Thursday, December 27, 2012


Westchester Square News: WHERE TO CELEBRATE NEW YEAR’S EVE!: CULINARY ROAD  By Morris Gut BRONX, NEW YORK, December 27- Ready or not, here it comes! 2013 is upon us, so whether you’ve been na...


By Morris Gut
BRONX, NEW YORK, December 27- Ready or not, here it comes! 2013 is upon us, so whether you’ve been naughty or nice its time to make plans with friends and family. If you are planning to go out, here are some dining suggestions for every palate, each offering a good dose of New Year’s cheer…
It is over-the-top during the holidays and it begins with the bright lights and smell of chestnuts roasting at the entranceway. Take home a bag of them. The annual Christmas Holiday Fest at Mulino’s, White Plains, lasts right thru the season and it’s a sight to behold! The fountain garden is beautiful as is the lavish dining room and bar/ lounge. General Manager Gimmy Cavagna and his staff are keeping the premises spiffy as ever: gesticulating Christmas decorations galore, holiday carolers, life size toy soldiers, the bursting colorful floral displays, the sparkling grappa and glassware collection, the handsome multilevel seating area. The Cold Seafood Platter is a wonder and fine to share as is their decadent version of Linguine Carbonara; plump tender Rack of Lamb served on the long bone; delicate Dover Sole finished off in the dining room; and perhaps for dessert have the wait staff whip up warm Zabaglione with fresh ripe berries tableside. And, oh that smooth Italian cheesecake. Open 7 days thru the Holiday Fest. Bring the whole family. The place sparkles! Valet parking. Reservations advised. Mulino’s of Westchester, 99 Court Street, White Plains 914-761-1818
Lou and Rose Promuto have re-opened The Marina Grille Waterfront Restaurant & Bar located at Wright Island Marina in New Rochelle surrounded by boat clubs and L.I. Sound. It had formerly been The Sea Breeze. The Promutos also own Valentino’s Cucina Italiana and Sunset Grille both in Norwalk, CT. Chef is seasoned Sergio Dechiara, a graduate of the New York Restaurant School, who is not bound by culinary borders. His menu offers such comforting dishes as: New England Clam Chowder; Artichoke Crab Dip; Coconut Shrimp; a massive Paella Valenciana, served with mixed seafood with chorizo-chicken rice; Buttermilk Fried Chicken served with broccoli, mashed potatoes and brown gravy; Porterhouse for two; and an occasional tender hunk of Short Rib on the bone with all its delicious juices. Complete Dinners served Monday thru Thursday: $18.95. Daily happy hours in the bar/lounge. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday thru Sunday. Ample free parking. The Marina Grille, 290 Drake Ave., New Rochelle. 914-365-1860.
Proprietor Michael Vivolo and his wife Margaret of La Riserva, 2382 Boston Post Road, Larchmont (914-834-5584), have been serving ‘the Italian classics’ here for 34 years and the refreshing atmosphere and friendly ambiance keep it a treat. Be seated in the lovely refurbished dining room, now part vintage photo gallery, and let veteran manager Ellie Cucino suggest such specialties as: flavorful Polenta al Gorgonzola with shrimp; Angel Hair Abissi Marini, thin egg noodles in a light cream sauce with shrimp and mushrooms; Veal Chop alla Griglia, with mushrooms and roasted potatoes; or the Branzino Mediterraneo. Michael’s son Dean operates Trattoria Vivolo in Harrison. Private party facilities. Open 7 days for lunch and dinner. Free parking.
Chef Anna Catalano of Agostino’s, 336 Pelham Road, New Rochelle (914-235-6019), prepares everything in her regional Italian kitchen from scratch: her sauces, the pastas, right down to the fresh cannoli shells and desserts. Be seated and let Anna, her husband Antonio and brother Gasperino Di Fabio serve you such home style favorites as: Portobello e Polenta alla Griglia con Gorgonzola; Spaghetti alla Chitarra alla Pescarese con Frutti di Mare,  seafood in a light marinara sauce; homemade Ravioli di Aragosta in Salsa Rosa, with lobster in a light cream sauce with touch of tomato; classic Zuppa di Pesce all Mamma Lucia, with clams, mussels, shrimp, calamari, scallops, octopus and fish of the day with linguini; Pollo alla Scarpariello prepared here on the bone sautéed with garlic in a white wine sauce; or Involtini di Anna alla Fantasia, stuffed with provolone and shitake mushrooms. And, oh those wonderful cannolis! Fresh pasta for take home by advanced order. Cozy bar/cocktails. Open 7 days a week. Free parking. Valet evenings.
Owner Dominic Cesarini of The Quarry, 106 Main Street, Tuckahoe (914-337-0311), has settled into new larger quarters in downtown Tuckahoe, a handsomely renovated bi-level 70-seat dining room and bustling bar/lounge that is always engaged in spirited networking. There are artsy exposed pipes and vents on the ceiling. A lovely area rug and acoustics temper the noise level. Handsome brown wood and clay tone walls, warm lighting fixtures and modern sturdy dark brown butcher block type chairs and tables highlight the floor with large picture windows with seating spilling out onto Main. The staff here is most friendly, efficient and eager to please. Cesarini, a ‘local grill man’ himself whose family owned and operated several cafes and grills in the Bronx-Tuckahoe-Eastchester area, has kicked it up a notch with a good mix of reasonably priced American tavern comfort fare with a good dose of broccoli rabe to go around. Good salads, burgers, Prime Rib and Short Ribs on weekends. Open 7 days.
Here’s a big guy who likes to cook big! Chef/proprietor Paul Caputo of Chianti, 174 Marbledale Road, Tuckahoe (914-346-8844), opened a bustling ode to Italian-American cuisine served in generous style. He previously operated Gina Marie’s Bella Vita in Mt. Vernon and the former Bella Vita in Mahopac. Over the years he has worked for a storied cast of kitchens from Rigoletto’s and Amici’s on Arthur Ave. in the Bronx to the original Valentino’s in Yonkers to the former Gregory’s in White Plains. Over on one wall in the dining room is inscribed: “chi mangia bene, viva bene” (if you eat well, you live well), and that’s the overriding philosophy here. Chef Caputo has a history of serving big portions of fresh made-to-order food; ‘family style’ some call it. Check out such specialties as: Spiedini ala Romana; his amazing Garlic Bread Paoliccimo with chopped broccoli rabe; Zuppa Di Pesce over Capellini; Steak Compagniola; or giant Veal Chop De Benedictis. Don’t worry; there are always plenty of doggie bags on hand for take home. Complete lunch and dinners available daily. On and off-premise catering.
(Morris Gut, restaurant consultant and former restaurant trade magazine editor, has been tracking and writing about the food and dining scene in the Bronx and Westchester area for over 25 years. He may be reached at: 914-235-6591.
Dr. Dre Solo HD Purple On-Ear Headphones - 900-00064-01 (Google Affiliate Ad) --> Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0" - Gifts for Kids (Google Affiliate Ad)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Westchester Square News: Cops Recharge Battery Theft Caper

Westchester Square News: Cops Recharge Battery Theft Caper: Look into Edenwald Man for Highway Battery Thefts Throughout Region By David Greene BRONX, NEW YORK, December 26- Cops in se...

Cops Recharge Battery Theft Caper

Look into Edenwald Man for Highway Battery Thefts Throughout Region
By David Greene
BRONX, NEW YORK, December 26- Cops in several neighboring jurisdictions are looking at a suspect captured in Westchester regarding the theft of $60,000 worth of heavy-duty car batteries-- used to light road signs along local parkways.
Westchester County police recently announced the arrest of Angel Velez, 26, of Baychester Avenue, who was charged with multiple counts of grand larceny, possession of stolen property and criminal mischief, after Velez allegedly unhooked hundreds of batteries, leaving needed roadway warning signs-- dark.
Velez was arrested on December 4, and held to answer charges regarding thefts of more than 300 batteries in Yonkers, New Rochelle, Mt. Vernon and Greenburgh, N.Y.
The New York State Police and the NYPD are currently investigating Velez for similar thefts in Rockland and Orange Counties, as well as in the Bronx.
The thefts have taken place along the Hutchinson River Parkway, Saw Mill Parkway, Bronx River Parkway. the Cross County Parkway and the New York State Thruway over the last six-months.
Even a secured New York State Department of Transportation Yard was the site of at least one theft.
Investigators from the Westchester County Police Department's General Investigations Unit who cracked the case, believe Velez pocketed some $20,000, selling the stolen batteries at recycling centers.
The investigation began after several complaints from the Westchester Department of Public Works and the Westchester Department of Transportation, who reported the initial thefts. 
Westchester Public Safety Commissioner George Longworth was quoted by, stating, "These battery thefts knocked many Variable Message Signs out of service, preventing messages from being displayed and posing a threat to the safety of the motoring public."
This reporter could not find anyone in the Edenwald Houses that even knew Velez. 
Dr. Dre Solo HD Purple On-Ear Headphones - 900-00064-01 (Google Affiliate Ad) --> Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0" - Gifts for Kids (Google Affiliate Ad)

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Model Train Show at NYC Transit Museum

DNA Solves 20-Year-Old Murder Cold Case

BRONX, NEW YORK, December19- District Attorney Robert T. Johnson announced that a murder charge has been filed against a 60-year-old defendant in connection with the brutal stabbing of a woman in Riverdale 19 years ago on October 20, 1993.
Lucius Crawford, of Beekman Avenue, Mount Vernon, New York, was indicted by the grand jury on one count of murder in the second degree. The indictment alleges that Crawford acted “with intent” in causing the death of 38-year-old Nella West by “blunt force trauma and sharp injuries to the head, face, and abdomen.” The deceased was stabbed multiple times and had sustained multiple fractures to her skull and numerous blunt force injuries and lacerations to her face.
Crawford, who was arrested last month in Mount Vernon, was arraigned before State Supreme Court Justice Richard Lee Price in Part T-16. The judge ordered that Crawford be held without bail.
The homicide remained unsolved until March of this year when the NYC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner developed a full DNA profile of a suspect as a result of advances in DNA technology that was not available when the homicide occurred. Investigators were able to develop a profile from forensic evidence retrieved from vaginal swabs taken from the deceased.
(No sex crime could be charged in this case because the Statute of Limitations for sexual offenses has expired.) The profile was uploaded to the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) and was found to be a match to Crawford, who was paroled in 2008 after serving ten years on a conviction in Westchester County.
The investigation was re-opened by the NYPD 50th Precinct Detective Squad and the Bronx District Attorney’s Office as a result of a grant to test DNA forensic evidence in “cold cases”.  Court records indicate that upon his apprehension the defendant admitted to causing West’s death.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Rachel Singer, Director of DNA Prosecutions.

Dr. Dre Solo HD Purple On-Ear Headphones - 900-00064-01 (Google Affiliate Ad) --> Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0" - Gifts for Kids (Google Affiliate Ad)

Monday, November 26, 2012

Westchester Square News: Parkchester Chorus Presents Their 73rd Annual Chri...

Westchester Square News: Parkchester Chorus Presents Their 73rd Annual Chri...: BRONX, NEW YORK, November 26- Parkchester Chorus, under the direction of Lorraine C. Nanko, with Thomas Cuffari, Accompanist, will prese...

Parkchester Chorus Presents Their 73rd Annual Christmas Concert

BRONX, NEW YORK, November 26- Parkchester Chorus, under the direction of Lorraine C. Nanko, with Thomas Cuffari, Accompanist, will present their 73rd Annual Christmas Concert, “Glad Tidings of Great Joy”, on Sunday, December 9th at 3 p.m. The program will also include selections from George Frideric Handel’s “Messiah”. The show will feature the talent of renowned local artists, Christian Aquino, Elizabeth Figols-Galagarza, Vivian Rose, and Joseph Zamplione in traditional solo selections as well as collaborative numbers. 
Bearing the distinct honor as Artists In Residence, the Chorus is proud to present this most festive performance at The First Presbyterian Church at Throggs Neck, located at 3051 East Tremont Avenue, with access for the disabled as well as a parking lot conveniently available at the entrance on Dudley Avenue. Free-Will Offering  graciously accepted.
Established in 1939, Parkchester Chorus is the longest-running community chorus in the Bronx, which is celebrated for singing a wide range of musical styles from classical to popular, from opera to musical theatre, as well as the great choral classics. Founded by a local group, Parkchester Chorus has grown to proudly boast members hailing from other boroughs in the City of New York, as well as Westchester County.
Parkchester Chorus is proud to be a member of the Bronx Council on The Arts. 
For further information regarding Parkchester Chorus, please visit the website at, or call 718-409-1051 and leave a message.
--> Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0" - Gifts for Kids (Google Affiliate Ad)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

To Give Thanks

Father Richard F. Gorman
Community Board #12 (The Bronx)
BRONX, NEW YORK, November 21- I suspect that by the time you have the opportunity to see this column, you might well be feeling a bit tired, a touch full in the stomach, and, perhaps, a tad out of sorts.  
This is quite understandable, as you will be reading my words subsequent to our annual “GOBBLEFEST.” Of course, I am making light of our beloved national holiday, Thanksgiving Day.  However, I refer to it as “GOBBLEFEST” not only because of this holiday’s signature tradition of enjoying a turkey dinner, but likewise because Thanksgiving is all too frequently a busy and bustling day upon which one contends with “I,” “C,” “I”  --  i.e., “Irritation” with preparing for visiting relatives and guests, “Congestion” on the highways, and “Indigestion” after eating and drinking too much! Too many of us, “Yours Truly” included, “gobble” down a little more than we should in the course of commemorating this yearly event.
Nonetheless, in spite of the aforementioned, Thanksgiving is a day to take stock of life and to take the time to be grateful for whatever blessings with which we have been gifted. As we sit round and about our Thanksgiving dinner tables, we can plainly and immediately see right in front of our nose the most significant and precious of these graces and good fortunes  --  viz., family, friends, health, happiness, and the means with which to provide for ourselves. In these gifts, hopefully, we are prompted and prodded to celebrate those two fundamental realities that underlie and underwrite them  --  first of all, the God who gives us life and who redeems it and, secondly, a free country with its open, democratic society that affords us the opportunity to enjoy and to exercise our God-given human rights and dignity. For God and for nation, and for all those blessings that issue forth from them, we need to be humbly appreciative for who we are and for all that we have.
On this Thanksgiving week in the Year of Our Lord 2012, I write to give public thanks for, ironically enough, for that what was recently not given to us  --  i.e., the same magnitude of devastation that Hurricane Sandy inflicted on our less fortunate fellow New Yorkers in other parts of our City and our State.  True, there were many residents of our own neighborhood that were adversely impacted by the recent extreme weather.  Nonetheless, Bronx Community District #12 was spared the horror of what happened in areas such as Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens, and Long Island, a grace for which I am deeply grateful. 
I am equally as thankful for the privilege of serving as the Chairman of Community Board #12 (The Bronx). It has been, and remains, an awesome honor that I neither take for granted nor fail to be grateful for each and every day of my tenure and my service as Chairman. Notice here that I utilize the expression “to give thanks” for, to my mind, there is a big distinction between merely “SAYING THANKS” and really and actually “GIVING THANKS.” The distinction between them is neither superficial nor simply stylistic or terminological. There is a bona fide dichotomy that is best defined and highlighted by the wisdom contained in the familiar, old adage “ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS.” I am further reminded of the insightful admonition that words are oftentimes cheap. The values that we truly cherish and that form the basis for how we think and live are best manifested by our actions, not by our words. More importantly than maintaining that I am a grateful person is the upholding and the daily observance of a way of life that exhibits thankfulness and gratitude. The undertaking of such a lifestyle, in my humble estimation, is the genuine test of Thanksgiving and all for which it stands. Thanksgiving is not just a day. Thanksgiving should be, and MUST be, a way of life! 
This avowal naturally should lead a thoughtful individual to inquire what a “Thanksgiving” way of living entails. For what it is worth, I believe it requires one to live in peaceful, respectful, and civil concord with others. Scripture instructs us that gratefulness to God is best demonstrated by esteem and regard without distinction for all of God’s children, icons of the Divine Image and Presence in whose Holy Image we have been created.  Appreciation for the blessings of our magnificent land is preeminently displayed in facilitating and protecting the exercise of those God-given and constitutional liberties that we claim for our loved ones and ourselves. A most excellent fashion in which to proclaim our appreciation of family, friends, home, and the ability to support them is to enable others to realize and to have the benefit of these blessings as well. Such is the challenge of a genuinely thankful person, not only on the Thursday that is called “Thanksgiving Day,” but on each and every day in each and every year.  May it be an endeavor that we all accept with relish and in which we succeed beyond all expectations.
On behalf of myself, my District Manager, Miss Carmen L. Rosa; our staff members, Mrs. Ursula D. Cruz-Greene, Ms. LaShieka Williams and Ms. Jakira Torres; our Associates, Mrs. Joyce Anthony and Mrs. Verna Smith; and all of my colleagues on Community Board #12 (The Bronx), I convey best wishes for this holiday and for the others soon to follow, along with the hope that our gracious and grateful way of living will redound to the benefit of our neighborhood, our Borough, our City, our, State, and our Nation, and, indeed, all the world.
Happy Thanksgiving!
106717_Akademiks - 392x72

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Westchester Square News: FreshDirect to give away turkeys

Westchester Square News: FreshDirect to give away turkeys: BRONX, NEW YORK, November 20- FreshDirect is donating a total of 1,900 turkeys this week to various groups throughout New York City a...

FreshDirect to give away turkeys

BRONX, NEW YORK, November 20- FreshDirect is donating a total of 1,900 turkeys this week to various groups throughout New York City and Philadelphia in anticipation of the Thanksgiving holiday.
The schools and charitable organizations receiving the turkeys are the Brooklyn Anti-Violence Coalition, the East River Development Alliance, Project H.O.M.E., and Public School 209 in the Bronx. The offices of State Senator José Peralta, Bronx Borough President Rubin Diaz Jr., and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz will help distribute the donated turkeys. FreshDirect is also providing 200 turkeys to victims of Hurricane Sandy in Far Rockaway through the Church of the Nazarene in Queens.
“Thanksgiving is a time for families to come together and enjoy a warm, fresh and high-quality meal,” said FreshDirect CEO and co-founder Jason Ackerman. “We feel fortunate to have the opportunity to help provide part of that meal for those who need it most.”
Due to a shortage of delivery trucks caused by Hurricane Sandy, the company is enlisting the help of Bronx-based small business FarmFresh Trucking to aid in its donation deliveries.
“We work hard to give the Bronx community a helping hand during the holiday season. Assistance from private sector companies like FreshDirect is invaluable to our efforts,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr.
State Senator José Peralta, who represents District 13, added, “Queens has been through a lot in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.  Many of our residents are struggling and need a helping hand.  FreshDirect’s donation will help some of them get a good meal on Thanksgiving.”
Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz said, “Bravo to FreshDirect for its generous donation to the Brooklyn Anti-Violence Coalition and for helping to make this Thanksgiving a little brighter for those in need. But let’s not forget that for many struggling to recover after Hurricane Sandy – and for thousands of residents in our area every year – the issue of hunger will be around long after the last light is turned back on and the final home is rebuilt. So as we count our blessings and give thanks for all we have, remember to support individuals and organizations like FreshDirect who are dedicated to putting healthy food on the tables of Brooklynites and New Yorkers throughout the year.”
Reverend Leslie Mullings of the Church of the Nazarene in Queens said, “Many areas in Far Rockaway were devastated by the recent storm.  As we work with residents to rebuild our community, we are glad to have FreshDirect pitch in during this difficult time.”
P.S. 209 Principal Anne Keegan added, “I know there’s been some concern about how FreshDirect will fit into the Bronx, but this company is letting their actions do the talking. They’re actually following through on their promise to be a good neighbor, and I look forward to welcoming them to our community.”
Bishop Mitchell Taylor, President and Founder of the East River Development Alliance, said, “Seeing charitable donations being given to those in need, especially during the holidays, is a beautiful thing. Residents all over Queens will be grateful to receive the 400 turkeys that FreshDirect is providing.”
Reverend W. Taharka Robinson, founder of the Brooklyn Anti-Violence Coalition, said, “I would like to thank FreshDirect for their support for the Brooklyn Anti-Violence Coalition and the surrounding communities here in Brooklyn. FreshDirect has been a great community partner and we look forward to their continuing success and productivity in the community.”
FreshDirect is not limiting its contributions to New York City. The company will also make a donation to Philadelphia’s Project H.O.M.E, an organization devoted to ending homelessness in the area, where it will distribute 100 turkeys.
“As an organization dedicated to alleviating poverty, Project H.O.M.E. is proud to be working with FreshDirect and others to makesure everyone in our city is able to feed their families this Thanksgiving,” said S. Mary Scullion, executive director of Project H.O.M.E.
FreshDirect began distributing the turkeys this past Saturday, November 17th and will continue to do so through Wednesday, November 21th.  

Friday, November 16, 2012

Westchester Square News: BP, Zoo Collects Toys for Needy Kids

Westchester Square News: BP, Zoo Collects Toys for Needy Kids: Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. joined officials from the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo and  students from PS 2...

BP, Zoo Collects Toys for Needy Kids

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. joined officials from the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo and  students from PS 205 at the Zoo Center to kick-off Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.’s holiday toy drive.
The partnership between the Bronx Zoo and the Borough President on the toy drive has become an annual tradition. The Bronx Zoo will serve as a collection point for new, unwrapped toys donated by members of the community. Toys will be collected through the end of December and will be distributed by the Borough President’s office to local veterans and active-duty members of the military and their families.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

FREE Pizza giveaway

BRONX, NEW YORK, November 14- CiCi’s Pizza in the Bronx is keeping its doors open on Thanksgiving this year and will give away its famous endless buffet for adults and children for free all day while supplies last. No purchase is necessary, but drinks are not included and will be available at regular price.
“We’re new to the Bronx community and want to say thank you to our great neighbors for making us feel so welcome,” said CiCi’s Pizza Franchisee Nabeel Ansari. “As part of this community still recovering from Hurricane Sandy, we also wanted to invite people affected by the storm to come enjoy a meal on us this Thanksgiving.”
CiCi’s Pizza offers more than 28 pizzas in rotation on its endless pizza buffet in addition to pasta, salad, soup and dessert. Every CiCi’s restaurant makes each pizza by hand using house-made dough, sauce made in small batches with special herbs and seasonings, freshly grated cheese and crisp vegetables. Guests are limited to one free visit on Thanksgiving. CiCi’s will offer hot, made-to-order carryout pizzas at regular price throughout the day.
The restaurant hours of operation for dine-in and carryout are Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.