The Latino restaurants in Port Chester just keep multiplyin'. In the last three months I've spotted three new ones that have opened-one Mexican, one Colombian and one Peruvian. That brings the total number of Mexican eateries in Port Chester and Rye Brook to 11, Colombian to seven and Peruvian to nine. By comparison, there are nine Chinese restaurants in the two villages. That's not including Euro Asian Bistro in Port Chester and Buddha in Rye Brook which have some Chinese dishes or at least influence but are classifi ed as "Asian."
Sin Dulce Pastry & Bakery, which opened on Dec. 26, 2012 at 146 North Main St., bears the same name as a Mexican bakery and restaurant in Yonkers with the same owner. However, the name is deceiving because there are no baked goods at the Port Chester location, just some darn good Mexican specialties nicely presented.
Mexican-born owner Rodolfo Orea of Yonkers said he started out baking sweet specialties from his native country at his Port Chester store but has since abandoned that enterprise. His experience was that the pastry chef would not show up and he'd end up having to do the baking. While Orea may eventually change the name of his establishment to reflect the change, for now it will remain as is. Lit signs in the window indicate that you can get tacos ($2.75 each), quesadillas ($4 each) and tortas ($6.50).
The interior of Sin Dulce is brand new, brightly colored and welcoming. Just passing by you notice through the front window that the cooks at the grill are wearing bright white coats which is unusual for this type of quick serve eatery without table service.
During a visit earlier this month, the beef enchiladas rojas ($9), listed as a main dish, were presented as two or three (it was hard to tell) rolled tortillas filled with chopped steak and covered in red sauce with sliced avocado on top. There's also a choice of chicken filling and green sauce.
The chorizo quesadilla ($4) brought chopped Mexican sausage, shredded lettuce and two types of Mexican cheese on a long crunchy shell which was excellent. Red and green sauce in squeeze bottles can add the desired amount of zing to any dish.
Finally, a dried beef (cecina) taco ($2.75) featured two tortillas, chopped beef, onions, cilantro and sliced radishes, enough to make two tacos in soft shells.
Breakfast of eggs, ham, chorizo, steak, bagels, rolls, brunch of omelets, eggs and bacon or ham or chorizo, several types of beef, pork or lamb tacos, quesadillas, burritos, fajitas ($12), tortas (Mexican sandwiches), cemitas (a sandwich that originated in Puebla, Mexico on a roll covered in sesame seeds whose ingredients usually are restricted to sliced avocado, meat, white cheese, onions and red sauce), tamales, soups and a selection of main dishes ($9) such as bistec encebollado, fried beef or chicken tacos, pork chops and chicken or beef chilaquiles. Quesadillas can be filled with fried pork rinds or beef brain, for instance, or the more common shredded beef, Mexican cheese or jalapenos.
You order at the striking brown and black granite counter with a decorative tile face and your food can be picked up there or will be delivered to your table. Five wooden stools at the counter are another option for seating. Walls are painted bright yellow with white chair rails and then pale orange or rust below. The space for seating is long and narrow with shiny square tables for two situated along one wall across from the grill and then two rectangular tables for four set up in the more spacious back part of the eatery.
The restaurant is decorated with orchids and other plants and brightly lit with fluorescent lighting and five orange drop lights over the counter.
No desserts are made on the premises, but there are baskets of snacks like peanut crunch, nuts and mango lollipops on the counter.
Hours at Sin Dulce Pastry & Bakery are Monday through Saturday from 6 a. m. to 10 p. m., Sunday from 7 a. m. to 10 p. m.
A sign in the window at Javy's in the Lyon Park Shopping Center at 540A Willett Ave. reads "The Best Burgers, Cubans and Dogs." The simple menu at this tiny eatery doesn't go much beyond that except that there are several varieties of each. The burgers, dogs and Cubans are all topped with mozzarella cheese and the burgers and dogs with crushed potato chips.
Mango, blackberry, guanabana and passion fruit smoothies are also on the menu.
Besides accentuating burgers, fries and hot dogs, Javy's décor has a music theme. Two bongo drums sit on the counter as you enter, Latino music plays loudly in the background and posters on the walls read "Music Zone," "Got Salsa?," "I Love Hamburgers," and "Peace, Love, Hot Dogs."
Javier Rodriguez, a friendly gentleman who hails from Colombia and now lives in Stamford, opened Javy's, bearing his nickname, on Jan. 31. While there's a sign in the window, he's expecting a professional sign to be installed on the building any day by Artemio's Signs across the street.
Wood laminate tables for two with bamboo chairs provide seating along the wall across from the enclosed grill and kitchen while two larger tables for four are situated in front of the storefront windows. There's also a comfortable cushioned seat in front of the window. Besides the posters, ceramic light fixtures decorate the walls. The ceramic floor features an equal number of off-white and brown tiles while walls are yellow on top with reddish wainscoting below.
Visiting a week ago, I found the ham and salami Cuban sandwich ($5.75) to be an excellent choice. It comes topped with lettuce, tomato, mozzarella cheese and a mild white house sauce on a toasted roll. I opted to skip the tomatoes. Other varieties include sausage and ham, chicken and salami and shredded pork and ham.
The Texana burger ($6.50) brought a large beef patty on a roll supposedly with fried beans although we did not taste them, avocado, bacon, mozzarella, crushed potato chips, lettuce, tomato and a white sauce. I liked the crunchiness of the chips, but otherwise the burger was fairly gloppy and all the flavors blended together.
The Cubana, Texana burger and two drinks came to $16.37.
Some other burger choices are Hawayana ($6.25) with ham and pineapple sauce, Mixta ($6.25) with bacon and boiled egg, and De La Casa ($6.50) with ham, avocado, bacon and house sauce. I'm sure you could eliminate the house sauce and substitute ketchup or nothing at all if you wanted to cut down on the messiness.
Hotdogs come with similar toppings including the Pa'Comer ($5.50) with ham, bacon, chicken and egg plus chips, mozzarella and pink sauce. I haven't tried one of these yet.
Another section of the menu features the typical Colombian flat corn patties called arepas with chorizo ($4.50), cheese ($3.50), Hawayana ($5), Mixta ($5) and a few other varieties.
One salad and two desserts complete the menu.
Javy's is open from 11:30 a. m. to 10 p. m. Sunday through Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 11:30 a. m. to 11 p. m.
La Gladys Restaurant
at 453 Ellendale Ave., corner of Merritt Street, is the only eatery of these three new ones with table service. It's located across from the former Giorgio's, now a beautifully renovated office building, and has been in the works for many months. Apparently it took a while to get all the necessary permits, according to a friend of the owner who has a better command of English than she does.
Gladys Barzola of Port Chester opened the full service Peruvian restaurant, which has an extensive menu, on Mar. 1. She is often in the kitchen while her husband, Antonio Aguilar, runs the front end of the eatery.
On a recent Sunday evening the neighborhood restaurant had a lot of people coming and going for takeout orders but few eating in. No credit or debit cards are accepted here.
The striking black and white décor of this cozy eating place includes three shiny rectangular black tables for four with black high-backed chairs and three smaller square tables for two, a black counter with five black cushioned stools and a white floor with gray highlights. Walls are painted a deep rust color with white trim and three TVs are positioned around the dining room for easy viewing from all locations. Bright light streams in from the many windows during daylight hours.
When my husband and I went in for dinner, a dish of salted toasted Peruvian corn kernels was served to start. These are addicting.
The Tallerin Verde Con Carne ($11) brought a generous portion of Peruvian spaghetti with a thick coating of green pesto sauce, more than I would have liked. On the side was a good-sized piece of thin, tasty steak as well as two wedges of crunchy fried potatoes.
Ceviche Mixto ($14) was nicely presented with a slice of Peruvian corn, piece of sweet potato, shrimp, baby octopus, calamari, mussels and raw fish marinated in lemon juice. We asked for medium spiciness and it was quite spicy.
A dish of the traditional Peruvian green chile sauce was served to our table, but I was waiting for bread to dip it in and cut the spiciness of the ceviche, but it never came.
With the meal I ordered a glass of the delicious chicha morada ($2) made with Peruvian purple corn and flavored with cinnamon and was not disappointed.
For dessert, we had a yummy alfajor ($2), the Peruvian butter cookie filled with dulce de leche and sprinkled with powdered sugar, and a slice of a dense custard type cake ($4) since no flan was available.
Our meal priced out at $36.
The menu features appetizers, soups, Peruvian spaghetti, chicken, seafood, beef and Chinese dishes. Breakfast and specials are available on the weekends only.
La Gladys is open from 10:30 a. m. to 10 p. m. Monday through Friday, 9 a. m. to 10 p. m. Saturday and Sunday.