Chris’s Short Takes: Loch & Quay in Albany

Lobster: [ˈläbstər]  NOUN

  • a large marine crustacean with a cylindrical body, stalked eyes, and the first of its five pairs of limbs modified as pincers.
  • (Yeah, yeah, yeah,…or a fascinating subject or person,…we’re shooting for THAT here,…)

Here in the 518, we have more than our share of these “Lobsters”, and usually in out of the way spots that really spark the interest of foodies, music lovers, and fun seekers.  In this series, I’m finding those spots, and I’m giving you directions on how to get there, and a little insight on what to expect on the menu, both food and fun wise.  And we begin, right around the corner…

Down on the corner of Broadway and Beaver Street is an original Art Deco bar from the 1930s. Here’s a peek at the amazing back bar!  Frank O’Conner, a well-known presence on the downtown Albany restaurant scene for years now, has revived this place and is quickly turning it into a real “Cheers” scenario.

You walk in and Pat greets you from behind the bar, you watch an order of tacos go by that looks like a great idea, just as Pat asks what he can get you behind the bar.  A great tap line beckons,…but so do the cocktails like this Mezcal Negroni.

Tacos aren’t the only thing you’re going to want here, check out the burgers like this 414 Burger,…that’s an 8 oz patty topped with cheddar, sautéed mushrooms in a house-made whiskey sauce.  I had this, it was fantastic.
Not quite so hungry,…try the soft pretzels with beer cheese and Loch mustard,…

There’s plenty of seating in the back, and there’s a great sidewalk seating option as well.  Something tells me they’re going to need it, they run weekly Trivia Nights on Tuesdays and are lining up all kinds of special tastings and events.

But the real fun is the people that hang out there.  Here’s Loch & Quay regular Larry McCrory.  If Loch and Quay were really ‘Cheers”,…Larry would be Norm,  and how does he feel about the whole situation?

“They let me be me,…and they still love me!”

Whether you’re a neighborhood dweller looking for a great watering hole, need a place to grab a bite on the way to the train, (or just want to see where you’d fit into “Cheers”), sometimes everybody needs a place where everybody knows your name,…this is it. And don’t forget to ask Larry what’s goin’ down when he walks in!  I bet he answers, “My buns on this stool,…”

The corner of Broadway and Beaver St. across from the old D&H Building (NYS Education Bldg.)

Loch & Quay
414 Broadway
Albany, NY 12207
(518) 389-7201

1 Comment
  1. Kevin Tighe says

    I’ve loved this place since arriving in Albany in the late 1970’s. From the Plaza Grill to Franklin’s Tower and now Loch & Quay, what a joint! Probably the coolest designed bar in upstate New York. A single cut slab of carved mahogany, there may not be another bar top anywhere still around quite like this one. Loch & Quay did a great job of renovating, a difficult balance of preserving the history and bringing in modern updates. If anyone knows where the “It’s Time For A Hendrick’s” clock went, I’ll make an offer. May the spirit of Patrick McHenry haunt that building forever.

Comments are closed.