Hito Japanese Restaurant in Mount Kisco, NY- A Series of Unfortunate Events

Hito Japanese Restaurant in Mount Kisco, NY has great reviews across Yelp and Open Table. I went based on the research I did. What happened next was a series of unfortunate events for everyone involved.

It was a mid-January night. I met a friend at 6:30pm. The restaurant was completely empty and cold. We asked for the heat to be turned up and they thought we would be more comfortable in one of those Japanese styled rooms in the back. Something was wrong with the design of the room. The distance from the tatami to the floor was weird; my legs were hanging off the tatami like those of a small child sitting on the edge of a cliff. The distance from the tatami to the table in the center of the room was off; I could not sit close enough to the table without hunching over. The table was too low. I tried to pull my legs up, sitting cross-legged and leaning back against the wall. The walls looked like they were constructed out of 4’x 8′ plywood and were barely decorated. The walls were also hard and uncomfortable to lean against.

Despite my discomfort, I tried to order. Because we were now located in one of the rooms, the wait staff forgot about us. We waited and waited. After 20 mins or so, a waitress finally came. When the food came after another 20 mins, I saw that my chopsticks were uneven. That was blasphemy in the Asian culture! I got up and went outside to show them my chopsticks. The Asian male behind the counter thought it was a little funny that I was fuming – he handed me another pair of uneven chopsticks. I declined and picked out my own out of a big batch they had behind the counter. I said to him, ” You really should know better.” Salmon Roe/Ikura with a Quail Egg Yellow Tail/ Hamachi  Nabeyaki Udon – tasteless. Came without togarashi, the Japanese red chili pepper that always accompanies the udon
 Shrimp Tempura – greasy
Seared Tuna/Maguro – compliments of the restaurant. Why would you sear your raw fish and smother it with teriyaki when it’s better raw?
Mochi Ice cream compliments of the restaurant. This was good.

Perhaps the food was better than what I thought that night. Perhaps I am just an ungrateful person. It irritated me greatly that the Asian wait staff did not have more pride in their service level or a higher bar for chopsticks. You only see uneven chopsticks in the cheapest of the cheap restaurants in Asia; takeout joints in most places do better than this fancy restaurant in Mount Kisco, NY.

For a $70 meal, I expected and demanded even-length chopsticks.

The wait staff seemed to have recognized their shortcomings by offering complimentary dishes. Regardless, it’s difficult to like your dinner when nothing went right all night.

This experience took place at

Hito Japanese Restaurant

26 E Main St
Mt Kisco, NY 10549
(914) 241-8488

Cafe of Love in Mount Kisco, NY- Closing Out September, The Month of Atonement

Today is the last day of September, the month of atonement. Yom Kippur, known as the Day of Atonement, is the holiest day in Judaism and is usually in September. I am not Jewish but have always found the concept of atonement interesting. Why do people have the desire to atone for their sins and how far will people go to atone for their sins or seek forgiveness? Is apologizing enough? Is making amends enough? When will one be resolved of her sins? When should one forgive herself? Can one truly forgive herself for the errors of the past? I am closing out the month with more questions than answers.

Separately remembering the late Summer days – when I went to Cafe of Love in Mount Kisco, NY in late August, they were still serving the Summer menu. I am happy to see that three dishes out of the four below are no longer available on the dinner menu. I enjoy a restaurant that changes up their menu according to the seasonal available ingredients. Cafe of Love says that they are where the “local New American Cuisine takes farm-to-table ingredients on a global adventure.”
Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho with apricot-balsamic glaze. Cooling and summer-like with chunks of tomatoes, perfect for a late August dinner.
Tuna Carpaccio with sliced radish
Bison Burger with tomato and onion on challah bun with fries. The Bison was unfortunately over-cooked. It was not the medium I ordered. The fries were pretty decent for being the thick-cut fries that they are.
John Fazio Duck: pan-seared breast & confit, roasted potatoes, figs, sautéed mustard greens

Overall the food was above average and worth a repeat visit. More importantly, if you know any of the answers on atonement, please leave me a comment. I have been told that I should forgive myself and let go of the regrets. Don’t let me ponder the big philosophical questions by myself – not only do they take away my appetite, they also suck all the joy out of life!

This experience took place at

Cafe of Love

38 Main St
Mt Kisco, NY 10549
Phone:(914) 242-1002

Global Grill @Myong Gourmet in Mount Kisco, NY- LOVED. LOVED. LOVED. 

Global Grill in Mount Kisco was a very pleasant surprise. This is how they describe their offering. “Our Influences emanate from New American Progressive across the US, Europe, Korea and East Asia. You will find tastes from Middle East, India and Japan with a French flair.” From the small sample size of my lunch there, I would agree.

It is a big and beautiful restaurant with a counter filled with gourmet dishes. Although the food was great, the concept was confusing. The same location has a restaurant, a section for a cafe and a take out counter, in addition to offering catering service. Chef and owner Myong is trying to do too many things at once with her food magic.

Myong’s Korean Fried Chicken – gluten free – Asian pear jicama slaw and fries. My friend loved the jicama slaw and asked for seconds. The fried chicken was also excellent. She was not overwhelmed by the fries.

Bi Bim Bop with Bulgogi – Grilled sweet Korean beef, crispy rice, spring vegetables, kimchi, fried egg, XO sauce. This was soooooooo good. They ran out of white rice so they substituted with crunchy black wild rice. the rice was divine. Man, this was heaven on a big plate. I wished I was a big 250 pound man with a much bigger stomach for food. Believe it or not, I almost ate the entire thing in one setting.

The food was so excellent as was the service. Will definitely return… LOVED it. LOVED. LOVED. LOVED. 🙂 A huge smile!

This experience took place at

Global Grill
@Myong Gourmet
487 Main St,
Mt Kisco, NY 10549
(914) 241-6333

Little Crêpe Street in Mount Kisco, NY – Crêpes Wanna Be

Little Crêpe Street is a little crêpe place in Mount Kisco, NY. I had an enjoyable Sunday brunch there with a friend last week. This weekend I am headed up to Montreal, Canada, and will be visiting my all time favorite crêpe place, La Crêpe 2 Go. Therefore, I must write this post before I become too darn assimilated into the French culture and become highly critical of the crêpes I had. #crêpes

BANANA FOSTER: salted caramel, toasted pecans, rum flambé : It was okay. Interesting enough but the banana tasted a little too ripe for me. The toasted pecans were nice and I wish there were more rum.

SAUSAGE, EGG, PROVOLONE, tomatoes, onions: My friend had the savory crêpe and she said it was good! Looked good and smelled good from across the table.

So what was wrong with the crêpes here? Why am I having a hard time finishing this post?  They look the part. But truly they tasted like American crêpes. Not thin, not buttery. Just crêpes wanna be. They even have “CHOOSE YOUR CRÊPE: original, buckwheat, gluten free rice + lentil, or gluten free lentil.” This just sends chills down my spine. WHAT?  

Of course, my friend, originally from England, and I picked the original flour crêpes and not the bastardized version. They were still too Americanized. It’s an American breakfast slapped on a French pancake. I still remember a similar small crêpe place in Paris and it was night and day in comparison to this experience. I also remember a crêpes place in Utah where I almost had an argument with the owner on the definition of a crêpe; I got served a burrito!  Ok, I am stopping now before I completely butcher this place.

The crêpes are fine if you don’t mind the Americanized version.  If you want authentic French crêpes, do what I do -> head up to Montreal where they actually know about French food.

This experience took place at

Little Crêpe Street
29 E Main St, Mt Kisco, NY 10549
(914) 242-0200

Lalibela Ethiopian Restaurant in Mount Kisco NY – Love and XOXO

In full disclosure, I am a regular at Lalibella Ethiopian restaurant in Mount Kisco, NY. Have I told you how much I like Ethiopian food? Have I told you that Ethiopian food almost made the list on my last supper request? I have been going to Lalibela since it opened back in 2010.

The food is finger licking good and delicious! The spices especially the cardamom, the berbere, the turmeric, the use of the clarified butter and the unleavened bread of injera are just some of the reasons why I love this cuisine. There are a lot of vegetarian dishes: lentils and different kind of dark greens and beets. Proteins are also used but to a lesser degree than the vegetables.

This is injera, torn up and rolled. I would come just to have injera. The bread itself is a little sour, soft and spongy. This is an acquired taste and it is excellent. You must try it!

The proper way of eating Ethiopian food is to tear up a small piece of the injera, use it to pick up the sauce, vegetables, or proteins.  Although forks are shown here, we don’t use them.  We use fingers on the right hand to pick up our food.

Here is the Taste of Lalibela, a combination of Siga wat (stewed beef), Yebag wat (stewed lamb), Doro wat (stewed chicken leg with an egg) and three vegetarian dishes of our choice. In this case, we chose Shiro wat (split peas), Gomen (collard green), Misir wat alichan (non spicy split lentil). From 12 o’clock counter clock wise, we have Yebag wat, Gomen, Siga wat, Shiro wat, Doro wat. In the center is the Misir wat alichan. This is a very nice combination of different popular Ethiopian dishes.

This is Kitfo (steak tartar), ground beef cooked to perfection with Ethiopian spices. This is my go to. I think of it as my Ethiopian hamburger without the buns. Much more tasty than the traditional burger.

Not pictured here is the Ethiopian coffee/espresso.  Ethiopian coffee is an experience deserving of a solid long post.  I love freshly brewed Ethiopian coffee.

Slight detour from Ethiopian:  The freshly brewed Moroccan mint tea, served in the traditional way, has the same high regard as the Ethiopian coffee in my heart.

Overall, I love Ethiopian cuisine and I always seek out Ethiopian restaurants in any cities I visit. Specifically, Lalibela is an Ethiopian restaurant that I love to frequent. I highly recommend it.  XOXO.

This experience took place at

37 South Moger Avenue
Mt. Kisco, NY 10549
T: 914-864-1343

Village Social in Mount Kisco, NY – Hello Pizza!

A friend and I met up to have a leisure lunch during the Labor Day long weekend. We decided to go to Village Social Kitchen + Bar in Mount Kisco, NY.  Do you know that I have not had pizza since say, April or May this year?  Coming back from Taiwan and trying to avoid all Asian restaurants, pizza seems to be the extreme that could be both safe and tasty.  It was!


This is the Sunny Side Egg Pizza with prosciutto, tomatoes and truffles


This is my friend’s Grilled Eggplant Sandwich, with chili aioli, caramelized onions, mozzarella, and fried.  Look at those French fries!


This is our appetizer, salty pretzel tuna with kimchi aioli and scallion.  It is crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside with a kick of kimchi.  Even the bees love it!  We got many bee visitors throughout our lunch.


The salty and sweet combo: salty peanut butter pie with sweet vanilla ice cream.

This is my love: flourless chocolate cake with chocolate ice cream.  It was ok. My utility went down very fast once I started eating. Too much American-type chocolate sweetness.  Basically, it was too sweet and made with the American brand chocolate. I prefer the European dark chocolate.  That’s ok.  I can always love again.

All in all, it was a very satisfying meal. We sat outside. The sun was shining and warm.  The company was excellent and the food was great.  We chatted about life and where we would go for a long weekend.  Will definitely return if I am seeking an easy and carefree lunch.  I understand the chef here used to work at Jean-George’s.

This experience took place at

Village Social Kitchen + Bar
251 East Main Street Mount Kisco, NY 10549

Thai Angels in Mount Kisco, NY- 你吃飽了嗎? Have You Eaten Yet?

Thai Angels is a cute, middle of the road Thai restaurant in Mt Kisco, NY.  It is a local place that I frequent for its Wonder Tofu that bears slight resemblance to my beloved Stinky Tofu from Taiwan.  The food has always been satisfactory enough during the period of drought between my visits to Taiwan.  Twelve days after I returned to NY, I felt brave enough to have my first Asian meal here.

Epic Fail!  I was so disappointed with the Wonder Tofu, seen below.  I am certain that it is made exactly the way it was.  Still crispy.  Still yummy.  It was the diner that has changed.  I came back with a heightened and authentic sense for Asian food and the bastardized version of Asian food in NY just won’t cut it. I really should have waited until I am fully reverted back to the old NY me and completely succumbed to the Americanized Asian food.

This is the Wonder Tofu. Mind you, there is absolutely nothing wrong with it. It is crispy and the consistency is good, minus the stink. The sauces are still yummy and spicy. But to my “true” Asian palate today, it lacks the nuances and the finesse of the tofu eaten in Taiwan.  I thought to myself while eating, “What am I doing here?”  My brain had trouble processing the signals from the tofu.

Thai fried rice with chicken. Reliable and with a Thai slant.  Not bad if I were to evaluate it from the American perspective.  Just look at the picture – isn’t it vibrant?

Pad See You with tofu. Satisfactory from the American perspective.  Americanized stir fry , from the Asian perspective, not even worth writing about.

Tom Young Goong Soup. Spicy and that was all I could taste.

If I were to view the Thai Angels restaurant as one that serves Americans, the food was decent and even delicious.  It has the umami that food should have. The Thai tea hit just the right spot. I used to love this place and still want to love it. I even love the waitress that serves us all the time. She is nosy and always sticks her nose in my business but I love that. It felt like home.

Depending on what you seek and what your requirements are for Asian food, this is a nice place to come if you live an Americanized life like I will do in the next 11 months.  If you just came back from Asia and miss the food there, avoid all Asian restaurants in the states. 😦

Food creates memories and is an integral part of any culture. The sensation that we get from food becomes emotions and is embedded in our souls.  Make it a good one.

你吃飽了嗎? Have you eaten yet?

This experience took place at

Thai Angels Restaurant
Address & Hours
155 Lexington Avenue, Mt. Kisco, NY 10549
Telephone: 914-666-0937
Business Hours
Monday – Thursday : 11:30 am – 10:00 pm
Friday – Saturday : 11:30 am – 10:30 pm
Sunday : 11:30 am – 10:00 pm

Via Vanti! In Mount Kisco, NY

Via Vanti! is a cute little Italian restaurant in the Mount Kisco train station in Westchester County, NY.  It looks a bit small when I first walked up to it.  Once entered, I was greeted by eager and smily hostess and waitress.  The vibe was easy-going and low-key.  The decor was modern chic with a heavy hand on the color red.  The place seems to be frequented by the locals.

The food was what I would consider as new Italian, taking influence from here and there, using in season ingredients, and preparing dishes that fit the palates of New Yorkers.  I had the Red Quinoa & Grilled Shrimp with chunky avocado and mango salsa.  It looked so inviting that I almost forgot to take a picture before completely destroying the plate.


This is Couscous & Grilled Vegetali.  As you see here, my friend already dived into the food before I had a chance to photograph it.  It looked very inviting and my friend polished it off in no time.

Via Vanti seems to be big on gelato and sorbet, claims to have 18 varieties daily.  The menu looks impressive.  I will have to try it next time.  It was a good night out.  Will definitely return to try the gelato.


Via Vanti! at the Mount Kisco Train Station
2 Kirby Plaza
Mount Kisco, NY 10549