Farewell to a favorite

Alex & Ika in Cooperstown, which reopened as a new restaurant today.

Alex & Ika in Cooperstown, which reopened as a new restaurant today.

Put a gun to my head and ask me to name my favorite upstate New York restaurant and I’ll eventually blurt out Alex & Ika.

I love how I always feel at home at Union Hall Inn. I love the crispiness of the chicken thighs at Hattie’s and the nostalgic feeling I get when I walk into Jack’s Oyster House. And I would be perfectly happy eating every meal for the rest of my life at the Northampton Diner.

But with Alex & Ika in downtown Cooperstown, it was love at first sight. And now it’s gone.

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Where the buffalo [used to] roam

Gem Farms bison crossing the New York State Thruway. Photo from the Times Union, http://www.timesunion.com.

Bison can swim?

That was my first thought when I read the amusing but sad accounts about a herd of buffalo that escaped from Gem Farms in Schodack and traveled as many as 20 miles, most of them swimming across the Hudson River, crossing the Thruway and wandering into Bethlehem, where they eventually were dispatched.

My second thought was more somber. Man, bison farming is tough.

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