Mike’s Organic Market Now Open In Stamford!

(NY Foodie Family was invited to attend a Tasting event at the newly opened Mike’s Organic Market. As always, all opinions are our own.)

After 10 years of delivering organic groceries to the Fairfield, Connecticut and surrounding Westchester area, Mike’s Organic Delivery has opened a market!

Meet Mike Geller. A Greenwich, CT native, he founded Mike’s Organic Delivery in 2009. His mission is to make it easy for people to eat clean and wholesome food by delivering it right to their doorstep. During the ten years of owning his delivery business, he’s fostered partnerships with farmers, fishermen and other artisans and producers. He and his team hand-pick only the best products to offer his customers They are able to continue Mike’s mission but now are able to give customers the ability to shop for themselves.

The market, located in an commercial park in Stamford, is housed in part of a brick building that formerly served as their grocery delivery service headquarters. The warehouse gives the market an industrial vibe.

Part of the decor pays homage to Mike’s time spent bow hunting while he was living in Africa. His experience working and living in the Kalahari Desert helped to inspire the launch of his business.

You will see their slogan “Your Organic is Showing” throughout the space and branded on gear, like this cute tote bag. Mike states the slogan dates back to the origins of Mike’s Organic Delivery and was the slogan for the first t-shirt he made. He thought it was fun, catchy and memorable and it’s just stuck over the years.

Inside the Market, the shelves are stocked with the highest quality, small batch, artisanal products that Mike and his team can find. We found many locally made products in the store like Farmer Orzo and Spinach Rotini from Northern Farmhouse Pasta, handcrafted right in the Catskills. In the freezer section you can find ice cream from Arethusa Farm in Litchfield, CT and the dairy case includes milk from the Bethel Creamery.

And, of course, we can’t forget about the produce! The market only sells organic, seasonal fruit and vegetables from local farms.

The corn, from Saunderskill Farm (where we went strawberry picking this summer!), is so sweet you can eat it uncooked and right off the cob.

We discovered at this event that fresh, seasonal produce doesn’t need much to taste good.

Grilled organic mini bell peppers, gazpacho, and Persian cucumber salad are all easy to make and highlight the freshness of the ingredients. If you need some cooking inspiration, you can find plenty of recipes on the Mike’s Organic website.

The showstopper of the evening was the wagyu beef. The beef was first cooked sous vide earlier in the day and then seared for a few minutes before serving. According to my husband, it was the most buttery, tender rib-eye that he’s tasted.

There’s a cute little play area for little ones to shop and cook their own food while their parents shop. Mike doesn’t want the space to be just be a market. His goal is to make it a learning and wellness center as well by providing classes and programs that encourage healthy living and eating. His plans include pop-up chef dinners, partnering with local restaurants and businesses to provide classes and more.

Some fun, already planned upcoming events include:

  • September 19th, 7-10 PM: Nola @ the warehouse pre-event to the 2019 Greenwich Wine + Food Festival – Mike’s Organic Market is kicking off its fall event season…New Orleans style! Hometown legend Pete Francis (founder of Dispatch) will perform a special concert at the warehouse featuring his brand new song “Belong to the Band,” whose music video was shot in The Big Easy. The event will showcase signature New Orleans cuisine including Oyster Po’ Boy Sandwiches, Warm Beignets (a la Cafe Du Monde) and more prepared by culinary genius Chef Geoff Lazlo and utilizing the finest locally sourced ingredients from Mike’s. A portion of the proceeds will go to clean up efforts in New Orleans.
  • October 6th, 9 AM – 2 PM: Sheep Shearing Day – a fun-filled fest for the whole family where the kids can meet Farmers Pete and Carol from Sepe Farm and watch a live sheep shearing. The event will offer food tastings, crafts for the kids and a Sunday Market loaded with baked goods.
  • October 17th, 7 – 10 PM: Oktoberfest – the ultimate Pig Roast in collaboration with farmer-owned butcher shop The Piggery. Two Roads Brewing Company will provide brew tastings and Chef Lazlo will roast the pig and create farm to table masterpieces.

Be sure to check out the new Mike’s Organic Market in Stamford for all of your organic, locally sourced produce and healthy foods!

The Details:
Mike’s Organic Market
377 Fairfield Avenue, Building 1
Stamford, CT 06902
(203) 832-3000

Hours:
Open Monday – Friday, 9 AM – 4 PM

Parking: Plenty of free parking outside the market

A Visit to the Hudson Valley Food Hall {Beacon}

Our family loves food halls! Food halls are an upscale equivalent to a mall food court. We love having a variety of food options available but being able to eat together in one location. We’ve been to City Kitchen and Urbanspace Vanderbilt in New York City multiple times. So when we heard that Hudson Valley Food Hall was opening in Beacon, we of course had to check it out.

Hudson Valley Food Hall is located at 288 Main Street in Beacon. The building was formerly inhabited by the Roosevelt Theater. The food hall is directly across from the Howland Public library and Glazed Over Doughnuts. From northern Westchester County it was approximately a 35 minute drive.

We planned to have a late lunch at the Hudson Valley Food Hall and arrived at 1:45 PM. The place was fairly busy when we got there. There are several food options from six different food vendors:

Bombay Wraps

Green House Salads

Hudson Valley Seafood

Katie Rose Bakery

Miz Hattie’s Southern BBQ

and Momo Valley.

Our first stop was Bombay Wrap, which also had the longest line during our visit. We opted for The Big Meal which includes rice with a choice of sauce, roti, two subji (fillings/mains), a samosa and a drink for $12.99.  For our subji we got the Chicken Curry and Paneer Tikka, on the recommendation of the cashier. When we asked for his suggestions, he mentioned that these are two of their popular dishes. Everything was delicious but a bit spicy. That was fine with us, but the kids aren’t huge fans of spicy food. Overall, I think it’s a great value for the price.

We then stopped at the Momo Valley stand.  Momos are South Asian dumplings native to areas like Tibet, Bhutan and Nepal.  Established in 2018, besides momos, Momo Valley offers a noodle soup bowl, a chicken over rice bowl and an Everest platter (Nepal’s national fish that includes lentil soup, rice, veggies, dry curried meat, fermented daikon or carrots, and sautéed greens). 

We opted to share a mixed momo bowl, which includes two grass-fed beef, two chicken and two spinach and cheese momos for $10. The momos are served steamed, though you can get them fried for an additional cost. We liked how each momo flavor is wrapped differently to differentiate them.

The Hudson Valley Food Hall doesn’t have a liquor license yet, so no alcohol is served.  The plan is for the Roosevelt Bar to serve cocktails which showcase local spirits made in the Hudson Valley. At the time of this posting, the food hall still did not know when they will receive their liquor license. For now, it’s an ice cream and soda bar.

We tried a peach and basil soda. The syrups come from More Good, a local Beacon company that, besides hand-crafted soda syrup concentrates, also sells a variety of teas and bitters. A 16 oz. soda is $2.95 and besides Peach and Basil, other flavors include Concord Grape, Cherry Cola, Root Beer, Ginger Ale and Cassia Kream.  We loved how the serve the sodas in a glass with a metal straw.

Although we did not try any ice cream, the menu looks delicious! The ice cream is homemade from the Mapleview Cafe in Poughkeepsie.

The food hall is narrow with limited seating. There is an upstairs dining space with a couple of additional tables and chairs.

We enjoyed the couple of items that we tried during our visit. We like how the food hall aims to showcase chefs and food from around the Hudson Valley. However, we wished that there was more unique food offerings. Overall, we are very happy to see a food hall in the area and wish the Hudson Valley Food Hall great success!

The Details:
Hudson Valley Food Hall
288 Main Street
Beacon, NY 12508

Hours: 11 AM – 9 PM, 7 days a week
Hudson Valley Seafood is open 9 AM – 6 PM
Once the Roosevelt Bar opens, food vendors will be staying open later

Parking: Street parking – see tip below

Tips:
*Expect to wait a few minutes for your food, especially during busy times.

*Main Street on a weekend in Beacon is BUSY! We recommend taking the first available parking spot you find and hope you are good at parallel parking! We parked a few blocks down from the food hall and made the short walk.

* The Beacon Farmer’s Market takes place on Sundays from 10 AM – 3 PM, right down the street from the Hudson Valley Food Hall. After you enjoy lunch at the food hall, you can make a stop at the market to stock up on veggies, baked goods, cheese and much more!

You may enjoy reading:

Day of Contemporary Art: dia Beacon


A Walking Tour of Bannerman Island


Dennings Point Distillery

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French Food Products to Celebrate Bastille Day!

(Thank you to the French Food and Drink Federation and Business France for sending us this Taste Box of goodies to sample. As always, all opinions are our own.)

Many moons ago, back in 2002, my boyfriend (now husband) and I visited Paris, France. This was our first international travel experience and was the beginning of our interest in all things culinary. My husband tried escargot for the first time and we enjoyed our fill of steak frites!

While the United States celebrates its Independence on July 4, France celebrates Bastille Day on July 14. This day celebrates the storming of the Bastille fortress-prison in 1789 and is considered the turning point of the French Revolution. The French holiday is celebrated in Paris with a military parade and firework shows are held throughout the country.

In honor of Bastille Day, Business France kindly sent us a box of French goodies to sample. We sadly don’t see a trip to France again anytime soon in our future. However, Bastille Day is the perfect occasion to enjoy the flavors of France with some of these French food products. We enjoyed getting to try new-to-us food products made in France.

Abtey’s Eiffel Tower box of chocolates – Not only is this tin adorable, but the individually wrapped praline filled milk chocolate balls are amazing! We love chocolate, but have discovered that we REALLY love French chocolate!

Vichy mints – These octagonal shaped mints were invented in 1825 in Vichy, France. They are super minty, leaving a fresh, cool feeling in your mouth.

Carambar caramels – These caramels were created in 1954 and continue to be a popular French sweet, especially for kids. Although we sampled the original caramel, the candy comes in several different flavors. Known for its jokes, you can “snap” (snapchat) a code for 50 different augmented reality jokes.

Chancerelle House Connétable sardines – Connétable is the world’s oldest sardine cannery that is still in operation. The fish are caught at the peak of the fishing season with sustainable fishing methods. To be honest, I’m not a big sardine fan. However, my husband enjoys them and was gobbling these up.

André Laurent Choucroute Traditional and Seafood choucroute – Choucroute is the French version of sauerkraut. The company has been family owned since 1945. Most of their sauerkraut is cooked in wine and bacon. While we haven’t tried this yet, I am hoping to enjoy it this upcoming week with sausage or chicken.

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Cooking Lately {June 2019}

I cannot believe that summer is here and June is almost over! As I mentioned in last month’s post, due to lack of time, instead of posting our weekly meal plans, I’m posting the dishes from the month that the family enjoyed the most. This will hopefully inspire you to try a new recipe! Here are some of the dishes that we enjoyed in June. Next month will likely have lighter, more veggie filled summer recipes! And if you have a great recipe that I should try, please share! I’m always looking for new dinner ideas.

Asian Turkey Meatballs – I mentioned these meatballs in a recent Five on Friday post. My husband made these for our “bite-size” themed supper club. They were easy to make and so tasty! Make a batch of these and serve with some rice and veggies and you have a complete meal.

Mexicali Hashbrown Taco Casserole – I’m always looking for new takes on tacos. This taco casserole sounded interesting and from start to finish only took about 45 minutes. My husband did the grocery shopping and when I wrote hash browns on the list, he purchased a bag of diced potatoes that were labeled hash browns. He didn’t realize that I needed the shredded hash browns. So this ended up being made with a thicker potato than was called for. Although it doesn’t look it in the pic, the potatoes were cooked. I was too lazy to give them a broil to brown them for the pic! #truth

One-Pan BBQ Ranch Chicken Gnocchi – I’ve been enjoying one pan pasta dishes recently. I’ve been hesitant because in the past the pasta hasn’t always cooked correctly. However, this dish came together nicely. I did dice the chicken prior to cooking it and I omitted the baby spinach. The kids really enjoyed this dish.

Paprika Shrimp and Farro – I try not to repeat recipes very much. But I’ve been going through some old meal planning calendars and remaking some of the recipes again. I believe I first made this dish back in 2017. When I was growing up there was no way that I’d eat this dish. I disliked all grains – rice, barley, etc. So, I have to give my kids credit for eating this. My husband actually made this and he precooked the farro the night before. Then it was super quick and easy to warm the farro and cook the shrimp.

Philly Cheesesteak Pasta Skillet – I mentioned I was on a one pot meal kick and this was one of those dishes. Total time for this meal is only 35 minutes and one that everyone enjoyed. I will make this again in the fall and winter when comfort food is needed.

Tater Tot Breakfast Casserole – Breakfast for dinner is always a winner with the family. I’ve made countless breakfast casseroles because they are just so easy and I love having the leftovers for breakfast. I’ve made similar tater tot breakfast casseroles before and this one doesn’t especially stand out, but it was good. This is another dish that I could have broiled to crisp up the tater tots, but I didn’t.

What are you making for dinner this week?

Westchester County Freak Shakes

Freak shakes have been around for a couple of years now.  These epic shakes are topped with everything from cookies, candy and even whole slices of cake!!  NY Foodie Family recently took a foodie tour of Westchester to try four of these monstrous dessert mash-ups.

The cotton candy milkshake from Lazy Boy Saloon in White Plains.

Our first stop was Lazy Boy Saloon in White Plains.  They serve four different milkshakes including Cotton Candy, Chocolate Chip Cookie, Oreo and Fruity Pebbles.  We decided to go with the Cotton Candy, since it seemed the most interesting of the four.  This strawberry shake is topped with cotton candy and  a lollipop. The rim of the glass is covered in vanilla frosting and sprinkles. Each shake is $12.

Verdict:  Of the four shakes we tried, this one was the smallest.  We found the milkshake to be very liquidy and the sprinkles are pretty much for show only, as they were pretty well glued on with hard frosting.  The cotton candy was a tasty and fun touch.  I think this shake lacked the amount of “stuff” to really be considered a freak shake, but was priced like one.  According to the menu description, it seems a lollipop should have come with our shake, but did not.  This was our least favorite of the shakes we tried. We will visit Lazy Boy Saloon to try their wings and other tasty-sounding apps and take advantage of their extensive beer selection.  We’ll just go elsewhere for our shakes.

The Boozle freak shake from Sugar-Hi.

Our second stop was Sugar-Hi in Armonk.  Sugar-Hi identifies itself as a “destination boutique sweet shop.”  The shop offers hand crafted chocolates, custom cakes, baked goods with a twist and more.  Of course, we had to stop by to try one of their freak shakes.

The freak shake menu at Sugar-Hi in Armonk.

They offer four different shakes, priced at $14 each.  We went with “The Boozle” – a chocolate shake with a vanilla frosted rim covered in m&ms, topped with a Hershey’s chocolate bar, chocolate covered pretzel rod, an entire Chipwich ice cream sandwich, whipped cream and chocolate sauce.  We got to choose between chocolate soft serve or their “Death by Chocolate” scooped ice cream.  No contest. We, of course, went with the “Death by Chocolate.”  Go big or go home, right?!  When we visited Sugar-Hi on a Sunday afternoon, it was crowded with families stopping by for an ice cream treat after soccer games.  The small dining area for guests to enjoy their treats inside was packed so we opted to enjoy our shake outside.  It was a blazing hot day so we had to enjoy our treat quickly before it melted.

Verdict:  This shake was voted unanimously by our family as (spoiler alert!) the favorite of the day, which included our trip to Lazy Boy Saloon and the next entry below.  Crafted at a boutique sweet shop, it seems fitting that they’d have the best sweet treat. We will be making a return visit soon to check out their other shakes and baked goods!

The Oreo S’mores Mega Milkshake from the Mt. Kisco Diner.

Our last stop of the day was the Mt. Kisco Diner.  I was surprised to discover that a diner was serving Insta-famous shakes.  The Mt. Kisco Diner dubs themselves, “the Diner not a Diner.”  Don’t expect your typical menu here.  For someone who isn’t a fan of diners, I will be returning here with an appetite and my camera.  The Mt. Kisco Diner prides themselves on creating Instagrammable dishes (their Instagram account has a mere 34.8 thousand followers) in a, “stylish setting.”  However, despite the creative selection of dishes, you will still pay diner prices.  They have five Mega Milkshakes on their menu including the Oreo S’mores, Rainbow Cookie, Love Shake, Chocolate Chip Cookie and Cake Poppin.  We went with the Oreo S’Mores shake which is an Oreo shake, a chocolate frosted rim covered in crushed Oreos, topped with whipped cream, Toasted Marshmallows and an Oreo cookie.  The Mt. Kisco Diner’s mega shakes are competitively priced at $10.99 each.

Verdict: Too bad that the Mt. Kisco Diner was the last stop of our foodie tour.  By the third shake, even with four of us sharing, we were just about in a sugar coma.  We ordered some salty, cheesy appetizers to even things out. As an Oreo fan, this was a tasty shake.  The whipped cream layer was a bit too much, so we took the layer off and enjoyed the shake and the “stuff.”

The Peanut Butter & Chocolate Out of this World Shake from the Hudson Creamery.

Before I could publish this post, we had to make one more stop.  I only recently discovered that The Hudson Creamery in Peekskill started making freak shakes, known as “Out of This World Shakes” there.  They offer five different milkshakes including the Peanut Butter & Chocolate,  Cookie Monster, S’mores, Candy Candy and Salted Caramel Pretzel.  We opted to try the Peanut Butter Chocolate milkshake.  This is a chocolate and peanut butter shake with chocolate & peanut butter fudge ice cream, Reeses PB Cups, Reeses Pieces, PB Sauce, Chocolate Syrup, Funny Bones and Nutter Butters.  These shakes are priced at $13.50 each.

Verdict:  Delicious!  I am so happy that we made a stop here.  Out of all the shakes we tried, this was our favorite.  In terms of quality and value for the money, this shake also wins.  This had a generous and delicious shake filling the glass, topped with a waffle cone overloaded with indulgent chocolate ice cream.  Then it was completed with all of the fun extras.  While we were told this could feed two people, it was plenty for the four of us to share.  We will be back to try some of their other “Out of This World Shakes” as well as their seasonal sundaes!

Broomstick Sweetie’s:The Dawn of the Suburban Underground Supper Club

(Thank you Nicole for hosting NY Foodie Family.  As always, all opinions are our own.)

The e-mail arrives in your inbox 24 hours before the event and gives you an address and an arrival time.  Wine recommendations are included, since this is a BYOB meal. You have no idea what the menu will be or who else will be attending.  This, my friends, is the dawn of the underground supper club experience and it’s taking place right here in Westchester County.  While the concept of an underground food event is not new, it has finally arrived in the suburbs of New York City.

Nicole Brake is the mastermind behind Broomstick Sweetie’s.  She is a mom of two children (ages 9 and 15), works part-time as a nurse, and is a former ballerina who still enjoys taking dance classes.  What started as a side gig, selling baked goods and fudge at local farmer’s markets, has evolved into an underground supper club.  The goal of Nicole’s supper club is to get people from all over to come together to share a unique dining experience.

Each dining event has a theme where, “seasonally inspired comfort food and dessert with a global influence” is served.  Nicole creates a 4-5 course menu reflecting that evening’s theme.  You don’t know what dishes you will be served until you arrive.  Therefore, the only requisite of the supper club is to be an adventurous eater. It is important to note that these menus are not vegetarian or gluten-free.

Ideally, you attend the supper club either alone, or with one other person.  The goal is to meet and mingle with others where you: “enter as strangers, leave as friends.”  As a super-introvert, I was hesitant about attending.  However, the whole concept intrigued me too much to pass up.  So, this past weekend I attended an October Harvest Moon themed dinner.

When I arrived at the designated location, a platter of bread and homemade chimichurri sauce was set out on the porch, along with homemade sangria. Nicole’s husband Robert was also at the event, greeting guests and making sure everyone was comfortable.   This was a very relaxed setting to get to know the other dinner guests as they arrived.

Eventually, we were moved inside to a dining room. There’s no awkwardness of where to sit, as name cards are set out.  Plus, the maximum guest count is ten, to keep the gathering intimate and manageable.

The printed menu was reflective of Nicole’s goal of seasonal comfort food. As a self-taught cook, many of the dishes she serves are tried and true examples that she’s made for her family.

The first course of the evening was a pumpkin soup.  This was delicious.  It had all the flavors of fall, including pumpkin and apple, and was garnished with pomegranate and pumpkin seeds.  Nicole served generous servings of soup in giant bowls. I chose not finish, although I would have gladly licked the bowl clean, because I knew there were many more courses to go.

Next up was a spinach salad.  The spinach leaves were covered in a peppery vinaigrette and the salad was garnished with slices of pear and Parmesan.

The main course was a garlic infused chipotle pork tenderloin with scalloped potato gratin and butternut squash.  The pork was moist and flavorful, while the potatoes were soft and creamy.  The butternut squash was so tender and sweet that it could have been served for dessert.  Once again, I didn’t finish every last bite on the plate in order to leave room for dessert.  Some diners were smart and asked for their leftovers to be wrapped.  Definitely something to keep in mind for the future, and an added bonus is being treated to Robert’s aluminum foil art.

Since Broomstick Sweetie’s originated as a baking and dessert brand, I knew dessert would be delicious.  I was not disappointed and was glad I had left room for the Apple Bavarian Torte.  An iced broomstick sugar cookie was a bonus treat!

The kitchen of this house was adjacent to the dining room, so we could see Nicole plating dishes.  As I mentioned, these dinners are BYOB.  Several guests brought bottles of wine and invited the other diners to share.  Throughout the evening Robert was making sure glasses were full (of water, wine, or both!) and serving and clearing dishes.

Okay, so the food is delicious but what is the dining experience like?

 

If this introvert had a great evening, then there’s no doubt you will as well!  The ages of the other guests ranged from early twenties to late 50’s.  At the Harvest Dinner there were ten guests including a film maker, an administrative assistant, a kitchen designer, a litigation lawyer, and a financial adviser. Conversation flowed smoothly as we all had at least one thing in common: we like food.  While Nicole does not sit and dine with guests, she does encourage them to come talk to her while she’s cooking.  She even had a pianist playing live music during the evening.

Discussions ranged from favorite restaurants to most adventurous foods eaten.  One guest had eaten Rocky Mountain Oysters (go ahead, Google it), another frog’s legs and alligator.  One couple attended a dinner party where they dined in a swimming pool.  I learned that, in India, there’s no such thing as what we Americans call “curry.”  Curry is really just a blend of different spices.  I also learned that there’s a restaurant in NYC that sells only one dish: steak frites, and obviously does that one dish very well at a super-reasonable price.

I highly recommend attending one of Broomstick Sweetie’s underground supper club events.  Future event through the end of the year include a costume-wearing “Dishes to Die For,” Tastes of Southwest, Friendsgiving Feast, Italian Comfort, a Charles Dickens Dinner and an End of Year Soiree.  The website gives further details on the specific dates.  These dinners are very reasonably priced at $65 a person.

This supper club is great because you can attend alone without any stigma. The whole point is to meet new people and enjoy a great meal.  This is especially attractive to a busy working mom like myself.  Scheduling a date night or a girls night out can be difficult at times.  But if I want to enjoy a night off from cooking, this dinner is a great escape that I can do alone. At the end of the evening, Nicole gave us a parting gift of homemade pumpkin fudge.

It was an enjoyable evening.  I arrived home and told my husband that he needs to attend a future supper club.  While we may end up going again together, I feel like it’s a different experience going solo.  Broomstick Sweetie’s underground supper club is truly a unique dining experience.  Please check out the Broomstick Sweetie’s website to learn more about the supper club as well as to reserve a space at a future dinner.

Dinner and a Beer Flight at Mill House Brewing Company

(Thank you to Dutchess Tourism and Mill House Brewing Company for hosting NY Foodie Family.  As always, all opinions are our own.)

Mill House Brewing Company is located on Mill Street in Poughkeepsie, right off of Rt. 55.  Surprisingly, the restaurant was never actually a mill and was most recently a Chinese restaurant! My husband and I didn’t realize until visiting that we’ve driven by this place multiple times on our way across the river!  Now that we know that it’s there though, we will be back.  Mill House Brewing Company is a brewery and a pub.  When we talked to people at other stops on our Dutchess Craft Beverage Trail tour and mentioned that we were visiting Mill House Brewing Company, they always commented on how good the food was here.  And they weren’t wrong!

The restaurant has an extensive menu, filled with so many delicious options.  My husband and I debated making a meal out of Appetizers and Bar Bites, because there were so many dishes that we wanted to try!  In the end we took our server’s recommendation and shared the Fried Calamari Salad.  The portion was humongous and could have been a meal in itself!  I had never heard of a fried calamari salad before, but it was so good.  The calamari was so tender and the chili-lime vinaigrette and Srirarcha Ranch aioli complemented the arugula so well.

For our entrees we shared the Fig and “Pig” pizza and a Deep Fried Scallop and Oyster Po’Boy.  The sandwich was messy good!  Unfortunately, it was a daily special and not something that they serve every day.

The pizza Fig and “Pig” is one of five pizzas that the restaurant serves.  This has smoked mozzarella, housemade duck bacon, black mission figs, arugula and aged balsamic.  We were getting full and took most of the pizza home with us!

Mill House Brewing also has several burgers on their menu, including the 50/50 burger being the winner of the Hudson Valley Burger Bash, three years in a row.  They also make several different sausages and offer a variety of pasta, seafood and steak dishes.  There is something for everyone at this Mill House and I can almost guarantee you that it will be delicious.

We were seriously too stuffed for dessert, as much as we wanted to try some of them (I’m talking about you, Peanut Butter Sundae and Cannoli Profiteroles!).  Just another reason for us to go back!

“….our A-Team here, who make “holy s#*t” moments happen at Mill House day in and day out.”

But of course, besides serving amazing food, we can’t forget that Mill House is also a brewery!  They have 16 taps and are always changing the beers that they serve.  My husband enjoyed a flight, where you can choose 5 beers for $15.  His flight included Kold One, which is their most popular beer, Cross Reference Blackberry, Cucumber Blessings, Velvet Panda and Northwest Territory. Although he enjoyed them all, his favorite was Cucumber Blessings. This award-winning cream ale is crisp and dry with notes of cucumber.  Basically, a perfect summer beer!

Assistant General Manger, Chris, told to us that the brewmasters Jamie Bishop and Larry Stock have become more experimental with their beers since they acquired the additional space down the street that houses 20 additional barrels.  According to Chris, asking him to name his favorite beer is like asking a parent to name their favorite child.  However, at the time of our visit, his current favorite brew was Zoe.

Brewmaster Jamie works with a local artist to create unique badges for each new beer.

If you really enjoy your beer, hopefully it is one of five that are sold in cans.  Kold One, Cucumber Blessings, Hubar I DIPA, Grocery Getter and Northwest Territory Imperial are their five beers that you can find in stores like Whole Foods, some local beer distributors and even Grand Central Station.  Otherwise, you can purchase some on your way out of the restaurant to take home with you (along with some of their home homemade sauces made with their beer).

Stop by The Mill House Brewing Company for a delicious meal and a cold brew (or flight)!

The Details:

Mill House Brewing Company
289 Mill Street
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
(845) 485-2739

Website: www.millhousebrewing.com

Hours: Monday – Thursday 11:30 AM – 9 PM, Friday 11:30 AM – 10:30 PM, Saturday 11 AM – 10:30 PM, Sunday Brunch 11 AM – 3 PM, Sunday Dinner 3 PM – 9 PM

Fondue Fun at The Melting Pot

I can’t believe that I haven’t written a review of The Melting Pot until now.  This restaurant has become a family favorite and is frequented annually for one, or sometimes even both, of our kids’ birthdays.  The restaurant is a chain, with locations throughout the United States.  While my husband and I aren’t huge fans of chain restaurants, we both enjoy the The Melting Pot as much as the kids do.

For those unfamiliar with The Melting Pot, it is a fondue restaurant.  Dining here is a fun, interactive experience for the entire family.  One of the best parts of The Melting Pot is that you can customize your menu.  If you only want to do appetizers and dessert, you can.  For our family of four, we usually order two 4-course experiences and share between the four of us.  They do have a children’s menu, but we have found that there is enough food for all of us, sharing the two adult entrees.  The kids do love the special kid cocktails they offer.  Be warned, they are very sweet!  We usually water them down.

The 4-course experience begins with your choice of cheese fondue.  Our go-to choice (and a signature item) is the Wisconsin Cheddar.  This fondue includes Aged Cheddar, Emmenthaler, Sam Adams Boston Lager, garlic and spices.  You get a board loaded with veggies, different types of bread (including our favorite, pretzel bread) and apples.

The second course is a choice of three different salads.  The kids usually share a Caesar salad and my husband and I share this California salad.  It’s super tasty with mixed greens topped with candied pecans, Gorgonzola and house-made raspberry vinaigrette.

The third course includes a choice of three different entrees.  I believe that different locations of the restaurant may offer different entree options.  We always opt for “The Classic” which includes Certified Angus Beef Sirloin, shrimp and Herb-Crusted chicken breast.

For our second entree our go-to is “The Pacific Rim” which includes dumplings,  duck, shrimp and Teriyaki marinated sirloin.

With the entrees you also get a bowl of veggies that includes potatoes, broccoli and mushroom caps. The fun of this restaurant is getting to cook the food yourself!  Every person gets two colored cooking forks.  The colors are different so it’s easy to keep track of whose fork is whose.  Your server will tell you cooking times, but it’s approximately one to two minutes for seafood and additional cooking time for other other proteins.

And we can’t forget about the sauces!  There are six different sauces that you can dip your cooked foodinto including a Green Goddess sauce (my fave), cocktail sauce, Gorgonzola sauce and a curry sauce.

The restaurant thinks of everything.  The plates have special compartments for you to scoop your sauce into.  As you can see, you will be eating your main entree in stages.  Since you only have two cooking utensils, you will be continuously cooking and eating the main entree.  You will also get a “Search and Rescue” slotted spoon, because inevitably, some food will fall off your cooking fork!

Of course, the kids’ favorite part of the meal is dessert! Since we most recently celebrated my son’s birthday, we let him choose the chocolate fondue, since there’s only one per table.  This time, he chose the Flaming Turtle which includes milk chocolate, caramel and and candied pecans.  There’s a splash of rum which is added and set on fire, thus the “flaming” part of the turtle.

When you arrive at the restaurant, they ask if you are celebrating a special occasion.  We mentioned to the hostess and our waiter that it was our son’s 10th birthday.  When our waiter brought us our dessert, he also brought this fun, colorful plate.

The Melting Pot is a fun restaurant that is great for celebrating special occasions, a date night or just a dinner out with friends.  When you dine here, you will have a memorable, interactive experience.

The Details:
(Please note that The Melting Pot has locations throughout the United States.  Check the website to see if there’s a location near you.)

The Melting Pot White Plains
30 Mamaroneck Avenue
White Plains, NY 10601
(914) 993-6358

Hours: Monday – Thursday 5 PM -10 PM Friday 5 PM -11 PM, Saturday 12 PM – 11 PM, Sunday 12 PM – 9 PM

Parking:  Street Parking

Price:  $$$ (Four-Course dinner for two plus cocktails approximately $100+)

 

Newest Additions to Savor Westchester: The Little Beet And Melt Shop

 

(Thank you to The Little Beet for hosting NY Foodie Family.  As always, all opinions are our own.)

Two new eateries, Melt Shop and The Little Beet recently opened at Savor Westchester, the food hall type dining experience at The Westchester in White Plains.

Melt Shop is one of the newest eateries at Savor Westchester.

Melt Shop is all about comfort food.  We’re talking grilled sandwiches (with, of course, lots of melty cheese!), tater tots, and milkshakes.  Sandwiches are reasonably priced, ranging from $5.05 to $8.96.

The Signature Fried Chicken sandwich from the Melt Shop.

One of our favorite Melt Shop sandwiches is the Signature Fried Chicken.  A generously-sized piece of fried chicken is topped with pepper jack, red cabbage slaw, and Melt sauce.  A warning: This sandwich is messy, but so good!  Have plenty of napkins on hand.

We also tried the French Onion Beef.  Roast beef, frenched onions, Muenster cheese, arugula, and sherry vinaigrette are piled on Country White Bread.   This was a tasty sandwich as well, though the fried chicken was definitely preferred.

The loaded tots from Melt Shop at the Westchester in White Plains.

Melt Shop doesn’t serve fries, they have tater tots.  You could choose tots topped with just cheese sauce.  However, we opted for the loaded tots which are covered in cheese sauce, bacon, jalapeno and herbed parmesan.

Another new addition to Savor Westchester is The Little Beet.  This eatery has a strong plant-based focus, featuring lots of veggies. They have dining choices for special dietary preferences including gluten-free, vegetarian, dairy-free and more.

This is a quick-service create-your-own bowl restaurant.  You choose a base of either field greens, brown rice and spirulina (FYI -spirulina is a superfood algae), or a gluten-free ancient grain blend.  Then choose two veggies for your bowl.  They offer cool choices, like the cukes and tomatoes (which happens to be a fave of the staff at the Savor Westchester location), seaweed slaw and pea and radishes.  Warm veggies include chipotle kale, charred sweet potato and more. If you don’t want one of the bases, you can opt for a third veggie instead.  Step two is picking a protein.  Salmon is one of the best-selling options, since no other eatery at Savor Westchester offers a salmon dish.  Other options include chicken, tofu, beet falafel, sesame avocado, and braised pork.  Step three is to choose a sauce; Chimichurri, beet hummus dip and sweet chili garlic sauce are a few of the choices.  Finally, you can pick a garnish of either super seeds, turmeric almonds, pickled ginger or hibiscus pickled onion.  The combinations and options are nearly limitless!  Prices are based on the type of protein chosen but range in price from $11.40 for sesame avocado to $14.00 for salmon.  You can also just have the veggies and base only for $8.95.

One bowl we opted for was brown rice and spirulina topped with charred broccoli, cukes and tomatoes and braised pork.  We chose to top it with avocado bean dip and sweet chili garlic sauce.  This combo was definitely one of our favorites!

A beet falafel bowl from The Little Beet at Savor Westchester in White Plains.

On this bowl we opted for a third veggie instead of a base.  We chose charred sweet potatoes, golden cauliflower and shaved brussels sprouts topped with turmeric tahini, roasted red pepper and walnut dip and pickled onions.

We also tried the Chef Made Yuzu Poke Bowl.  We opted for a rice base which is then topped with salmon poke, grilled avocado, cucumber, sea vegetables, pickled ginger and sesame seeds.

I am not kidding when I tell you everything was delicious.  The kids loved it all as well and my husband noted that you don’t even need the meat.  The veggies and sauces are so flavorful.  If we could eat this every day, we could totally become vegetarians!

So the next time you are at Savor Westchester, make sure to stop by either Melt Shop or The Little Beet for some tasty eats!  Click the link to read more about some of the other dining options at Savor Westchester.

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Cooking Lately

If you’re a regular blog reader you may have noticed that I haven’t posted a weekly meal plan for the past two weeks.  Believe me, I’ve still been cooking up a storm during the week.  I just haven’t had time to post our meal plan here.  So today, I’m sharing some of the meals that I’ve cooked over the past two weeks.  Again, I hope this post helps you find something new to make for dinner.  Mix up your weekly dinners and try a new recipe!  You and your family might like it!  So on to what’s been cooking lately:

Cheeseburger Tater Tot Casserole from Broma Bakery – This was a family favorite and my daughter already asked me to make this again.  My only criticism of this recipe is that it should be called Taco Tater Tot Casserole.  After looking at some other “cheeseburger” tater tot casserole recipes, I noticed that the others had mustard, ketchup and pickles.  This recipe had none of that but does have taco seasoning.  I forgot to serve this with sour cream and it was still tasty.  This is a hearty, comfort dish that I’ll save to make again in the fall once the weather gets cool again.

Cowboy Spaghetti from Rachael Ray Express Lane Meals – I’ve made this recipe before many years ago.  Although it sounds like a weird combination of ingredients, somehow it works.  I did not use beer in my recipe.  The family enjoyed this meal and this is another recipe that I’ll likely make again, come fall or winter.

Instant Pot Sticky Korean Chicken from Half Baked Harvest –  This was a quick and easy chicken dish.  Instead of the gochugang sauce the recipe called for, I used a tablespoon of chili garlic sauce.  Even that was probably a bit much, since the chicken turned out pretty spicy.  My chicken ended up pretty saucy, which I didn’t mind because I spooned it over the rice.  However, I used a pound of chicken and there was no leftovers and not even enough for seconds.  Next time, I’ll reduce the amount of chili garlic sauce and double the amount of chicken.  I served this with rice and veggies.  This will be made again!

Cajun Chicken Alfredo Shells from Closet Cooking – This was probably one of the more time consuming meals to make over the past two weeks.  The night before I was going to make these my husband pre-cooked the chicken for me in the Instant Pot.  While the shells cooked, I made the sauce and got the chicken and broccoli mixture together.  These were pretty tasty, but I think more work than it was worth.  Luckily, there were leftovers which my daughter and I took for lunch the next day.  I served these shells with a Caesar salad.

Wafflewiches from Rachael Ray Express Lane Meals – If you are looking for a super quick and easy meal, these Wafflewiches are it!  It’s a different take on the Monte Cristo, using waffles instead of French Toast.  My kids rarely eat a cold cut sandwich, but both enjoyed these wafflewiches.

Spicy Shrimp Tacos with Garlic Cilantro Lime Slaw from Pinch of Yum –  Shrimp are quick and easy to cook.  The sauce and slaw was easy to throw together and it packed a lot of flavor!  There was a bunch of slaw and sauce leftover, which we are using in fish tacos!

What have you been cooking lately?