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Help me plan please [Lower Westchester County]

I can confirm that Gemelos consolidated both restaurants into the newer space around the corner. We've been a few times and it's as great as ever. I hope others realize this change and it doesn't hurt their overall business.

PS also agree on the KB and Acuario recs. All three are great spots

Ramen in Westchester?

Not Westchester, I know, but depending where you are in the county, Mecha Noodle Bar in Fairfield, CT is really great and worth a visit (don't skip their dumplings either)

Nessa, PortChester

Zeppoleme closed but looks like they're turning it into an Italian market and wine bar?!

Agreed on Nessa. Loved it at first but seemed less great all around with each passing visit. Haven't been back in a few years and would be very curious to hear an updated review.

Moving offices to Midtown East ... I need new lunch options!

I'm right near you but my company provides free lunch via Seamless so I mostly stick to ordering that way. On that note, my favorite, healthier option is Akdeniz, a Turkish spot on 46th btw 5th and 6th. A bit far for walking but if you happen to need a Seamless rec, don't hesitate to order from there.

Also, a Luke's Lobster opened recently right outside your door.

Apr 01, 2015
mla19 in Manhattan

Best of the Cancun Hotel Zone

Hello! Visiting Cancun next month with two other couples, and each of our three year old daughters. My husband and I love food but we'll be limited here between the young kids and the fact that the two other families are not going to be inclined to go digging for good eats. Accordingly, if you had to eat in the Hotel Zone (we're staying at the Ritz), what are your best bets? We plan to get a sitter one night so an adults only suggestion is also requested. Thanks!

Mar 16, 2015
mla19 in Mexico

Ko reservation policy change

Just an update that the GM at Ko could not have been nicer and more accommodating to me. She called me Wed with an open spot and went out of her way to make sure we'd have a great time. And we did! A flawless and delicious meal! My two meals at Ko have been so memorable. Hope to have many more.

El Rey Coffee Bar

El Rey is so great. Loved reading this review. Thanks for sharing.

Mar 09, 2015
mla19 in Manhattan

Greenwich/Stamford First Date

MRS - agreed on Le Penguin. It's the best spot in Greenwich. Delicious. Finally trying their sister place, Le Fat Poodle in a few weeks. Nice to finally have a restaurant or two to be excited about in Greenwich.

Mar 07, 2015
mla19 in Southern New England

Premium prices at Ben's Deli in Scarsdale

We just go to Liebman's in Riverdale. Better food and fairly convenient for much of Westchester.

Ko reservation policy change

Thanks, Loraliff! Someone at Ko did respond to my email and they've put me on the wait list for that night should someone cancel. It's a nice gesture and I'm just generally glad that they responded and are trying to make the customer happy. We shall see...

Mar 03, 2015
mla19 in Manhattan

Ko reservation policy change

In my opinion, that's a crummy thing to do. I was following their long standing policy and ready to sign on tomorrow at 10am on the dot for my 3/13 reservation. Instead, the restaurant changed their policy with no notice or "grace period" and thus a person who may have decided on a whim to log on to Ko's site 5 days ago, got my reservation.

Mar 02, 2015
mla19 in Manhattan

Ko reservation policy change

Any idea when Ko announced the change from their long standing policy of taking reservations 10 days out to taking them 15 days out? I planned months ago to try for a birthday reservation tomorrow for 3/13 and I checked the Ko site several times in recent months to ensure I followed their ressie policy. Somehow, when I logged onto their website this morning, I saw that the reservation policy changed effective 2/23 and sure enough, 3/13 is already sold out. I can't imagine Ko gave much notice for the new policy, since I'm pretty sure the site still showed the 10 day policy in January and possibly parts of February.

Assuming I'm right, it's pretty terrible that they would change their red policy so suddenly without any sort of notice period. I sent an email to the restaurant, but have thus far gotten no response and not expecting to. Really frustrating and off-putting.

Mar 02, 2015
mla19 in Manhattan

YELP's algorithm fail in Westchester

Agreed. Beyond Yelp, food blogs around here taut and praise food that wouldn't get a second glance in NYC. It drives me nuts, especially as NYC places operating at a much higher level, get critiqued all the time on their own local blogs (Serious Eats, Eater NY etc). In the burbs, the crappiest food passes for excellence.

ko or blanca?

I've only been to each once so I am not a great judge. But I can tell you that my one meal at Ko in 2011 was outstanding and I still think about it often. Hope to finally revisit, now in their new space, for my birthday in March. I ate at Blanca in 2012 and have no interest in going back.

Jan 29, 2015
mla19 in Manhattan

Piora revisited- Fantastic dinner!!

So glad to read this. I went once with a friend when Piora was fairly new and loved everything about my meal, including the gorgeous room. I'm going back soon with my husband this time and am happy to hear it's still great. Agreed it doesn't seem to get the appreciation it deserves.

Jan 29, 2015
mla19 in Manhattan

The best of Connecticut?

In lower FFC, each of the Bill Taibe restaurants in Wesport are excellent and worthy of a stop (Le Farm, The Whelk and Kawa Ni). Also good:

Mecha Noodle Bar in Fairfield
Colony in Stamford or Fairfield
Brasitas in Stamford or Norwalk
Estia's in Darien
Espresso Neat (Darien and Westport) or Lorca (Stamford) for coffee
Rincon Taqueria in Norwalk
And Fortina is soon to open in Stamford. They'e already in Armonk and Rye Brook, NY and excellent

Jan 29, 2015
mla19 in Southern New England

Fortina opening in Rye Brook

Hmm I bet you were mischarged, which is a shame. Fortina's pricing is generally pretty reasonable, especially given it's tastier than most Westchester joints at a similar price point.

I'm Angry and I'm not Taking it Anymore! Westchester NY

Ok so not a cocktail and not entirely relevant but i must share a story about los gemelos in port chester. I just love that spot - its food and prices. The other day i order their lone red wine with my meal. It was listed on the menu at $10, which i thought was a bit steep for Gemelos but generally in line with the going rate for house wine by the glass. Five minutes later, the waitess plops an entire bottle of red wine on my table. Yup, that price was for a full BOTTLE.

There are some great and reasonable spots in Westchester for food and drink. They're just much fewer and farther between than NYC.

Fortina opening in Rye Brook

We tried Rye Brook last Saturday (a week ago) at 5pm with our young kids and another family. Service, food and amibiance were absolutely perfect - even better than our last visit in Armonk. By 630 the place was packed. They're going to kill it in both towns and I'm sure Stamford, too. While we were there, I saw Rob and John (2/3s of the owners). I suspect, at least for now, they'll travel back and forth through the night.

As for the food, our old favorites were as good as ever (tenderoni, burrata, pork braisole, bread pudding), but we tried their brussels bravas for the first time and they were pretty much the best side dish I've ever had. We ordered a second batch. We dine in NYC often and we think Fortina honestly stands up against its city counterparts. It's really that good.

Re the noise, I'm in my 30s and I'm a city mouse, so that stuff doesnt bother me (I actually prefer the energy of a crowd), but I think that atmosphere is par for the course with Fortina, and you either "get" their shtick or you dont.

Cosme soft opening

Went last night and looks like things haven't changed much. Food was outstanding but service, particularly from the hostess, was comically bad. Luckily, we enjoyed what we ate so much, that it made the slow/amateur service tolerable. The husk meringue dessert was to die for.

Nov 14, 2014
mla19 in Manhattan

Campagna - the old Bedford Post, Bedford, NY

Did you get your res on Open Table or by calling? I predict this being a hardish ressie especially during holiday season!

Can't wait to hear what you think. Having Michael White pastas in the burbs is a dream come true!

And I can't believe how quietly they opened. I follow Chef White on Twitter and Instagram. No mention.

Campagna - the old Bedford Post, Bedford, NY

Did you get your res on Open Table or by calling? I predict this being a hardish ressie especially during holiday season!

Can't wait to hear what you think. Having Michael White pastas in the burbs is a dream come true!

And I can't believe how quietly they opened. I follow Chef White on Twitter and Instagram. No mention.

Locali (New Canaan) - Outstanding Dishes

Interesting. I tried it once and was not impressed with the food or service. It was only a few months ago but the food didn't leave much of an impression as I can't remember a single thing we ordered.

Side note - for wonderful pizza not too far from New Canaan, check out Fortina in Armonk.

Oct 27, 2014
mla19 in Southern New England

Trip Report: Grace, Schwa, Au Cheval and Little Goat

Thanks to everyone for the help in planning a great time in Chicago this past weekend. We had lots of fun (gorgeous weather!) and some delicious meals. Quick summaries below.

Au Cheval (lunch): My husband and I knew we were going to love Au Cheval from the moment we walked in. The atmosphere was top notch - relaxed but still buzzy, even at lunch. The cheeseburger with egg and thick cut bacon lived up to the hype, though it's certainly not something I could eat often. We also ordered the bone marrow with a divine beef cheek marmalade and the duck heart hash. All excellent and not for the faint of heart. We were still full many hours later.

Grace (dinner): A wonderful dinner. My husband and I each ordered the Fauna menu. Each dish was presented beautifully and ranged somewhere in taste from very good to outstanding. My favorite dish by a long shot was the Miyazaki Beef with Vietnamese flavors. That whole plate came together perfectly and it was one of the most delicious things I've ever eaten. I also really enjoyed the mini bread tastings that came with each of the savory courses. I've never seen that done before. Service was polished across the board, and the sommelier was especially excellent. The night ended with a tour of the kitchen and getting to briefly meet Chef Duffy.

Little Goat (brunch): A modern and improved take on the average diner. This is a place we would come to often if we lived in the city, particularly since it's child-friendly and we have young kids at home. As an out-of-towner, I'm happy I tried it once, but wouldn't look to go back on another visit. The hash browns (who knew it'd be a weekend of hash browns?!) were fantastic.

Schwa (dinner): Certainly the strangest restaurant I've ever been to. Chef Carlson was unfortunately not present at our meal so I wonder what effect that had on our experience. I appreciated the uniqueness of it all - food and beyond. But ultimately, the dishes were all way too sweet for my palate. I was craving something salty and savory the whole meal. The menu just didn't work for me.

We also had some awesome Tiki drinks at Three Dots and a Dash on Friday night. And we tried some doughnuts at Doughnut Vault and Firecakes.

A great weekend!

Oct 27, 2014
mla19 in Chicago Area

The Little Pub ROCKS Ridgefield, CT

I know this is an old post but I just had to weigh in to tell you that I agree entirely with your burger assessment. Little Pub just opened in Greenwich and it's making a killing. Constantly packed. I've been several times now and the food just isn't special. The burger, which you'd think would be decent at a pub, is totally flavorless and bland, like you said. Oh well - another letdown in Greenwich.

Oct 13, 2014
mla19 in Southern New England

Working in Greenwich - Nearby lunch options for take-out/delivery

Try Steam on the Ave. It's a bit pricey but much, much better quality than any of the other Asian fusion spots in town. I've tried a bunch of items off their menu and pretty much everything was great. I used to frequent Penang but Steam is better.

Another great option for lunch, albeit not near Greenwich Ave, is Villa Nuova on the Cos Cob/Riverside border. Delicious sandwiches and hot food options.

These two are pretty much the only restaurants I actually like in Greenwich.

Oct 13, 2014
mla19 in Southern New England

Zero Otto Nove in Armonk

Hi 51rich, I'm sure you already know this but if you live in New Rochelle, you're much closer to the original ZON in the Bronx. As I mentioned in the other thread, I've been to the Arthur Avenue location a bunch and it's good (and popular), but nothing amazing and not as good as its sister spot, Roberto's. Definitely less special than Fortina. In the Bronx it does get crowded but if you go early enough, you get right in. I'm sure the same will be true of Armonk.

Help us decide on an Italian restaurant for early December girls trip...

Morini and Maialino are two of my favorites. You can't go wrong. Morini is a bit more casual, hip and loud; Maialino more refined and comparatively subdued. With young girls, I'd say Morini would be more fun. The atmosphere is rustic but none of what you mentioned take away from the experience.And Morini's pastas are out of this world. Enjoy wherever you end up!

Sep 22, 2014
mla19 in Manhattan
1

Grace - Fauna and Flora Menus

Interesting that you had such a different experience. I was previously unaware that you could so easily substitute courses from each menu at Grace (not a common occurrence in fine dining). And should that be the case, I would gladly pick and choose from each menu.

I do appreciate the responses and agree that whether the restaurant allows us to freely substitute or not, we will not make any decisions about what menu to pick until we get there and see what most appeals to each of us.

Thanks, everyone!

Sep 16, 2014
mla19 in Chicago Area

Grace - Fauna and Flora Menus

Hi All - My husband and I are traveling to Chicago the last weekend in October and are very excited for our meal at Grace. For anyone who has been before, would we be remiss to each order the Fauna menu? We do want to get the full experience of Chef Duffy's food, but we both also really like our meat and seafood. A mostly vegetarian menu doesn't really get us too excited. I suspect if we ask our waiter that night, he or she will tell us to order one of each menu. But I'm curious to hear other diners' perspectives. Thanks!

Sep 15, 2014
mla19 in Chicago Area