Where to Eat to Celebrate AAPI Month in Westchester

Where will you eat in Westchester for AAPI Month? Adobe Stock/HLPhoto

May is Asian American and Native Hawaiian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and what better way to celebrate than by indulging in Asian food?

The Asian culinary scene in Westchester is a tapestry of hidden gems, family-owned home cooking comfort food, and elevated fine dining. From Thai street food to Cantonese roast duck to omakase and loaded street-cart fries with tikka masala, there’s no time like the present (namely, AAPI Month) to take a tour of the Asian cuisines in the towns that make up our beloved county.

Here are our picks for Westchester’s tastiest Asian-owned restaurants.

Korean Takeout

Bibille

14 Main St, Tarrytown; 914.372.7677

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Junho Kim and Joohyun Kang opened Bibille with a passion for bringing healthy, high-quality Korean food to Westchester. The main claim to fame for this neighborhood fav is the build-your-own bibimbap bowl. Choose your base: white, brown, or purple rice or lettuce; your protein: chicken, spicy pork, beef, mushroom, shrimp, or tofu; a plethora of healthy toppings; and the sauce: Korean hot sauce, teriyaki, bibille, or yogurt-wasabi. In addition to bibimbap bowls, Bibille also offers build-your-own udon, bubble tea, smoothies, and mochi ice cream.

Thai Street Food

Chuchok Thai

404 Old Bwy; Sleepy Hollow; 914.909.5390

This takeout-only, easy-to-miss gem has a cult following and such an avid fan base that it recommends ordering before 3 p.m. to be sure you get your food! The menu consists not only of go-to Thai takeout dishes like pad kee-mow (drunken noodles), pad Thai, and massaman curry, but Thai street food like pad krapow gai sub, the latter which is a spicy chicken basil dish with sauteed ground chicken, onions, peppers, scallion, and basil with chili garlic oyster sauce over jasmine rice. Be sure to order dessert, namely the blue pea coconut sticky rice topped with coconut cream and sesame seeds. Wash it down with a homemade Thai iced tea during AAPI Month.

 

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Sweet and Savory Pastries

Daido Market

522 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains; 914.683.6735

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Walk inside Daido Market and prepare to be transported to Japan. Tucked inside the familial Japanese grocery store is a bakery where you’ll find both sweet and savory traditional pastries including Japanese sandwiches, tuna buns, melon pan (a sweet melon-flavored pastry), anpan (sweet azuki-bean-filled pastries), matcha pastries, and more. Don’t forget to grab some Japanese fluffy bread for a mind-blowing sandwich experience at home. On your way out, pick up bento boxes and nigiri (rice balls) from Daido’s daily takeaway selection. Pro tip: As a very special treat, on Saturdays and Sundays you will find authentic cream puffs assembled onsite (bring cash!).

 

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Date Night

Goosefeather

49 E Sunnyside Ln, Tarrytown; 914.829.5454

Drive up the winding path to the Tarrytown House Estate and enter an otherworldly historic oasis in Westchester. Goosefeather, tucked away in the The King Mansion, is a culinary gem from the mind of James Beard-nominated Chef Dale Talde, and it is the perfect date night spot — whether you sit indoors in one of the impeccably designed dining rooms or choose to savor Goosefeather’s creative al fresco dining concepts. Either way, feast on smashed crispy fingerling potatoes, Kung Pao chicken wings, dan dan noodles, and Cantonese roast duck. Get there early to sit at the cocktail bar straight out of the movies and sip on the photogenic seasonal drinks during AAPI Month and beyond. This summer, Goosefeather will open its lawn on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. for a curated food and beverage service, speckled with theme nights and live DJ music.

 

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Omakase

Hajime

267 Halstead Ave, Harrison; 914.777.1642

If you want to experience the art of a masterful sushi chef, you’ll want to go to Hajime. Sam Takahashi opened Hajime (which translates to “beginning” or “start”) in 1996 and named it after his father’s sushi restaurant in Osaka, Japan, where Takahashi began working at the age of 15 after his father fell ill. Hajime offers a traditional omakase experience with impeccable ingredients, skill, and passion that can’t be manufactured. For more casual nights, the restaurant also offers a traditional Japanese a la carte menu for dining in or takeout with dishes like age-dashi tofu, gyoza, yakitori, teriyaki, and an extensive sushi menu.

Halo-Halo

Hapag Filipino Cuisine

1789 Central Park Ave, Yonkers; 914.652.7773

This authentic Filipino restaurant offers traditional dishes like kare kare, a meat-based stew cooked in a hearty, savory peanut sauce, and lechon kawali, crispy salted pork. But the most popular favorite is the well-known ube halo-halo, and the trip is well worth it for that flavor-packed dessert alone. The star of this sweet frozen dessert is ube (purple yam) ice cream, with shaved ice, sweet milk, assorted jelly, sweet beans, and flan.

Sushi Takeout

My Tokyo

31 Main St, Tarrytown; 914.909.4451

Authentic Japanese comfort food with fresh ingredients make this local favorite a staple in anyone’s ordering rotation. The standard handrolls, sushi plates, and poke and chirashi bowls are reliably delicious and bright, made with consistently excellent quality fish. Japanese comfort staples like the karaage (Japanese fried chicken with mentaiko mayo sauce) and curry croquette will not disappoint. MyTokyo also serves heartier hot dishes like tonkatsu and teriyaki which also make for great takeout or dine-in lunches or dinners during AAPI Month and beyond.

Bento Box

Oishinbo

283 Halstead Ave, Harrison; 914.835.4390

Drop into this family-owned market for a fresh-daily selection of bento boxes, nigiri, yaki soba, bowls, and more. Pick up a selection of Asian snacks and a sparkling peach soda. Pro tip: Be the star of your next party and bring a fresh sushi platter to your office or family event (order the day before).

 

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Spicy Miso Ramen

Ramen Musash

816 White Plains Rd, Scarsdale; 914.874.5290

Ramen Musashi offers authentic ramen with traditional house-made recipes. Popular go-tos include the tonkotsu spicy miso ramen and tori tonkotsu shio ramen in a salted chicken and pork broth. Plant-based guests won’t be disappointed by the vegan miso ramen. Patrons can also enjoy a selection of curry dishes and popular appetizers like gyoza and tonkatsu. Currently, Ramen Musashi is open for takeout and delivery only, but fret not: These experts have mastered the art of ramen takeaway. (In other words, you should place an order during AAPI Month.)

 

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Vegetarian and Gluten-Free

Root2Rise

359 Manville Rd, Pleasantville; 914.769.8460

Jyoti Tewani spent much of her career as a nutritionist using food as medicine to care for clients. In 2021, Jyoti, together with her husband Raj Tewani and Chef Michael Kagan, opened Root2Rise to serve up delicious dishes made fresh daily that are nourishing to both your body and conscience. This local favorite is gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free, and plastic-free. And for all of the ingredients that don’t make the plate, each carefully crafted dish and baked good is packed with hearty fresh flavors. Popular dishes include the Mumbai cheese toast, vegan mac ‘n’ cheese, and “Joe’s Way” grilled cheese with spicy Calabrian chili paste. Don’t forget to order the house-made chai, add at least one chocolate chip cookie to your order, and grab some health-conscious snacks on your way out.

 

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Special Occasion

Shiraz Kitchen & Wine Bar

80 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains; 914.345.6111

At this repeat Michelin Bib Gourmand winner, popular dishes include feta-stuffed dates, saffron chicken, and lamb chop sultani. Pair with a beautifully crafted cocktail, and don’t skip dessert! Dip into saffron ice cream, baklava, or both and savor a Turkish coffee. Housed in a former Japanese restaurant (and because the Persian owner’s favorite is sushi), you won’t be able to miss the blossoming sushi bar up front. Pro tip: Mediterranean market goods like Persian pistachios, Sadaf rose water, and Armenian gata bread are available on Shiraz’s website.

 

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Loaded Street Cart Fries

Shirley’s India

1 Leroy Pl, New Rochelle; 914.632.6736

Trying the mouthwatering loaded street cart fries of Shirley’s India is a must during AAPI Month (or any day, really). Choose a vegetarian or chicken option, and don’t forget to add the tikka masala sauce. Shirley’s India has a walk-up window in downtown New Rochelle and offers a mix of traditional and new age Southern Indian dishes from the heart and mind of Shirley. The menu includes a healthy serving of vegetarian dishes like paneer korma and bhindi masala, tandoori dishes, butter chicken empanadas, and a variety of savory breads (hello, naan). You’ll also want to add a mango lassi to your order, trust us.

 

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Related: Neung Thai Kitchen Is Ardsley’s Latest Foodie Craze

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