Rosy outlook

It’s official: California has come to Westchester in the form of Maple & Rose, a clean, contemporary café just opened on the first floor of the tony Grand Street Lofts building on Mamaroneck Avenue. Between the school and the station, this cheerful café brims with light, with bonhomie and exudes an easy laidback charm. As for all those glass windows, it’s a veritable solarium on even the grayest winter day.

Clean lines, hardwood floors and undressed teak tables and chairs are the look, a pot of orchids on a square central table adding some welcome color. Outside, a wide terrace sticks two figurative fingers at the traffic on Mamaroneck Avenue and is going to be a terrific place to dine come the warmer weather (or any time, under heat lamps).

Open for breakfast and lunch daily and dinner every day except Monday and Tuesday, Maple & Rose’s short but well-thought-out menus tick all the boxes. At breakfast, avocado and Romanesco cauliflower are right on trend, while soft scrambled eggs sitting on wonderful sourdough toast with, say, smoked salmon and labneh, or — even more temptingly — truffle butter and pecorino, set you up for the day. If on the other hand, a shot of espresso on the hop is your thing, then head for the bar, where you can also pick up some top-flight breakfast patisserie, a flaky butter croissant or pain au chocolat, perhaps. 

At lunch and dinner, simple salads join the lineup, along with a carefully made orzo risotto, rendered rich with pecorino and winter truffles. My dinner companion raved about his roast chicken on a recent evening, buttery soft and served with Delicata squash and a punchy salsa verde. The short ribs — at $26, something of a bargain in my book — also draws plaudits.

Launched last April by Matt Gorney, who lives in Eastchester, and his business partner Ryan Hart — the two met while they were both working at Chipotle — this is a first restaurant venture for both of them. The café is already popular with groups (a meeting of ex-pat British moms is in full swing the morning I look in for breakfast), while the quality of the produce and fairness of the pricing means Mason & Rose has started to attract customers from a wider radius. 

Service is informed and very obliging; a request for a side order of prosciutto, to be stolen, magpie-style from another dish was brought without demur. To add to the fun, a selection of grocery items are for sale up front in the bar area, Katz’s vinegars, from California (naturally), or raw Sicilian olive oil, for example. The café also sells its own tote bag, along with linen tea towels and a selection of chunky tableware.

Not everything in the garden’s Rose-y. Sit too near the door and a wintry blast can assault you. And the acoustics can be a little unsympathetic if a large group is sitting anywhere near. Otherwise Maple & Rose is a boon, a great addition to the somewhat stultified Mamaroneck dining scene.

Situated next to the Dip-In car wash, plan it right and you can have your car washed while you enjoy breakfast or a lazy lunch. Then leave with a spring in your step, and head back to your vehicle.

“Let me tell you it’s always cool,

And the boss don’t mind sometimes if you act the fool.”

 A great spot and a great lyric. Thank you, Rose Royce. And thank you Maple & Rose.

 For reservations, visit maplerosecafe.com.

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