Tucked away on a quiet country road seemingly in the middle of nowhere yet somehow close to it all, there lies a hidden gem that is every bit worth discovering as a cool glass of water in the midst of the desert.
This unpretentious venue with glossy wooden tables and more bottles of beer on the wall than you can sing may soon become your favorite place to grab a quick breakfast or lunch… or possibly even dinner as the Route 67 Country Store and Cafe considers adding a dinner menu to their roster of fresh-from-the-farm selections.
From the humble beginnings of a tired old Harmony Corners X-Tra Mart in 2008, Route 67 Country Store and Cafe first opened in 2009, offering a fully renovated, clean, contemporary community meeting place for residents looking to fill their tanks or tummies in the Charlton area, southwest of Saratoga between Ballston Spa and Amsterdam.
Regulars agree, the specialty breakfast and lunch selections are beyond amazing, featuring honest, fresh ingredients that offer fullness in flavor with every bite, including vegetarian and gluten-free options. Get your meal to go, or slow down and sit down with a glass of their homemade lemonade and take it all in.
Grilled egg sandwiches are the star of breakfast at Route 67 with options for bacon, sausage, ham, cheese, goat cheese, grilled onion, jalapenos, roasted red pepper, spinach and other compliments to boot. Hearty breakfast burritos, freshly baked croissants, muffins, cinnamon buns and other pastries round off the breakfast menu.
Among the favorites on the lunch menu, which includes hot and cold sandwiches, salads, wraps, soups and more, the Route 67 Country Store and Cafe has authentically fresh house sandwiches and “craft your own” sandwiches that will leave you wondering why you ever settled for less. The aroma of fresh bread (available in country white, wheatberry, seeded rye or sourdough) begins your experience before you even take a bite of your sandwich, which is stacked with the perfect amount of fresh deli meat, choice of cheeses, flavorful condiments and crisp vegetables that are as local as the farmer on that tractor you may follow on the trip home.
Dining alfresco is a breeze at Route 67 Country Store and Cafe with your choice of outdoor seating options, ranging from tables on their covered porch or side patio to a grassy picnic area offering the perfect spot to drop a blanket for a front-row view of the beautiful two acres of countryside and Mourningkill Creek.
Need some guidance on what to order at your first visit? According to the owners, some of the most popular orders are for these locally famous favorites:
- Route 67 Signature
- The Jockey
- Dirty Harry
- Cranberry Maple Turkey
- Grilled Veggie Panini
- Hungry Man Breakfast Panini
- Mikes Breakfast Burrito
- Roasted Red Pepper and Smoked Gouda Soup
- Steak and Ale Chowder
But we’d be deceiving you if we let you believe Route 67’s local fame ended with soups and sandwiches. In fact, one of the biggest draws of this unassuming country store is without a doubt its Charlton Beer Alley, offering over 250 craft beers and micro-brews to mix and match at affordable prices.
Their selection includes dozens of hard-to-find beers and is quite arguably one of the widest beer selections you can find under one roof throughout all of Saratoga County. So whether you’re looking to pair a beer with your meal or simply purchase some great ales by the bottle, rest assured they have more selection than you can shake a stick at. Bottoms up!
The great selection, wholesome food, low prices and rustic charm of the venue are enough to tell your friends about, but the friendly, personalized service at Route 67 Country Store and Cafe will turn you into an instant regular.
Route 67 is the most inexpensive gas station in the Capital Region because Owner Eran Wasserman puts the focus on the store and the people who come through its doors, with gas a secondary service. Wasserman knows his customers by name and even their pets, too!
When asked his favorite part of owning the business, Wasserman responded, “Creating a welcoming place for the community to convene in, an oasis for travelers, and taking pride in business creation and development to meet the needs of the surrounding area.”
Wasserman also mentioned giving back to the community by means of outdoor and indoor events. Route 67 has hosted many community events at the store, including an equine expo to benefit a local horse park and health and wellness sessions to provide alternative therapy. Weekly beer promotions are being held throughout the summer, and they are in the process of setting up beer tasting sessions with the brewery representatives for the fall. A customer appreciation day is planned for the fall as well, which will be a day to thank the community for their support of the business. A date is yet to be announced.
Just minutes from Saratoga and Clifton Park, Route 67 Country Store and Cafe does not ode to the typical enervated gas stations of the 1920s anymore. This contemporary country store transformed an 85-year-old dilapidated eyesore to create a welcoming and fully functional gathering place, drawing customers near and far with specialty breakfast and lunch menus using products from local farms in addition to their one-of-a-kind Charlton Beer Alley. Route 67 is more than a country store, more than a cafe; it’s an experience — a hidden gem of Saratoga County.
Because this little country store has such a big reputation, plans to duplicate into a small chain store are being considered. Wasserman assures us the expansion won’t compromise the community feel of the store, which is really what sets them apart.