More than just beautiful views at upscale riverfront restaurant

The exterior of Alex's on the Water.
(Amanda Bintz | The Oswegonian)

Alex’s on the Water succinctly advertises itself as “food and drink with a view,” but that only scratches the surface of what this riverfront restaurant has to offer. Located at 24 E. First St. on the bank of the Oswego River, Alex’s may be a bit pricey for the average college student, but it’s worth it for one of the most beautiful dining experiences in Oswego.

The interior of the restaurant is alive with fountains, rows of plants, standing ferns and flowers. It is softly lit with string lights in the decorative shrubbery and the natural light coming in from the wall of windows facing the river. The windows look out onto a large patio that overlooks the water, where guests may choose to sit outside and take in the view while they eat.

Nothing on the menu at Alex’s is cheap, but it shouldn’t be for the quality. They have a three for $25 deal where you can choose one each from two lists of starters and entrees, and then add any dessert, all for $25. I got a mojito as well, which was extra but worth it. It was jam-packed with freshly cut limes and crushed mint leaves and tasted smooth yet strong.

Before our starter arrived, our waitress brought a breadbasket to our table. It wasn’t your standard breadbasket with a side of butter, though. There were two types of bread, French and herb with sundried tomatoes, the butter was pressed into the shape of flowers and there was a dish of herbs and grated parmesan that our waitress poured warm olive oil over to create a dipping sauce.

Spinach and artichoke dip (Amanda Bintz | The Oswegonian)
Spinach and artichoke dip
(Amanda Bintz | The Oswegonian)

 

After we finished that, our starter arrived: spinach and artichoke dip with tricolor tortilla chips. The dip steamed as we scooped it onto our chips, but it was way too good to wait for it to cool off. With large spinach leaves and generous chunks of artichoke, the cheesy dip almost seemed healthy. (But don’t worry; it was still plenty cheesy!)

The entrees arrived soon after. I got the Tuscan chicken pasta, which was campanelle and free-range chicken with red onion, black olives and spinach in an asiago cream sauce with sundried tomatoes.

Tuscan chicken pasta (Amanda Bintz | The Oswegonian
Tuscan chicken pasta
(Amanda Bintz | The Oswegonian)

My boyfriend got the lobster macaroni and cheese made with fresh lobster, gouda and New York sharp cheddar and baked in its dish with bread crumbs sprinkled on top.

Lobster mac and cheese (Peter J. Hanley | The Oswegonian)
Lobster mac and cheese
(Peter J. Hanley | The Oswegonian)

During our meal, the manager of the restaurant stopped by our table, and every other table in the restaurant, to ask how everything was. Both our entrees were such generous portions that I only finished a third of mine and my boyfriend only finished half of his, so expect to have leftovers.

For our dessert, we got the Peanut Butter Blast, a circular piece of rich chocolate cake with a layer of peanut butter mousse and chopped peanut butter cups on top. Its name was a little misleading as it tasted equally of peanut butter and chocolate, but it was delicious nonetheless. Alex’s dessert menu isn’t online yet, but rest assured it has a diverse range of dishes that could probably please anyone’s sweet tooth.

Peanut Butter Blast (Amanda Bintz | The Oswegonian)
Peanut Butter Blast
(Amanda Bintz | The Oswegonian)

From its scenic location to its décor and the aesthetic preparation of its food, Alex’s on the Water takes pride in its presentation. As it’s getting warm out in Oswego, their summery dishes and ample outdoor seating will surely draw many new customers. Even if you sit inside, you can still take a walk outside along the beautiful harbor after you’ve finished eating. We were lucky we did because our waitress saw us and ran out onto the patio to bring us the leftovers we’d forgotten at our table (Thanks, Paige!).

If you’re willing to spend the money, Alex’s on the Water is one of the best spots in Oswego for a nice date or a more upscale get-together with friends. It’s fancy, but not snobby. The atmosphere was welcoming and no one treated us college students with anything but respect.

Alex’s on the Water opens every day for dinner at 4 p.m. and it is recommended you make a reservation. Go celebrate the thawing of Oswego with food, drink and view.