Sonora: Port Chester’s legendary Latin restaurant celebrates its 20th anniversary



Located in Port Chester, a town known of its collection of multi-cultural restaurants, Sonora  made its mark  on the area food scene twenty years ago with Chef Palomino’s signature Latin inspired menu, and innovative cocktail program.  As 2019 is the 20th anniversary of its opening, Sonora still pleases its customers and attracts new diners  with a fresh and creative take on Latin cuisine and an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients.

Born in Columbia, Chef Palomino draws inspiration for his menu from his childhood in Bogotá, his earlier years in New York City alongside such culinary legends as Larry Forgione and Charlie Palmer, and his time in France honing his craft with renowned Chef Michel Guèrard in Eugènie-les-Bains.

With a wealth of knowledge and great respect and appreciation for cuisines from around the world, Chef Palomino took all that he had learned and returned to his roots, focusing on the flavors of Latin America. He opened the first Sonora Restaurant in New York City’s Eastgate Tower Hotel in 1997 before relocating it to Port Chester, NY in 1999.


Sonora’s menu is a culinary tour throughout Latin America, Mexico, and Spain. Dishes are drawn from Spain, Portugal, Peru, Mexico, Brazil, Cuba, Ecuador, and Chile.   The Chef has also embraced the desire of many diners for a healthier plant based diet and has incorporated modern offerings such as Fresca Kale, and Tacos de Squash.

Inside the unique and beautiful dining room with soft colors and white linen covered tables, the menu is beautiful as it is delicious.  Tapas include; crispy coconut shrimp from Peru served with sweet plantain and Chino Latino lemongrass sauce; Mexican tacos de churrasco with grilled skirt steak, mushrooms, chopped lettuce, and cilantro sauce; and quinoa empanadas from Peru, filled with roasted eggplant, quinoa, and goat cheese, served with chocolate vinaigrette. For entrees; from Colombia, Pollo Organicorrelleno, stuffed with sweet plantain, goat cheese, peppers, chorizo, served with saffron mashed potatoes.

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Eggplant Meatballs in a Spanish Tomato sauce

From Spain, Eggplant Meatballs in a Spanish tomato sauce is a twist on the this Italian vegetarian favorite, and was delicious.   Palomino Pulpo was a fantastic dish of grilled octopus served with fingerling potatoes, arugula and chimichurri.


Palomino Pulpo

The delightful and flavorful Cerviche served in a martini glass is from Ecuador with shrimp in a tomato base with cilantro, onions and sweet potato.  A unique combination of flavors.

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Sunny Mexico provides  Camarones y Vieras, a beautifully presented dish of shrimp and sea scallops in a delicate edible potato “basket” with black bean and cheese ravioli and finally topped with a sweet corn chipotle-chardonnay sauce.


Camarones y Vieras,

The menu is quite inclusive and the chef has included innovative dishes for vegetarians and vegans so that everyone in your party can enjoy the cuisine at Sonora.  The Chef has written 5 cookbooks and has restaurants in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Florida in addition to Port Chester.

“Westchester County is where I call home and is where Sonora and my professional career took shape,” says Chef Palomino, “Sonora will forever be dear to my heart, and I hope my guests feel the same way for years to come.”   We are happy he feels this way, as we plan to return again and again.


179 Rectory Street, Port Chester, NY 10573

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A fun event for all ! The Hudson Valley Hot Air Balloon Festival is back July 12th-14th

balloon fest

Here is a fun and unique event for this weekend.  This year’s Hudson Valley Hot-Air Balloon Festival is back and promises more of everything—more eye-catching “shape balloons,” more vendors, and more attendees.  We were able to enjoy one of the ‘tether”balloon flights which takes you a short distance off the ground, and it was a fun experience.

The festival takes place in the scenic village of Rhinebeck New York.  Be sure to visit the village and browse its shops or grab a bite at some of the great local  eateries.

The festival, presented by the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce (DCRCOC), is in its 28th year of hosting balloonists from all over the country, and will once again take place at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds, on July 12th, 13th, and 14th. The Fairgrounds treats spectators to a 360-degree view of the balloons; gives guests free and easy parking; and allows balloonists room to launch, offer paid rides to the public, and interact with the crowd.


The Hudson Valley Hot-Air Balloon Festival hosts over 100 balloon launches throughout the weekend, with mass launches scheduled for 6 pm in the evenings Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and the popular sunrise launches at 6 am—which are free and open to the public—on Saturday and Sunday. An exciting variety of other activities will be available at all times. These include a craft beverage tap tent with live music, over 100 vendors, food trucks, hayrides, family friendly games, and “balloon presentations,” where balloonists will answer commonly asked questions about the art of ballooning.

Festival-goers can purchase full flight balloon rides and helicopter rides, which are available on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, online in advance.. Tethered hot-air balloon rides are available on a first-come-first-served basis. These rides are $20 per person, cash only. Spectators should arrive an hour early to allow extra time for traffic and to ensure seeing the balloons inflate and launch. For more information and to reserve your ride, visit It is extremely important to note that all rides and launches are weather- and wind-permitting.

Advance discounted tickets are available online. Visit for festival tickets and balloon ride reservations, schedule and festival information, and a full list of sponsors and vendors.

for more information and tickets:

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