Best of 2018: Drink

Best of 2018: Drink

Best Cafe

 Superior Merchandise

147 4th St, Troy

The amount of thought, love and care put into each drop of liquid you consume at Superior Merchandise is rivaled by the same energy that goes into the design and atmosphere of this Troy staple. That’s not to say Superior Merchandise is the only good place to drink coffee in the region. Superior edged out Stacks in this category by a single vote. 

2nd place Stacks

3rd place Iron Gate

Best Cup of Coffee


260 Lark St and 488 Broadway, Albany

No fuss, no muss. Our readers say that the best place to get a simple cup of joe is at Stacks in Albany. By the sound of it, residents of Troy and Schenectady will soon be able to rely on Stacks to keep their energy levels up.

 2nd place Superior Merchandise

 3rd place Fifth Tier Baking Studio


Best Cafe for Food

Cafe Madison

1108 Madison Ave. and 359 Northern Blvd, Albany

Like your coffee with delicious breakfasts, amazing salads and a deep vegan selection? Cafe Madison is the place for you!

2nd place Little Pecks, Iron Gate Cafe

3rd place The Whistling Kettle

Best Espresso


This wasn’t really a competition. Stacks blew everyone else out of the water. Take a sip of Stacks’ espresso and you’ll understand why.

 2nd place Eden Cafe

 3rd place 3 Fish, Happy Cappuccino (tie)


Best Chai


Stacks does it again!

 2nd place Daily Grind

 3rd place Superior Merchandise, Honest Weight (Tie)


Best Iced Coffee


You must be starting to get the idea at this point.

2nd place Daily Grind

3rd place Superior Merchandise


Best Tea

The Whistling Kettle

254 Broadway, Troy

The best place to sip and think.

2nd place Stacks

3rd place The Fifth Tier Baking Studio


Best Bar


4 Clinton Square, Albany

Tess Collins brought all of her magic with her when she took over this friendly Albany pub. Some of the area’s best bets round out the top three in what was a tough competition for second and third.

2nd place The Savoy, Hunters on Jay (Tie)

3rd place The Ruck, Susie’s (Tie)


Best Bar For Food


4 Clinton Square, Albany

Tess strikes again! From fun appetizers, hearty burgers, and fresh salads, McGeary’s is a decent choice for lunch or dinner even if you aren’t looking to toss a few back.

2nd place The Savoy

3rd place The Shop, The Ruck (Tie)


Best Sports Bar


1094 Madison Ave., Albany and 48 North Greenbush Rd., Troy

This veteran Albany bar and grill is a great place to eat some wings and take in a soccer game.

2nd place Wolff’s Biergarten

3rd place McGeary’s


Best Taproom

The Savoy

301 Lark Street, Albany

The staff at The Savoy will find you your favorite drink, and if you want they’ll have a stimulating conversation with you while doing it. Alcohol and education? Who is going to pass that up? The second and third place winners brew their own tasty sippers.

2nd place Brown’s

3rd place Rare Form

Best Gay Bar

Oh Bar

304 Lark Street, Albany

Oh Bar is a joyous place full of good beer, nice people, and AMAZING karaoke. The second and third place winners are neighbors on Albany’s Central Ave. and combined they make one hell of a dance party.

2nd place Waterworks

3rd place Rocks

Best Cocktail

The Savoy

301 Lark Street, Albany

Like a candy store but with sweet and savory alcoholic beverages, The Savoy has the golden ticket to cocktail nirvana.

2nd place Speakeasy 518

3rd place The Shop, Hamlet and Ghost (Tie)


Best Bartender

Halsey Reed, McGeary’s

Halsey Reed of McGeary’s fame brings home the big win with a majority of votes in the category.

2nd place Sam Hooker of Speakeasy 518 

3rd place Andrew Barrone of Waterworks, Josh Turner of Susie’s

Best Brewery


50 Factory Hill Rd, North Hoosick and 417 River St, Troy

Both ubiquitous across the region and ultra tasty Brown’s remains the standard to which all upstart local brewers are measured. A lot of those new brewers either got their inspiration or even help and education from Brown’s owners and staff.

2nd place Rare Form

3rd place Druthers

Best Distiller


78 Montgomery Street, Albany

Albany Distilling Company has become a shining example of entrepreneurial spirit in Albany–from a great products, fun branding, an exciting new bar and shop and great marketing, ADCO stands out above the rest.

2nd place Yankee Distillers

3rd place Harvest Spirits

Best Local Spirit

Ironweed Rye Whiskey

Besides summoning images of 1930s Albany to mind with every sip, this ADCO product has managed to become the preferred pour at a number of Albany’s most popular establishments. Cheers!

2nd place Deathwish Vodka

3rd place Harvest Spirits Applejack


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