Father-son restaurateurs Pasquale and Francesco Coli chose the name Massa' Italian Kitchen & Bar as a tribute to the southern Italian farmhouses, known as “masserias,” that line the countryside of their native Puglia, located on the heel of Italy. Their passion for the rustic, Old-World charm of Puglia permeates the kitchen, where chefs hand form pastas, chop local farm vegetables, and assemble housemade sausages. As a nod to Puglia's centuries-old maritime traditions, they also seek out fresh shipments of fish and seafood every day. Before diners embark on a gustatory expedition to Italy, servers suggest wine pairings from a list of more than 100 bottles, and bartenders mix signature cocktails with vodkas they infuse with vibrant fruits.
Today the restaurant continues to embrace its rustic roots, catering to diners and families who appreciate classic Italian cuisine and healthy portion sizes. The easy, dining-room evokes the feel of a rural cottage with its exposed-stone walls, floor-to-ceiling fireplace, and woodwork, which was constructed out of materials salvaged from century-old New England barns to created a relaxed dining experience. At each table, Old-World crafted entrees steam atop white plates, while families and friends breezily chatter amid the homey ambiance to the split-level dining room and wine bar.
Though its dining room is in the heart of Yonkers, La Bella Havana's food transports diners straight to Cuba with the chefs' homestyle Caribbean cooking. Drawing equal inspiration from the land and sea, hearty comfort foods include sauteed chorizo with fried plantain chips, empanadas with a variety of fillings, and massive servings of paella that the New York Times hailed as "the real deal: stuffed with seafood, chorizo and chicken, full of flavor and cooked to perfection." The drink menu similarly embraces its Cuban roots with hand-blended mojitos and other potent tropical cocktails.
But Cuba's presence inside the restaurant also goes beyond the edibles to its island-inspired decor. The walls give the appearance of rustic, exposed brickwork peeking through plaster and a glance upward yields ceiling fans and their distinctively leaf-shaped blades. Even the bar area is shaded by a thatched straw canopy, which shields the bartenders from the imported Cuban sunshine.
Crave's carefully crafted menus provide sandwiches, burgers, and meat and seafood entrees for lunch and dinner. Take an afternoon break from lifting paperweights or mounting executive-level tickle-fights at work with a bistro-centric selection from the lunch menu such as the chicken sandwich served with broccoli rabe and provolone cheese on a ciabatta roll ($7) or the arugula salad ($7). For evening-time noshing, kick things off with a bowl of cauliflower soup ($7) before segueing to a lightly smoked Angus sirloin steak surrounded by a red-wine-pepper sauce ($28). Suckers for shellfish can opt for the mussels prepared with either a curry-coconut-milk-lemongrass broth or an Italian ragout of san marzano tomatoes, calamari, and hot pepper. The restaurant's wine cellar boasts an impressive list of bottles from three continents.
Writing in Time magazine, food critic Josh Ozersky praised the "Iberian flavors" of dishes prepared by Chef Anthony Goncalves, which he called "eclectic, unpredictable, and very, very good." The executive chef and co-owner of 42 the Restaurant, Goncalves sources ingredients from the surrounding Hudson Valley, then serves up his dynamic menu in the ultra-sleek dining room atop Westchester’s Ritz-Carlton. Sticky garlic lobster and crab and roasted pork tenderloin gleam on tables next to floor-to-ceiling windows, which let guests look out on White Plains, the sparkling Long Island Sound, and foolhardy merchant vessels sailing off the earth's edge.
In a converted brick electrical plant where machines once hummed and pumped power to the railroad, streams of craft brews flow into glass jugs branded with the Growlers Beer Bistro logo. The New York Times-praised gastropub has earned a spot among the 31 best bars in the county, according to Westchester Magazine, and boasts an ever-changing draft list that has featured Brooklyn Brewery reserves, Two Brothers’ Midwestern suds, and Smuttynose ales. Bartenders funnel the liquid gold into pints as well as half-gallon growlers for at-home enjoyment.
Growlers’ seasonal cuisine menu is designed to harmonize with the current selection of brews and features upscale pub fare, such as the Devils on Horseback—bacon-wrapped prunes stuffed with blue cheese and featured as Westchester Magazine's Dish of the Week. The hearty fare also includes a burger of beef, pork, and veal topped with a relish of bacon, onions, and pickles.
The building's industrial past shines through with accents of exposed brick and ceiling beams, complemented by decorative additions that include a polished concrete floor, a long communal table, and reclaimed barn wood that frame an illuminated wall. Along with their Tuesday–Friday "Hoppy Hour", the pub hosts regular events throughout the week, from Tuesday trivia nights to Friday ladies nights. Saturdays feature live music, while the kitchen cranks out its signature brunch dishes on Sundays. Brewery events are held every Thursday of every month while a Wednesday open-mic night rouses laughter-friendly crowds.