Scared to dine out alone? It’s only natural. I was forced to overcome my fear years ago after being stood up at a restaurant I’d been dying to try. I stayed, and it turned out to be fantastic. No forced conversation. No compromising over appetizers. And no one stealing my dessert. Now, I actually look forward to solitary meals—specifically at these single-friendly restaurants:
Haiku Asian Bistro
265 Mamaroneck Ave, Mamaroneck (914) 381-3200
Sushi bars are a great option if you find yourself alone—quick meals in a relaxing, often spa-like environment—and Haiku is no exception. The Mamaroneck location of this local mini-chain is less hectic than its other outposts, with comfy leather banquettes and patio seating—perfect for the ultimate lone-diner distraction: people watching.
Tip: Eat at the sushi bar. Watching a knife-wielding chef serves as great entertainment—and chances are he’ll throw in a spider roll on the house.
Le Jardin du Roi
95 King St, Chappaqua (914) 238-1368
Tiny tables, small portions, and that sitting-in-your-living-room vibe make cafés and bistros almost beg for solitary diners. There are tons around the county, but Le Jardin du Roi is ideal. Here, diner meets Parisian-chic and you can order everything from omelets to coq au vin—it’s open from 8 am to midnight, seven days a week.
57 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains (914) 328-9400
You grocery shop alone, right? So why not combine your tedious weekly errand with a meal. Roam the gourmet aisles of Iron Tomato (take note of the fresh mozzarella), then order a yummy sandwich or salad and have a seat in its quaint café space.
Tip: Don’t show up empty-handed. Bring a book, puzzle, or even that scarf you’ve been knitting for years. You’ll be amazed how much you get done when you’re not forced to converse.
Q Restaurant & Bar
112 Main St, Port Chester (914) 933-7427 487 Main St, Mount Kisco (914) 241-7427
Let’s face it: eating barbecue while talking just doesn’t work. That alone makes this finger-lickin’ fare perfect for singles. Q’s cafeteria-throwback keeps the dining experience light and fun. Pull up a seat at one of the longer community tables while you nosh on ribs and chicken—you never know who might saddle up beside you.
Sweet Grass Grill
24 Main St, Tarrytown (914) 631-0000
New to my repertoire, Sweet Grass Grill is the ultimate in serene, garden dining. If the moss-colored walls and outdoor décor don’t drift you to a lush, green setting, the seasonal farm-fresh menu will. What’s more: the friendly waitstaff always makes you feel right at home.
Tip: Nervous about large crowds? Dine during “off” times—an early lunch at 11:30 or a light dinner around 4.
Scarsdale Metro Restaurant
878 Scarsdale Ave, Scarsdale (914) 713-0309
With dozens of Westchester diners to choose from, why pick the Metro? Easy. Aside from the fantastic food, the bustling, yet homey, vibe creates a Cheers-like atmosphere, so you’ll never really be alone. Leave the book at home—you can easily spend an hour perusing the enormous Greek-inspired menu.
26 Chatsworth Ave, Larchmont (914) 833-9760
If mornings aren’t your thing, then breakfast at Stan’z is for you. There’s no better way to start off your weekend than by quietly enjoying a piping-hot cup of coffee, the paper, and some of Stan’z famously fluffy eggs. In particular, Saturday mornings are so laid-back, you could probably show up in your pajamas and no one would say a word, which, after all, is precisely the point.