by LESLIE-ANNE BRILL
Source: Westchester Magazine
BLUE-CRAB-STUFFED PIQUILLO PEPPERS
Some places are just plain cool. We don't usually think of them as being in hotels, but forget that NoMa Social is in the Radisson (well, unless you want a room) and step in. I was here two restaurants ago and it was already intrinsically cool; must be the feng shui. It turns into a dance club late at night. And I'm sorry to say this, but cool can be in short supply around here, No of Ma (north of Manhattan).
But you're here for other reasons—and if you've been here, you know that one of them is the drinks. For cold weather, try some of the killer new specials: a S’mores martini that’s lit on fire, a Pumpkin Pie martini that you're not gonna find at Starbucks, or Coquito, a Puerto Rican eggnog-like drink from the mixologist's family recipe—they’ve got a big vat of it going in back. If you're watching your holiday waistline, the “skinny” drinks will set you back only 150 calories; for other priorities, there’s the infamous Panties Off. And here’s a deal: their new 4 x 4 weeknight happy hour at the bar features four choices of wine, cocktails, beer, and tapas for $4 each from 4 to 8 pm.
To go with, foodies will never go hungry or bored, and Chef Bill Rosenberg has added some new dishes to the cosmopolitan, tapas-centric menu. Flavorful butternut squash soup benefits from a pop of floating fresh cranberry and crushed ginger snaps. Blue-crab-stuffed piquillo pepper with lemon pepper aioli and baby arugula is delicious and refreshing (I came back and had it again); crispy baby artichokes with basil mayo will make you forget your table manners. Add a little aioli-slicked tosta topped with sobrasada and a runny quail egg and you’re in Spain. For something more substantial, fresh potato gnocchi with long-braised Painted Hills beef cheeks, wild mushrooms, and Coca Cola Rioja guazzetto, topped with fresh ricotta, will warm you up, all elements holding their own and uniting in the sauce. And for a fun ending: a banana-Nutella dessert empanada with cinnamon ice cream.