Prix Fixe Dinners

Friday, October 31st Served 5-9

Braised Oxtail fontina grits, apple gastrique, fried leeks, cilantro

Smoked Baby Pork Loin whipped plantains w coconut, butternut squash hay, pineapple rosemary demiglace

Butter Poached Monkfish fried green tomatoes, pine nut couscous, pink lemon pearls, white wine syrup

Includes Choice of Dessert:


Chocolate Satin Cake

Pear-Apple Tart

30, or w/ red or white sangria 35

Full Tapas Menu Also Available

as is wine, beer, and Jim-Gerale

Artist’s Reception—Gary Masline: Faces & Places October 30th 5–9

Gary Masline Faces & PlacesNew Art Exhibit: Faces & Places, works by Gary Masline Showing Thru 2014

Reception—Gary Masline: Faces & Places

Thursday, October 30th 5PM till 9PM

Dinner is Served!

Chef Ross is whipping up a special menu, we’ll pass out Tapas hors d’oeuvres and Sangria, and we’ll be serving dinner till 9!

Gary Masline is a painter who works exclusively with oils on canvas. A resident since 1979 of the Capital District, his paintings have been included in juried exhibitions across New York State, receiving awards at the Mohawk-Hudson Regional Exhibition, the Arts Center of the Capital Region’s “Fence Select Exhibition”, and from Albany Center Gallery. In 2010, the Albany Institute of History and Art, America’s oldest art museum, named Gary one of “Tomorrow’s Masters Today”, and in 2001 he won the readers’ poll for “Best Visual Artist” in “Metroland”, the Capital Region’s weekly arts and entertainment newspaper.

Gary paints with the understanding that art is meant to provoke a response, and his hope is to stimulate a dialogue with viewers responding to his use of color, light, and even body language, to establish image, illusion, or icon. The vibrant palette and intense light of the American Southwest have affected his work, and Gary believes the Southwest is one of the earth’s centers of spiritual energy, which animates artistic awareness. Realizing that a painting can feign a reality which the viewer may never have experienced or seen, Gary asserts that people can nonetheless be profoundly affected by southwestern images serving as emblems or totems, with the symbols or gestures in paintings generating highly individual “stories.”

Gary Masline’s previous creative incarnation was as a screenwriter, and he reasons that painting is a consistent development stemming from that history. If one thinks of Gary’s paintings as consisting of line/drawing, pigment/color, and story/narrative, his work reveals him still “making films”…now just one frame at a time.

Gary currently is a member of the board of directors of the Upstate Artists Guild, and formerly served on the board of Troy’s Fulton Street Gallery. His studio is in Troy. Trained as a lawyer, Gary in 2010 retired from a longtime position as assistant counsel and press spokesman for a governor’s investigatory commission. He lives in East Greenbush with his wife Sharon.

Spot The Flowers, Win A Prize

Tell Me Where–Win A Prize

A Cubano and a Cortado
That’s a Cuban Sandwich with Cuban Coffee, to you Anglos

Walking the streets of downtown Troy today, and I happened to look down. I saw these beauties: someone planted them to make the City look good, to bring a smile to a passerby’s face. And it worked!

Relax, slow down, enjoy life while you can.

So tell me where the flowers are, and be precise. The winner gets to RELAX over a tasty lunch with us— on us.



Weekly Specials / Tapas / New Art / Fall Music Schedule

Week of Thurs. Oct. 9 to Sun. Oct. 12

Carmen Updates Window Boxes

As Wednesday’s cold front was rolling in, Jim was winter proofing and Carmen was cleaning and redecorating the window boxes. Check them out—  hearty mums, gourds and baby pumpkins.
Get Your Leaf Peeping In Soon!


French TaostBy which we mean, breakfast any time, PLUS our lunchtime menu!

—Which is why we are showing you a picture of French Toast with Fresh Fruit and Real Whipped Cream

Cubano Sandwich by popular demand— pork, ham & Swiss w/ mustard & pickle on Cuban bread


Check out our full menu!

Though for a real treat, come in and see what’s on our Specials Board.

SearedTroutFriday Tapas Specials 10/10

Beef Stew slow cooked in a tomato herb broth
Herb Stuffed Pork Loin marinated, served over mashed sweet potatoes
Pan Seared Rainbow Trout over saffron rice & pea purée

~Full Tapas Menu Here~

Desserts expanded offerings:

Have you tried the Apple Crisp? Fan-Tastic!!


Raspberry Chocolate Layer Cake

Gary Masline Faces & PlacesNew Art: Gary Masline—Faces & Places Showing Thru 2014

Gary loves Santa Fe, and it shows.

You may have seen Gary’s work around the area, he’s widely known.  We like the way his paintings start to tell a story, then leave the rest for you to figure out.  Look for an artist’s reception toward the end of the month.

Shows @ 6 & 8, $5 cover each

Music This Fall:

Mundo Nuevo – 10/24
Elizabeth Kasius & Heard– 11/21
The Nellies – Victorian Stroll
Mundo Nuevo – 12/19

Empty Bowls Benefit for the Homeless Oct 5th 2014 ~ 12-3pm Italian Community Center Troy NY 12180

Featuring many Troy restaurants, including your favorite, Carmen’s

What wonderful blend of savory and spicy will we bring this year? You’ll have to come and see! It’s all good, all for the homeless, AND you walk home with a handmade bowl, courtesy of area potters and volunteers.

A unique event to support the growing fight against the issue of hunger.

OCTOBER 5, 2014 ~ 12-3pm~ Italian Community Center ~1450 5th Avenue, Troy NY 12180
Description: The Empty Bowls Program is a wonderful grassroots movement that have brought artists, chefs, and communities together to help raise money for local food programs. Started nearly 20 years ago, it spread throughout the country to raise money and awareness about hunger.For the past seven years, the Collar City Clay Guild, in partnership with the Troy Architectural Project, Inc., has been fortunate to organize the Empty Bowls Project in Troy, NY. The Empty Bowls Program has become a community event in the city that draws hundreds and maybe even over a thousand people each year to help raise money for food programs.Every year, the Troy community flocks to the Italian Community Center with the great expectation of warm soup, fresh bread, beautiful handmade bowls, and the wonderful company of friends. By selling bowls, we have been able to raise almost $100,000 for the food programs in Troy.Since the beginning of the Empty Bowls Project in Troy our impact has been great, in 2009 we supported 17 food programs in Troy to help put food on their shelves and deliver food to those in need. Empty Bowls

Ride Bikes with the Mayor / Freedom Square Free concert / Mouth-Watering Specials


Thurs. Sept. 18 to Sun. Sept. 21 Take the challenge!

Anonymous Donor Puts Up Long Green for Bike Racks
Ride with the Mayor: noon Thurs. 10/2 from Monument Square
A heartfelt donor came back from health problems by riding a bike, and wanted to give something back at the same time as he showed others a key to health— exercise.

Our anonymous donor put up $1000 for bike racks for Troy. “Troy has none!” he moaned. “Get some already! You want people should just flop their bikes on the sidewalk? What is this, third grade!???!?”

The details were quickly dumped on Andrea Davis, who doesn’t have enough to do already. She is hunting down matching funds so we have more reach with this generosity, plus figuring out who and how and all the other questions.

Here’s the skinny— We need 50 people to ride their bike to work or school for a week, starting with the PreRamble Festival on September 27. Email Andrea at to register, or stop by the Transport Troy table at the Farmer’s Market. You’ll get a chance for a free kayak paddle at the PreRamble when you sign up. Plus a 45 minute ride with Mayor Lou Rosamilia on 10/2!


PreRamble 2  Sept. 27

  • Free Helmets for Kids
  • Bike Safety Course
  • Free Bike Tuneups
  • Walking and Biking Tours of Washington Park, the Burden Iron Works Museum and the New Riverfront Trail

Upstate Kayak Rentals will bring their boats to the Troy Boat Launch at Ingalls Ave for the PreRamble 2.  Rent a boat for $10 an hourStoryHarvest:  Finishing up with Free Concerts at Freedom Square


StoryHarvest 3:30-6 September 27 at Freedom Square

Free concert featuring Nation Beat plus Alex Torres and his Latin Orchestra
Chef’s Consortium prepares healthy food for a free community meal

How many different ways can you say free in one story? But it’s all wonderful and all free!

Help out w/ food donations: have extra fruit or veggies from your garden? Bring them to the Sanctuary for Independent Media, 3361 6th Ave N. Troy, Fri., 9/26 noon-4 or Sat. 9/27 from 8am-noon.


New Breakfast Special: Desayuno de Reyes

And this Desayuno (breakfast) is sure fit for a Rey (that’s king!
Two Eggs Over, topped with Pico (diced pickled peppers, but that’s another story for bedtime) on Veggie Hash, with sides of Croquettas and Fried Green Tomatoes.

Then jazz it up with a Cuban Coffee— a Cortado!


¡Lunch! We make it great, fresh cooked and tasty!

Cubano Sandwich by popular demand— pork, ham & swiss w/ mustard & pickle on Cuban bread


Check out our full menu!

Though for a real treat, come in and see what’s on our Specials Board


—Tapas Friday

Gambas al Ajillo Grilled Jumbo Shrimp in a garlic and wine sauce over cous cous

Braised Beef Short Ribs over mashed potatoes

Pernil Pulled Pork over saffron rice w/chimichurri sauce

Mejillones en Salsa Verde Mussels sauteed in a garlic-parsley green sauce

Friday Night: Mundo Nuevo—Tapas Specials—Fall Music Calendar

Mundo Nuevo Returns to Carmen’s Friday August 22nd

The best in Latin music, plus the best in Cuban food!
What a wonderful world! Mundo Nuevo returns to Carmen’s for an evening of music, dance and celebration. How good does it get?

About the only way you hear these guys is to hire them for your party (hey, we don’t mind!) or come to Carmen’s when they play. Shows @ 6 & 8, $5 cover each

now for tonight’s news from the happeningest bistro on First and Adams:

Tapas Friday night, and maybe over the weekend too

Tilapia over saffron rice w/ garlic-wine sauce

Cubano Sandwich by popular demand— pork, ham & swiss w/ mustard & pickle on Cuban bread


Pernil Pork, slow roasted for 14 hours…served with arroz con gandules…that’s herbed rice with pigeon peas

Desserts tasty & traditional


Key Lime Pie

Triple Chocolate Cake

Full Tapas Menu (click here)

Music This Fall: Who Plays When

Sensemaya– 9/19
Mundo Nuevo– 10/24
Elizabeth Kasius & Heard– November TBD
The Nellies– Victorian Stroll
Mundo Nuevo– 12/19

Metroland Best of Food & Drink 2014: Best Cuban: Carmen’s Cafe

Metorland Best of Food & Drink 2014: Best Cuban: Carmen’s Cafe

by Metroland Staff on July 24, 2014 ·

But you already knew we made the best Cuban food!
In addition to the six— yes, count ’em, six— 2014 Metroland Reader’s Poll wins, Carmen just snatched the prize for Best Cuban.

We know there was never a Best Cuban before but they created the category just for us. We’ll call that a win!

And that was before we had all these garden fresh tomatoes on hand–Imagine what we’ll be doing with them all week!

Patrons gathering at bistro tables outside Carmen's Cafe at 198 1st Street Troy, NY 12180

Best Cuban: Carmen’s Cafe

Hidden Garden Tour Thursday, May 22 from 4-7:30


EPSON MFP imageSee the hidden wonders
of gardens you’ve only imagined
Friends of Prospect Park

Hidden Garden Tour

Thursday, May 22 from 4-7:30

Refreshments & Rest Stop at Carmen’s Café
After-party starts at 5:30 at Carmen’s,
w/ prix fixe menu plus wine, beer and sangria

Tonight! Annie And The Hedonists—Acoustic blues, swing, and folk!

Friday November 16th— Annie & The Hedonists—Acoustic blues, swing, and folk!

…A band with a great lead singer and tight harmonies, covering an eclectic mix of acoustic music, torchy blues, standards, bluegrass, gospel, labor ballads, early jazz, …A wild ride across the vast acoustic music landscape Greg Haymes, Times Union

Annie and the Hedonists blew the place away Ralph Hunt, Heartland Music

Annie Get Your Fun! Tom Keyser, Times Union

Cafe open from 5–10pm with music in two live shows from 6–7:30 or 8–9:30 5$ Cover.
Call 518 326 2064 for reservations

~ Tapas Specials for Friday, November 16 ~

Fried Marinated Chicken Breast
w/Arroz con Gandules—Rice w/Pigeon Peas and Plantains

Guiso de Mariscos-Hearty Fisherman’s Stew
over saffron rice

Grilled Flank Steak w/Yucca fries and veggie

Eggplant stuffed with asparagus, manchego cheese
and tomato-lime sauce over saffron rice

~ Full Tapas Menu Here ~

~ Dessert Specials ~

Mango-Lime Cheesecake

~ Specials for Sat & Sun, Nov. 17 & 18 ~

Steak and eggs, served with home fries and toast

Pumpkin cream cheese mouse served over pancakes/Short Stack

~ Full Breakfast Menu Here ~

MasterCard  —  Discover  —  Visa  —  American Express accepted.