Address: 1 Rush St., Schenectady
Year established: 2017
Founders: Rivers and Mallozzi families
Restaurant type: American steakhouse
Restaurant’s origin: Named for Schenectady icon Tony “The Duke” DeLorenzo
Contact information: (518) 579-8850, riverscasinoandresort.com/dining/dukes
SCHENECTADY — Dukes Chophouse is an American steakhouse, and serves its namesake in spades.
The in-house eatery at Rivers Casino & Resort offers prime bone-in (Kansas City strip, ribeye and porterhouse) prime rib (queen and king cuts, filet mignon, New York Strip) and other cuts, such as a half-rack of lamb.
On the seafood menu is pan-seared salmon, king crab legs and swordfish au poivre.
The location also offers lobster rolls, which are a big lunchtime draw.
“People just rave about them,” said Jeanette Martin, food and beverage manager at Rivers.
That includes guests from New England, who know a thing or two about lobster rolls, the regional specialty that slightly varies, but always contains an open-faced bun packed with meat.
At Dukes, the claw meat is poached in drawn butter and served on a brioche roll.
And a wide variety of bread is available owing to Duke’s connection with Malozzi’s Villa Italia Bakery.
While firmly rooted in the American steakhouse tradition, the menu also allows executive chef Justin Engineri to spread his culinary wings, adding a southern and Asian flair to menu offerings, which change seasonally.
Their recently streamlined lunch menu aims to pull in more clientele, Martin said.
Dukes prides itself on its wine selection across multiple price points and carries a minimum of 100 wines which, displayed in a shining glass cube, serve as the centerpiece of the location.
The variety has led to an award from Wine Spectator magazine, a feat Martin hopes to repeat in 2019.
The atmosphere is casual, with the polished and softly-lit interior lined with vintage photos of Schenectady and the restaurant’s namesake, Tony “The Duke” DeLorenzo, a long-time employee of the Galesi Group, developers of the complex.
The location also hosts a full-service bar.
Dukes Chophouse is located just steps from the gaming floor at Rivers. Martin estimates 75 percent of the restaurant’s clientele are casino guests.
Dukes at Rivers Casino.
But the location aims to be a destination in its own right, she said.
“We want people to know we’re here,” Martin said. “You don’t have to be a player in the casino to eat here.”
An outdoor patio offers views of the Mohawk River in the summer. A private dining room seating 25 is also available, and includes audio-visual equipment for events and presentations, an effort to lure in the business crowd.
Holiday and special events rotate regularly, including a upcoming beer dinner on May 15 as part of their “Sip and Savor” series which will offer a five-course dinner paired with a to-be-determined lineup paired with seasonal styles from Mad Jack Brewing Company.
More from Dine 2019: Schenectady County
- Mad Jack brews, cooks and plays its own tune in Schenectady
- From farm to table at Colonie’s Field Notes at Lansing’s Farm
- Taj Mahal Restaurant serves up traditional Indian dishes in Schenectady
- Malcolm’s brings farm-to-table to Schenectady
- Good food and friendly setting carry Scotia’s Turf Tavern through eight decades
A Mother’s Day Brunch on Sunday, May 12, will feature “edible displays and interactive carving stations.”
A similar event is planned for upcoming Father’s Day in June.
Dukes is located off the gaming floor and patrons must be 21+ to enter.