Westchester Food Lover’s Guide: Italian Delis
For the best dried meats, mozzarella, and sauce.
A wonderland of Italian deli foods await at Latticini A & S Pork Store in Yonkers. The house-made balsamic vinegars are exceptional.
The Highridge Plaza may be rough on the eyes, but it’s home to at least two food gems, one of which is Latticini A & S Pork Store (see JJR Highridge Fishery under “Seafood” for the second). If you ask most deli owners, ‘What’s good?’ they’ll proudly say ‘Everything’ and mean it, but it’s likely not true. Here, it’s kinda true. Short ribs for Sunday sauce, spirals of homemade sausage, drippingly fresh mozzarella, steaming trays of chicken Marsala and lasagna, a wall of dry pastas of all shapes and sizes, Italian sodas in flavors like blood orange and pomegranate, and jars of marinated veggies. (Asparagus tips anyone?) The counter people are spirited and provide colorful banter as you wait on your number, and everyone (customers included) speaks a lot and loudly. (Note to reality show TV producers—this is your next big hit.) Upon leaving, you may have to blink hard a few times to dispel the mirage that you’re on the corner of Arthur Avenue and 187th and not a strip mall parking lot off Central Avenue in Yonkers.
Don’t Miss: bocconcini, house-made fig balsamic vinegar, fennel seed olives, sweet fire-roasted peppers, grilled artichoke hearts, Italian combo, braciole, broccoli rabe sausage, house-made stuffed shells
I have a Bronxville address, Pelham phone number, Tuckahoe is my high school, calling 911 results in Eastchester Police coming, and my neighbors across the street live in Mount Vernon. Who am I? Chester Heights, a neighborhood in Bronxville proper but in the Twilight Zone of Westchester zips. It’s the home of J&G Deli and Market where there’s a chance you’ll hear Italian spoken for orders of stuffed Italian peppers, mushroom panini (portobello, Asiago, spinach, caramelized onion), eggplant Parm and veal and pepper wedges on Bronx baked breads, Borgatti’s ravioli, and homemade sausage. There are shelves full of dried pastas (tapered shells of gnocchetti and armoniche or wavy half ruffles curved around a smooth cylindrical core) and olive oils and vinegars. The catering menu is impressively lengthy and full of stellar choices for your next party—just don’t forget the creamy homemade Italian cheesecake for dessert.
Don’t Miss: hot fried peppers, provolone- stuffed olives, sundried artichokes, cherry peppers with goat cheese, daily house-made mozzarella, marinated bocconcini, house-made cheesecake, sandwiches on Terranova Bakery and A&M Bronx breads, arancini (rice balls), house-made marinara sauce
A few shelves lined with specialty olive oils, pastas, and canned tuna and a small area behind the register filled with produce harken back to the original concept for the 1,000-square-foot Quaker Ridge Shopping Center space that owners (and brothers) David and Michael Zingone had for the Italian Meateria. “We set it up as a grocery/fruit/meat market” says Michael, “but we soon realized that many customers were not cooking often and instead wanted prepared foods.”
And prepare they do, with many dishes based on Grandma Michelle’s recipes, including a cold case full of takeout homemade soups (beef barley, chicken meatball, split pea); meal-portioned heat-and-eat trays of Italian-American classics (eggplant Parm, meatballs); and a knock-your-socks-off marinara sauce. The deli counter has its own must-try items, including the coleslaw with broccoli, carrots, and cranberries (there are more than 20 house-made prepared salads); sandwiches made on Terranova bread; and a hot lunch station with dishes such as apricot chicken and pork chops with vinegar peppers.
While the cooking public may have declined, it’s certainly not dead. Thus the Zingone brothers offer prime meats cut to order (beef brisket, whole prime ribs) from Master Purveyors in the Bronx. “Our father Gennaro owned Four Star Meat Market in the Bronx from the 1950s to 1996,” says Michael. “It’s our legacy to always sell meats.”
Don’t Miss: chicken marsala, meat lasagna, house-made mozzarella, marinara sauce, tuna salad, coleslaw, roasted peppers, Thanksgiving specialty sandwich or beef brisket sandwich, Italian wedding soup
As you stand at the counter of Cosmo & Alex Pisano Bros debating between something from the hot food station or say, a wedge of soppressata and imported prosciutto with roasted peppers and broccoli rabe, the wonderful ripe-funk smell from the curtain of dozens of hanging cured salamis may daze you into indecision. Not to panic. It’s distracting for sure, but after a moment the sausage buzz will diminish and you’ll be able to order.
There are many distracting items in this well-stocked (read: crowded) Arthur Ave-style deli and grocery owned by Pat Colalillo (who also has the top-notch Italian bakery, Boiano, next door), including close to 20 brands of dried pasta, a dozen or so types of olives, jarred and canned Italian goods, quick-cooking rice in flavors like truffle, pesto, and mushroom, specialty coffee beans, Sicilian sea salt, spirals of fresh sausage, and tray upon tray of prepared foods like chicken oreganato and eggplant rollatine.
And if you see Pat (kinda looks like Hill Street Blues actor and former Minnesota Viking full back Ed Marinaro), say grazie for all his good work.
Don’t Miss: house-made fresh sausage, house-made mozzarella, house-made marinara sauce, The Craving sandwich (marinated eggplant, roasted peppers, broccoli rabe, mozzarella), Greek salad, Italian combo, sausage and peppers, eggplant rollatini, smoked provolone, fresh Arthur Ave-style breads, arancini (rice balls)
Top Italian Delis
Latticini A&S Pork Store
1789 Central Park Ave
Yonkers, (914) 337-2550
Cosmo & Alex Pisano Bros
252 Mamaroneck Ave
Mamaroneck, (914) 381-4402
J&G Deli and Market
502 New Rochelle Rd
Bronxville, (914) 664-3475
33 Quaker Ridge Rd
New Rochelle, (914) 632-1505