Food that warms the soul (and the body) is a necessity during these cold, winter months. Maybe that’s why National Southern Food Day is celebrated each year on January 22.
There’s no need to head south of the Mason-Dixon line get in on the action: Here are five of our favorite spots to get your fried chicken, mac ’n’ cheese, and peach cobbler fix right here in Westchester.
14 Memorial Hwy, New Rochelle; 914.654.6549
At Alvin Clayton’s upscale, modern New Rochelle darling, the sound of jazz flows through the speakers and the bartenders know how to make a strong rum punch.
The menu is big on comfort foods — buttermilk-fried chicken with smoked-turkey collards, shrimp and stone-ground grits, and cornmeal-fried catfish — including items with a Caribbean twist (slow-simmered oxtails or jerk wings, anyone?)
1131B Yonkers Ave, Yonkers; 914.237.5083
With daily $6 lunch specials, discounts for local workers, and an entire menu dedicated to catering, this quick-service joint has a lot going for it. That includes the vast selection of straight-up Southern dishes, including chicken and waffles, smothered pork chops, black-eyed peas, chitterlings, and more.
As if there aren’t enough savory possibilities to choose from, you’ll also find plenty of Southern desserts to satisfy a sweet tooth, like banana pudding, peach cobbler, and sweet-potato pie. Plus, they deliver.
161 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains; 914.607.2476
Cool design, playful twists on Southern classics, and locally sourced ingredients give this contemporary spot a citified feel. From the smoker comes burnt-ends chili and brisket disco fries (crispy sweet potato fries, pulled brisket, and cheddar cheese), and the weekend brunch menu has a dedicated biscuits section.
Sunday Night Jams sessions are being introduced soon, with rock and blues music from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., plus food-and-drink specials.
284 E Third St, Mount Vernon; 914.668.7335
Mother-daughter team Emma Jackson and Redina Hembree run this under-the-radar spot, that’s the perfect place to satisfy a Southern food craving with generous portions of affordable, traditional soul food.
Pair the signature fried chicken, smothered pork chops, turkey wings, or fried whiting with any of the well-executed sides, including mac ’n’ cheese, collards, candied yams, and pinto beans. Desserts, such as coconut-pineapple cake, peach cobbler, and banana pudding, are all homemade.
Photo courtesy of Redina Hembree/King’s Southern Delight
39 Marble Ave, Pleasantville; 914.618.3355
Come on an empty stomach to indulge in huge portions of stick-to-your-ribs classics and whiskey drinks (there are more than 100 types of the brown stuff at the bar). Staples include Nashville hot chicken, hush puppies, cornmeal-crusted fried chicken, pimento cheese dip, and the massive mac ’n’ cheese with bacon and pickled jalapeños.
Parties of eight or larger can tackle the Communal Menu, featuring large-format seafood boils and suckling pig roasts with all the fixings.
Photo by Andre Baranowski
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