a great roasted garlic aioli and caramelized onions, the three cheeses of the grilled cheese melted together into a delicious twist on the classic sandwich. The dish was especially good when dipped into the rich and tasty tomato soup.
After all this, we had just enough room to share dessert. The apple hand pie was a perfect cross between an apple pie and an apple crisp, wrapped in a delicious flaky crust that may have been too good to share. Drizzled with semi-sweet chocolate and filled with peanut butter chips, the blondie was a dense and flavorful take on the traditional sweet.
Perhaps what sets Comfort Kitchen apart from the average restaurant or lunch chain is the quality of its locally sourced ingredients. For customers curious about where the restaurant's ingredients come from, the names of the vendors can be found on the chalkboard outside the restaurant. Each ingredient stood out in just the right way, adding layers of exciting complexity to meals that might otherwise seem standard.
As summer comes to an end, the restaurant will begin to incorporate more fall comfort foods into its menu. Be sure to check out new dishes like mashed potatoes with gravy and more. If you're looking for that high-quality comfort cuisine at an affordable rate, we highly recommend you head over to Comfort Kitchen.
For more info and to check out their menu, go to http://www.comforteats.com/.
And in case we weren't clear, get the tots.