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  • Writer's pictureAmy Leggett

What's New, Saratoga? A New Owner for an Enduring Saratoga Favorite!


Saratoga Springs Country Corner Cafe
The Country Corner Cafe on Church Street

If you are a resident or regular visitor to Saratoga Springs, you know that The Country Corner Cafe is not new to the area. However, it does have (fairly) new owners and they just happen to be friends of mine! Julee and Mark O'Callaghan purchased The Country Corner Cafe from Roseann Hotaling in January 2023 and are picking up where Ms. Hotaling left off by providing a great local spot to grab a delicious breakfast.


The Country Corner Cafe and the O'Callaghan's Story:


The Country Corner Cafe is located at 25 Church Street (one block off Broadway) and was opened in 1991 by Roseann Hotaling. During her ownership, the Cafe started as a 19 seat diner and eventually expanded its footprint within the building to be able to serve the growing loyal customer base. The Country Corner Cafe become known for its friendly staff and the delicious food. I used to live across the street from the Cafe and would always see a bunch of people waiting to be seated. Whenever I see a crowd gathered like that I know it is a great spot I need to try!



While Ms. Hotaling was building The Country Corner Cafe's business, Mark and Julee were living their lives downstate in NYC. Mark and Julee were getting their feet wet in the restaurant business by both working at the upscale Morton's Steakhouse on 5th Avenue. Mark was a server and Julee was a cocktail waitress. Morton's Steakhouse is where they met and fell in love. Soon after, they got married and had triplets.


Julee spent 16 years working at Morton's Steakhouse and ultimately became the Assistant GM at a Morton's location in Brooklyn. She eventually left Morton's, but continued to work in the restaurant industry at Nordstroms employed in their restaurant division. She took a brief break from the food industry to work for Apple. During that time, Mark had left the restaurant biz to go back to school to get his degree and began a career in IT.


Life was good and the O'Callaghan's loved raising their family in Long Island. But when their triplets went off to college, Mark and Julee started thinking about their future plans as empty-nesters. They had visited the Saratoga Springs area a few times and were enchanted by the charming city. Julee always had a dream to own her own restaurant or bed and breakfast and started looking for opportunities upstate. On one of their exploration trips upstate, they stopped in to The Country Corner Cafe to grab some coffee and chat about their options. Julee recalls that they were seated at Table 14 and that they noticed the groups of waiting customers. She also remembers being impressed by the delicious food and the superior customer service they received. Julee thought the place looked familiar and realized she had seen it offered For Sale on line several months earlier. She inquired and found out it was available. Mark encouraged Julee to buy it to follow her dreams. She did...and the rest is history!


Saratoga Springs Country Corner Cafe
Mark and Julee O'Callaghan-Happy New Owners

What's New At the Country Corner Cafe?


Because Julee and Mark were so impressed by the food and the service at The Country Corner Cafe, they didn't change much when they purchased it. Julee spent time before the sale closed coming up to meet with the staff and see how they did things. As they got to know each other a mutual admiration developed, so the team stayed on after the sale. Julee has a clear intention to honor the good will and great reputation that Roseann Hotaling worked so hard to create and she wants to maintain the familiar experience that Saratoga residents and visitors have come to expect and love.


Saratoga Springs Country Corner Cafe
Country Corner Eggs Benedict and French Toast

The menu is basically unchanged because there is no need to change something that is already a hit. But the O'Callaghans did decide to bring back an old Country Corner favorite...Ida's Famous Oatmeal Pancakes! Proof that not dramatically changing the menu was a great idea, The Country Corner Cafe was selected as the Best Breakfast in Saratoga for 2024.


Saratoga Springs Country Corner Cafe
Country Corner Cafe Best Breakfast in Saratoga 2024!



There are also Daily Specials to choose from in addition to the regular menut. Julee did give me some insider information about upcoming specials for Belmont weekend. They plan to offer some breakfast and brunch specials with a "Long Island twist". She wouldn't divulge any more information, so we will just have to go to The Country Corner Cafe to check it out! Here was the Daily Special menu when I visited.


Saratoga Springs New York Country Corner Cafe
Daily Specials at Country Corner Cafe

The Country Corner Cafe also has take out service if you would rather enjoy your breakfast at Congress Park or on your own porch! To check out the menu and to order on-line click here.


A few other new things from The Country Corner Cafe:

  • There are no reservations taken at The Country Corner Cafe. But now, if you have to wait for a table there is designated waiting area so you don't have to wait outside if the weather isn't nice.

  • During track season, there will be a hostess outside to help manage the customer seating and wait list.


AND MOST EXCITING NEW NEWS OF ALL (WHICH IS HOT OFF THE PRESSES!):

  • The Country Corner Cafe will have a cart at the Saratoga Race Course during the regular Saratoga track season! The cart will offer easy grab and go light bites like fruit cups, bagels, yogurt parfaits and iced coffees. You will also be able to purchase the famous Country Corner jams at the track.


So, if you find yourself in Saratoga check out The "new" Country Corner Cafe to try the same great food they have been serving since 1991! If you go, say hi to Mark and Julee and tell them Amy sent ya!


Saratoga Springs New York Country Corner Cafe
Enjoy Breakfast or Brunch at The Country Corner Cafe

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