You might have heard of pop up restaurants, springing up in empty spots or abandoned places. Here one week, gone another. You know…that’s so 2012. PopShop Market, though, is taking things into 2013 with their pop up market. For each pop up event they’ll have 50 or more vendors, a mini farmers’ market, they’ll feature a local brewery, and they’ll have a bunch of CT’s best food and food trucks available for your noming needs. The first PopShop Market is being held on June 1 from 9-3 at the Fairfield Theater Company‘s warehouse and parking lot. There’s no cost at all and there is live music, too. Here are the details for the first event:
This is the Cinco de Mayo party that’s too big for just one day. This is the Cinco de Mayo party to end all Cinco de Mayo parties. Yeah, seriously…Bodega Taco Bar in Darien and Fairfield are doing it right this year with lots of omnom-like things going down. First off, let’s start with the times: Saturday (5/4) from noon to midnight and Sunday (5/5) from noon to 8. Okay, let’s get into the yummy deets:
- Tequila tastings (worm and Pee Wee Herman not included.)
- Pig roast prepared in a custom La Caja China Roasting Box (Saturday.)
- Taco Eating Contest (definitely Saturday, maybe Sunday. When you get there, you’ll sign up. We’ll update this for you when we get more info.)
- Mariachi Band on Sunday afternoon
- “Guacamole Slapping” demonstration (maybe you slap it because it’s soooo good, but is fattening? Interested to see.)
- Drink specials (you know you have to celebrate with some margaritas, right?)
- Live music and dancing (agitarlo como una foto Polaroid.)
Winter is only one season, but why does it seem so long? Perhaps this year we can blame it on Punxsutawney Phil who promised an early end to winter, but lied? Yeah, never trust a rodent, that’s what momma always said.
But, look, we’re beyond it all now! The weather has turned, we’re at the start of spring, and we can actually feel the sun’s warmth. By now, you’ve probably already lit up the BBQ and cooked up a storm. And, you’ve probably been thinking about eating out(side) at a restaurant to enjoy the great weather. So, we decided to put together a nice list of restaurants in the area that we like that have either al fresco (outdoor) dining or open air dining. Perhaps you have an amazing restaurant to add that we missed? Let us know! Taco Bell doesn’t count, though. ;)
Enjoy the beautiful weather people…you earned it!
Ecco rooftop bar/eatery on top of La Zingara (added by N)
One of the most frustrating things about ordering delivery over the phone (#ConnecticutProblems) is repeating yourself 30 times, or being put on hold, or being transferred to 10 different people. Yeah, it’s seriously annoying and it’s a big waste of time, especially when there are other important things to do like watch TV, surf the net, watch the kids, or just be lazy.
But, two websites are making delivery (or pick up) just a bit easier and giving you some great things in return. All around, we use Seamless more often because they have a better variety of restaurants for delivery by us, but Delivery.com is still a good option. Let’s look at Seamless first.
Seamless has a very easy to use interface where you can save restaurants into your favorites and even just order a previous meal with just a few clicks. You’ll often see restaurants that have deals like 10% or 20% of orders! Be aware that some restaurants charge a small fee for delivery, but it’s not a fee from Seamless. Also, Seamless will send out emails time to time with special discount codes that you can enter before your finalize your purchase. Our favorite part: add the tip right in and when your food arrives, the delivery person will hand it to you, thank you, then leave. That’s more time for your to spend gorging yourself. Right now they are in the Greenwich, Stamford, and Westport areas, but are expanding.
Our obsession with Restaurant.com (not Restaurants.com) started years ago when we’d shell out $5 and get a $50 pass to restaurants. The amount of money we saved was awesome and we continue to check this site when we want to save some major dinero. We use it for local restaurants and especially when we’re on vacation and want to find a quick, inexpensive meal.
It works pretty easily: enter the city and state where you want a certificate then select the restaurant. The most common option that you’ll see is pay $10 for a $25 certificate, but sometimes there will be bigger incentives like $20 for $50, $30 for $75, or even $40 for $100. Before you purchase your certificate, just make sure that there aren’t any terms of the agreement that won’t work for you such as, “Only includes lunch,” or “No dinner on Saturday.” Also, pay close attention to the fine print because some have an order minimum or some include a tip into the amount of the bill automatically.
One of the first things we do when we’re looking for a restaurant to hit up is check to see if it’s on OpenTable. In just a few clicks you can see lots of restaurants in your area that are taking reservations. From there, you can click on a restaurant, enter in your party size and time, then you’re on your way to booking your table. You could even play restaurant roulette and enter a party size, date, and time and see which restaurants in the area have tables nearby.
Recently, we used OpenTable to get ourselves some nice seats at Bar Sugo in Norwalk and Dinosaur Bar-b-que in Stamford. Plus, we can’t tell you how easy this site makes vacation planning. And, wouldn’t you know it, Dan’s Prius has OpenTable built into it?
When you show up for the reservation, make sure you give your name and they check you in before you find your seat. At most restaurants you’ll earn 100 points for each time you show up and dine out. There are even some restaurants on the site that will earn you 1,000 points for honoring your reservation. When you reach 2,000 points you’ll be sent a $20 gift certificate usable at any OpenTable restaurant.
Here are just some of the OpenTable restaurants that you could hit up in just Connecticut:
Aww, mother and son. The love and the bond between both is inseparable and is stronger than that guy in a hardhat who is glued to the beam in that Krazy Glue commercial. Ah, yes, mother and son. While we could wax poetic about the bond more, we’ll leave it to Woman to Woman Magazine. They recently published an article written by Linda Kavanagh about five chefs and how their moms influenced their careers. As an outgrowth of this great article, there is going to be a contest between mom and son to see who’s best. Well, we don’t dare take sides. If we say mom will do best, the chefs will be mad at us, but if we say the chefs will do better then we’ll get yelled at in strange languages and/or hit with spoons, pizza servers, or sandals by the moms. Really, you can’t win…oh, but you do win at The Momma’s Boy Cook-off because you get to sample all the food that the chefs and their moms are making, get some recipe ideas, and even do some schmoozing. Here are the contestants and all the info:
Thursday, April 11 @ 6 PM at Aitoro of Norwalk
$40 per ticket, advanced purchase only
- Chef Pat Pascarella of Bar Sugo faces off against his mother, Gina Pascarella.
- The Singing Chef, Neil Fuentes (also a spokesperson for Sabra Hummus) tries to out-cook his Italian mother-in-law, Dee DiCrosta.
- Chef Biagio “Gino” Riccio of Quattro Pazzi/Osianna/BOCA goes up against his Greek mother-in-law, Anna Giapoutzis.
- Chef Kausik Roy of Tawa will be fighting for bragging rights against his mom, Shibani Roy.
- And, finally, we have Chef Michael Marchetti of Columbus Park Trattoria/Applausi Osteria/Tarantino Osteria who must somehow go against Marie Marchetti who is well known for her awesome handmade pasta.
Anybody care to take bets? Who do you think will win in each battle?
Congratulations to Wilton! From March 11 to March 16 they will hold their first Restaurant Week. This will be a great time to get out around town and check out some of the great new restaurants (and old faves) and save some serious dinero with prix fixe menus in the process. The Wilton Chamber of Commerce will be changing their site with menu info and pricing, so make sure to keep up to date with them and check back here for updates, too.
Bistro 7 (3.75 Noms)
Cactus Rose (3.25 Noms)
Back in October 2011, we told you about Eating Greenwich and Port Chester: a restaurant week that spanned two states. Well, these two neighboring buddies are back for more action two years later! But, this isn’t your typical restaurant week and you can thank New England Culinary Group for that. Starting off, one of the restaurants below might give you a deal on a three course lunch for $12.13/$18.13 or dinner for $20.13/$30.13. Restaurants also have the option of offering up a special killer deal that will get you there and save you some serious dough. But, here’s the gem in the crown of this event: the “Keep Eating” program. When you chomp away at any of the restaurants that are participating during Eating Greenwich and Port Chester, you will receive a Keep Eating 20% off gift certificate to be used at any participating restaurant from March 10-27, 2013. The certificates are valid from Sunday through Wednesday and don’t include alcohol, just be aware.
Make sure to check out NECG’s site and this post for updated info, deals, and pricing points. Here are the restaurants with their locations from 3/3-3/7:
- Alba’s in Port Chester
- Arrosto in Port Chester
- Avenue Cafe
- Bistro Latino in Greenwich (a must for tapas, review on the way)
- Centro at the Mill Restaurant in Greenwich
- China White in Purchase (we’ve heard amazing things, Greenwich opening around spring)
- Coals in Port Chester (yeah, love the grilled wings, pizza, and beer selection here)
- eleven14 Kitchen in Greenwich (we want to try)
- Greco’s Bella Cucina in Greenwich
- John’s of Arthur Ave. in Port Chester
- Lolita Cocina & Tequila Bar in Greenwich (we’ve been to Red Lulu, but not here yet)
- Morello Bistro in Greenwich (excellent Italian)
- Polpo in Greenwich
- Sonora in Port Chester (love this Nuevo Latino spot! Same chef/owner as Bistro Latino)
- Tandoori in Port Chester (when we lived in Rye Brook, we loved going here. Will have to try again)
- Tarry Lodge in Port Chester (excited to try)
- The Ginger Man in Greenwich (great beer selection)
- The Willett House in Port Chester