As close as Rosendale is to New Paltz, it remains something of a hidden gem. Where New Paltz streets bustle with students and shoppers, Rosendale roads remain delightfully quiet as occasional footsteps intermingle with ripples from the Rondout Creek. It’s along this creek and just a skip away from Main Street that Creekside Bar & Bistro resides.
Open since the tail end of November, Creekside Bar & Bistro is a passion project for Hudson Valley couple Reshma Ramoutar and Juan Galvan. Both former longtime (18 years!) employees at The Gilded Otter in New Paltz (Ramoutar was manager while Galvan served as assistant general manager), they began thinking about pursuing a place of their own after Clemson Bros. Brewery took over the Otter in April 2019.
They found their current location purely by accident.
“Our son, Naveen, wanted to go to pizza next door to where we are,” they recall. When they pulled up and saw a sign that the space’s former tenant, Matsu Japanese Cuisine, had closed, they were curious.
After a bit of groundwork to find the landlord for the property, they soon began the four-month process to settle a lease and clean up the space. Although they initially planned to open without a liquor license, they made a mad dash to stock up on beer, wine, and spirits upon receiving a temporary permit five days before their debut date.
Now officially up and running, Creekside Bar & Bistro is a cozy, welcoming eatery in central Rosendale. Ramoutar is the principal owner, with Galvan working full-time alongside her. Both professionals in the Hudson Valley food scene, they draw on their past experiences at The Gilded Otter to craft the American bistro and pub-style fare they know and love.
Bites range in size from “munchies” like deep-fried pork wings with four different sauces to grilled NY strip steak sandwiches and Cajun grilled salmon with a zippy tequila cilantro lime sauce. The juicy burgers are a hit, and the Tres Queso Burger with American, cheddar, and parmesan cheeses is already a bestseller. Creekside has a substantial kids’ menu too, with burgers, fried chicken sandwiches, sweet potato fries, and even milkshakes and smoothies on deck for little eaters.
With everything, the duo devotes time and attention to steps like hand-pressing burgers and switching up the menu by season. By the time summer rolls around, they hope to work with local farmers to make use of the Hudson Valley bounty that surrounds them.
As for the experience inside Creekside Bar & Bistro, it’s all about easy, community-oriented dining. Although the restaurant looks bitty from the roadside, it hides a 25-person bar along with a number of booths and tables. The windows boast clear views of the creek, while reclaimed wood along the walls and original Kingston steel beams add historic charm. In total, Creekside can hold about 96 people inside, with additional seating out on the patio during the warmer months.
For Ramoutar and Galvan, who live nearby in Tillson, Rosendale has exactly the sort of atmosphere they envisioned when they daydreamed about owning their own eatery.
“Rosendale has been very welcoming, and all the people from the surrounding areas have also been extremely kind to us,” they enthuse. “It helps that we also worked local for many years, so our faces are familiar to many. We couldn’t be more grateful to everyone that has come to support us.”
Happy as they are in their new space in the Hudson Valley, the pair are already talking about adding a patio along the creek for more outdoor dining opportunities. They both love the region, so they want to make the most of the scenery nearby. No matter what, priority number one remains to prepare simply delicious meals that have visitors coming back for more.
“For us to have a customer leave with a smile and a full stomach makes us happy,” they say.
Creekside Bar & Bistro
1128 Rte 32, Rosendale