Dubrovnik Restaurant in New Rochelle, NY – Terrific Food and Slow Service Makes Patient Dinners

Recently I was introduced to Croatian cuisine at the Dubrovnik Restaurant in New Rochelle, NY. Yum. The food was sensational, especially the sardines! It was the best preparation of sardines that I have ever had. The octopus salad was no slouch either. Both are extremely fresh – I could taste the crispness of the lemon and the stringent quality of the sourness. It sent tingle up my scalp! But the service was very slow… borderlined on poor. I had to chase down the waiter to get the menu and place the order. Not sure if it was because of the time of the day (2pm on a raining Sat afternoon) or because Croatians are just laid back people.

Marinated Sardines: Fresh sardines marinated in lemon juice. Fantastic. Loved it.

Octopus Salad: Octopus with capers, red onions, potatoes, extra virgin olive oil and wine vinegar. Great. Loved it as well.

Čevapčići: A traditional croatian dish of grilled minced meat, a type of kebab/sausage served with ajvar vegetable spread, red onions and pita bread. The grilled meat sausages were moist on the inside and nice and firm on the outside. The ajar vegetable spread is the best part of the dish. Dipping the meat into the spread and then coupling up with some red onions is the way to go.

Shellfish Stew: mussels, garlic, extra virgin olive oil and white wine. In comparison to the three awesome dishes above, the stew was not amazing. Tasted good but not outstanding.

Rozata: Croatian style flan. Could have easily passed on the flan. The consistency and the texture are neither smooth nor dense/matte. This was not a successful rendition of the flan.

Palacinke Dubrovnik: Croatian style crepes served warm and filled with choice of: ricotta cheese and lemon zest, rose hip or apricot jam OR ice-cream and Nutella. So I learned that Croatians are not great with desserts. This is supposed to be a very authentic dessert and I could have easily passed on it. Worse than the flan.

But- The Sardines, Octopus and the Grilled Meat were terrific and worth the wait.  I will dream of the marinated sardines tonight! Definitely highly recommend the Dubrovnik Restaurant.

This experience took place at

Dubrovnik Restaurant
721 Main St,
New Rochelle, NY 10801

Fortina in Rye Brook, NY – Wood Fired Oven Pizza and An Impromptu Octopus Dish Ranking

I found myself in the Rye Brook location of Fortina three weeks ago during a freezing night in February.  It was past nine and the restaurant was empty.  The Rye Brook location, in comparison to that of Armonk, is much more open and has better parking options.  Fortina is known for the wood-fired oven pizza and its simple Italian cooking.   Click here for my previous post.  A friend I went with apparently taught the Fortina owner Social Studies in a Bronx high school!  Look at that – our inner City education system can actually churn out entrepreneurs!

Spicy Olives – Simple? Yes.  Spicy? Yes.  Need to spit out the pits?  Yes. Good snacks for in between dishes?  Yes.

There was also supposed to be Wood-Fired Polpo with white beans, olives, and salumi vinaigrette but I forgot to take a photo.  Usually, this only happens when I am too excited about the food or the situation!  The octopus dish was excellent, too little to share in fact. We ate it very quickly.  I am a big fan of the octopus in every which way.  Of all the octopus dishes I have eaten that are shared on this blog, here is the ranking:  #Octopus

  1. Salt and Fat in Sunnyside, NY (in squid ink. Yum.)
  2. Osteria Laguna Bar and Restaurant in Manhattan, NY (with white bean paste)
  3. Zero Otto Nove in Armonk, NY / Roberto’s in the Bronx (grilled and a bit charred)
  4. Fortina in Rye, NY (with white bean paste).  This post here.
  5. Buena Vista Bistro, Miami, FL (grilled with butter)
  6. Casa Mono in NYC (tapas and too greasy)
  7. Kalbi House in White Plains, NY (wok-fried with noodles)

This is the Spicy Meatball Pizza with Fortina, pickled cherry peppers.  Do you see a theme here?  We like spicy food.

A virgin mojito that is entirely way too syrupy and soda like. But it does wash out the meatball and the octopus taste from your mouth.

Would I return?  Absolutely.  We should always support entrepreneurs in this economy.

This experience took place at


136 South Ridge Street
Rye Ridge Shopping Center
Rye Brook, NY