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Fish & Game Restaurant, Hudson

Zakary Pelaccio and Jori Jayne Emde make waves upstate with a homey new outpost

by James Thorne in Food + Drink on 13 August 2013

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Part of a growing community of entrepreneurs who have left NYC for greener pastures, husband-and-wife team Zakary Pelaccio and Jori Jayne Emde recently set up shop in Hudson, NY. The opening of Fish & Game restaurant follows the success of Pelaccio's previous ventures Fatty 'Cue and Fatty Crab in Brooklyn and Manhattan. With it, Emde and Pelaccio have brought the ingenuity of the five boroughs and married it with the local, organic ethos of the Hudson Valley. The result is a homemade experience that reflects the couple's appreciation for high quality, unstuffy food served in a relaxing atmosphere. "It's a home," Pelaccio insists. "This is our house."

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If the restaurant is a home, then it's an abode of a different color—one in which whole hogs come in to be butchered, snout to tail. In the months since the opening, Pelaccio admits that they have not bought any primal cuts, preferring to keep the butchering in-house. As for the greens, all produce comes from farms within 15 miles of the restaurant, and diners can find a list of the providers on the back of the menus.

Emde's influence can be seen in the house-made condiments. Everything from ketchup to worcestershire sauce to rhubarb kimchee are the fruits of Emde's ongoing project "Lady Jayne's Alchemy." She admits that the move upstate has been a blessing in terms of space, citing problems associated with fermenting fish sauce in a highly populated city.

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Michael Davis Architects + Interiors stands behind the architecture and design of the building, which began as a blacksmith's shop and has undergone a number of iterations since, including a stint as a late-night sausage and hot dog joint. Keeping the interior rustic, refined and kitted out with various knick-knacks, there was plenty of room to infuse the space with personality. "Chutney the boar" is the entryway's shining trophy, and deserves mention as the spoils of a hunt that involved none other than Ted Nugent.

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Another added bonus of Pelaccio and Emde's move to Hudson is the price point—at $70 for seven courses, the restaurant is a good deal cheaper than an equivalent meal in the city. And with trains shuttling to Hudson at a brisk two hour journey, the semi-rural destination starts to feel a good deal closer.

Fish & Game is at 13 South 3rd St, Hudson, NY

Images by James Thorne

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