Franklin Street Works is an art space, tucked away on (you guessed it) Franklin Street in downtown, right by UConn Stamford. But, to call FSW just an art space seems cheap, seems unfair. It’s actually more like a combination of an interactive gallery, community garden, and gathering place. And, there, at the heart of FSW is the cafe.
Over the past few months, they have been working on making it more social and have added some great craft brews to their offerings. But, the biggest changes have just happened with the appointment of Executive Chef Erin Emmett. She trained at Le Notre in Paris, learning how to craft perfect macarons, working with chocolate, and letting the sweet side of food shine. She took that experience and worked at Alizé in Las Vegas and Knipschildt Chocolatier right here in CT, then soon became Pastry Chef at Vandaag in Manhattan. She then packed her bags and became Pastry Chef at Chantal Guillon and Executive Pastry Chef of Componere Fine Catering in Cali. Taking all of that knowledge and experience, Chef Emmett came back to the East Coast to start her own dessert and pastry company, Sweet Pistachio.
With Chef Emmett at the helm, Franklin Street Works is serving up lunch as well as weekend brunch. Local ingredients are used, some hyperlocal . . . like backyard garden hyperlocal. Expect Signature Sandwiches (that come with a side of mixed greens) like Grilled Sweet Manchego (Manchego, Fig Jam, Sopressata) and their Chicken Apple Curry that includes Curried Chicken-Apple Salad, Almonds, Dried Cranberries, Cucumber, and Red Onions. There are also two different options of grilled focaccia that include either White Bean, Cherry Tomatoes, EVOO or Smashed Avocado, Lime, and Chili Flakes. In addition, there are four creative salads available including their Harvest Salad that includes local greens with ingredients right from their garden, all topped with a balsamic vinaigrette.
Brunch items include a daily baked quiche, a grilled egg sammy, roasted veggie frittata, yogurt bowls with housemade granola, bread pudding, and lots of more brunchy things. If you’re ready for dessert or just want a sweet snack, check out freshly baked cookies, brownies, hand pies, and Chef Emmett’s famous macarons (you just might develop an addiction). It’s also good to know that there are gluten free and vegan options, so they take care of you whatever you eat.
Wrapping things up, they also have more than just craft beer to drink. They have a nice selection of wines, mimosas during brunch, natural sodas, herbal teas, and take care of your caffeine needs by brewing coffee and espresso drinks from Brooklyn Roasting Company. Sweetening the pot up a bit, Franklin Street Works also provides free wifi and outdoor seating to help make the most chill day of food and art as possible. As always, there is no fee to look around the art space and check out the exhibits. Hours are Wednesday-Friday from 12-5 and Saturday-Sunday from 8-5 pm.
Franklin Street Works
41 Franklin Street
Hours: Wednesday-Friday from 12-5 and Saturday-Sunday from 8-5 pm.
Admission: there is no charge for admission during regular hours (but donations or membership purchases are very nice)
More about Franklin Street Works:
Franklin Street Works, a not-for-profit contemporary art space and cafe located in downtown Stamford, has worked with more than 150 internationally exhibiting artists, curated 15 original exhibitions, and has organized 100 free, public programs. This work was acknowledged with an Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts grant in 2013. Franklin Street Works’ exhibitions have also received positive reviews and features in major art publications such as Artforum online, Art Papers, and Hyperallergic.