I'm new to CHOWOUND, but old to WP (moved in temporarily in 2000 and never left)...and have tried to add my .02 to some of the threads and stayed out of the trash talking.
But a few thoughts after reading about my home town, and the bashing that Iron Tomato, Antipasti, Via Quadrano, The Ritz, Trump, Etc. are receiving. We have some decent, some good, and some very good restaurants. There is generally better food in Manhattan and Queens...but we have Westchester quality of life and Westchester Prices (which are significantly cheaper than Manhattan...yes while still being outrageously high). But
I used to refer to downtown White Plains as little beirut when we moved in...I much prefer on a Saturday around Noon to walk to the book store, head to starbucks for a coffee with my paper, or catch a movie (well frankly, that was before our son was born...not so easy now)...and it is much easier to indulge my inner and outer gourmand today than years ago.
When we moved in our restaurant choices within walking distance was the awful Thai place (nice owner) on Main and Broadway...a splurge for Bengal Tiger...and that was about it other than fairly lame italian at Laguna, etc.
During the warmer season...in early evening you will see us walking with the family down Mamaroneck from our condo (God forbid...sorry Dolores), taking a stroll to Iron Tomato for Gelato, an espresso, or down the street to Big Apple Smoothie for...a smoothie. It is our "not as pretty" version of the after dinner stroll down most main streets that happens in Italy. A date night can involve a walk to one of 7 reasonably good restaurants.
I was eating at La Bocca one night and Delfino walked in...I almost interrupted his meal to ask him to take the White Plans development plan one step further...Friday and Saturday nights (maybe Thurs), block off Mamaroneck Avenue and the area surrounding the fountain for Pedestrian only traffic. Shopkeepers would stay open longer, restaurant's could do what they often do in Piazza towns and put tables out on the sidewalk and street. I think it would rock and foster a more family friendly and 30 something friendly community. Cops on Horses to keep the adolescents from going to crazy.
In the mean time, I will enjoy my cheese plate with a glass of Malbec at Antipasti, my steak at 42, my Vindaloo at Bengal Tiger, my strolls with the stroller to Iron Tomato, my Tapas at Peniche, my Asian Market on Hamilton, and La Boccaor Tango for a quiet romantic meal. Yes we need more Lefteris' and cheap eats that are not dialed down milktoast...but it is sooooo much better than it was. Enjoy our town and community...get out there, eat drink and be merry!