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Lower Westchester Italian Delis

roxlet Dec 28, 2008 09:32 AM

I just paid my very first visit to Dante's on Central Avenue, and although it is a bit far afield for me, I can't wait to go back. It is the most authentically Italian deli that I have ever been to locally with the exception of those on Arthur Avenue. By this, I mean that it is not just Italian-American, as I would classify other lower Westchester delis that I have been to. I mean, they even had Brooklyn gum, a brand that is everywhere in Italy and that you never see her! The range of products was large for such a small shop, and they had many imported Italian items that I have never seen anywhere else -- sleeves of lentils from Le Marche, large celophane sleeves of hot Italian pepper flakes and many similar and wonderful-looking items. Though the prices were not low, I felt that the quality of what was on offer was high, and thus worth it. My son ordered a panini, which was made with their own fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, artichokes, balsamic vinegar and pesto. He was in heaven. I got hot peppers stuffed with 4 cheeses as well as an artichoke stuffed with breadcrumbs -- my favorite, but which I rarely make since my husband doesn't "get" it. I was lucky to get a parking space in the small lot that fronts the shop, but I could see how parking could be an issue there. However, since you can't eat in, I would assume that customer turnover is fairly high. Service was a tad on the slow side, but that was mainly because each customer seemed to be buying tons of stuff from the prepared foods area. Lasagna looks quite good, and from the number of patrons buying it, I would guess that it is. They also had what looked like a porchetta to me, but I didn't get a chance to ask.

  1. l
    laylag Dec 29, 2008 08:22 AM

    We like Dante's too - tried for the first time a few months ago. Do have to say the several times we've gone the service is extremely slow. I think it's just the way it is there. Knowing that I spend my time wandering around looking at all the fabulous imported, interesting items - I have to control myself as I'm always tempted to buy stuff whether I need it or have any particular use for it or not.

    Have been waited on by pleasant women every time and not even sure who the owner is so haven't experience the problems Intrepid has. I hope it doesn't happen to me as I'd hate to swear off this place - I like it too much.

    Cosmo & Alex is good and service is always very, very nice but doesn't compare to Dante's with a much bigger selection of everything. No paninis at Cosmo either. Also, don't like Cosmo & Alex's tomato sauce - the one they use if you buy meatballs to go (I know, lazy, lazy to do that but sometimes...). I think there's green pepper in it and just tastes all wrong.

    1. w
      wincountrygirl Dec 28, 2008 10:45 AM

      We love Dante's, and coming from Queens to Westchester, believe me, we are very happy to have it!

      9 Replies
      1. re: wincountrygirl
        i
        intrepid Dec 29, 2008 06:10 AM

        i agree dantes is a good deli, and I used to be a regular customer there for years, however I stipped going about 2-3 years ago, the owner is costic, volatile, and nasty, i wont go back there, and have many friends who feel the same way i go to iron tomato in white plains, or arthur ave, or a& s italian deli never again dante

        1. re: intrepid
          d
          dolores Dec 29, 2008 06:17 AM

          Really? Wow, that's not good intrepid. They are also verrrrrrry expensive.

          I find Cosmo and Alex to be perfectly fine, and the guys there couldn't be nicer.

          1. re: dolores
            i
            intrepid Dec 29, 2008 06:44 AM

            i didnt mind prices at dantes yes they are not cheap, but goodies are good, owner can snap, he goes from a nice , kind chap, to the exorcist at any given time..i had enuff of him and that bs..wont go back

            1. re: intrepid
              d
              dolores Dec 29, 2008 06:55 AM

              Wow. I was waited on by a woman when I was there. No, that stuff doesn't cut it with me.

              If you don't like being in the customer service business, get out of it.

            2. re: dolores
              j
              Jim P Dec 29, 2008 07:02 AM

              I went to Cosmo and Alex for the first time a couple weeks ago and I'll become a regular. It was busy due to the holidays but they were as pleasent as could be the prices weren't bad and quality was very good.

              1. re: Jim P
                d
                dolores Dec 29, 2008 07:17 AM

                Glad you liked it, Jim P. It's my go-to Italian deli. Hubby's father used to make sausage for him, and he declares theirs the nearest store-made we've found.

                I confess to having been a regular at Mercurio, but A&S or J or whatever they are put an end to that with their disregard for their customers. You're right, they're very pleasant a C&A.

                1. re: Jim P
                  a
                  Avalondaughter Dec 29, 2008 11:30 AM

                  Although I love the food, it seems I'm the only one who doesn't find them pleasant there. Actually, a couple of the guys there are pretty nice, but there is one younger guy there who just seems to hate me and he always seems to be the one who waits on me.

              2. re: intrepid
                roxlet Dec 29, 2008 07:18 AM

                Sorry to hear about that, intrepid. I was waited on by a woman, who was extremely pleasant, and as I said, I was blown away by the unusual Italian imports I saw in the store. Is the owner an older man or a younger man? There was a younger man there, and he was also quite pleasant not caustic, or volatile or nasty at all. Where is Cosmo and Alex? I like Iron Tomato, but it is just that much further for me since I live in Bronxville. If I am in WP and I need some deli I items, I definitely stop there. I rarely buy prepared foods anyway since I make most Italian specialties and grew up with the attitude of "why are you buying that when you could make it?" so I am mostly shopping for unusual/authentic grocery items to cook with and Dante's really impressed me with that selection...

                1. re: roxlet
                  d
                  dolores Dec 29, 2008 07:34 AM

                  Cosmo and Alex is in Mamaroneck, on Mam'k Ave., down near the Post Road.

                  Is Yonkers closer for you? I would imagine there are good Italian delis in Yonkers?

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