Zenzo Sushi in Mamaroneck, NY – A Ranking of Mamaroneck Ave Asian Fusion Restaurants 

There are four Asian Fusion restaurants in Mamaroneck, NY and I have been to all of them now with Zenzo Sushi rounding up the end of the list. Each has its own uniqueness. Below is a quick summary of them. Click on the name below to read my past reviews.

  • Red Plum – the least expensive and probably the most fusion (bastardized) version of Asian food
  • Haiku – the middle of the road, balancing the fusion with the traditional. I was pleasantly surprised by their specials of Chinese Soup Dumplings… Almost as good as those in Flushing but much closer geographically to home
  • Ginban – Decent food. Friendly staff, caters to families. Big on presentation. A tie with Haiku.
  • Zenzo – The surprising winner with a strong selection of sashimi. Worth returning to try other non raw items that are on the menu. We went off menu and simply ordered whatever we fancied.

Sashimi: Hamachi (Yellowtail), Toro (Fatty Tuna), Maguro (Tuna), and Hotatekai (Scallop). The presentation was clean and elegant. Sushi: Uni (Sea urchin), Ikura (Salmon Roe).

This experience took place at

Zenzo Sushi

328 Mamaroneck Ave
Mamaroneck, NY 10543


Ginban Asian Bistro and Sushi in Mamaroneck, NY- A Playground for the Children

Ginban Asian Bistro and Sushi in Mamaroneck, NY is one of the four Asian Fusion restaurants on a short stretch of Mamaroneck Ave off the Metro North Station. I often wondered how these four restaurants compete and survive. Ginban apparently is the family friendly one. When I was there, there were two groups of families with small children. The children (4-5 of them all around 5-6 years old) ran around the entire restaurant playing hide and seek, without discouragement from parents nor the restaurant staff. They were very noisy and I asked to sit as far from them as possible.

Interestingly, Ginban is positioning itself as a “cutting-edge” and hip restaurant filled with adults. The image and reality are diametrically different.Sushimi Delux. 21 pieces of assorted raw fish. Can’t complain. It’s fresh raw fish cut up with wasabi, soy sauce and ginger. Beautifully presented!Salmon roll  Miso Soup. Decent.Fried Rice with Chicken. Decent and edible.Tempura Fried Ice Cream. Was told that this is their most popular dessert. Yuck. It was horrible. The batter was greasy. Vanilla Ice Cream. My 12-year-old critic did not like it. Now, for a child to not like ice cream…

In conclusion, if I had a family in Mamaroneck with small children and want to eat dinner out in a restaurant with contemporary atmosphere (almost like the City but not quite), Ginban is where I would come. My children could eat the generic chicken fried rice, be exposed to slightly more exotic dishes like salmon roll, and run around in the restaurant after they finish eating. I can then eat in peace with my husband, partner or friends. It’s all about targeting your demographics- Ginban’s website content should be re-written.

This experience took place at

Ginban Asian Bistro and Sushi
421 Mamaroneck Ave
Mamaroneck NY 10543
phone 914.777.8889

Andrea’s 25 North in Mamaroneck, NY- Happy Holidays with Angry Losters 

This was a work holiday lunch with a partner agency at Andrea’s 25 North on Boston Post Road on Mamaroneck. The restaurant is a beautiful house with cozy corners and large bright windows. The wait staff was attentive and knowledgeable. The food was excellent. The specials were plentiful and mouth-watering, especially the 2-3 pound angry lobsters. It was a happy meal for the growth ups and a wonderful break from a busy work week. Thank you! Appetizers: Broccoli rabe & sausage egg rolls, Burrata, shrimps and salad. Lobster Ravioli Deana: Cognac infused pink cream sauce with asparagus, mushrooms & diced shrimp This was George’s: plain chicken pieces with potatoes. You would not guess from the type of food he orders nor the amount of food he eats that George is a statuesque former wrestler. NY Strip Steak: 14oz. Prime N.Y. Strip. Served with creamy mashed potatoes & cabernet sauce. Steak was no cooked to the temperature that was ordered. It’s over done.Chicken Piccante: Classic chicken francese sautéed with cherry peppers topped with melted mozzarella over a bed of sautéed spinach.  Kerri – I Don’t think this is Chicken Martine.Special: Red snapper with tomato sauce and salmon on a bed of zucchini. Salmon was a little dry but red snapper was moist.
Special: Veal with rigatoni pasta
Special: 2-3 pound Angry Lobster on a bed of angel hair pasta. They offered for us to go pick out our own lobsters from the tank downstairs. 🙂  Special: Angry lobster. The knife is placed there for scale. This was a big plate.
Special: Angry lobster. Although the lobsters were angry, they made many of us very happy.  Special: Lamb chop lollipop. Best dish by far. Tender and juicy. Best lamb chop lollipops I have ever had.

Highly recommended for a large gathering. Authentic Italian cooking. Cannot go wrong.

This experience took place at

Andrea’s 25 North

974 E Boston Post Rd,
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
Phone:(914) 698-2597

Haiku in Mamaroneck, NY- A Round of Applause for Authenticity

I found myself having nothing to do on a Friday night and hungry. My options were to hunt for food in Queens or around work in Westchester. I let the red traffic lights decide whether I got on the highway to head down to Queens or straight to a restaurant nearby. I ended up at Haiku’s Asian Bistro on Mamaroneck Ave, in Mamaroneck NY. I knew what I was walking into- a bastardized version of Asian food. But I was pleasantly surprised!Crispy Calamari Salad with miso vinaigrette dressing. This is truly an Asian fusion dish. The fried calamari is made with a sprinkle of Chinese five spice and Chinese white pepper, the traditional way to prepare Chinese fried calamari. Yet we would never lay crispy calamari on a plate of raw greens, cut up cherry tomatoes and dressing. Regardless, it was delicious. The combination of the east and the west worked.
Special: Chinese soup dumplings. I saw this special on the table. A little surprised that they were offering an authentic dish. It prompted me to test it out. It was authentic, all right. Not the best soup dumplings I have ever had. The skin was a bit thick. But it was very decent and it was authentic.   Pad Thai Noodles: spicy Thai flat noodle with jumbo shrimp. By this point, I was full. Ate the jumbo shrimps but packed up the rest. Never got a chance to finish it because I forgot it in the fridge.

Haiku, like Red Plum next door, offered all kind of Asian food (Japanese, Chinese, Thai, etc.) But I like Haiku a lot better for the fact that they are trying to be authentic when they can. I give Haiku both thumbs up for the effort and I will return to encourage. Happy Thursday my friends! Let’s all try a little bit harder and be ourselves despite our circumstance.

This experience took place at

Haiku Asian Bistro

265 Mamaroneck Ave,
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
Phone:(914) 381-3200

Red Plum in Mamaroneck, NY- Take Two and A Challenge for the Bastardized Asian Cuisine

This was a funny visit where I tested Red Plum’s ability to understand English and be flexible. I had been to Red Plum before with so so experience. Read my prior post (Reliable Old Shoe Asian), click here.

Red Plum offers bastardized fusion Asian cuisine, from an authentically Asian perspective. Let me just say that there is nothing wrong with it if that’s what the local population wants. Hey, I live in a bastardized area and I deserve this Americanized version of Asian cuisine for being highly assimilated. Sashimi Lunch: 12 pieces of assorted sashimi with rice, served with miso soup and salad. This was perfectly fine. Simple and straight forward for $13. They even put a light inside the ice-cube. The extra touch was fun. But in tomorrow’s post, I will show you how to have a lot more sashimi for not a lot more money.
Chirashi Special: 17 pieces of raw fish and vegetables over sushi rice. This was also fine for $20. The fish was fresh and the uni was very tasty.

Here is where the story gets interesting. I went with a picky friend who insisted that sashimi must be placed on the rice in a bowl, like how it is done in Japan, and not placed directly on ice as how Red Plum always serves their sashimi. He has a point! When chirashi is served on a bed of ice, it is very cold and a lot less appetizing. Further, if that’s how the Japanese eat their chirashi, should the Americans and the Chinese really argue with it? Red Plum is run by the Chinese, as far as I can tell.

My friend explained his request once to the waiter. The waiter did not understand and brought in a waitress, who presumably has better language skills. In the meantime, the wait staff were talking to each other about this request all in Mandarin, which I understand. My friend explained it again, in English, to the waitress. Then came a long conversation, back and forth, with the waitress attempting to clarify the “weird” request and my friend not understanding why she doesn’t get it.

I finally could not listen anymore, after about five minutes of this… I interrupted in Mandarin and repeated the exact same request, in Mandarin, to the waitress. Her response to me was, “That’s really what he wanted?” She did understand him but she didn’t believe what she heard! She also confessed to me that they didn’t have a bowl! Hmm. No bowls in a Chinese restaurant… I told her that there must be one, somewhere back there.

Other than the fact that there is a cultural and language gap between the diners and Red Plum, I feel Red Plum did an excellent job serving the Americanized Asian food. The Sashimi Lunch and Chirashi were well priced and fresh. I will now return and only order in Mandarin! I am sure I will get outstanding service as well as getting a bowl for my meal.  🙂

This experience took place at

Red Plum
251 Mamaroneck Ave.
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
Tel: (914) 777-8696 | 777-6888

P.S. This is my December writing challenge 5 of 17, writing one post a day until I leave for vacation.

Hash o Nash in Mamaroneck, NY- A Long Menu of Middle Eastern Dishes and Great Service

Hash O Nash is a middle eastern restaurant located in the heart of Mamaroneck, NY. Their menu is as long as a book. I was a little concerned when I saw the menu because a long menu indicates only one thing to me: the restaurant is trying to do too much and to satisfy too many. Really? How many outstanding generalists are there? It’s an oxymoron.

This is a plate of extremely sour pickled vegetables. So sour that as soon as you put a piece in your mouth you start to salivate. The pickle was the least sour; the green tomato was the most sour. I ate the whole tomato and had to wipe off my drool with a napkin! I just kept on going back for more… Very unique.

VEGETARIAN TRIO PLATTER: Falafel hummus, baba ghanoug and grape leaves. This was the first time I had the baba ghanoug. Very smooth and has a slightly watery consistency when compared to the hummus. Delicious and healthy. I can eat this all day with pita bread.

SHRIMP HAR’RAK: Cooked in olive oil with hot pepper, cilantro, garlic, parsley and lemon juice and pita. Meh – the shrimps were fresh but the preparation seems very common. Acceptable but not special.

MIXED GRILL: A real fiesta combination of shish kabobs and shawarma (lamb shish, chicken shish, lamb kafta, lamb chops and shawarma). They use oak, hickory and mesquite wood, served with tahini sauce, salad and rice or bulgur pilaf and vegetable of the day. I so wish this were better. It had all the promises of being good- I checked out their grill before ordering; this is what they specialized in. Alas, the meat (lamb and shawarma) was dry and rubbery which depleted all flavors from the spices. The chicken was the best because it was moist.

BAKLAVA: Baked phyllo dough, stuffed with chopped pistachio and drizzled with rose water flavored homemade syrup. I am usually not a baklava fan but the flaky dough with the pistachio that night really hit the spot. I used my finger to pick up the last bits of pistachio.  I also had the Arabian mint tea with the Baklava – transported me to a cool ryad with green trees and serenity during a hot July summer day in Marrakech, Morocco.  Arabian mint tea with honey is one of my favorite teas.  Mmm. Mmm. Good.

To be fair now, the food was good, even above average. After all, I did choose only four dishes from a list of “hundred.” When I return, I will stick to the most popular items and avoid the grilled meat.

Oh – the waitress was very attentive and patient with us. She told us that they have belly dancing on Friday nights. Hmm. Who should I invite for this festivity of ogling women?

This experience took place at

Hash o Nash
441 Mamaroneck Ave
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
(914) 630-7310

Le Provençal Bistro in Mamaroneck, NY- Outstanding Service

Le Provençal Bistro is a restaurant I go often. It’s a decent place. I have been there many times for work related lunches and dinners. Tonight, I brought my 11-yr-old honey boo boo for a quick dinner before her year-end concert. The French Bistro delivered the exact experience we were seeking.

French Baguette: Authentic. Any French restaurants that can’t do a good baguette is not a French restaurant. The baguette should also come with room temperature butter and not olive oil.

Angel hair pasta fresh tomato, basil and garlic. This dish was ordered by my daughter and represented a mother’s regret… My French speaking and French educated daughter ordered an Italian dish in a French bistro. I have given up and let her be her own person when it comes to food and most of other things.

This was the special that night: Lobster with avocado, mango and greens. Light, airy and refreshing.

The service was outstanding. We had an hour from sitting down to departure and the waiter took great care of us. Everything was done quickly but not rushed. We had everything we wanted. The afternoon sunlight came in through the French windows that we sat next to. My job was done as a mother. She was happy.

This experience took place at

Le Provençal Bistro
436 Mamaroneck Ave
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
(914) 777-2324

Frankie & Fanucci’s Pizzaria in Mamaroneck, NY – A Happy Spring Lunch with an Average Wood-Fired Pizza

An Italian friend and I went to Frankie & Fanucci’s Pizzeria for a quick lunch. My honey boo boo monkey bird has been going to Frankie & Fanucci’s with her grandparents for years and this was my first time there. Given all the tall tales I have heard, I had high hopes for Frankie & Fanucci’s. I like pizza. I like wood oven, brick oven, and coal-fired pizzas. As long as it is well made, I will like it.

As always, I started out with a Classic Margherita with fresh mozzarella, San Marzano tomatoes sauce, and bail. This was average. The crust was not thin and was not crispy. In fact, it was a little moist. My friend and I spent quite a lot of time talking about other better pizza places in Westchester or even the one down the street, called Sal’s (no frills pizzeria that turns out NY and Sicilian styled slices for decades).

Wood-fired Cauliflower: whipped ricotta, rosemary flatbread. This was also average. The aspect of having cauliflower at lunch was exciting for me but the execution was lacking in the whipped ricotta and rosemary flatbread. Very one note.

This entire lunch reminded me of one of my experiences in Fortina in Armonk where I ordered almost identical dishes: pizza and wood-dire cauliflowers. The satisfaction was high and certainly not average. See my post on Fortuna, click here.

I felt a little like an idiot for having selected Frankie & Fanucci’s to dine with an Italian…  However, the best part of my lunch that day was sitting outside for the first time this Spring with the sun hitting on my face. Happy Spring, my friends.

This experience took place at

Frankie & Fanucci’s Pizzeria
301 Mamaroneck Ave,
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
(914) 630-4360

Molly Spillane’s in Mamaroneck, NY – Generically Good Pub Food

I have been writing this blog since last July. It has become a little stale and boring for me. I have been thinking of changing it up and writing differently. Some readers have suggested that I write more about the atmosphere of the restaurant; some want SAT vocabulary and more complex sentence structures; some want the same short posts with no changes; some want ratings and better pictures; some want more of my personality.

I am going to experiment here and write whatever I feel like. Please feel free to comment and let me know how you like it.
Molly Spillane’s on Mamaroneck Ave is nothing special. I picked it because I was meeting a new friend who may have very generic mid-west taste. So I figure pub food is a safe choice. And it was.

STEAK SANDWICH: Grilled flat iron steak sliced & topped with sautéed onions & mozzarella cheese on a ciabatta roll. The photo does not show the close up of the cheese on the steak. The sandwich looked like it was made yesterday. My friend was hesitant to bite into it. Luckily, the quote from my friend is “It looks ugly but it’s awesome!”  How often can we say that about people and things? A surprising inner beauty of a steak sandwich?

CHICKEN AVOCADO SALAD: Mango & citrus marinated chicken breast over mixed greens with tomatoes, avocado & fresh fruit served with a light vinaigrette dressing. For rabbit food or Westchester skinny women food, this was not too bad. The chicken was grilled to the point that it was very chewy. The avocado was not ripe enough yet. But who cares. Good fat is still good fat.

The downside of Molly Spillane’s is that the wait staff was not so great and one of the young boys had an attitude. The upside of Molly Spillane’s is that it is a pretty generic restaurant and if your standards are not super high, Molly will do. Just like many things in life – all you need to do is lower your expectations and they all seem like winners.  It’s generically American.

This experience took place at

Molly Spillane’s
211 Mamaroneck Ave.
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
Tel: 914 899 3130
E-Mail: mollyspillanes@gmail.com

Bar Harbor Grill in Mamaroneck, NY – Local but Disappointing

I was having a work lunch with a friend last week and I got to pick the restaurant. I wanted something close enough to both of our work and thought of the Mamaroneck Ave restaurants in Mamaroneck. Picked Bar Harbor Grill for my past satisfactory experience and to get away from the Americanized Fusion Asian restaurants. What a mistake!

My friend and I sat on the deck out back: the sun was shining, the weather was warm, and the music was groovy.  The music must have been from the 70s.  We were the only two patrons there when we first arrived.  Sitting there under the warm Fall sun, seeing the top of the sail boats, it was nice enough to cock your head, squint your eyes, smile and enjoy the moment.  All we needed was great food.

We both ordered the New England Clam Chowder. You know – ordering clam chowder from a harbor restaurant seems like an okay thing to do. No no. It was weird. The taste was funky. The thought of whether it had gone bad went through my head. It had not.

Here is the Grilled Chicken Sandwich my friend ordered. He said that it was fine but I think he was being nice.

After the soup, I am glad that I stuck with the Beet and Apple Salad. Hard to mess that up.  At least the beets and the green leaves contrast well.

If I did not focus on the food, the lunch experience was nice. If lunch were meant for eating, I would not go back again. What a shame – the last time I was there, I ordered the Lobster Salad which was excellent. What happened, Bar Harbor Grill?

This experience took place at the

Bar Harbor Grill
181 E Boston Post Rd, Mamaroneck, NY 10543
(914) 630-7167