Coriander Modern Indian Restaurant in White Plains, NY- What Delicious Indian Fare!

I LOVE Coriander’s food! Let me get down on my knees and be thankful for the delicious Indian food I had the other night with my wonderful friends. I only stumbled upon Coriander’s in White Plains because one of my friends is a vegetarian.

Why do I love Corianders? Because it is Indian food that is re-imagined, cooked to near-perfection and served in a contemporized setting. Only one down side – slightly dried lamb and a very very nosy and pushy waitress named Rositta. During dinner, Rositta had asked me to “read” her the menu because she could not see what I was pointing to; Rositta also took my menu away with force while I was “reading” the menu; Rositta loudly interrupted our conversation multiple times to make sure she was heard. Rositta acted like our aunt and we were in Kindergarten. I guess I can love that, too, as long as I am in the right mood. It can be liberating to be bossed around.Eggplant Chaat: thinly sliced globe eggplant, garnished with sweet & sour chutneys, candied red onion, fresh cilantro & dusted with garam masala.This was awesome. This was a vegetarian’s delight. It made vegetables taste like proteins. I LOVED it.Edemame with Indian spice: Yum.Naan: Solid.Basmati and Mint ParathaShrimp Rangoli: pan seared shrimp, garlic, curry leaf, mustard seed, tomato cream sauce. The sauce was to die for. The shrimp was inconsequential. Spicy sauces made out of Ghost and Habanero peppersLamb Vindaloo: a spicy red & green chili, tomato based sauce, with tender, curried lamb & baked potatoesHomestyle Lamb Curry:slow cooked, tender lamb in a browned tomato & onion curry. Flavored fully with traditional indian spices.Pumpkin Kofta Curry: handmade vegetarian “meatballs” roasted with Indian spices, simmered in a new england Pumpkin curry, flavoured with garam masala & cinnamon. My vegetarian friend loved it but I found it to be too sweet. Macaroons: nothing special.

The food is outstanding. Minus Rositta, it would have been just perfect. 🙂

This experience took place at

Coriander
74 Mamaroneck Ave
White Plains, NY 10601
Phone:(914) 358-4500

Lombardo’s Pizzaria in White Plains, NY- A Pizzette Deliciously Enough for A Day

I like pizza. There are many places that are supposed to have the best authentic pizza in Westchester, such as Sal’s on Mamaroneck Ave and Roma’s in Eastchester. There are places that serve gourmet pizza such as Fortina’s. Best of both worlds, there are places that straddle the line between the traditional and the gourmet like Lombardo’s Pizza Bar & Restaurant on Mamaroneck Ave in white Plains.I was at Lombardo’s many times before but never ordered the pizza. This is the Fra Diavolo: fresh tomato basil sauce, homemade mozzarella, crumbled Italian style sausage and sliced hot cherry peppers.

It was perfection at $12.50. Loved the spicy, the dried sausage, the soft cherry peppers and the mozzarella and the tomato sauce that tied the pie together. The curst was just right. I had the pizzette for lunch, dinner and breakfast the next day. That was how much I loved it. Highly recommended it to people who like traditional pizza with a flair.

This experience took place at

Lombardo’s Pizza Bar & Restaurant
1203 Mamaroneck Ave,
White Plains, NY 10605
Phone:(914) 615-9090

City Limits Diner in White Plains, NY- Last Post for the December Writing Chanllege

I have never considered City Limits Diner in White Plains as a valid option for food given the variety of restaurants in White Plains. But I was happy to find that City Limits Diner is an excellent option if one wants the semi-traditional diner menu with a pleasant decor. With the Christmas decorations up and the lights dimmed, it was warm and pleasant. My friend mentioned that she uses the diner for business breakfasts – that’s an idea. It is affordable, comfortable, modern and convenient.

That is also the conclusion I have come to at the end of the meal.My goto in a diner, traditional burger and French fries
Curried egg salad on multi-grain, potato salad

The food was decent to good. My burger was slightly over done but very good for a diner. Definitely a viable choice for a casual business breakfast and a friendly informal gathering.

This is my last post for the December writing challenge, where I write a post a day until I go on vacation on the 21st. I cheated… or should I say, I changed the rules? I sometimes wrote a couple of posts a day, like today, to catch up on the prior days – the upside of creating your own challenge. I am proud that I wrote 17 posts in the past 17 days even if some of them were written in the middle of the night!

This experience took place at

City Limits Diner

200 Central Ave,
White Plains, NY 10606
Phone:(914) 686-9000

The Lounge at the Ritz in White Plains, NY- Surprisingly Good

I am not usually a fan of the Ritz; see my experience at The Ritz in Amelia Island, Florida. However, I was pleasantly surprised by The Lounge at the Ritz in White Plains. The food was excellent despite slow and inattentive service. The lounge area is comfortable enough and cozy enough for a long conversation.PROSCUITTO FIG FLATBREAD: Spiced orange marmalade, arugula, prosciutto, goat cheese. This was great. The orange marmalade and fig on the flatbread made me feel like I was eating something from my grandma’s house (if I had an Italian grandma.) It was chewy when you hit those sweet pieces. The prosciutto did not come through but also didn’t distract. The arugula, although pretty, distracted. Thanks to the goat cheese that tied all ingredients together.
WARM APPLE SALAD: Seasonal Brine apples, toasted pecans, cranberries, Bibb lettuce, goat cheese, citrus vinaigrette. The salad was not warm but other than the temperature everything else was perfect. I learned that I love Bibb lettuce and I can love a salad. There was the crunch from the pecans, the sweetness from the cranberries and the apples, the punch from the goat cheese and the lettuce to bridge the gaps. It was a beautiful culinary symphony.  ASIAN MIXED RICE BOWL: Vegetable medley, marinated beef, egg, sesame oil. This is Ritz’s version of a Bibimbap – surprisingly excellent. I was more surprised that it was very spicy. The Ritz honored how Bibimbap should be eaten and did not bow down to the pop culture to satisfy. Kudos to the Ritz in White Plains.

Highly recommended for people who are not in a rush and have patience. Will definitely return.

This experience took place at

The Lounge at
The Ritz-Carlton, Westchester

3 Renaissance Square
White Plains, NY 10601
Phone:(914) 946-5500

Lilly’s in White Plains, NY- We Eat Because We Love

Lily’s is a new restaurant (tapas, small plates, new American) in White Plains, NY. I was there with a new work friend who enjoys food, especially oysters, as much as I do. Food is such an important part of our lives. We use food to bond with people and to love.

Every time I think of the meals I had, the sensations of a particular meal and of the companion(s) come flooding back almost as fresh as it had just happened. I associate food with emotions, colors, and the sensory experience it delivers through the texture and taste. In this particular case, I remember Harrison’s sunny demeanor, his optimism, sincerity and commitment to the business; I also remember the joy of sharing oysters and our critiques of each dish.OCTOPUS bean salad, red pepper coulis, orange-saffron reduction, and pepperoncini. Harrison had never had octopus before. He was an octopus virgin before that day. I was honored to introduce. On the evaluation scale, this dish was between a 6 and 7 on a scale of 10. KALE SALAD: cider vinaigrette, apples, endive, grapes, strawberries, parmesan, bacon, almonds. This was well executed and fresh with the late Summer ingredients. This was a 7. MARINATED BEETS SALAD: frisee, mache, fresh ricotta, citrus, almonds. This was a 7.TUNA TARTARE: cilantro, lime, guacamole, crispy wonton. This dish bombed big time. The tartare smothered or choked in sauce was not a pretty sight. The wontons were not crispy and tasted like pointlessness against the tartare swimming in the orange sauce. This was a 3.OYSTERS: east and west coast oysters, cocktail sauce, tabasco, lemon, & mignonette. Now the oysters took the crown. This was the best of the entire meal. Blue Point oysters won over the west coast ones. Decent in comparison to the other oysters I had. Read about the best oyster experience I had, click here. This was an 8.

Lily’s is not bad for the White Plains’ location (a suburban population with a somewhat homogeneous food preference and is not social-economically diverse; sadly this describes most of the tri-state suburban areas). Lily’s is excellent for business lunches and probably also excellent for casual dinners. Is it highly memorable, other than the oysters? No. But again, we eat because we love so they get a pass for today. Over all, the food experience is a 7 and the dinning experience is a 10.

This experience took place at

Lily’s

169 Mamaroneck Avenue
White Plains NY 10601
914.997.5600
info@lillyswp .com.

Bao’s Chinese Cuisine in White Plains, NY- A Hybrid of Bastardized Asian and Authentic Dishes

I rarely eat Chinese food in the US. Sure, I will eat Chinese food to fit in if there is a need but I will keep my opinions to myself. I am not saying that there is no authentic Chinese restaurants; I just don’t like the experience outside of Asia because something is usually wrong with it and that conflicts with a part of me. Bao’s Chinese Cuisine is a perfect example. Bao’s is located in this run down White Plains Mall, where the DMV, various low-end stores (including a Chinese grocer), and questionable massage parlors keep company.

Bao’s, on one hand serves the bastardized version of the American Asian (has dishes from Vietnam, Thai, and more) and on the other hand serves up a page (menu in Chinese) of average authentic Chinese dishes. I am probably being hyper critical right now since I find this practice to be so wrong! But this is a way to appeal to their customer demographics and the food were very good, if I felt less conflicted and less desperate to leave New York. Guess from what page of menu I ordered? The page without the English translation.


上海菜捲 (Shanghai Vegetable Spring roll)- Satisfactory and not greasy nor over-fried. The veggies inside were delicious.


‘Satay’ 炸豆腐 (Fried Tofu)- Satisfactory but not very special.


蟹粉小籠包 (Crab Steamed Soup Dumpling)- More than satisfactory. I have missed you, 小籠包. I am looking forward to eating even more authentic 小籠包 in a few days.


Fried Noodles with Pork (Not me! My 11-yr-old with American taste buds did this)

蒙古牛 (Mongolian Beef)- Surprisingly satisfactory. Execution was excellent.

I don’t know if I would recommend this restaurant unilaterally. If you are not Asian and don’t mind an average-looking restaurant located in a run-down mall, then yes. This is great Americanized Asian food. If you are Asian and want to have a taste of home, this is acceptable if you live near by. If you fall outside of the two categories, you should probably stay away.

This experience took place at

Bao’s Chinese Cuisine
White Plains Mall
200 Hamilton Ave #4A
White Plains, NY 10601
(914) 682-8858

Mulino’s in White Plains NY- Usually Exceptional Pasta and Meat Ragu

I was at Mulino’s a long time ago and recently had the opportunity to return with the Principal of Chinese School of Southern Westchester, where I taught for the past four years. Mulino’s is a well-known Italian restaurant in the area and gets superb reviews. It was no different today.


Special of the Day, Portbello with Four Cheeses on top of a bed of arugala and cheery tomatoes, drizzled with balsamic vinegar. Almost perfect other than the fact that the four cheeses made the dish just a tad too salty.

Tagliatelle alla Bolognese: Long flat ribbons of pasta tossed in a meat ragu (1/2 portion). This was pasta made and cooked to perfection. Love the meat ragu, making me want to learn how to make it. Loved. Loved. Loved.

Garganelli alla Carbonara: Garganelli pasta tossed with pancetta, eggs, and parmiggiano reggiano.

Sicilian Style Homemade Canoli: almost perfect other than the fact that it had cinnamon/cinnamon oil. The waiter did not believe me when I offered him a piece to try. He politely declined leaving me not able to successfuly argue my case. Would have been fine if I liked cinnamon but I did not.

It was an exceptional meal: the wait staff was attentive and knowledgable; the ingredients were fresh; the execution was close to perfect. The pasta was simply really really good. Highly recommend it.

This experience took place at

Mulino’s of Westchester
99 Court St
White Plains, NY 10601
914-761-1818