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Any Cuban in Westchester?

menton1 Jul 26, 2010 01:05 PM

Have some cravings for good, authentic Cuban food. Papas Rellenas, Ropa Viejo, Lechon asado, et al.

I know there are several in New Jersey, but haven't come across any in Westchester. Perhaps Port Chester?

Hope someone knows of one here!

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  1. g
    grouchomarx RE: menton1 Jul 26, 2010 07:27 PM

    I wish someone would answer because I too am dying for Cuban in Westchester! Love love love Cuban food.

    1 Reply
    1. re: grouchomarx
      softgentleraine RE: grouchomarx Jul 30, 2010 05:13 PM

      I don't know of any in Westchester but my absolute favorite Cuban eatery is Victor's Cafe 52 on West 52nd in the city. Amazing food and service.

      http://www.victorscafe.com/index2.html

    2. Sra. Swanky RE: menton1 Jul 26, 2010 07:47 PM

      Here's a good thread on this - we've got a few choices here in Westchester and more if you're willing to go a little further south:

      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/594981

      2 Replies
      1. re: Sra. Swanky
        menton1 RE: Sra. Swanky Jul 27, 2010 03:29 AM

        Sorry, that thread was old and useless. No help there. Closed places and non Cuban places. Looks like we have to head over the bridge to Union City/North Bergen? (Several there)

        1. re: menton1
          Sra. Swanky RE: menton1 Jul 27, 2010 09:16 AM

          Sorry menton - had no idea these places closed down and/or were non-authentic. Will report back when I get more info.

      2. b
        Boswell RE: menton1 Jul 27, 2010 07:06 AM

        There's Belle Havana in Yonkers. Too loud and too dark for my tastes, when I went there, but the food was quite good.
        http://bellehavana.com/Home.html

        -----
        Belle Havana
        35 Main St, Yonkers, NY 10701

        4 Replies
        1. re: Boswell
          menton1 RE: Boswell Jul 27, 2010 07:43 AM

          Looks pricey, and not really Cuban. No Papas Rellenas!!! THE most popular dish in Cuba!! Over the bridge we go!

          1. re: menton1
            m
            Maryld RE: menton1 Jul 27, 2010 08:57 AM

            While I am partial to Cuban food, (with a husband born in Cuba), a lot of other Latin Americans make papas rellenas. You might want to look into Port Chester in order to satisfy that craving. Also, they're fairly easy to make at home. But it seems that places like Jersey City, Union City, etc. are where it's at. Bobby Flay recently did a
            French toast throwdown with a Cuban chef (believe it or not) who owns a little place in NJ that also does a Sunday Cuban brunch--can't remember the name but the website is on the Throwdown website and the menu looks quite authentic.

            1. re: Maryld
              menton1 RE: Maryld Jul 28, 2010 10:03 AM

              Got some restaurant names in Port Chester that you recommend?

              1. re: menton1
                m
                Maryld RE: menton1 Jul 28, 2010 11:20 AM

                I like the ones at Chavin-- you know how it is with Peruvians and potatoes! They are served with a very good onion salad. Misti also has them, but I have not eaten them there.

                -----
                Chavin Restaurant
                16 N Main St, Port Chester, NY 10573

        2. Sra. Swanky RE: menton1 Jul 29, 2010 12:50 PM

          Ok - before heading over the GW, this one might be worth a try - it's in Rockland though:

          Nights in Havana
          67 Old Tappan Rd
          Tappan, NY 10983

          (845) 359-4479

          7 Replies
          1. re: Sra. Swanky
            m
            Maryld RE: Sra. Swanky Jul 29, 2010 01:21 PM

            I couldn't find a website for this place--do you know of one? Thanks.

            1. re: Maryld
              m
              Maryld RE: Maryld Jul 29, 2010 01:37 PM

              Also, if you must head over the bridge into NJ, here's the restaurant website of
              the chef who did the French toast throwdown with Bobby Flay:
              http://www.laislarestaurant.com. It looks like the real deal.

              1. re: Maryld
                menton1 RE: Maryld Jul 29, 2010 01:52 PM

                Here's an even better one, and not as far:

                http://www.restaurantpassion.com/list...

                1. re: Maryld
                  menton1 RE: Maryld Jul 29, 2010 01:52 PM

                  Nights of Havana has been closed for years.

                  1. re: menton1
                    Sra. Swanky RE: menton1 Jul 29, 2010 06:48 PM

                    Ok, menton - don't kill me for trying! Hit up the Bronx -- Colonial Cafe on White Plains Rd. and Caridad on Williamsbridge Rd are my go-tos - Cuban/Dominican. And they are definitely still open.

                2. re: Maryld
                  menton1 RE: Maryld Jul 29, 2010 01:55 PM

                  Here's an even better one, and not as far

                  http://www.restaurantpassion.com/list...

                  1. re: menton1
                    m
                    Maryld RE: menton1 Jul 30, 2010 07:07 AM

                    Looks good! Has anyone been to one of Maricel Presilla's places in NJ (Zafra and
                    Cucharamama)? She's gotten a lot of press space over the last couple of years.

              2. Cheese Boy RE: menton1 Jul 30, 2010 09:10 PM

                If you're looking for a place over in the Bronx, Caridad is a solid choice.

                Caridad --> http://www.caridadbronx.com/menu.html

                6 Replies
                1. re: Cheese Boy
                  Sra. Swanky RE: Cheese Boy Jul 31, 2010 11:36 AM

                  Thanks, Cheeseboy for the extra props! Love Caridad. Some folks on the board seem fixated on going to NJ, but this place definitely fits the bill.

                  1. re: Sra. Swanky
                    menton1 RE: Sra. Swanky Jul 31, 2010 08:32 PM

                    You don't like NJ, S.Swanky?

                    1. re: menton1
                      Sra. Swanky RE: menton1 Jul 31, 2010 08:44 PM

                      I like Jersey - just trying to help you save some time & travel expense. It's a shame that a good Cuban place in Westchester is non-existent. Too bad a Miami staple like Versailles can't expand to the north a bit!

                      1. re: Sra. Swanky
                        menton1 RE: Sra. Swanky Aug 1, 2010 08:32 AM

                        Oh, you can't move Versailles of Calle Ocho! A Miami institution, only one location in the world. That would be like asking for,say, the Empire State Bldg to move to Boston!

                        P.S. Parking in NJ is far easier than in the Bronx, and the restaurants there are cheaper, negating any travel "expense", IMHO.

                        1. re: menton1
                          m
                          Maryld RE: menton1 Aug 3, 2010 08:48 AM

                          Also, there is a big homogeneous Cuban population in NJ, so you find restaurants that are more purely Cuban rather than a mixture of foods from different Latin American countries. While the menu looks very nice at Cardidad, it doesn't look all that Cuban to me. Also a pet peeve of mine--they describe themselves as a "Spanish" restaurant. It's not; it's Latin American.

                          1. re: Maryld
                            menton1 RE: Maryld Aug 3, 2010 11:03 AM

                            Good point, Mary. Food from Spain is a totally different animal, and it's very poorly represented on this side of the Atlantic.

                            It's as bad as these so-called "Northern Italian" restaurants. I haven't the slightest idea what that phrase means, and neither do the restaurants so-named nor the patrons!! What a ruse!!

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