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Spanish Tapas for Hudson Valley Restaurant Week


Sala on Hudson, a Spanish Tapas restaurant, is offering a prix-fixe menu for Hudson Valley Restaurant Week. We have always enjoyed our meals/time there – - so happy they are participating in this great event. The menu follows. As an aside, they were named by Westchester Magazine for Best Paella. Also, they have a Happy Hour Special daily at the bar … Two for the price of one and applies to wines by the glass, draught beer, and sangria (from 5 – 7pm).

Sala HVRW Nov 2013

Sala on Hudson

44 Maple Street

Croton on Hudson, NY

(914) 862-4100


Mon, Wed, Thurs: 5-10pm

Tuesday: Closed

Friday – Saturday: 5-11pm

Sundays: 5-9pm
BRUNCH: Sundays from 11-4

Don’t discard your rinds… Enhance soups!


When your block of cheese, particularly Parmigiano-Reggiano or Parmesan (hard cheeses) have been mostly used up, place them into a sealed freezer bag and store them in the freezer. When making your next batch of soup, place a chunk of a rind into your soup and let it cook down in the soup. You will not sense any “cheesiness” in the soup, but it adds a flavor dimension and texture that makes one smile. Prior to serving, discard any of the remaining rind. Save them! Use them! Take your soups to another level.



Hudson Valley Restaurant Week – - it’s that time!



It’s that time! Hudson Valley Restaurant Week, November 4 – 17. 3 courses $20.95 for lunch and $29.95 for dinner.
Go HERE to learn more.

Minestrone – - fall beckons


Minestra is an Italian word for “soup” similar to “zuppa.” MinestrONE refers to a BIG soup. Sometimes all vegetable, but in this case I incorporated pancetta. I also placed grilled pieces of ciabatta at the bottom of the bowl for extra texture. Perfect for fall and winter weather.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped, with leaves preferred
  • 3-4 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, coarsely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced or pasted
  • 1 pound Swiss chard, stems trimmed, leaves coarsely chopped
  • 1 russet potato, peeled, cubed
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig
  • 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained, rinsed
  • 1 32 oz. can of chicken stock
  • 1 Parmesan cheese rind
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • Kosher Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Optional: cut crusty bread into cubes and sauté in a cast iron skilled drizzled with olive oil until crispy


Heat the oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery, pancetta, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté until the onion is translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the Swiss chard and potato; saute for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and rosemary sprig. Simmer until the chard is wilted and the tomatoes break down, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, blend 3/4 cup of the beans with 1/4 cup of the broth in a processor or an immersion blender until almost smooth. Add the pureed bean mixture, remaining broth, and  cheese rind to the vegetable mixture. Simmer until the potato pieces are tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Stir in the whole beans and parsley. Simmer until the beans are heated through and the soup is thick, about 2 minutes. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, to taste. Discard Parmesan rind and rosemary sprig (the leaves will have fallen off of the stem.). Optional: place grilled bread cubes at bottom of bowl and ladle soup over the top. Drizzle the top of soup with extra virgin olive oil and grate extra cheese on top, if desired.

Founders Brewing event!




It seems like everyone would like to meet the people behind the venerable
 Founders Brewing Company in a private setting, hear some great stories, get
 updated on their newly planned $26 million expansion, share a great meal and
 drink some of the most amazing beers produced.

Well, you are going to get your chance to do just that.

Holy Smoke and Founders is pleased to announce that Dave Engbers – Co-Founder,
Vice President, Director of Brand & Education of FOUNDERS will be here for their last Brew
Masters Dinner of 2013.

Tuesday, December 10th 6:30pm. 

They have just about finished the beer and food choices, this is what they are leaning toward:

  • Cheese course with Founders Pale
  • Fish course with Centennial IPA
  • Pasta course with Doom (barrel aged IPA)
  • Meat course with Backwards Bastard Barrel aged Scotch Ale
  • Dessert course and Rubaeus

Tickets are on sale now. 

Holy Smoke

241 Route 6N

Mahopac, NY 10541



Thai Relish with Basil and Peanuts

thai basil relishFINAL

This is dedicated to a good guy with good taste, Matt Pucci. Keep up the good work!


  • 3 cups firmly packed fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 cup unsalted roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1 serrano pepper, seeded and minced
  • 2 -3 garlic cloves, minced 
(to taste) – - placing the garlic through a garlic press works well here
  • 1 bunch green onions (green parts only), thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce (you may substitute 1  teaspoon anchovy paste instead)
  • 1/8 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil


Stir together first 7 ingredients; slowly stir in olive oil until fully blended.

Place into glass jars. Refrigerate. Bring to room temperature to garnish with grilled meats, fish, add to stir fries, toss with Asian noodles, etc.

Chipotle Corn Salad

The smokiness of the adobo with chipotle and the bright flavor of lime and sweetness of corn make this a wonderful addition to the table.

summer corn saladFINALjpg


  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 4 cobs of corn, with kernels sliced from the cob
  • 2 bell peppers, preferably yellow and orange for color interest, seeded and cut into 1/4 inch dice
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 chipotle chilies minced, reserving the juices
  • sea salt (or Kosher salt)
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Limes cut into quarters for squeezing


  • Remove kernels from corn cobs
  • Seed and dice bell peppers into 1/4 inch pieces
  • Paste garlic with the blade of a knife or put through a garlic press
  • Heat a skillet with two tablespoons olive oil
  • Add and sauté tomatoes until they begin to reduce in size and give off their juices
  • Add bell peppers and saute until tender
  • Add the garlic and stir until thoroughly combined, taking care not to allow garlic to burn
  • Season with salt and freshly ground pepper as they cook
  • Fold in the chipotle chilies with their juices and continue to sauté until all are combined
  • Check for seasoning and adjust as needed
  • Serve with lime wedges


Tapas and wine-pairing event


Sala-on-Hudson is holding an event for tasting tapas paired with Spanish wines. Details about the event and menu offerings are below.

“A Taste of Spain”

Date: Thursday, August 15, 2013

Time: 5 – 9 PM

  • 3-course wine and tapas pairing: $30
  • 5-course wine and tapas pairing: $45

tax and gratuity not included

You can RSVP online:

or call, 914-862-4100

sala 3 course


sala 5 course

Sala on Hudson

44 Maple Street

Croton-on-Hudson, NY 10520

Holy Smoke’s 2013 Cigar, Bourbon, and Beer Dinner


Tuesday Night, September 10th

This event sells out quickly!

The layout for the event is below and tickets will be available starting today. There are a very limited number of seats for this event. Event starts at 6pm.

Tickets are $75 per person which includes all cigars, food, beers, bourbon, taxes and tip.

2 Premium Cigars 

  • Alec Bradley Black Market Torpedo
  • H. Upmann Reserve Churchill

Choose a Beer for the beginning of the night

  • Choose a beer from the outstanding 30 craft beers on tap

Choice of dinner with two side dishes and cornbread

  • St. Louis Ribs, BBQ Chicken, Pulled Pork or Chorizo


  • Fresh Summer Berry Parfait

Choose a Beer for the end of the night

  • Choose a beer from the outstanding 30 craft beers on tap

Choice of a Great Bourbon Pour

  • Elmer T. Lee
  • Buffalo Trace
  • Rock Hill
  • Blanton’s

Holy Smoke

241 Route 6N

Mahopac, NY 10541

The Stone Manor 101


Westchester has a new steakhouse. It is called The Stone Manor 101. The focus is Mediterranean influenced dishes. Owners Michael Casarella and Tommy Stratis have put much love into this new venture (they also  own Casa Rina and Goldfish Oyster Bar). This building, which has been around for a very long time, has been completely gutted, redesigned and is a new gem in our community. The calming muted colors, contemporary lighting and  stylish furniture make this 14, 000 square foot space a worthwhile destination. In addition, there is ample room for corporate parties and they are building bridal suites for weddings on the upper level.

The ambience is beautiful, contemporary, and the service is fantastic. Given its size they have many plans unfolding. A wine room is developing as are various patio plans.

open kitchen final

The busy and well-appointed open kitchen creates a unique experience

The restaurant has an “open kitchen” so you can watch the preparations by CIA trained chef, Scott Karns (who they relocated from Kansas City steakhouses to lead the charge here) and Sous Chef William Lawrence, who learned and honed his skills at the The French Culinary Institute.

Stone Manor  has large roomy lounge areas for cocktails, an impressive and broad wine list and over twenty wines by the glass. Anthony and Alex are gracious behind the bar and very attentive. The wine list features bottles from France and Italy, South America and Australia and many delicious wines from California and our country’s Northwest region.

bar area exterior final

Area by the bar to lounge and have cocktails with appetizers

dining room final

A section of the dining area – - beautifully designed and appointed

The steak menu ranges from a 45 ounce Porterhouse for two, to a 14 ounce Filet Mignon, and a 20 ounce Prime Rib. A nine ounce filet is available for those with smaller appetites, or those who just want to make room for the wide ranging selection of side dishes that include roasted garlic mashed potatoes, baked eggplant and artichoke mousaka.

porterhouse for two final

Porterhouse for two – - a prime cut of steak as it is cut from the large end of the short loin – very tender and well executed

steak final

Steaks well prepared to your desired temperature – here is the Prime Rib with a horseradish sauce

The menu features many outstanding sauces to accompany its main steak offerings, including a Chimichurri, which was delicious atop the grilled Skirt Steak, a Gorganzola Bechamel,  Béarnaise, Green Peppercorn Cognac, which pairs well with the Rib Eye, and a Wild Mushroom Marsala sauce. The star, in my opinion, is the Prime Rib (a true WOW). This steak is presently only available Thursday through Saturday, but is amply portioned, the seasoning is pristine and mouth feel is noteable.

In addition to steaks and touting themselves as a steakhouse, there are other offerings, too. The appetizers include a wonderful plate of jumbo shrimp wrapped in pancetta, sliders, and vegetarian meatballs, which allow something for everyone. The lobster roll is the most substantial and tasty we have ever had in Westchester.

slider trio

Slider Trio –  chilled lobster, “kobe” beef and lamb


The Lobster Roll with an abundance of celery and those requisite flavors of lemon and tarragon

crepes with butternut squash puree-appetizer

Crepes of butternut squash purée with fresh sage


Stuffed Long Hots – - spicy peppers stuffed with ricotta and roasted to deliciousness – heat alert for the faint of heart! We love them.

Side dishes do not disappoint. The creamed spinach is absolutely perfect. The mashed potatoes will have you falling out of your chair – - they are that good and served in beautiful personal sized cast iron mini-Dutch ovens. A throw back but well executed is the Sweet Potato Au Gratin, yes… Complete with marshmallows in the mix!


Creamed spinach – - luxurious and comforting

Stone Manor also features an outstanding fish and chicken menu ranging from maple glazed wild salmon with roasted parsnips and scallions; to grilled swordfish finished with citrus segments, cauliflower puree, fennel prawns and croutons; to a stuffed roasted chicken that is combined with mushroom duxelle, braised fennel, baby carrots and snap peas.

Desserts are artfully crafted by pastry chef Arlin Varela and complement the menu’s savory choices.

strawberry cheesecake

Strawberry shortcake  – beautifully crafted, not to to sweet, and enjoyed by all

chocolate deliciousnessfinal

Chocolate deliciousness – - nothing more to be said here

Stone Manor 101 is open seven days a week, with extended hours and a bar menu Thursday through Saturday.  The owners are also offering a Monday – Friday happy hour from 4:00 – 6:30 with drinks and bar-menu items half price.

The Stone Manor 101

101 Old Saw Mill River Road

Hawthorne, NY 10532


(located across from the Hawthorne Multiplex Theater)