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CT Food News, Vol. 9: Hot Dogs, Cocktails, Free Oysters, Trux, Cooking Classes, Festivals, and More…

18 Jun

Well, what can we say but there’s a whole helluva lot going on in and around Fairfield County over the next two weeks.  So, in addition to our regular posts, we’ve gathered up some major highlights of things going on such as awesome events, special meals, beer news, beer dinners, cooking classes, farmers’ markets, festivals, ways to give back, and we give some props to a city in CT that just got some major press.  Check out more events here, too.

Cool (and Chow) Down

6/18-6/20:  Chef Storch of Match continues his themed lunches, this time with “Super Duper” Match.  And, if you’re wondering…yes, he’s featuring some of the greatest dishes from Super Duper Weenie:  the best hot dog joint in the world.  Check out Match’s FB page for the menu.

6/19:  The Chelsea in Fairfield is takin’ things back to ‘Nawlins with food and drink specials, mon cherie.  This is all in celebration of Marc Broussard hitting up Fairfield Theatre Company that day.

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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

Taste of Westport: a night of food + drinks to raise money for CLASP

21 Apr

Taste of Westport is back with their annual fundraiser that directly benefits CLASP, a nonprofit that provides homes and services for adults with autism and developmental disabilities.  This year there’s an amazing variety of restaurants and drink providers including spots in Westport and all over Fairfield County.  The event happens on 5/1/14 from 6-9 pm at Westport Inn right in Westport.  Tickets are $75 prepaid via PayPal or by contacting Robin at (203) 226-7895 or $80 at the door.  Once there, taste some food, drink some wine, sip on some cocktails, and try to win some of the great silent auction items that are up for grabs.

Here are 26 delicious reasons to come to Taste of Westport this year:

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Kawa Ni: Bill Taibe to Open Japanese Pub with Pan-Asian Flavors at Bridge Square Market in Saugatuck

27 Mar
Chef Taibe is outstanding in his field...

Chef Taibe will be opening his third restaurant shortly…you ready?

Update: Kawa Ni is now open and here’s our review!

We saw the news a couple of weeks ago from LeFarm:  “Signed…”  A slew of comments, congratulations, and demands for answers from hungry fans lit up their Facebook page.  Signed what?  Autographs, Declaration of Independence, soul to the devil, or a lease to a new place?  Yes, the latter…but what kind?

Some of the gyoza Chef Taibe devoured in Osaka…

Well, we got our answers when Chef Bill Taibe shared some insights with us into his new spot, soon to be the third restaurant in his arsenal of Westport hotspots.  A name?  That’s in the works now, but he does say that they are close to coming up with one, “Japanese for sure,” he promises.

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Best of the Gold Coast 2014 Voting Is Now Open…Plus, Win Big!

17 Feb

Now open for their 10th year of voting, Moffly Media’s Best of the Gold Coast contest is ready for your votes!  Just login or register if you’re a n00b then you’re ready to pick your favorites in tons of food categories and other categories such as clothing, jewelry, things to do, education, fitness, beauty, bridal, home, kids, pets, music, retail services, and automotive.  Once you get your votes in you can then enter their contest, too, to be one of 5 winners who will win two VIP tix to the Best of the Gold Coast party (we had a blast last year) on July 24? from 7-10 pm at the Hilton Stamford.  Plus, you’ll also win dinner for two one of five previous winners:  Bartaco of Darien or Fairfield, EOS of Stamford, Dinosaur Bar-b-que of Stamford, Rowayton Seafood of Rowayton, or Harvest Wine Bar of Greenwich.

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Taste of Stamford 2014: Culinary Tour of the City that Works

12 Feb

 

As if the great deals of Stamford Winter Restaurant Weeks weren’t enough, the Stamford Chamber of Commerce is giving hungry people even more reasons to visit Stamford. You got it people, it’s the 21st Annual Taste of Stamford!  This year’s event is on 2/27/14 at the Stamford Marriott and goes from 5:30-8:30.  Tickets are $50 if you pre-pay by ordering here or will be $60 at the door.  Money raised from Taste of Stamford will go to the Kids Our Future Trust Fund formed by the Chamber to bolster educational programs in Stamford Public Schools.  

Now, let’s give you the details on why this night is gonna rock yo world:

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Where to get some liquid courage this Valentine’s Day – Fairfield County

6 Feb

Cask Republic beer by the fire

Let’s face it, Valentine’s Day can be a nerve-racking holiday.  If you’re single, you either long for meeting the love of your life, or you’re filled with hatred that such a ridiculous holiday even exists.  Who the heck is Hallmark to tell you what to do anyway?  If you’re just dating someone, it’s super awkward. What gift says “I like you” in a sweet, awwww inducing kind of way, and not in a creepy “I want to meet your mom and have your babies kind of way”?  And if you’re in a serious relationship, you might feel bored and uninspired, desperate for some romance to spice it up.

Yep, Valentine’s Day can be tough…unless you loosen up and have a few drinks. Single and want to hit on a hot girl?  Have a couple drinks. Single and want to forget this day even exists?  Have a couple drinks.  Dating and want to tell your date you love them for the first time?  Have a few drinks.  In a serious relationship and want to tell your partner you like handcuffs and furry costumes in the bedroom?  Errr…well…have a lot of drinks.  Either way, we gotcha covered with a sampling of some of our fave places to get your drink on in Fairfield County this Valentine’s Day.*

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Fine Food for a Cause: Benefit Dinner for Stamford YMCA and Children’s Health

15 Jan

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As adults, we can pick and choose what kind of food we’d like to eat. Maybe we eat healthy all week, but decide to treat ourselves once a week. Or, maybe we get a few quick take out meals because we’re just so busy. But, there are plenty of people in the world and even here in Fairfield County who don’t have much of a choice.  Time after time, studies have shown that lower-income families often purchase unhealthy food because it’s cheaper, easier to access, and keeps everybody in the family fed.  Unfortunately, these fatty, processed, and preservative laden foods lead to obesity and major health problems.  And, nowhere is this more seen than with children who are growing, developing, and are incredibly susceptible to obesity.

Lots of people have taken stands on this issue such as Michel Nischan of Wholesome Wave who fought tirelessly to let food stamps work (and work better) at farmers’ markets. Lawmakers, too, are taking steps to kill off trans fats, and make school lunches healthier too.  And, there is also a group of people, restaurants, and organizations that are coming together to help out locally, too. You can be a part of this just by simply attending Fine Food for a Cause at the Palace Theatre in Downtown Stamford on 1/27 starting at 6:30. The night of music, food, awards, a live auction, and celebrity guest appearances all will be in place to help raise money for the Stamford YMCA. With the money raised they will bolster their youth development and healthy living programs and build a youth/teen wing.  The center of this new extension to the YMCA will be a teaching kitchen that will be used to help teach healthy and nutritional cooking techniques and recipes to teenagers and families.

Tickets for Fine Food for a Cause are $150. And there are different levels of sponsorship for individuals and businesses, too, if you’d really like to get more involved.

Now, onto the night itself…

We’ll be there and we hope to see you there, too.  Even if you can’t make it, consider a donation or helping out with a sponsorship.

Fine Food for a Cause

Date: 1/27/14

Time: 6:30 pm

Place: The Palace Theatre

Address: 61 Atlantic Street

                 Stamford, CT

Full 3 Day Recap of the 2013 Greenwich Wine and Food Festival (We’re Still Full)

7 Oct

Greenwich Wine & Food Festival Collage 2013

Because of prior commitments, we were only able to attend the Grand Tasting at last year’s Greenwich Wine & Food Festival.  So, after having a great time at that last year, we vowed to hit up every event this year…and we did!

Thursday’s kick-off party was held at Miller Motors in Greenwich and featured wine, cocktails, finger food, and lot of goodies up for auction to help benefit the Hole in the Wall Gang.  We learned a great deal about the charity that Paul Newman founded to give children with disabilities a chance to attend a great summer camp and met some great people.

And, then there was Friday’s Grand Tasting (see our complete album with descriptions here).  This year’s event was in a bigger tent, so there was lots of room to stroll around and go from table to table.  This event was amazing and featured some of the best chefs from NY and CT including Michael William Batt from Food Design Catering, Rui Correia from Douro, Clifford Crooks from BLT Steak, Eric Gabrynowicz of Restaurant North, Bryan Gilmore of 121 Restaurant, Frederic Kieffer of l’escale, Michelle Klem of CakeSuite, Fritz Knipschildt of Chocopologie, Eric Korn of Good Life Gourmet, Tim LaBant of The Schoolhouse at Cannondale, Debra Ponzek of Aux Delices Foods, and Bill Taibe of LeFarm and The Whelk.  There was a nice variety of wine, plenty of great top shelf liquor, and even lots of sweets and coffee to wind the night down with.  We finally had the chance to meet Chris Barrett and Brianna Pennel from Steam, so that made us very happy.  And, we got to meet and talk with Raphael Palomino, owner and culinary brain behind the amazing Sonora and the newcomer to Greenwich, Bistro Latino.  We also finally had the chance to meet Graham Elliot who became part of the auction by offering up not one but two exclusive experiences at his new restaurant in Greenwich, Primary Drink & Food.

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Westport + Weston, Greater Valley, Milford, Fairfield, West Haven, and Connecticut Restaurant Weeks Info and Listings

27 Sep

Restaurant weeks are about exploring new places, trying new restaurants, and saving mucho dinero.  Lucky for us, there are always restaurant weeks here in Connecticut.  In October, alone, there are 6 special weeks.  So, let’s look at all the restaurants that are taking part in the Westport + Weston, Greater Valley, Milford, Fairfield, West Haven, and the statewide Connecticut restaurant week.

Westport + Weston:  9/29/13-10/12/13

Lunches for $10 or $15, dinners for $20 or $30

23 participating restaurants (info here)

323 Main Restaurant & Bar ($15/30), Acqua Ristorante ($15/30), Arezzo Ristorante ($15/30), Artisan ($15/30), Blue Lemon ($15/30), Cru Restaurant & Lounge ($15/30), DaPietro’s ($15/30), Matsu Sushi ($15/30), The Mumbai Times ($10/$20), Pink Sumo Cafe ($15/30), Positano’s Trattoria ($15/30), Post 154 ($30), The Red Hen at the Westport Inn ($15/$20), Rive Bistro ($15/30)Rizzuto’s ($15/30), Sakura Japanese Restaurant ($15/30), Spotted Horse Tavern ($15/30), Tabouli Grill ($15/30), Tarantino’s ($15/30), Tavern on Main ($15/30), Tarry Lodge ($15/30), Tengda Asian Bistro ($30), Terrain Garden Cafe ($15/30)

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