By Morris Gut
Autumn is in full swing! The air is crisp, apples falling to the ground at area orchards just waiting to be picked. Trees putting on their annual Technicolor light show along highways and byways. Area markets selling their late season harvest of squash, apples, pumpkins, and hearty root vegetables. Restaurant kitchens are geared up with the best the season has to offer. There are many comforting flavors awaiting us at area markets and eateries right now. Follow Covid guidelines and Stay Safe…
Oktoberfest on a rail car in Valhalla.
Personable owner Stan Chelluck operates this bustling vintage old stationhouse next to Valhalla’s Metro North. Over the years, he has spruced up the railroad cars, facade and sweeping bar, and offers flavorful ‘authentic rail car dining’. The kitchen, which serves an eclectic menu of American tavern specialties, will have a special Oktoberfest menu in effect all month: hearty Sauerbraten, Bratwurst, Wiener Schnitzel, Potato Pancakes, even a sampler platter, along with a selection of Oktoberfest & Pumpkin beers and Riesling wine. Portions are generous.
Valhalla Crossing Restaurant & Bar is located at 2 Cleveland Street, Valhalla, just off the Taconic Parkway and across from Broadway, Valhalla’s main commercial strip. The restaurant is open Tuesday thru Sunday for lunch and dinner. Seasonal outdoor seating. Free parking. Phone: 914-682-4076. www.valhallacrossing.com
Oktoberfest brews at Wolf & Warrior, White Plains.
Wolf & Warrior Brewing in White Plains is the brainchild of Michael Chiltern, a micro-brewery and restaurant that features house-brewed beer, farm-to-table cuisine, and in-house roasted coffee. The daily larder is posted on big blackboards overlooking the bar area. I pop in from time to time and watch the actual brewing takes place on the lower level.
The main level is a long sprawling space designed in an understated brauhaus mode with unadorned tables and chairs. The walls are highlighted by brewing artworks and artifacts. There is a lounge area in the front as you enter. There is a popular outdoor beer garden in the rear where you can see hops growing. Seasonal sidewalk seating, too, on E. Post Road.
Wolf & Warrior holds the distinction of being the only brewer located in White Plains. While there taste the flavorful sausages and brats, tacos and fixin’s off the menu along with a couple of brews. I must say, the signature B127 NEIPA is a good one. We were told Oktoberfest Braufest brews and specialties will be available all month.
Wolf & Warrior is located at 195A East Post Road, White Plains. Open Tuesday thru Sunday. Municipal parking. 914-368-8617 www.wolfandwarrior.com
German specialties at Nadine’s, Yorktown heights.
Christian and Pamela Schienle along with son Jagger took over the former Jennifer’s Restaurant and combined many of their German specialties with French/European classics. They have a spacious beer garden and offer such hearty dishes as: Roasted Pork Shoulder with potatoes and onions; Jagerschnitzel, Wienerschitzel, Trio of Sausages, Sauerbraten, a Butcher’s Plate, even Spatzle Mac and Cheese. Save room for the fresh Apple Strudel and Black Forest Cake. The Schienle family also operate Sel et Poivre, a long running French bistro in Manhattan.
Nadine’s is located at 715 Saw Mill River Road, Yorktown Heights. Open 7 days. Check ahead for exact hours of operation. 914-962-4298 www.nadinesrestaurant.com
Hearty fall fare on the patio at Alex’s Bar & Grille.
This restaurant could make a fine stop on your fall dining tour. Marking his 8th year, proprietor Alex Ahmetaj, a veteran of the restaurant-hospitality field, has updated the menu at Alex’s Bar & Grille on North Broadway in North White Plains, a 120-seat restaurant and bar/lounge that offers big cuts of classic prime aged steaks and chops along with generously served Northern Italian/Continental fare.
Customers enter the multi-section dining room thru the inviting bar/lounge with its black industrial ceiling, banquets, and soft lighting. The handsome dining room is split into cozy sections with white tablecloths, colorful deVelleneuve impressionist paintings, and warming sconces. Mediterranean clay colored banquets and chairs compliment wooden walls and plush beige curtained windows. There is outdoor patio seating with heaters, weather permitting.
The menu offers such tasty appetizers as: Baked Clams, Pan-Fried Calamari with Hot Cherry Peppers, Jumbo Broiled Shrimp, Crab Meat Cocktail, and Clams on the Half Shell. There is a Cold Antipasti Platter, too. Fresh salads include: Burrata, Alex’s Chopped Salad, Asparagus Vinaigrette, Fresh Mozzarella with Sliced Tomatoes; classic Caesar Salad, and Sliced Tomato and Onion. Warming soups include: Pasta Fagioli and Escarole with Beans.
Big bowl pastas include fine versions of Linguini ala Vongole with white or red sauce; Giant Shrimp Pasta; Fettuccine Alfredo with cream sauce; Gnocchi Bolognese with meat sauce; Penne ala Vodka, and Eggplant Parmigiana.
Hearty seafood, chicken and veal dishes include: popular Veal Parmigiana; Veal Campagnola; fresh Sea Bass prepared in a variety of styles; Chicken Portabella with sliced portabella mushrooms; Veal Portofino, rolled with prosciutto and mozzarella served over rice with shitake mushrooms in a brown sauce; Lemon Sole Marechiara with clams and calamari; Chicken Scarpariello prepared on or off the bone; and Veal Saltimbocca with prosciutto, eggplant and mozzarella. The fresh Branzino prepared tableside is a delicious indulgence. Daily specialties augment the regular menu.
Carnivores will enjoy selections From the Grill featuring such big value priced prime cuts as: Ribeye Steak, Filet Mignon, N.Y. Sirloin Steak, Lamb Chops, Pork Chops with sautéed green and sweet peppers, and Veal Paillard, and hearty Veal Chop Valdostana. Addicting sides include: hash brown potatoes, creamed spinach, sautéed broccoli, and asparagus. To complement your meal there is a fine wine cellar.
Alex’s Bar & Grille is located at 577 North Broadway, N. White Plains, N.Y. The restaurant is open 7 days a week from noon. Lunch is served Monday thru Friday: noon to 3 p.m. Main courses: $14.95 to $25.95. Dinner main courses: $15.95 to $54.95. Major credit cards. Proper casual dress. Free parking. Reservations accepted. Phone: 914-358-1444. www.alex577.com
Morris Gut is a restaurant consultant and former restaurant trade magazine editor. He has been tracking and writing about the food and dining scene in greater Westchester for 30 years. He may be reached at: 914-235-6591. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.