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Whole Foods, Balducci’s, and City Limits Have You Covered 4 Summer BBQs and Picnics

15 Jul

If there is one universal American truth, it’s that summertime is the official time for grilling and BBQ season. And, sure, there are plenty of times when you want to throw some burgers, chicken, or steak on the grill, but let’s be honest with ourselves . . . we’re not always full of energy. Whether it’s a day of working or filling a huge order for a crowd of friends and families, sometimes it’s just nice to let other people take care of you and get your food ready. So, whether you’re putting together a get-together, a picnic, a day at the park, or sunning at the beach, we’ve got three great options for you here in Fairfield County to help you feed your need: Balducci’s Food Lover’s Market and City Limits Diner. Plus, as an added bonus, Whole Foods Market has offered up pairings of great summer time brews available at their stores with some great dishes available at their stores. 

Balducci’s Food Lover’s Market (Scarsdale, Greenwich, Westport and more . . . )

A sample of the menu (full one here) . . . 

  • Balducci’s BBQ Pork Spare Ribs are smoky, tender and succulent and get the ultimate in classic BBQ treatment
  • White Mac’n Cheese are a pillar of any barbeque feast
  • Chocolate, Banana or Coconut Cream Pies are made using only the finest, wholesome ingredients and real cream
  • Balducci’s BBQ ½ Chicken is antibiotic-free, rotisserie cooked and slathered in Brother Jimmy’s Barbeque Sauce
  • Summer Delight Salad is made with cucumber, tomatoes, chick peas, edamame, fresh herbs and a refreshing white wine vinaigrette
  • Balducci’s Mousse Cakes combine the finest ingredients and real whipped cream wrapped in a decorative sponge to create these refreshing summer favorites
  • Whole Cut USDA Prime Certified Angus Beef New York Strip that can be freeze-wrapped or marinated in your choice of Chipotle-Lime, Black Pepper Sauce, Provencal or Yakiniku
  • Chipotle Bacon Potato Salad with redskin potatoes, smoky bacon, corn and a chipotle dressing
  • Lemon Meringue Pie with zesty, lemon flavor and creamy meringue topping combined with Balducci’s famous flaky crust

City Limits (Stamford, White Plains)

The menu below is available from July 23 until August 6.

Chef Peter from City Limits,  photo by Paul JohnsonAppetizers

  • BBQ Pancetta Wrapped Shrimp served on top of a white bean salad, $11
  • Grilled Berkshire Bacon iceberg wedge, tomato, corn & ranch dressing, $11
  • Watermelon & Feta Salad watercress & Kalamata olives, sherry vinaigrette, $11

Entrees (all include two sides & cornbread)

  • House Smoked Beef Brisket slow cooked with Applewood, $19
  • St. Louis Ribs dry rubbed, slow smoked & lightly glazed, $19
  • BBQ Half Chicken banana BBQ sauce, $18
  • BBQ Combo Plate St. Louis Ribs, Brisket, Pulled Pork, $20.95


  • Cole Slaw, Braised Greens, BBQ Fried Rice, Corn on the Cob, House Made Pickles, Mac & Cheese, Potato Salad, Mashed Potatoes, Stone Fruit Compote, and Brisket Baked Beans (4.50).


  • Chef Tracy’s pies, Summer Peach and Blueberry Streusel Crisp.

Whole Foods (Danbury, Darien, Fairfield, Glastonbury, Greenwich, Hartford, Milford, Port Chester, Westport, White Plains, and more . . . )

*Paired with Two Roads Workers Comp Saison ($10.99, pricing may vary between Whole Foods Market stores)

  • The Saucey Sauce Co. Habanero Ketchup ($8.99) with a Burger

*Paired with Captain Lawrence Sun Block ($10.99, pricing may vary between Whole Foods Market stores)

  • Sir Kensington’s Spicy Brown Mustard ($5.99) with Hot Dogs

*Paired with Kelso Nut Brown Ale ($11.99, pricing may vary between Whole Foods Market stores)

  • Empire Mayonnaise Red Chili Mayo ($7.99) with a Tuna Burger

*Paired with Sixpoint Jammer Gose ($12.99, pricing may vary between Whole Foods Market stores)

Local + Highly Spirited @ Neversink Spirits Distillery – Port Chester, NY

27 May

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Port Chester is one of our favorite places and is a short drive from nearly anywhere in Fairfield County. When you think about it, they’ve got it all: from barbecue, to pizza, to Peruvian, to Mexican, to pubs, to movies, to awesome markets, to The Cap, and just way too many other things to list. What it comes down to is this: if you can think of something that you want to eat or do, chances are you’ll be able to do it there.

The beautiful copper steps for distilling at Neversink Spirits in Port Chester, NYWell, add one more thing to that list: visiting and drinking at a local distillery that’s all about local ingredients. That distillery, as you can probably guess from the title (so smart!) is Neversink Spirits. This distillery is now in full production and already has their brandy on store shelves for purchase along with select bars. In addition to their brandy, you can look forward to trying their bourbon, their gin, and a boatload of specialty brandy based on the season (pear brandy anyone?)

Let’s look a little deeper at Neversink Spirits now:

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Resolve to have a kickass year with 1000 Passions unique experiences

7 Jan

1000 Passions Experiences Logo

Aside from the usual resolutions such as eating better or taking better care of your body, a resolution that should be on your list is getting outside and doing more. Sure, there are lots of festivals to go to and there are plenty of events, but what if you’re craving more adventure or more of a one-on-one, direct, interactive, experience? Well, that’s super easy with 1000 Passions!

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What’s in a name…a review of Salsa Picante – Port Chester, NY

2 Sep

…that which we call a Mexican restaurant by any other name would taste just as amazing. Right?

See, we heard about Salsa Picante in Port Chester well before it opened a little over a month ago, but we didn’t really give it any thought because the name made it sound like the same ‘ole, same ‘ole quick service Mexican joint. But then, like magic, we were walking down the street in Port Chester and the new spot caught the corner of our eyes. We peeked in and saw that it seemed to be more than what we thought it was, so Danny ran in to snatch a menu and Kristien immediately whipped out her phone to see what the word was on the street. Both searches turned out to be fruitful as the menu looked ah-mazing and people were RAVING about the food online. So, naturally you know what we had to do next…

The very next day (Sunday to be exact) we headed on over early, around 6PM…which we’re glad we did because by 6:30 there were people lining up outside to get in.  To be fair, the restaurant itself is pretty small fitting about 30 people. It has a simple, casual, cafe type feel with Mexican art work all around the darkly painted walls.  The sounds and sizzles of the grill are heard through the open kitchen and the chachacha of drinks being mixed are like music to diners’ ears.

Alright, let’s get into the drinks.

Before we did much of anything, we ordered some drinks. Lucky for us they got their liquor license just about two weeks before we visited.  That means they had margaritas, sangria, basic cocktails, wine, and beer available!  We went with margaritas for Kristien, sangria for Dan.  The margarita is made with house tequila (though we upgraded to Patron), Cointreau, and freshly squeezed lime and orange juices (we watched the bartender squeeze them by hand). It was a very simple, but well-balanced, fresh tasting margarita. Dan’s White Sangria was light, refreshing, and just sweet enough with a nice peachy undertone from the Schnapps.  Dan later got the Red Sangria (because you HAVE to try both, duh) which, again, was nicely balanced and not too sweet.  We later talked with owner David Dolores who shared that the sangria is made with at lest five different kinds of liquors, making them very complex.

Onto La Comida!

There was definitely lots of options to choose from on the menu like appetizers, tortas (sandwiches), burritos, and lots of classically authentic Mexican dishes.  We decided to start off with their Ceviche Misto, which was good, but we had two major issues:  they were pretty heavy on the lime so it was very acidic and, perhaps because of that, the fish had a bit of a mushy consistency. The shrimp and calamari, though, had a good consistency. Here, too (like the Margarita) it was very simple and traditional.  We also tried one of the specials for that day:  a lobster quesadilla.  The lobster, actually, wasn’t overcooked and had a nice consistency.  While we know lots of people say it’s a horrible sin to pair cheese with seafood, we have to say that it worked nicely here with the crispy tortilla and melty cheese playing off the lobster quite nicely.

Elote at Salsa Picante in Port Chester, NY

Next up is one of our favorite dishes from Latin spots, Elote.  They served two corn on the cobs with mayo, Cotija cheese, and chili powder.  David was accommodating with Dan’s loathing of mayo and kept it off of his ear.  The corn was spicy sweet, and rich from the cheese and mayo, just like we like it. The only issue was it was just warm rather than hot.  We would have preferred it to be hot, if not steaming. We also love those charred grilled marks on the corn, which we didn’t see.

For our entrée we decided to share the Taco Platter.  You got your choice of any 3 tacos meats plus onion, cilantro, lime, rice and beans, tortillas, and guacamole.  When the dish arrived, we were so excited:  it’s essentially “Do it Yourself Tacos”!  David explained to us that this is how they do things in Puebla, Mexica where he’s from:  family style, just like us Italians!  We had decided to go with the fish (tilapia), Carne Asada, and Al Pastor tacos because, well, those are some of our favorite flavor combos.

Fish (tilapia) taco at Salsa Picante in Port Chester, NY

First up was the tilapia that came out red (from paprika), moist, and delicate.  We made ours with cilantro, onion, radish, lime, and a touch of their orange sauce.  Then we both made our own Carne Asada tacos!  The beef had nice grill marks, giving off even more flavor.  We threw everything on this taco, using the smoky red sauce on one and the orange sauce on our seconds.  And, finally, we made our Al Pastor tacos. Unlike most variations we’ve had, you can actually taste (and see) the pineapple along with the pork…which we loved!  We decided to make ours with cilantro, onions, lime, and the orange sauce, though the red sauce did help to highlight the pork even more, too. We had enough meat and toppings to make 6 tacos each and even asked for more tortillas so we could make two more tacos at home. All in all a tasty (and again, simple and traditional) dish!

And last, but never least, dessert.

We couldn’t decide which to go with, the Quatro Leches (ooo that’s one more leche than normal) or the Churros. So guess what? Yeah, we did both…don’t judge!

The Quatro Leches was ridiculously moist, and only a little sweet unlike most we have that hurt our teeth. The chocolate syrup on top gave it a nice little warmth/depth. Honestly, this was one of the best we’ve ever had.

The Churros were stuffed with cream and Cotija…OMG. They were super crispy on the outside and oh so ooey gooey on the inside.  Man, that cheese really sent this dessert over the top. Yum!

So, would we say Salsa Picante lived up to our expectations of its name, or did it far exceed those expectations? Well, if you’re looking for a traditional, simple, affordable, authentic Mexican experience that is a major step up from quick service Mexican spots, then this is most definitely a great place to go. If you’re looking for modern twists, fancy cocktails, a hopping ambiance, and complex flavors, you can stick to one of our other fave trendy Mexican spots, like Bodega.

Noms: 3.25

Cost: $$-$$$

Address: 110 Adee Street.

Port Chester, NY 10573

Phone:  (914) 481-5488

Salsa Picante on Urbanspoon

Our new go-to spot + probably yours too: Port Chester Hall + Beer Garden

5 Jun

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Update:  we have been back a few times since our review and we have had mixed results. At times we have good service, at other times service is spotty and slow. During our last visit, the food wasn’t as good as it used to be. The burger, in particular, was bland, mushy, and disappointing while the chicken sandwich was also bland and uninteresting. 

Last year when we heard that Heartland Brewery was opening up a new brewery in Port Chester, we darn near jumped for joy. First off, we live just a few minutes away. Secondly, we think that Port Chester is the most underrated place in our area and were psyched for people to show it some love. And thirdly, mmmm, beeeeeeer.

Now, a few months back we got a little worried and upset when we learned that it wasn’t actually going to be a brewery, but our frown got turned upside down when we learned that it would become a beer hall and a beer garden with beer pumped in from Heartland Brewery.  So, when the weather this past Saturday turned out to be beautiful, we knew what we had to do…

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Get you some: Taste of Port Chester and Wilton Are Back for more in 2014

4 Jun

We love tasting events where you get to taste some of the best spots in an area.  They tend to be inexpensive, they have lots of variety, and it’s basically like a Costco tasting spree on steroids.  ‘Nuff said, right?  So, get ready for two great events coming up:  Taste of Port Chester on 6/8 and Taste of Wilton on 6/9.  Check out the deets with us and get yo’self down (or up) there for all the nomworthy food.

Taste of Port Chester

6/8, from 12-3 pm

Registration starts at 11:30 at the Marina on Abendroth Ave.

Tickets are $25 (drinks extra; you’ll get a map for easy food tourism)

Taste of Port Chester is a walking tour (though there are busses available) through CT’s neighboring village.  Once you have your wristband, you can just visit any of the places below (there will be balloons outside) and get samples of their goodies.  We were downtown when this was going on last year and it was a very popular event, so you won’t want to miss this one.  Added bonuses:  your ticket purchase helps to support Port Chester Public Schools and you can walk off all of the calories that you ingest (wishful thinking).

Here are all the spots that you can check out:

• A&S Deli:  Italian
• Acuario:  Peruvian
• Aqui es Santa Fe:  Colombian
• Arrosto:  Italian
• Bubbles & Berries:  Juice Bar and Desserts
• Cafe Mirage:  Eclectic, Modern American
• Carvel Ice Cream
• Coals:  Pizza, craft beer, killer sprouts, and wings
• Copacabana Steakhouse:  Brazilian steakhouse
• Cousin Frankie’s USA Grill:  American
• Euro Asian Bistro:  Asian, sushi
• Frankie & Louie’s:  Italian, pizza
• Garcia’s:  Nightclub, bar
• Il Sogno:  Italian
• J.J. Cassone’s:  Bakery
• John’s of Arthur Ave:  Italian
• Kiosko:  Mexican
• Longford’s Own Made:  Ice Cream
• Los Chuzos de Juancho:  Colombian
• Mary Ann’s:  Mexican
• McShane’s:  Irish Pub (new)
• Neri’s Bakery
• Nessa:  Italian
• Paleteria Fernandez:  Ice cream, frozen treats
• Panera Bread:  Cafe, American
• Port Chester Hall & Beer Garden (new)
• Salsa Picante:  Mexican
• Sichuan Pavilion:  Chinese
• Sonora:  Nuevo Latino
• Spadaro’s:  Italian
• Tarry Market:  Gourmet market
• Varmax:  Wine, liquor
• Zeppoleme:  Zeppoles, panini, coffee

7th Annual Taste of Wilton

June 9 from 5:30-8:30

$30 per person at Wilton Chamber of Commerce, Fairfield County Bank, Bankwell, or Wilton Family Y

$35 at the door

Cheaper than an entrée at most restaurants here in CT, admission to Taste of Wilton is a great deal…especially because food and drinks are included.  This year, you’ll want to check out this event all over again so you can try out some of the new restaurants that have opened up and to nom away on your favorites.

Here are all the participants (getting full already):

• Ancona’s Wines & Liquors
• Bianco Rosso Wine Bar Restaurant
• Bistro 7
• Black Cat Grille
• Cactus Rose Restaurant & Tequila Bar
• Fleur de Lis Academy
Georgetown Package Store
• Little Pub Wilton
• Luca Ristorante Italiano
• Marly’s of Wilton
• Pinocchio Pizza
• Portofino Restaurant & Bar
• Stop & Shop
• Sweet Pierre’s
• Sweet Sabrina’s Cake Shop
• The Painted Cookie
• Toozy Patza Pizza
• Village Market
• Vintage Fine Wines (visit their store during the Taste)
• Wilton Pizza

Inaugural Zeppoleme Wine Dinner a Wicked Good Time – Port Chester, NY

31 Jan

Lots of Friends at Zeppoleme Dinner

Things don’t get much better in life than having good friends, good food, and good wine all together in one perfect spot.  And that’s exactly how it went down yesterday, 1/30, at Zeppoleme in Port Chester, NY.  This was, perhaps, one of the most fun events that we’ve been to in a long time, so we were very happy and proud to be a part of it.  Let’s take you through each course.  Oh, and if you were one of the bums who missed this event, Zeppoleme plans to have more, so don’t worry!

Hearty Tuscan Tomato Soup at Zeppoleme in Port Chester, NY

The Hearty Tuscan Tomato Soup was excellent, thawing us out nicely.  It was tangy, a tad bit sweet, and had nice chunks of veggies.  Marc and Robert of Zeppoleme paired this with a nicely balanced “Truth or Consequences” Riesling which was so easy going down.

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Zeppoleme + OmNomCT team up for four course wine dinner on 1/30

8 Jan


Zeppole.  Doesn’t that word instantly make you smile and drool at the same time? Yes, those fried pillowy puffs of doughy goodness that make you feel like a kid again, are the things that dreams are made of.

It’s because of that, that we’re proud and excited to announce that we’ve teamed up with Zeppoleme of Port Chester for an exciting, “A Night out with OmNomCT and Friends” event on 1/30 at 7 pm.  You’ll have a chance to meet and talk with both of us and the awesome Zeppoleme owners Marc Tessitore (he also owns Nessa next door) and Robert Squeri as we all chow down on some killer good food and drink some delicious wine.

If you haven’t had the chance to eat at this awesome restaurant that we have raved about (and The New York Times too), then you MUST get in on this dinner on 1/30 starting at 7 pm.  There will be enough food and wine to feed an army of OmNomivores for just $29 + tax and tip.  Now that’s a deal!  Call them up at (914) 481-5900 to make your reservation and get your spot…only about 25 seats, get calling!

We hope to see you there!

Here’s what you’ll get (to om nom nom on):


Hearty Tuscan Tomato Soup


Bacon Chive and Provolone Zeppole and Mixed Vegetable Zeppole

Wine Pairing:  2012 “Truth Or Consequences” Riesling, Columbia Valley, Washington,

(Lip Smacking, Balanced Fruit, Lime and Green Apple)


Arugula Salad

Cucumber, Cherry Tomatoes, Parmesan Lemon Dressing

Wine Pairing: 2012 “Gazerra” Pinot Grigio, Sicily, Italy

(Light to Medium Bodied, Pear, Lemon, Refreshing Mineral)


Assortment of Butter Pressed Panini

*Slow Braised Beef Short Rib, Brocolli Rabe, Provolone

*Spicy Eggplant, Pepperoncino Peppers, Goat Cheese

*BLT, Bacon Lettuce, Tomato, House Made Aioli

Wine Pairing: 2012 “Pacific Standard” Red Zinfandel, Lodi, CA

(Fabulous Ripeness, Full Bodied, Pepper, Cocoa, Blackberry)


Trio Of Oreo, Classic, and Modern Ricotta Folded Zeppole with Buttercream

Your Choice of Latte or Regular Coffee by Stumptown Roasters

Noms: 3.75
Cost:  $$
Address:  321 North Main Street
Port Chester, NY
Phone: (914) 481-5900

Brew-view: Even More Denmark Chocolate Stout, Evil Twin Brewing and Chocopologie

7 Jan

Even More Denmark Evil Twin Brewing

“Much has been said about the Danes. Like they seem reserved at first and are obsessed with bikes, food and ‘hygge’ – Danes are always on time, they appear liberal yet traditional and leave their babies outside in prams while they shop. We at Evil Twin Brewing teamed up with fellow Dane at Chocopologie and decided to set the story straight with a Chocolate Stout infused with smoked chestnuts and even more Denmark. The punctual aromas, comfortable taste and liberating body will make you feel like one of the happiest people on earth.”

chocopologie-by-knipschildt-chocolatier-77307138You’ll find this on the side label of Even More Denmark, a chocolate stout brewed by Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø of Evil Twin Brewing in South Carolina with the help of Chocopologie by House of Knipschildt chocolatier Fritz Knipschildt.  Fritz brought his internationally known chocolate to the party that was used to brew the beer with and Jeppe took care of the rest.  After production of the beer, Fritz created Even More Denmark infused truffles that you can purchase at Whole Foods Brooklyn.

Let’s check out what these two crazy Danes (certainly not crazier than Hamlet) did and get all Even More Denmark up in this bitch.

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Holiday Gifts and Giveaway w/ Path Coffee and Cathy’s Biscotti and Sweet Treats

18 Nov


You’ve probably passed by it a hundred times.   It’s just a big brick building in Port Chester.   But, as you get closer the amazing aroma of roasted coffee beans assaults you.   This is where Empire Coffee and Path Coffee roasters (a division of Empire)  roasts and packs up different varieties of coffee.   Head brewers Johnny Steverson and Jason Richter are roasting up small artisan batches of coffee there at a seemingly endless pace.

Where the magic happens at Path!

Where the magic happens at Path!

And, just a few miles down 95 in White Plains is Cathy’s Biscotti and Sweet Treats.  Owned by Cathy Schauber, Cathy’s Biscotti and Sweet Treats has been creating yummy biscotti cookies and more since 2006.  And, guess what?   They’ve come together in a perfect pairing and marriage with Path Coffee for the holidays.  Yes, you can get 6 biscotti and a 12 oz bag of Path Coffee for just 22.58.  

But, our readers have a chance to get this package for free!   Continue reading

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