Ballston Spa, NY


(3 star)

Augie’s in Ballston Spa is a hometown restaurant, serving “family style” portions. This is “family style” similar to Buca di Beppo (Wolf Rd, Albany), where one dish is enough to feed the entire family. The portions are huge, the service extremely friendly and more than capable of handling large tables flawlessly and with a smile. Still, there is some reason I can’t bring this up to five stars.

We’ve been to Auggie’s twice, and will return. The first time was stupendous. The second time was not. I am not sure if a chef changed or we just caught them at the wrong time.

Auggie’s does boast a large menu, and plenty of specials on any given night. We are not kidding when we say two people will have plenty of left overs for tomorrow on a single entree. The portions are huge.

Bread is standard, but the bread is a heavy, wholesome grain bread that you feel healthy eating.

For the appetizers, we ordered two orders of Rice Balls. The Rice Balls were large, and came four per serving. The price was $14 per order (not mentioned before hand), and I do think twenty eight dollars for eight Rice Balls is a bit…um…high? They were good and tasty and cooked well, but at $3.50 for a ball of rice, they better be.

For an entree, we opted for the puttanesca, which was large and flavorful, but could have used a few more olives and capers for the amount of pasta. This came in at a reasonable $21 and change. The other order was pasta and seafood, namely shrimp and scallops, which came in at roughly the same price, and I know the seafood ingredients were more than the dangling of capers and black olives in the puttanesca…. The shrimp was ok, but the scallops seemed a bit scarce. The common theme seemed to be that the pasta dishes needed more ingredients, whatever those ingredients be. But what you receive will usually please the palate: The food is tasty, cooked well, tossed with fresh ingredients and homemade cooking. And as I said, the wait staff is extremely pleasant and capable.

We enjoy Augie’s and will return, because we love family- style and we love family owned businesses. Lower the price of the Rice balls, throw in a few more olives and capers and garlic, and this could be a five star family style restaurant.

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