My never ending quest - new restaurants I won't hate in Tristate NY, CT area

JMF. Another question on a fave pastime. Have you ever heard of a ‘clean slate’? Hubby had a glass of wine and suddenly noticed a fly in it. We called the waitperson over and after making a suitable face, took it away. Come the bill and there was a charge for a new glass of under the heading of ‘clean slate’.

Never heard of a “clean slate.”

Sorry for bothering all those who have now taken over this board, but I must speak out on behalf of those who believe reviews in magazines and newspapers, some supposedly reputable, some bribed by advertising dollars. I.E., the NY Times and Westchester Magazine. Don’t. Unless you like being duped. That includes here, unless you trust the person. :slight_smile: Bottom line, go for yourself, and then make your own conclusions, ignore the self-professed geniuses (genii?), and make a note on your own excel sheet and on Trip Advisor. Tread carefully here, lest someone attack you for consciously streaming on.

A friend has allowed me to repost her words here (thank you), words which I found pertinent and downright brilliant. Having to do with the dearth of decent restaurants in Westchester and the adulatory praise given to any tom, dick, or harry who opens a restaurant that charges a lot for a little.

Friend: Is it possible that Hans Christian Anderson wrote the Emperor’s New Clothes after a life altering stay in Westchester County :wink:

Me (you would have guessed that all by yourselves): And all his descendants work at Westchester Magazine, where they love every freaking restaurant that I don’t. Then again, even the NY Times has their heads up their youknowwhat. We just went to Agostino’s, which they gave an ‘Excellent’. Now, they’ve hardly ever ever given any place an excellent, so I figured wow, they must have changed their last chef to Chef God since I last went there, when they were so so. They didn’t. Their macaroni - I will not call it pasta - was outstanding, but the rest of the meal? Meh. A Caesar salad was good, a fish that was pushed on me - orata - was not deboned at table and I had to do it with my fingers. Blech. They made a very good whiskey sour.

Service was very good (outside of the fish), dessert was ordinary, and prices were average for what passes for average in Westchester. I still haven’t come across a meal that equaled or beat any meal I had at the late lamented Villa Nova. But they weren’t chic, remodeled, nor whatever it is that yuppies love. And so, there was never anyone in the place.

Truth be told, I’d go back for a whiskey sour, a Caesar salad, and the lasagna, which looked very good.

Okay, sorry to interrupt, go back to doing whatever it is you’re all doing here now.

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Deedee -
Westchester magazine is a source for finding out about (new) places,their reviews are not really reviews but a heads-up about a place (advertisers only).So don’t really expect a review. As far as the N.Y. Times,just ignore the “rating” and read the actual review,can usually get a pretty good idea of how a restaurant actually is. Unfortunately ,very few “high” spots in Westchester, so their is little to write about.- (watch this) - What can you expect of a county whose best hot dog is Walter’s P.S. I do like Walter’s occasionally,but a great hotdog?- A+ for enjoyment (the experience of ordering from a great piece of roadside architecture) c (at best) for the actual hot dog.

Thanks, rich. You’re quite right.

FYI, no need to worry about NY Times reviews anymore. As of this weekend they’ve been discontinued for all regions.

It’s sad that The Journal News chooses not to review restaurants and only writes fluff pieces.

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MisterBill, I take them all with a grain of salt until I’ve tried the restaurant myself.

It’s still sad when print (and/or online) media is no more.

Get there before New Rochelle Food Fest is over

Yes, Patsy’s Pizza, Carlo’s Restaurant and Modern Restaurant are very good, but Chef Bill Rosenberg’s tasting menu for $30. (!) is out of this world. The other places are meh.

My must-haves out of the way (4 top, extra napkin, side glass of ice), our service was impeccable. Ask for Elizabeth when you go - not ‘if’ you go, when you go, for you must go before the 23rd.

She was there lickety split to ask about our drinks - how hard is that, other restaurants that make me wait? - and I asked about their special drink named Bensonhurst (after Ralph Kramden and The Honeymooners, I hope). Neither she nor Nina the bartender showed recognition and I thought I dreamed it, but then I found it in a review from March, when we were there for my birthday. Phew, it wasn’t me.

So Nina googled it - don’t you love it? - and made it perfectly. I was happy.

Hubby and I both had the tasting menu, your app choices are: mussels-salad with apples, walnuts, onions, and blue cheese-or gazpacho. Not sure if the Chef will change each day, but we also chose from chicken, skirt steak, pasta, or mushroom risotto for entree; nutella crepes with marshmallow fluff (guess which I chose?), apple crisp with ice cream, or flan for dessert.

The mussels were spicy and dunkable, very dunkable. The salad was delish, I just had the remainder for breakfast. I put the frizzled onions from the amazing skirt steak (rare) with spinach and fries on my salad and hubby gets the leftover steak. He had apple crisp and I had sigh the nutella crepes.

Oh, and we both had a glass of wine, included, he Cabernet, me Sauvignon Blanc.

Parking is free, and again, all of this wonderful stuff was $30. each. My drink was extra, as was our espresso, but who cares. It was a wonderful dinner.

Have I convinced you? GO! New Rochelle Food Fest runs Sunday September 18 thru Thursday September 22.

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Nice review, thanks! I remember you went there for a special occasion once before. The staff sounds great too. If I get down to New Rochelle I’ll check it out!

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Thanks, Gwenn. NoMa Social is turning out to be one of my very favorite places.

I know 11 days doesn’t sound like a lot, but it must be in restaurant time, no?

Well, Elizabeth struck me speechless, and that ain’t easy, when we went there today for lunch. She remembered that I liked Table #24, a glass of ice on the side, and an extra napkin.

Extraordinary, to me.

Lunch turned out to be excellent - a bourbon drink with muddled fruit, named Muddlin’ Mark. We had brussel sprout chips to start. He had a jalapeno shrimp BLT with avocado, hold the mayo, and I had curried mussels, spicy and delicious. Frites came with both. I got to dunk in his mayo and my ketchup.

Lunch turned into dinner and we had caramel apple tart with cinnamon ice cream, and espresso. Perfect, all.

Most of the fun was the charming Elizabeth and it drives home how waitpersons who barely acknowledge their diner are doing their diners a disservice.

They now do brunch, we’ll have to try that one of these days.

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Servers like that make a restaurant. That is great. The place sounds really good. We’ll have to get there!!!

It is. Ambiance isn’t the best, but then neither was Spadaro in its tiny little space. Before they expanded and blew themselves up.

Oh, and Elizabeth remembered my name when we walked in. And we hadn’t made a reservation.

She sounds amazing!

A sign on Augie’s in Larchmont:

‘Keep calm. We’ll be opening soon’.

Define ‘soon’.

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I spotted these today at Shoprite in Warwick, I’m sure the other stores have them too

$8.99 each or per pound?

If you can wait several years, they make an amazing Buddha’s Hand Vodka. Just slice paper thin, fill a liter Bell/Mason jar 1/4 way, packed with the slices, add a 750 ml bottle of vodka, and add more slices until fill to the top. Seal and let sit for 1.5 - 2 years. Yes, it really takes that long. Up to a year and you get slightly bitter and astringent tones. then something magical happens after 1.5 years and the bitterness and astringency disappears, and you get a slightly sweet, citrus blossom flavor.

I once let a few liter jars get misplaced for five years and then tried it. fantastic.

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Per piece which makes no sense as they were all different sizes … I’m not sure they knew what they were talking about

I have seen the same problem at several stores over the past few years with the price by the piece as opposed to pound. 2 and 3 years ago fairway had them at $7.99 each.

Get the largest, that have the deepest yellow color, unblemished if possible. You can let them sit as a center piece for a few weeks and they will scent your home.

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I had it in my cart while I shopped, it was very pleasant. I’m allergic to anything with scent, so this is a treat, half the house smells nice. There was only one that had an almost orange color, very different from the others. You can actually see it in the picture.

This is one of the only citrus that ripens/improves with aging for a few weeks to months. buy ones that are deep yellow or orange, very aromatic, and firm. Sometimes ones with a bit of green will ripen and improve. Don’t buy ones that are not firm and crisp.

You can use it in a lot of dishes and beverages. Zest into anything. Makes great salad vinaigrette. Fantastic zested into a lemon sorbet or lemonade. Paper thin slices in salads. You can candy 1/4"-1/2" slices. Add to a marmalade make an amazing citrus cocktail bitters.

Paper thin strip expressed and then garnished into a cocktail like a Manhattan, Martini, Old fashioned, or any citrus based cocktail. For cocktails or flavored seltzer you can use it combined with lemon and/or orange peels to make an oleo-saccharum. I used it with various other peels to make citrus cocktail bitters.

You can grind some mixed with sugar in a food processor to make a wonderful citron sugar to use with teas or espresso.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold