Welcome to Taste of Schenectady® and Beyond

In this issue

The Most Unknown Restaurant in Schenectady Celebrating 18 Years!

Two guys one dream and a restaurant called Ambition. Co-owner Marc Renson says with arms wide open, “Welcome to my world, welcome to my ambition. Like attracts like and I like food, music and Hollywood...


Renson and Salomon opened Ambition Coffee & Eatery April 10th, 2000, in downtown Schenectady. They purchased the building formerly home to the historic Old Jay Tavern at 154 Jay Street (on the Jay Street Pedestrian Mall and walkway). Renson holds a degree in Culinary Arts from Schenectady County Community College and Salomon holds a degree in Business/Marketing from Siena College.


Ambition started out just as a restaurant which then morphed into something greater and larger than they ever expected. Along the way, Marc let his passion out and when asked, “What is Ambition?” Renson normally responds, “I don’t know. Ambition is my soul, and how do you describe a soul? And if you can describe a soul, then that’s Ambition.”


Encountering strange customers and wild experiences Renson said to himself, “…this is a book.” So he started keeping notes of all the odd things that happened. From customers asking if the cream of tomato had milk in it or what does the vanilla tea taste like? He took those notes and penned his hilarious memoir, Is the Coffee Fresh? Drama, dysfunction and daily life at a downtown coffeehouse. Nationally published by 23House Publishing, his book won the award for best non-fiction in 2017.


READ MORE in the online issue of Taste of Schenectady® magazine and Beyond tab below.

Gourmet Food as Community

Food has a special ability to bring people together. I often find this in my own life and I hope you will find that this online community feels just as welcoming as a real kitchen. For me, cooking and dining together builds the best communities, so savor the flavor of Taste of Schenectady® and Beyond!

Step-by-Step Cooking

I have been cooking for a long time, but that doesn't mean that you need a ton of cooking experience to follow my recipes. I work to make my recipes interesting in Taste of Schenectady® and Beyond for advanced cooks but still accessible for beginners. If you ever have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask by sending a message or posting a comment.

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