La Camelia: savor the authentic flavors of Spain and Portugal in a charming atmosphere in Mt. Kisco

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While there are many fine restaurants in our area, it is unique to discover an eatery that is provides a great menu, friendly service and a dining atmosphere that is warm and inviting.  La Camelia in Mt Kisco is such a place.  Perched on a hill in a 19th Century home, the restaurant is instantly welcoming.  I felt as if  I had walked into the home of a favorite relative, or a quaint New England or European inn that was overflowing with charm and warmth.  The feeling was instant comfort.

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While the restaurant has been operating since 1984, current owners Victor and Serafina Varela have infused new life, an updated menu and genuine warmth and hospitality into La Camelia.  The interior has wide wood floors, fire places and  wooden tables draped in linen.  Prints and tapestries adorn the walls.  There are three separate dining spaces and a bar, all with a unique charm of their own.

The menu is comprised of  authentic Spanish and Portuguese dishes, tapas (small plates), sangria and wines.  The fresh flavors of the Iberian Peninsula  are all here to explore and enjoy.

We started with a pitcher of white wine sangria which was served in a traditional hand painted ceramic pitcher instead of glass or plastic.  This authentic beverage was a great way to start our culinary tour.

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Sangria served from a beautiful hand painted ceramic pitcher

The Sopa de Lagosta (Lobster Soup) was warm and delicious on a cold night.  Served in a unique fish shaped bowl , this lobster bisque also included crab meat and a piece of toast floating on top.  It was hearty and delicious.

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Sopa de Lagosta (Lobster Soup)

Since Spain and Portugal border the sea, the menu is full of seafood options.  We enjoyed the Tostada de Gambas,  a warm tapas with grilled shrimp, fresh guacamole and served over in house made crunchy chips.

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Tostadas de Gambas

Another great tapas was the  Mexilhoes na Cataplana, or steamed mussels in a red sauce.  A very unique presentation of this classic dish as it was served in a covered metal bowl with a hammered finish.  Lifting the cover allowed the fragrant flavors of fresh steamed mussels in a slightly smoky red sauce to fill the air.  This unique presentation and fantastic preparation is what makes La Camelia so special.

For our main dishes we sampled (at the suggestion of the staff), the Bife na Pedra which is  black angus steak that is lightly grilled on each side then served on a cooking stone. You slice the steak and allow the hot stone to cook it to your liking.  A really fun, interactive and authentic dish which we highly recommend.

A visit to a Spanish restaurant is not complete without  enjoying Seafood Paella.  I am big fan of this dish and La Camelia delivers with  all seafood including mussels, clams, shrimp, and topped with a 1/2 pound lobster.  The presentation of the dish was wonderful, and the taste was perfection.

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Seafood Paella

With just a bit of room left for dessert we were surprised to see a dessert cart rolled into the dining room.  Again a charming detail we have not seen in some time in dining and another example of the hospitality at La Camelia. There were several great looking desserts with the Carrot cake and the Chocolate Mousse being our favorites.

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La Camelia is a very special dining experience.  The warmth and genuineness of the hosts, friendly staff, amazing dishes from the sunny Iberian peninsula and a cozy welcoming atmosphere make this a must dine destination.

We cannot wait for warmer weather when the side patio opens up for outside dining.   A perfect restaurant for date night, or a gathering of friends.

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La Camelia

234 North Bedford Rd 
Mount Kisco NY 10549     

web   https://lacameliarestaurant.net

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O Mandarin: Authentic Mandarin cuisine in the heart of Westchester

Irene pix 1663We have been planning to visit O Mandarin in Hartsdale for since its 2017 opening  the restaurant has been receiving very positive reviews.  We were very happy to dine here on a recent Saturday evening. Even though our reservation was for 8 pm the restaurant was full with patrons, and more were waiting at the bar.

The interior of the eatery is set in warm tones with both tables and elevated booths.  There is generous use of wood and the chairs are carved wood inspired by Ming Dynasty design.  The effect is soothing, comfortable  and sets the mood for an evening of dining.

O Mandarin does not serve cocktails, but there is a list of beer, wine, and saki available from the bar.   Our party of four decided to order and share different appetizers so that we may sample some of the many dishes from the menu.  O Mandarin’s menu philosophy is to provide diners with fine authentic Mandarin cuisine using the freshest ingredients.  The food includes an infusion of spices that gives each dish a unique flavor.   There is plenty to choose from with beef, pork, chicken, shrimp and vegetarian options available.

We sampled such favorites as the Mandarin Glazed Short Rib which was sweet and tender.  We also enjoyed the Cucumber Honey Shrimp, and unique dish of cooked shrimp laced with organic honey and covered in sesame seeds.  Very delicious.

 

The Home Made Dumplings can be steamed or pan fried and these dough filled delights (shrimp or pork) were served in a ceramic rowboat with soy sauce on the side.    Shrimp and Chicken  Lettuce wraps came next.  Prepared with scallion and onion and served with lettuce wraps, this is a nice light healthy dish that can be an appetizer or a main dish.

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 Dumplings

Our main dishes consisted of the hearty and delicious Beef Short Rib with two ribs served in a red wine reduction with ginger and anise.  The meat was soft and tender and fell off the bone.  The red wine and spiced reduction was the perfect complement to the beef.

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Pineapple Fried Rice

Our other main was the Garlic Pepper Shrimp with bell peppers and leeks, and we also enjoyed the Pineapple Mixed Fried rice which was served in a hollowed out half pineapple.  The fried rice was delicious and light and filled with beef, chicken and veggies.  A really great dish.   We were impressed with the variety of the menu, the presentation of the dishes, and the healthy way we felt at the end of the meal.   The use of fresh spices  instead of salt and soy sauce really sets O Mandarin apart.

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Garlic Pepper Shrimp

We learned the owner is constantly bringing in guest chefs from China to infuse fresh ideas into the menu.  With this kind of innovation, we look forward to returning again to O Mandarin.

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O Mandarin

361 North Central Avenue Hartsdale NY

https://www.omandarin.com

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Greenwich Wine and Food Festival returns to Greenwich September 21-22nd

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The fantastic Greenwich Wine and Food Festival presented by PepsiCo returns to Roger Sherman Baldwin Park on the harbor in Greenwich Ct., September 21-22, 2018.  The festival is amazing with food, wine, beer, and spirits tastings, celebrity chefs and demonstrations, a casino gaming tent, and capped off by a fantastic outdoor concert.  All this is the beautiful setting of Roger Sherman Baldwin Park.

Friday night will feature a  special dinner with The Opening Night Master Chef Wine Dinner, held at Roger Sherman Baldwin Park on Friday, September 21, will honor Alex Guarnaschelli for her innovation and substantial contributions to the culinary world.

Saturday September 22nd is a fun filled day starting at 12:30 pm with the Grand Tasting Tent with 150 different food and beverage vendors!  It is quite the treat.  It is a great way to sample wine, spirits, beverages and check out the culinary delights from great local restaurants.

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Celebrity chefs abound at the festival with The Celebrity Green Room, presented by Ethan Allen, will host celebrities and culinary experts in a luxury lounge while being interviewed by Serendipity contributing editors Chef Matt Storch and Chef Robin Selden.

12:30-12:50pm – Adam Richman  1:00-1:20pm – Scott Conant 1:30-1:50pm – Alex Guarnaschelli  2:00-2:20pm – Samantha Benjamin (The Dessertist), Kevin Des Chenes (restauranteur and author) and Lindsay Perkins (Lindsay Culinary, LLC)    2:30-2:50pm – Christian Petroni (Fortina, Winner of Next Food Network Star), Bill Taibe (Jesup Hall, Kawa Ni, The Whelk) and Serena Wolf (author and Domesticate-Me.com)  and more!

From 1pm to 6pm there will be two kitchen demonstration stages with celebrity chefs presenting great cooking demos.

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From 4:30 pm to 8:30pm there will be more great activities leading up to concert time!  There will be “The South of The Border” presented by Don Julio featuring the flavors of Mexico.   Bud and Burgers will have burger samples from competing restaurants as well as plenty of Budweiser on tap.   There is also a great “Tailgate Party” during this time with great samples from   featuring samples from Blue Point Brewing Company, Cafe’ Bon, Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, Filippo Berio, Half Full Brewery, Hoodoo Brown BBQ, Izzi B’s Bakery, Jameson, Kettle One, KOW Steaks, Mike’s Organic Delivery, Pepsi Zero, The Blind Rhino, The Dough Girls, True Color Sparkling Wine, Val’s Putnam Wines & Liquors, Walter’s Hot Dogs and Woodford Reserve.  There is something for everyone!

The festival will end with an outdoor concert.  At 6:30 pm vocalist and multi instrumentalist Caroline Jones will kick off the concert. She has released her first album this year “Bare Feet” and has spent much of 2018 touring with Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band.  I have seen her in concert and she is not to be missed!

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At 8:30 pm Tim McGraw will be the main act on stage.  McGraw’s career spans over 20 years and  is considered a top  country music artist. He has numerous Grammy, CMA and AMA awards to his credit.  His crossover into a blend of country and pop music has made him a fan favorite all over the country.

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This event is not to be missed and comes along once a year !  For more information click the link below.

https://serendipitysocial.com/greenwich-wine-food

Greenwich Wine and Food Festival presented by PepsiCo

 

Viceroy Publik House: A hip English Ale House with Indian roots opens in Stamford

 

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A new restaurant, pub and music venue has joined the restaurant scene in downtown Stamford Ct.  Viceroy Publik House is a unique  new addition to Summer Street and offers a two level townhouse where you can discover the fusion of Indian and English cuisine along with the energy and vibe of an upscale English pub.

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The theme recalls the British Raj era of Colonial Rule over India from 1858 to 1947.  Decor features vintage photographs and maps on the walls in the intimate and more formal downstairs dining room.  Upstairs is the Tiger Room which creates a hip and more modern atmosphere with its modern prints (including one of the Beatles in India), curved banquettes , bar with wine cabinet that looks like an English Telephone booth . A British Triumph motorcycle serves as a backdrop for the stage area which hosts different musical artists.

 

There is a list of interesting and creative cocktails including House of Victoria and the Bengal Tiger (gin based),  and  Sun City, an interesting take on the Mule with Bourbon and Ginger Beer.  All are interesting combinations that will have you sampling more than one from the bar.

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The menu that we sampled was classic English Pub Fare, elevated to a finer level and filled with Indian influences.  The Spicy Vindaloo Wings were tasty but I must caution as the hot spice will linger on your lips!  The Bombay burger is made from spiced lamb and served on a toasted brioche roll with fried egg and mint aioli.  A more modern version of the burger not found in your average pub and an example of the innovative way in which the Chef has developed the menu.

The Faroe Island Salmon was excellent and was served with an orange soy ginger glaze that gave this British favorite a bit more flavor.  The pub standard of Fish and Chips was great with tender sustainable cod prepared in a Heineken beer batter and served with Viceroy curry ketchup.

Also on the menu are items such as the Lamb Madras with lamb served in a madras curry and coconut cream with  rice pilaf.   The Bisto Steak is another good choice  and fits well in the overall British pub theme.

Music promoter and Stamford restaurateur Eric Monte is your host and can be seen moving about the restaurant mingling with guests, or introducing the band as it begins it set in the Tiger Room upstairs.

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photo credit: Viceroy Publik House

The Viceroy is certainly a very unique and lively restaurant  experience for our area and is one you will want to check out.

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Viceroy Publik House

211 Summer Street Stamford Ct

web http://www.viceroystamford.com      tel.  (203) 658-8423

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Westchester Magazine’s Wine And Food Festival returns June 6th-11th 2017 !

 

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Westchester Magazine, the premier lifestyle magazine of Westchester County will be hosting its annual Wine and Food Festival from June  6-11th 2017.  This is an event for foodies from all over and is not to be missed !

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The signature event of the Wine & Food Festival, is the Grand Tasting Village that takes place at the beautiful Kensico Dam Park in Valhalla.   The Grand Tasting Village features tastings from 50+ local restaurants and more than 200 wines & spirits. Chef demonstrations will be presented during the day from great local chefs. There will also be various food trucks from area vendors as well.

 

2017 Grand Tasting Village Participating Restaurants (partial list)
Amore Cucina & Bar ,Bar Sugo, Basta ,Benjamin Steakhouse,Blue Moon Mexican Café
Blue Tulip Chocolates, Cathy’s Biscotti ,Cedar Street Grill ,Chutney Masala Indian Bistro
Coffee Lab Roasters, Cooper’s Mill ,Dan Rooney’s, Dolphin Restaurant, Equus
Fantasy Cuisine G.E. Brown La Bocca Ristorante,Mason Sandwich Co.
Mediterraneo, Mighty Quinn’s, Mima Restaurant,Nonno’s
Poppy’s Cheesecake,Posh Pretzels, Quenas Restaurant, Raasa Indian Cuisine
Rita’s of Elmsford, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Serafina
Small Cakes, Sofrito, Sonora, Spark Valley Steakhouse.The Bayou
The Taco Project,The Twisted Oak  The Turk
The Westchester, Tomato & Co., Tredici North, Village Social – Rye
Westchester Milk, Winston,  Zero Otto Nove

Tickets for the event are $85 in advance,  $90 at the door.

for more information on all the Westchester Magazine Wine and Food events and ticket purchases see their website:

http://winefood.westchestermagazine.com/

Westchester Magazine Wine and Food Festival 

Grand Tasting Village event      June 10th  12-5 pm

Kensico Dam Park    Valhalla New York 

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Ramiro’s 954: An Authentic Latin Fusion eatery with a fresh innovative menu

 

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I visited Ramiro’s 954 restaurant as I was excited to try a Latin fusion eatery with a stellar reputation.  Located over the border of Northern Westchester in Mahopac NY, the restaurant is warm and inviting with bright colors and wood trim and ceiling beams that create the a Latin atmosphere. Ramiro’s 954 has a lovely menu with a contemporary of blend of cuisine from Spain and Latin America.

The bar offers a nice selection as well of cocktails and wine.  The White Sangria that I tried was one of the best I have ever had. Light, fruity and sweet and it made me feel like I was on vacation.  The classic Mojito is a perfect choice and was served in a tall glass with muddled mint leaves, lime, club soda and white rum and was delicious.

Ramiro’s offers a large selection of appetizers and it is hard to choose which one.  We sampled several from the menu.  Standouts for me are the Empanadas de Picadillo, a crispy turnover filled with ground beef, garlic, onion, pepper, red wine and served in a sweet chipotle cream sauce.  Everyone at the table thought they were fresh and fantastic.

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Empandas

Another nice choice is the Platano Relleno, a great dish comprised of fried sweet plantain stuffed with chicken, peppers and served with a black bean puree, queso fresco, and avocado sauce. A real knockout dish and great to share with your fellow dinner guests.

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Platano Relleno

If you are a taco lover, try the Tacos Dorado, crispy corn tacos filled with BBQ pork, chipotle, mango salsa and queso fresco.  This was a big hit with the combo of BBQ and fresh ingredients.  There are 15 items alone on the appetizer menu.  Some of the appetizers are available in vegetarian form.

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Tacos Dorado

There is also a Ceviche menu and I highly recommend the trio tasting, which consists of Ceviche de Camaron: blanched shrimp, roasted tomato sauce and orange juice, onion, jalapeno pepper, avocado and cilantro. The other sample was Chifa de Atun, which is tuna in lime juice with seaweed salad, jalapenos and soy-habanero sauce.  The last of the ceviche trio was sliced salmon in lime juice with wasabi avocado sauce.  This innovative ceviche menu was delightful and was beautifully presented.

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trio of Ceviche

 

Main Course:  It was a challenge to narrow down our entree course as there is such a unique and interesting selection of dishes. There are 20 selections from which to choose.

The filled Mahi-Mahi (Dorado con Risotto) is a stellar pick.  Fresh grilled Mahi-Mahi is served with mushroom risotto, lime blackened sea salt butter in a sour orange reduction.  The fish was lightly grilled so that there was a perfect balance of grill flavor blended with the fresh tender fish.

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Mahi-Mahi

 

 

If Paella is your favorite (as it is mine), go for the delicious traditional Spanish dish with saffron rice, and a healthy portion of shrimp, scallops, mussels, chicken and chorizo.

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Paella

For shrimp lovers, try the Cameron Enchilado– seared shrimp served in a mild tomato sauce, diced grilled pineapple, rice and zucchini salad. This dish is a true masterpiece with a delectable blend of tastes and a nice presentation.

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Cameron Enchilado

The meat lover in our party was very happy with the Grilled Skirt Steak served over morita chiles sauce, carmelized onions, green beans, and white rice.  There are quite a few beef and chicken choices as well as dishes for vegetarians.

Dessert:  Save room for the homemade desserts!  A unique selection is the  Bananas Fritas, crispy bananas coated in cornmeal and cinnamon served with caramel sauce with cinnamon cookies.  Tasty and creative!    Chocolate lovers will find the Torta de Chocolate the correct choice.  A chocolate tart served Latin style with vanilla ice cream and raspberry sauce.  The chocolate chip cheesecake is light and creamy and the perfect ending to this great meal.

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Bananas Fritas

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Torta de Chocolate

 

I tried the Coconut Martini which can be enjoyed prior to you meal or as I did at the end.  The drink was cool and refreshing and gave me a taste of the tropics.

Ramiro’s is quite popular with the locals.  However, I felt that I was eating in a top Latin Bistro in New York City or Westchester.  Chef and owner Ramiro Jimenez has created a friendly, top quality restaurant, with great service, and an innovative and interesting menu with something for everyone.  He has also written a cookbook called the “Daily Feast Cookbook” and is passion for cooking is apparent.

So take the few extra minutes and cross over the Westchester border into Mahopac and taste the great menu at Ramiro’s 954

 

Ramiro’s 954

954 Route 6 Mahopac New York           tel: 845-621-3333

website :  http://www.ramiros954.com

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Inn at Pound Ridge:Elegant dining in a casual rustic setting

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Main dining room – photo by inn at pound ridge

Upon opening the door at the Inn at Pound Ridge one is immediately drawn to the entrance fireplace and beautiful display of Autumn bounty of gourds and pumpkins.  The space is inviting and warm with a casual sophisticated flair.  Reclaimed wood, high ceilings in the main upstairs dining room and custom lighting create a soothing environment in which to dine. One has the immediate feeling that a special dining experience awaits.

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There are two floors on which to dine at the Inn at Pound Ridge as well as a large bar area.  All these spaces are all unique. The original building dates to 1833 when it was constructed as a home, but the property has served as an Inn for many years.  The Inn at Pound Ridge now owned and run by international chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten brings fantastic cuisine to this landmark restaurant.   The main floor of the Inn is a blend of modern design yet retains much of the charm of the original structure with fireplaces, wide plank wood floors, bleached wood and exposed rustic wood beams and trusses.   I chose to eat on the lower level which is divided into smaller more intimate spaces  and gave me the feeling I was in a secret yet warm place inside a castle with its exposed stone walls.

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There are several seating options from the small fireplace room behind the bar with its inviting couches and antique coffee table which offers a great place to enjoy a drink to the main dining area. The bar is comfortable and looks like it would be right at home in the English Countryside.  There is an understated elegance to this space and the wait staff was well prepared to tend to you from start to finish.

 

The menu is  a farm to table cuisine with many of the ingredients being locally sourced from farms in the Hudson Valley and New England.  Such a culinary philosophy brings great taste to each dish.  I  began my meal with a soothing and quite tasty lentil soup.  The broth was expertly prepared with just the right amount of seasoning. It was a flavorful and hearty soup that was just perfect for a November afternoon.

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Lentil Soup

Another appetizer to try is the Butternut squash salad with sliced apples and pumpkin seeds in a yogurt dressing.  This was light and delicious and the perfect pairing of fruit and vegetables.  Also a perfect selection with keeping with the spirit of harvest.

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Butternut Squash salad

My main dish was the salmon salad which consisted of a nice portion fresh salmon filet, encrusted with sesame seeds and served with a superb Asian dressing on the greens. Truly a delicious and healthy choice.  Another nice selection was the Fish and Chips, which was nicely prepared with a light and flavorful batter for extra crunch. The cod was not greasy and  was flakey, very fresh and served with potato slices.

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Salmon Salad

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Fish and Chips

You must not leave without trying one of the wonderful desserts prepared by top pastry chefs.  The Almond Cake was scrumptious and had just the right amount of sweetness with a nutty note.

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Almond cake

I also sampled the Warm Chocolate Cake which melts in your mouth with the velvet feel of the fresh cake and the soft chocolate inside.  The ice cream here is similar to gelato and I had the pleasure to taste is beautifully presented in bowl lined with warm chocolate syrup and sprinkled with caramel corn which gave a crunch to the smoothness of the ice cream.

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Warm Chocolate Cake

The Inn at Pound Ridge is a special restaurant with a beautiful atmosphere.  Reservations are a must at this popular Jean-Georges restaurant. The level of culinary skill and expertise makes this the perfect spot for a special occasion or for getting out and having a great dining experience.

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The Inn at Pound Ridge by Jean-Georges

258 Westchester Ave  Pound Ridge New York     tel: 914-764-1400

web: http://www.theinnatpoundridge.com/

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Hudson Valley Restaurant Week Returns! November 1-13th 2016. Great time to try a new restaurant!

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Hudson Valley Restaurant Week, presented by Valley Table Magazine is back again starting November 1nd through November 13th 2016. This event involves over 200 restaurants in the mid and lower Hudson Valley which offer diners special three-course price fixe dinner menus for $29.95 (not including beverage, tax and gratuity). Many of these fine restaurants also offer 3-course price fixe lunches for $20.95 (not including beverage, tax and gratuity).

This year celebrates 10 years of Hudson Valley Restaurant Week.


This is an amazing opportunity to try new restaurants, or some old favorites at a reasonable price. There are no tickets to buy and the process is easy ! Go to the Valley Table website and scroll down and view the participating restaurants, then choose a restaurant (or more), call them to make a reservation and then enjoy!
You really should not miss this special time get out and dine at some of the fantastic restaurants we have here in the Hudson Valley.

Hudson Valley Restaurant Week presented by Valley Table Magazine

https://www.valleytable.com/hvrw

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KEE OYSTER HOUSE: Old New York Dining Experience comes to White Plains

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There is a new restaurant in White Plains that brings to the local dining scene a touch of old New York City with an elegant and urban vibe.  Three Westchester natives opened KEE Oyster House to bring New York’s famed oyster history back to life by serving a dazzling array of seafood items as well other menu options from the land.  The food is all super fresh (no frozen food) and prepared simple and pure to allow the taste and the freshness of the  food to really stand out.  Everything we sampled was top quality with ample portions.

Upon entering you know you are in a special restaurant.  The interior design uses painted dark wood, high ceilings and large tall windows, black and white tile floor in the bar area and Edison bulb lighting.  The effect is to replicate the feel of a New York City restaurant in the early 20th Century.  A beautiful long marble bar serves top notch specialty cocktails as well as a large wine menu and 20 types of single malt scotches and craft beer flows from seven taps.  Guests can eat at the bar and I witnessed some enjoying large plates of fresh oysters with their drinks.

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I sampled the Pomegranate Martini as well at the Oyster House Amigo.  I highly recommend these cocktails. Also at the bar diners can enjoy a bag of freshly made potato chips.

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If you enjoy the seafood, this the place for you.  A delightful menu with an emphasis on favorites as well as some unique and fresh options.  There are hot or cold Seafood Towers which are loaded with clams, oysters, crab meat shrimp and lobster. Any of the items in the Seafood Tower can also be ordered separately.  There is nice range of starters with salad, Roasted beets, Chowder and even ribs are available.

Starters: I tried the grilled oysters which were delicious and had a pure and lovely essence of the sea.  I was transported briefly to a seaside cafe.  Also fantastic was the Oysters Rockefeller with a light crust and creamy spinach filling.  A comforting and satisfying way to start the meal.

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Grilled Oysters

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Oysters Rockefeller

The Shrimp with grits was another tasty choice and the grits provided a nice contrast to the fresh shrimp.  The Fried Calamari was a little spicy with its chili aioli and crusty coating, and again was very tasty.

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Shrimp with Grits

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Calamari

Main Course:  There are 6 seafood selections  and 5 meat selections on the entree menu.  My entree was a 2 1/2 pound steamed lobster (sizes are 2 to 3 1/2 pounds) which is split and deshelled for you table side.  You can really taste the freshness of this classic dish.  My dish was so large, it really can be shared.

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Lobster

Another mouthwatering and healthy entree is the Roasted Halibut with a grape tomato stew. The halibut was perfectly prepared, light and delicious.  No frozen seafood is used and fresh seafood is sourced daily and it makes a  big difference in taste.  All dishes are a la carte with side dishes available at additional cost. I sampled the scrumptious Grilled Asparagus and the Roasted Cauliflower with brie cheese.  A nice complement to the entree.

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Halibut in a grape tomato stew

Dessert:  Don’t leave without trying the homemade and classic desserts.  We sampled the Apple Cobbler and the Key Lime pie and both were a nice sweet way to round out our meal.

KEE Oyster House is a special restaurant with the feel, atmosphere and high quality of a top restaurant in Manhattan.   Not feeling the trip into Manhattan to dine?  Then KEE delivers the NYC dining experience right in the heart of White Plains. A warm and lovely atmosphere with top notch service and great food is why this new gem should be on your list of spots to dine.

Both Lunch and Dinner served.  Reservations are suggested.  Private dining room available.

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KEE OYSTER HOUSE

126-128 East Post Road White Plains New York   tel: 914 437 8535

http://www.keeoysterhouse.com/

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Beekman Arms Inn: History lives at this charming historic inn

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There is something very unique about staying in a historic hotel or inn.  Each of these places are unique as they have hosted a part of our history. The Beekman Arms in Rhinebeck N.Y. is one of those special historic inns that has been a witness to the history of not only the Hudson Valley but America as well.

Located right on Rt 9 in the heart of Rhinebeck, the Beekman Arms has been in operation since 1766 and lays claim to the title of “America’s Oldest Inn”.   During the American Revolution the Inn hosted George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, and Benedict Arnold (who was a General in the Continental Army at the time).  In the 20th Century, President Franklin D. Roosevelt completed several of his major political campaigns with a speech from the front porch of the inn.

We recently had the opportunity to stay an evening in the inn while visiting the charming village of Rhinebeck.  Upon opening the door you know you are in a special place.  The ceilings are low, the floors are clad in wide plank hardwood  and the public rooms on the first floor are intimate.  There is the reception area and a comfortable parlor with fireplace and next to that is  a cozy room that looks part sitting room, part library with its wood paneling and wing back chairs.

The main floor also houses the Tap Room which is the original part of the inn  which dates back to its origins as a tavern.  The room is clad in wood paneling, wide plank wood floors, a long bar and wooden chairs and tables. The large hearth dates from 1704.  The Tap room is the meeting place in Rhinebeck for locals and visitors to enjoy an ale or a cocktail with friends.  The walls are adorned with historic photos and prints which remind one of the history that has taken place within these walls.

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The historic Tap Room

Also on the first floor is a several small dining areas, the main dining room, and the garden greenhouse where we enjoyed our continental breakfast. The greenhouse was a charming spot to enjoy coffee overlooking the garden.

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The Greenhouse overlooking the garden and front lawn

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Our room was on the second floor, up the charming but steep staircase.  The room was very charming, clean and comfortable. It had a poster bed with quilts,  2 chairs for sitting and reading, a small desk, a non working fireplace, a Keurig coffee maker, and a small television.  The ceiling is low at just about 7 feet which reminds you that you are in an antique building.  The bath was modern and updated.  The floors are over 200 years old and they will creak, but that is just part of the charm of the hotel.  The room was air conditioned. A decanter of sherry and two glasses are also provided.

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Down the street the Beekman Arms also owns the Delamater House and Conference center which is a collection of seven guest house buildings.  The Delamater House dates back to 1844 and was designed by the famous 19th century architect, Alexander Jackson Davis whose designs dot the Hudson Valley and was responsible for such famous buildings as Lyndhurst in Tarrytown.

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The beautiful Delamater House (1844)

The village of Rhinebeck has a charm of its own with its Antique barn, farmers market, cool shops and great restaurants.  It is also a great place to stay and explore this area of the Hudson Valley with its wineries, farms,  hiking, and historic venues.  If you love history and unique properties, than check out the Beekman Arms.

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Beekman Arms

Route 9 Rhinebeck NY       tel:  845-876-7080

http://beekmandelamaterinn.com

 

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