Think globally, eat locally
ümami is the word for the "Fifth Taste" after salt, sweet, sour and bitter. It is found in french fries, ketchup, potato chips and all those things that you seem to just keep eating. It is also found in caviar, truffles, foie gras and fish sauce.
Our goal was to popularize the "ümami " taste, the fifth taste. We do not use food additives and are committed to maintaining the highest quality while keeping prices as affordable as possible. ümami café serves you quality food prepared in a variety of cultural styles at a fair price with a welcoming, relaxed manner of service.
Many of menu choices are original creations or re-interpretations of dishes from around the world. We combine ingredients and cultural styles freely and recklessly, without claiming authenticity. From our award winning Mac N Cheese to our Peking Duck Quesadilla, the common theme is an abundance of ümami in each dish.
Established in 2002.
Jon Pratt and Craig Purdy have known one another since 1972. Craig's first restaurant job was working for Jon's father at Peter Pratt's Inn. They maintained contact as they pursued their separate food service careers. "The Penny Dropped" and they decided, over a bottle (or 2) of old vine Zinfandel, to combine efforts and find a location for "Umami Cafe". 36 days after signing our lease, with the generous help from a customer/contractor, some modest funding from family, ample cash advances from credit cards, and Voila, Umami Cafe opened in January 2002.
We also operate Peter Pratt's Inn, in Yorktown Heights, N.Y. The Inn has been owned and operated by the Pratt Family since 1965. Peter Pratt's Inn is located in a circa 1790 Colonial farmhouse, rebuilt upon the foundation and reusing timber form a circa 1760 stable on the same spot. This was a listed Revolutionary War Battle Site, a home, a Country Inn, and now a classical country restaurant.
Meet the Business Owner
Jon Pratt is a 3rd Generation chef. Jon is our owner and Executive Chef. He devised this menu and concept after an intern from the Culinary Institute explained the idea and basis of "umami". He surprised Jon by explaining which of his current dishes had high levels of umami. "So that's why people come in and say, I'm just craving those Quesdaillas..." Yes, umami is the taste that makes you crave more. Jon is married to a Suzie, a classically trained chef and former instructor at the Culinary Institute. She is Chinese, born in Trinidad and raised in Hawaii. Visits to her family in the islands, awakened Jon's passion for Asian ingredients and cooking styles.