Flavors of the world are within walking distance here in Bloomingdale. One of the most interesting food trends to hit the city in recent years has been the proliferation of authentic Mexican eateries reflecting increased migration to areas like El Barrio, Washington Heights, Bushwick, and yes right here at home. “We designed the menu to reflect the best that Mexican cuisine has to offer,” says owner and partner Leo Vidals. No Tex- or Cal-Mex here!
“We saw this promising area as the right place to open and the neighborhood has been wonderful! We have been received and treated very well.”
Casa Mexicana opened in September of 2014 and has helped transform a block that had multiple vacancies before Arco Cafe and Casa arrived. Leo manages the restaurant with his brother Eric who is the executive chef, with their father also helping run the family-owned and operated business. Eric let us try his slow cooked 47-ingredient Mole Poblano, a real tour-de-force in Mexican cuisine from the city of Puebla.
After working for years in restaurants in the city, the brothers came to our neighborhood to open their first restaurant and we are glad Casa Mexicana calls Bloomingdale home. Across the street from our landmarked Youth Hostel, take advantage of their great sidewalk café, cozy ambiance, and the occasional art or music exhibit. Talk to them about their menu and ask for something new to try.
894 Amsterdam Avenue
48 seats inside/18 seats outside
Happy Hour M-F 12-7pm , Brunch Weekends, Free wifi
feature by: Alex Zamudio
We pride ourselves for having Flavors of the World here in Bloomingdale. Sitting down for a meal at Arco Cafe takes you straight into an Italian home kitchen. “Italians mostly eat at home, with fresh local ingredients and home made pasta,” says Partner/Manager Daniele Fiori who runs Arco Cafe with his sister Francesca, “and that’s what we have created here.”
“Everyone knows everyone else. It’s like a family between businesses and the clients.”
The Fiori’s, who hail from the Island of Sardina, opened on 103rd and Amsterdam in February of 2014 and have helped turn around a block that now also features newcomers in the family owned Casa Mexicana. They love the small town feel our neighborhood provides as a respite from the big city. “Everyone knows everyone else. It’s like a family between businesses and the clients.” Aside from his neighbors at Casa, Daniele also likes The Ellington, and newcomers Schatzie and West End Hall.
Arco seats 70 inside and 10 outside and serves wine and beer, which pair perfectly with the regional menu carefully designed by Daniele to mimic “the food I grew up eating at home.” Their $12 two-course fixed price lunch is one of the best deals in the neighborhood, and you can get a bottle of wine for 50% off if you go Monday through Thursday. You might need to as reservations are usually required on weekends, as they have adopted the classic American tradition of serving brunch!
886 Amsterdam Avenue
Sardinian Italian Restaurant
70 seats inside/10 outside
Weekend Brunch, Weekday $12 Lunch served M – F until 6 pm, Mon-Thurs 50% off wine
feature by: Alex Zamudio