David Grinberg Colonial Burger.
If you are trying to pick between restaurants to dine at for Binghamton’s biannual Restaurant Week, look no further than The Colonial. The student-favorite gastropub is located on Court Street in the heart of Downtown Binghamton and offers an American pub and comfort food in a rustic-chic atmosphere.

Since the weather is warming up, The Colonial has tables located outside in front of the restaurant and along Washington Street to dine at. My photographer, David, and I risked the threat of rain from the looming clouds above us and sat at one of the outdoor tables in the front. Among the sounds of cars, motorcycles and fellow students walking down Court Street, The Colonial had speakers playing music to vibe along with while you eat. The playlist was an interesting mix, to say the least, as we heard “The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air” theme song transition to “I Will Always Love You,” but David and I enjoyed the tunes nonetheless.

This year for Restaurant Week, The Colonial’s deals are $12 for lunch and $20 for dinner. The lunch and dinner menus each have three options for the appetizer, three options for the entree and two ice cream options for the dessert. The Colonial also has an extensive drink menu, with 30 beers on tap, which David took advantage of by ordering a Guinness.

David and I went for a late lunch, and I was excited to see the delicious vegetarian options. For the first course, I ordered the tofu bites with Korean BBQ sauce. The tofu bites were plated with celery and bleu cheese, which served as the perfect snack in between courses. I love my tofu to be a little crispy on the outside and The Colonial exceeded my expectations. The tofu bites were the perfect-sized cubes — not too big and not too small. They had a nice crunch when you bit into them, and were soft inside. Fans of sesame ginger would love the Korean BBQ sauce, which was sweet with a little bit of a spicy kick.

David ordered the country-fried chicken strips with BBQ sauce and honey mustard. David was ecstatic about the thin strips of chicken, as the middle was soft and perfectly cooked and the ends were crispy and crunchy. On our table, there was a wooden basket with additional sauces and seasonings, so David was able to add the perfect amount of salt to his chicken strips. Similar to the Korean BBQ sauce, David’s BBQ sauce and honey mustard were also delicious.

For the second course, I ordered the Portobello Slammer burger. The portobello mushroom was marinated in olive oil, garlic and other spices, resulting in a perfectly juicy mushroom. The sandwich came with roasted red peppers and a spinach-artichoke spread, which were both delicious. The bun was lightly toasted, but a little soft for my liking. David ordered the Colonial Burger with lettuce, tomato and mayo. The burger can also be served with cheese and bacon for an additional price. While I don’t eat meat, David’s enthusiasm for the burger almost made me want to order one for myself. David’s medium-done burger was cooked perfectly — not too pink and seared nicely. The edges were a little charred, which David claimed gave the burger a great added flavor.

All three of the second-course options came along with traditional fries, with the option of customized fries for a little extra money. David and I both stuck to traditional fries and we were highly impressed by the crunchiness and flavor. The large pile of fries were seasoned perfectly with salt and a bit of paprika. They also had an interesting crispiness to it that we guessed was created by coating it in flour, oil and some sort of breadcrumb batter.

As we cleaned off every last bite from our plates, the gray clouds finally did give out, a drizzle began coming down and we had to move to an indoor wooden high-top table for our third course. The inside of The Colonial is dim with golden lights hanging from the ceiling, which creates a cozy and warm environment, especially during a rainy spring day.

For dessert, I ordered the ice cream cookie sandwich and David had the strawberry ice cream bar. My dessert consisted of vanilla ice cream in between two soft chocolate chip cookies. The edges of the ice cream were coated in rainbow sprinkles and the sandwich was plated with fresh whipped cream and chocolate syrup. David’s dessert was a standard strawberry shortcake ice cream bar but was also plated with a drizzle of raspberry syrup and whipped cream. Both David and I loved the whipped cream and finished off our last course stuffed.

Before leaving, David and I talked to some diners at the table next to us who were also eating at The Colonial for lunch. They all agreed their food was delicious and plated nicely, just like ours. They clearly enjoyed their meals as they put their leftovers in to-go boxes, not wanting to leave behind any of the food.

My lunch at The Colonial was a great experience and I would not only recommend other BU students visit, but I will most likely be making a second appearance before the Restaurant Week deals are over. Overall, the food was delicious and the servings were large, especially considering the cheap lunch price. If you are looking for good food and a good time, head over to The Colonial this week and prepare your taste buds for some delicious flavors.