Gaskins -a new Hudson Valley Restaurant Gem!

photo from Gaskins Facebook page

At the corner of Rt. 8 and Rt. 33 in Germantown.  Once you’ve found Gaskins, I guarantee you’ll be back!

I had heard about Gaskins for awhile and hadn’t checked it out yet but when I learned that Julia Turshen (“Small Victories”) and her wife Grace Bonney (“In the Company of Women”) made the trip there for a special occasion and they shared their experience on Instagram, I KNEW we HAD to go.  So I invited our website editor, Auntie M and friends Claire Goodman and Bonnie Hundt to join me for my first Gaskins experience.

Gaskins (which the owners describe as a “Hudson Valley Tavern”) had amazing buzz when they first opened and immediately attracted a big following.  The owners are husband and wife team, Sarah and Nick Suarez.  He does the cooking and she manages the restaurant.  Before moving to the Hudson Valley from Brooklyn, Sarah managed several family operated restaurants in Brooklyn (Diner, Marlow & Sons, Roman’s, Marlow & Daughters, Reynard) and Nick owned a catering company.  They truly have their collective finger on the pulse of the Hudson Valley, where country meets cool!  Gaskins is totally unpretentious (though they would have every right to be) and as relaxed and comfortable as a favorite pair of jeans.  The night we went (President’s Day last Monday) the place was packed with a fabulous cross-section of diners: families with kids, weekenders, local college students, Brooklyn hipsters, and lots of baby boomers like me.  Gaskins doesn’t take reservations so we went early (around 6pm) and we still had to wait about a half hour for a table.  (Our server, Abby, later told us it was especially busy because of the holiday.)  Regardless, the time went quickly…the atmosphere was fun and friendly.  We ordered cocktails and found a high table near the bar where we chatted and laughed until our table was ready.

REMODELISTA on Gaskins

The interiors by Brooklyn-based Studio Tack are spare and simple, in keeping with the building’s humble heritage (it was once a five-and-dime and later a grocery store) and the low-key but stealth luxury vibe of Columbia County.

To see more interior photos, read Remodelista’s entire design review here.

I loved the interior design of this place and how they respected the soul of the building in the renovation.  They did not try to make it something it was not and yet, were able to give it an updated soulful, modern vibe.  I was impressed with every thoughtful design element: the paint colors, the bar, the tile on the floor, the seating (tables and booths)…even the fun vintage waste baskets in the bathroom.  Clearly, the heart and soul of Nick and Sarah are in each detail with the intention of making you feel “at home” and part of the community they have created at Gaskins.

 

Photograph from Gaskins Facebook page by Mikael Kennedy

So…the place looks and feels fabulous…what about the food?? 

We decided to each order something different so we could review as many dishes as possible and share our dishes with each other.  Our aforementioned server, Abby, was delightful…even though clearly the place was rocking and she was REALLY busy…and she helped guide us in our selections.  (click here to see the evening’s menu)  After we had a pretty good idea of what we were each getting we ordered great (and well-priced) bottle of wine.

Here we go with the food….

 

STARTERS

WINTER ROOT SALAD – Kohlrabi, Radishes, Asian Pear, Celery, Poppy Seeds

Talk about “first impressions”…this Winter Root Salad took all four of us by surprise with its deliciousness.  The gorgeous crispy radishes and kohlrabi with a lovely light but incredibly flavorful dressing.  This salad was my personal favorite…it will be in my memory bank forever!!

 

click images to enlarge

 

These other salads above were also amazing.  Beautiful, fresh, local ingredients made each one so memorable.  Claire’s favorite was the burrata: “The burrata was rich and sublime; a perfect crown for the royal slice of bread.”

 

ENTREES

 

Bonnie ordered the SHRIMP & GRITS with Lemongrass Butter, Pickled Peppers and Pea Shoots.  The shrimp was perfectly cooked, the grits creamy and savory and the portions were very generous.  She took her leftovers home and ate the next day and still loved this dish!

 

 

PORK CHOP with Sweet Potatoes, Roasted Onions & Tahini was Claire’s choice.   The pork had nice crispy edges yet it was still moist and the tahini sauce added such a surprising and delicious flavor.  The mashed sweet potatoes were yummy too.

 

 

FRIED CHICKEN SANDWICH – Fried Chicken Breast, Slaw, Honey Butter Hot Sauce, Side Salad.  The best review Auntie M can give a dish is “it almost made me cry it was so good”.  Well…Gaskins Fried Chicken Sandwich received such a review!  Just read the ingredients…you can almost imagine yourself how “friggin’ good” this sandwich is.  Not a crumb was left on her plate–she was almost unwilling to share:)

 

 

I got the FISH & CHIPS with Beer Battered Pollock, Tartar Sauce and Fries. The fish was so crispy yet light yet flavorful. Perfectly done french fries and what a generous portion! Loved it!

 

WE WERE STUFFED TO THE GILLS BUT DID ORDER THE CHAI-SPICED RICE PUDDING TO SHARE FOR DESSERT!

CHAI SPICED RICE PUDDING with Saffron, Honey and Pistachios


WE ARE SO LUCKY TO HAVE GASKINS IN OUR AREA!

All four of us were so impressed with our Gaskins dining experience that we are already planning our next visit.  We just loved the food and welcoming feel of this place and can’t wait to return when the weather warms up and they have opened their outside deck for patio dining.  I would also like to mention that Gaskins is a socially-responsible, community-minded family business. They support the same progressive and inclusive agenda I do and I always love spending money at businesses like this.  If you want to get a sense of the conscience and mission of Gaskins, I encourage you to visit their Facepage.

GASKINS
2 CHURCH AVENUE
GERMANTOWN, N.Y. 12526

518.537.2107
gaskinsny.com

HOURS – DINNER ONLY
Friday & Saturday –  5:00–10:00 pm
Sunday, Monday & Thursday: 5:00–9:00 pm

FROM GASKINS

Gaskins is a gathering place for the community and an extension of our home. The food we serve uses exceptional ingredients from nearby farms, but just as importantly, is nourishing and satisfying. We look forward to inviting our neighbors over for dinner for many years to come.


Sanctuary Restaurant – one more reason to love Gaskins

Sanctuary restaurants have a zero tolerance policy for sexism, racism, and xenophobia. We believe that there is a place at the table for all. Sanctuary Restaurants is a joint project of the Restaurant Opportunities Centers (ROC) United and Presente.org with participation by dozens of restaurants nationwide. Sanctuary Restaurants offer support and resources to workers, restaurants, and consumers to help create the world we want to see – a world free from hate, discrimination, and harassment.

 

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