There’s a a difference between “going out to eat” and “dining out.” The Cellar (21 W Market St, Corning, NY) fits the latter category. It’s the kind of place you go to celebrate, have a date night, or to impress clients. It’s more than just food and drinks; it’s about the whole dining experience. Let’s get this out of the way right now… If your going for dinner, entrées are in the range of $15-$50 (average is about $30) ; if you’re budgeting your night, a bottle of wine and some tapas are the way to go.
It’s a great thing to have a place with a cool chic atmosphere for dining and drinking in Corning. The lighting and decor is well thought out, elegant, and fun. [I have purposely not included photos in this post because all I had was my cell phone camera that wouldn’t do it justice.] The Cellar recently renovated by taking over the neighboring business, knocking down the wall, and adding dining space. They did a seamless job incorporating the new space. From cool new floor-to-ceiling booths, to having their extensive wine list on an iPad, it’s worth stopping in just to check out their new digs. It may sound a bit pretentious, but really it’s not. Pretentious implies it’s not justified, and I think Corning justifies a cool place like The Cellar. It’s a matter of perspective I suppose, but here you will find a fun, mixed, and excited crowd.
I ordered the Pumpkin Ravioli ($22). I figured it would be either A) awesome or B) mediocre and overpriced, making it a good entrée for evaluating. I also ordered a side of Potato Wedges (tossed w/ fresh herbs, truffle oil, & lemon tarragon aioli). I’ll make it easy for you; I’m quite sure the Pumpkin Ravioli is the best thing on the menu… that being said, I also had some of the Risotto ($19) and I’m quite sure that was the best thing on the menu. Obviously I haven’t tried everything; in fact, considering they have soups, salads, sides, deserts, and a separate bar menu of tapas, I’ve sampled very little. Hopefully that will change soon… they likely have the best chef in town.
I should also mention drinks. The Cellar considers itself a wine bar (in fact their website is www.CorningWineBar.com). They have a huge selection, and we ordered a bottle of Malbec that was fantastic and lower priced (JELU / 2009 / San Juan, Argentina). Like I mentioned earlier, the entire wine list is on an iPad, so you can find something you like easily with a lot of information on any particular bottle. The iPad also shows their beers and specialty drinks… It’s pretty nifty.
If you haven’t been to The Cellar in a while, you’ll find that even with the renovation expanding the restaurant, it’s still a fun place to stop in for Friday night drinks and entertainment. It’s a fun and sexy crowd, but then again, anytime I go somewhere it instantly becomes a bit more fun and a lot more sexy.