Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The Royal Treatment at The Palace - Phoenicians of Albany

I put on my crown, grabbed my sword and my scepter, and entered the Palace along with my knave Onion. All were at my service with grace and smiles, welcoming me inside. I looked around and I approved. 
The sign is small and hard to see - The Palace is in another scenic strip mall on Fuller Rd. between Railroad Ave. and Warehouse Row

Then I ate.

"The Palace" has plenty of promise - Phoenicians (formerly on Central Avenue in Colonie) is just one part, still offering their wonderful Lebanese fare. The space is enormous - still under construction but open -  it will soon include a banquet space for 300! Casual, colorful, yet cavernous - with partitioning it could become much more intimate as this newly combined Mediterranean marketplace unfolds. There are promises of a baklava bar, an Italian deli and a Kosher deli coming soon. And a wine bar??? Oh, and did I mention the jewelry store (also once on Central) is in there too? You can buy me something pretty while you wait for your meal. It's just a suggestion, anyway.
The main dining area - there is table service

Now a coffee bar until they get their license - soon to be the Wine Bar
I love the cozy room in front - a great place to relax and enjoy your morning joe and watch the peasants through the large plate glass windows commute to work down Fuller Road. It's kind of a Starbucks room full of comfy chairs - throw in some good coffee and free WiFi and we're all set. They are offering what looks like standard breakfast fare from 7:00 to 11:00 a.m., which is interesting - that Med theme is lost there, but who knows. With so many possibilities I'm pretty sure what works stays and what doesn't will get dumped the moat where it belongs.
Coffee lounge 
Knave Onion and I did take-out for the Goddess' Ladies. I went for a Meza Sampler, which wasn't quite on the menu but was on the old one, and they were happy to put it together for me. I love their hummus (best in the city!): smooth, creamy, just the right hit of salt and garlic with lovely slightly sweet homemade pita. The pita alone is the most amazing pita I've ever had - what a wonderful addition to their offerings. The baba ghanouj was also fab - fresh eggplant and a hit of lemon, royally delicious. The tabouleh salad was sans bulgur and oniony and lettucey, but very fresh with a hit of vinegar. Even the stuffed grape leaf was amazing, with a nice mush factor. Finally a surprise of moujadara - lentils and rice, savory and satisfying. En garde - an excellent foil to the rest of the plate!!! 

The current menu is all wraps as the space is still under development but there are goodies to be had, like this Meza Sampler ($12.99)

Hummus to go, $5.99

And do try the falafal - a bit salty but the texture is perfect, mildly spiced, crunchy on the outside, smooth inside, like me. 

Falafel Appetizer, $5.99
Falafel Wrap, $7.99 - this was a deal!

Zena, Goddess of Fire

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