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New Rochelle has a unique mix of cultures. This diversity creates a demand for an equally diverse group of cuisines. Besides having a Culinary Institute to visit right in town at Monroe College, a local or epicurean can eat a different cuisine every night and be incredibly pleased.

With its rich Italian roots, New Rochelle has no shortage of great Italian restaurants. So if you’re in the mood for an authentic Chicken or Eggplant Parmesan, Modern Restaurant and Lounge on Huguenot Street and Mamma Francesca’s on Pelham Road are the places to visit. Sorell Wine Bar and Lounge serves a Northern Italian risotto that tastes as good as it smells when you walk through the door, and Giovanni will help you pick out the wine in the adjoining wine store shop. On the other end of Pelham Road is Patsy’s, serving up a crispy brick oven pizza with a view of New Rochelle’s marina. A little farther North is Fratelli Ristorante and Wine Bar, which has a sauce that will make you feel like you visited Grandma on Sunday; and at Carlo’s Pizzeria on Boston Post Road, if you order the spicy Chicken Scarpiello you’ll dream about it for weeks.

If you’re in the mood for something different, you may want to try some of the other restaurants that have a Latin or Caribbean flair. Mangoville on the East End of North Avenue adds just the right amount of spice in its curry dishes and also has a night scene that’s lots of fun. Alvin and Friends located near the New Rochelle Public Library frequently has live music. But if you can’t arrive during the entertainment hours, Alvin’s welcoming smile and the Jerk Rubbed Duck Breast will charm you to return. Another chic place that just celebrated its grand opening is Rooster, which has a 5 p.m. happy hour daily where Chef Carlos serves tasty appetizers. If he doesn’t serve the Los Montaditos (filled plantain cups), order it anyway – they’re worth it.

If you’re looking for pub food, go to Beechmont Tavern, across from Iona College where they serve fresh juicy burgers “never frozen” on pretzel buns and General Manager Rob Hayes will argue his wings are the best in Westchester. Also close to Iona College is Smokehouse Tailgate Grill, which has tasty ribs and buffalo chicken dip that rivals those in Texas. The Wooden Spoon, located in the heart of New Rochelle on Division Street, which is starting to look like Restaurant Row, has a macaroni and cheese that will make you wish you were a kid again.

If all this has you wondering if any of these places are kosher or vegan, visit Got Thyme on the north end of New Rochelle for lunch or let them cater your next event. If you’ve “got time” and you’re in the mood for a cup of coffee after lunch, look for the New Rochelle Coffee Shop in the Quaker Ridge Shopping Center. The owners, Helen and Taso will make you feel like you stopped by your sister’s kitchen for a chat. However, if you’re still in the Boston Post Road area, visit Pop’s Espresso Bar and get a Donnoli, which is a donut filled with cannoli cream. We know someone who’s not allowed to visit his daughter in college without them.

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