A sampling of sliders to start a meal is nothing new, but for decades, the beef between the buns has been, well, just beef. Now, it’s becoming increasingly rare to find a restaurant in Westchester that only offers traditional, beef-based baby burgers. A variety of meats and elevated preparations are taking center stage in the appetizer section of many menus, with most dining destinations dishing up more than one iteration of these super-sharable, bite-sized beauties that possess the inherent ability to please carnivores and vegetarians alike.
Most akin to standard pub-grub sliders, the 105 mini sliders at this high-brow bar and grill are for burger purists who boast a nose for expertly executed eats. Tucked under a luscious blanket of melted Brie, these beefy bad boys are hit with house-made bacon jam and truﬄe aioli before tucking into toasty brioche buns.
Mini brioche buns provide shelter for lip-smacking grilled lamb sliders at this intimate craft-beer gastropub, where innovative, locally sourced cuisine complements the beer-centric setting. House-made tzatziki is the natural choice for a zippy slathering, and the sweet tang of tomato jam strikes the perfect balance, as a scatter of fresh arugula ushers an extra pop of color and crispness to the dish.
And now for something completely different: spiced potato patty sliders. Better known across the pond as wado pao, these tasty vegetarian bundles are served up at street carts all over India and on the Street Food Festival menu (dine-in only) at this cozy, eclectic Rivertown mainstay. Chef/owner Navjot Arora considers them “carbon-carb delicious,” and his restrained hand in the kitchen yields a snack of authentic Indian flavors with just the right amount of spice.
At this self-described “Irish pub with flair,” the starter standouts are the panko-crusted avocado sliders, which arrive artfully sprinkled with cotija cheese. A dash of vibrant salsa verde rests on one side of the “burger,” while chipotle mayo is featured on the other, offering a subtle nod to Mexico’s flag (though surely reminiscent of Ireland’s too). Simply put: These vegetarian beauties are “delicious little bites of heaven,” according to Chef Brian Donohoe, and avocado addicts don’t disagree.
When the clock strikes happy hour, beeline to the bar of this neighborhood red sauce spot for a hearty serving of meatball sliders made with an old-school blend of beef, veal, and pork that’s smothered in fresh marinara and spritzed with a shake of parm.
Known locally for its BYOB program (build your own burger), this friendly, ultra-casual bastion of downhome bar food (plus booze) beckons with a CIA chef and a slew of sensational sliders that make choosing tricky. For starters, the little brat is house-made sausage with stout kraut, while the fried goat is an outside-the-box incarnation of balsamic-glazed goat cheese accompanied by roasted peppers and caramelized onions. For a baby burger like no other, behold: the baconator. Featuring a blend of Black Angus beef and bacon that’s topped with more bacon, this is a sublime slider no matter how you slice it.
Lauded by locals for the laid-back vibe and voluminous menu of barroom faves, there’s a near-endless array of sliders here, including the all-veggie garden sliders and the mouthwatering concoction of corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and Thousand Island dressing — believed to be Westchester’s only Reuben sliders.
Fork-tender and filling, the braised short rib sliders at this casual, sophisticated village center staple simmer for four hours in red wine and succulent braising juices before being finished with a red wine sauce that “takes it over the top,” operating partner Chris O’Brien says. A side of house-made blue-cheese aioli adds to the heady aroma and flavor profile that threatens to take over the table but tickles the palate just right.
Typically a summertime craving, the lobster sliders at this riverside pub occupy a year-round spot on the apps menu, though they make a nice main, too, as they’re served six to the plate (or three for those possessing wizard-like willpower). Soft, mini potato rolls support a generous dollop of mayo-based lobster salad that bartender Brittany McGuckin calls “simple and to the point.” Similarly, she suggests a pint of Blue Moon as the perfect light-and-easy pairing any time of year.