Hilltop friendly fare at Ithaca’s Sunset Grill

High atop Ithaca’s south hill, Sunset Grill has long been a favorite for breakfast and lunch, and they’ve just added dinner hours.

The breakfast menu offers lots of griddle items and a variety of omelets; two of my dining companions chose omelets, which were generous and well stuffed. Go with a Greek omelet, featuring spinach, tomatoes, onions, and feta cheese; or the Bomber omelet, named for Ithaca College’s Bombers teams, with ham, bacon, and sausage, as well as your choice of cheese.

The Bomber Plate special at the Sunset Grill.

The Bomber Plate special at the Sunset Grill.

An occasional special is the Bomber Plate. It’s the Sunset Grill’s take on the legendary Rochester Garbage Plate, a scrambled version of the Bomber omelet with home fries, gravy, and melted cheese.

Another winner is the homemade corned beef hash and eggs, and I ordered the hash well done. I wasn’t disappointed! The hash was tasty and crisp, just the way I like it. In addition, I took advantage of the long list of “breakfast sides” to order a single blueberry pancake. I was surprised to find a pile of fresh blueberries in the middle of the pancake, instead of the occasional blueberry throughout the batter.

sunset-burgerThat “breakfast sides” section of the menu lets you add a single pancake or a bagel for $2.50, or a single egg for two bucks, to whatever you’re getting. This is a very customer-friendly way of letting you build the breakfast you want.

The lunch menu includes fried fish sandwiches, reubens, and a variety of burgers (or veggieburgers), including the Black & Tan Burger, topped with an onion ring and bleu cheese. There are also salads, steaks, and even fried clam platters, and the new dinner menu adds ribs and pasta to the mix.

Fish and fried clams on the seafood platter.

Fish and fried clams on the seafood platter.

Sunset Grill is a cross between diner and cafe, much more open and airy than in this building’s past incarnation as Franco’s. That’s thanks in no small part to a renovation that replaced the old kitchen area with a counter seating area and grill right in view of the entrance and dining room. The deck that stretches across two sides of the building provides ample additional seating and an excellent view of the valley and nearby hills. They extend the outdoor season as much as possible from spring through fall with plastic-draped awnings and even outdoor heaters.

Plan on spending $5-15 on breakfast or lunch seven days a week, $10-20 on dinner Wednesday through Saturday. Visit the Sunset Grill at 823 Danby Road on Ithaca’s south hill or www.sunsetgrillofithaca.com, or call them at 607-272-1986, and tell them you heard about them here.