Tag Archives: Moroccan

The Fez Grand Reopening Party Drops on August 15 – Stamford, CT

6 Aug

Back on May 21, we broke the sad news that The Fez in Stamford would be closed for a couple of months to further fezzify it and bring in some much-needed updates. Well, wait no more Fezavores . . . they’re just about ready to open their doors again!

And, lucky for you, you’ll only need to wait until August 15! That’s when owner Eric Monte will be hosting the Grand Reopening Party and the reveal of the made-over restaurant. On that night you’ll not only get tastes of Chef Shelby’s updated menu, but there will be live music from The Casablanca Project, The Juicy Grapes, and a few special guests. Plus, it’s also owner Eric Monte’s birthday, so it’s just gonna be a killer good time.

Continue reading

The Fez in Stamford Hosts 6 Course Starry Night Winery Dinner

15 Feb

•••

When people meet us out at events or parties, they tend to shoot right to the important question:  what’s your favorite restaurant?  That’s a really tough one to answer, especially because there are so many different kinds, price ranges, cuisines, and such…but, invariably, The Fez in Stamford is always a part of our conversation.  We’ve never had a bad meal there and people that we’ve sent on over have come back happy, satisfied, and ready for more.

If you’ve never been, we have a perfect opportunity to cozy up with this Moroccan/Mediterranean stalwart on 2/19 at 6:45:  a Starry Night Winery.  For just $69, you’ll get six glasses of wine from Starry Night Winery in California paired with some of The Fez’s favorite treats:

Continue reading

Pickle infused vodka, Fez Burger, killer fries, and avjar. Avjar? The Fez–Stamford, CT

31 Jan

Kristien’s parents, Tom and Linda, were in town and wanted to try The Fez after reading our review.  We were certainly not going to protest considering we declared The Fez our favorite restaurant in Stamford!  Again this time we were lucky enough to have Thami as our waiter. Thami is the kind of waiter you hope for at restaurant, friendly, attentive, and knowledgeable, so much that he even great he remembered exactly what wine we ordered last time and even some of the food.  And, the owner, Eric, said hi to us again.  I have to say, it was nice being back…they really make you feel welcome and make the whole evening a fun experience.

There’s been lots of talk about the infused drinks at The Fez.  First, our friend, Terri Zimmer, talked about them on FB, then Amy from ctbites.com asked us about them.  Well, I am proud to be your culinary and drinkiary ambassador.  So, I asked Eric about them.  Turns out they serve pickle infused vodka, orange blossom infused vodka, and cherry infused vodka.  I stuck with the first two in the list, though the cherry did sound good.

Well, onto the meal.  Unlike last time, I decided to switch things up and go with small plates.  I started with a very creamy hummus that had toasted pine nuts on top.  Served on the side was avjar:  a kind of salsa, only they use red peppers, some garlic, and possibly some eggplant.  A light, smoky flavor runs through the avjar.  We dipped into the hummus and the avjar with crispy (Fez) pita chips that were sprinkled with cinnamon–nice touch.  Even though this was my dish, Kristien and her parents couldn’t help themselves from stealing from me–even with dirty looks.

So, you’re probably wondering…what’s up with the pickle vodka? The waiter asked me how I wanted it and I wasn’t quite sure what to say. Then I said something I never thought I’d say, “Pickle infused vodka on the rocks please.”  Scary! Well, the pickle taste wasn’t overpowering at all and the vodka was good, though I realized that it was better to drink with food, not by itself.  The cucumber added a nice flavor when I took a bite then took a sip.  It’s worth trying, definitely!  I know my sister, Ren, used to drink pickle juice, so just consider this the adult version.

I also needed to get the Pizzet Aroub again because it was just that

amazing.  Last time I really wanted the Fez Burger, so I thought, hey, today is all about adventure so let’s do it!  This burger was really amazing.  First of all, it was cooked to a perfect medium rare.  Secondly, crispy and thin fingerling potato shoestring fries.  Damn, damn, damn.  Thirdly, we’ve got the burger, a mixture of lamb and beef.  I liked the mixture because the lamb was balanced out by the beef.  Crispy lettuce and juicy tomato lay beneath the patty and on top were some savory roasted onions and peppers, kept together with a green spiced sauce.

I also tried the orange blossom infused vodka which was quite different than my pickled vodka.  The vodka seemed much stronger with this infusion with a very subtle orangey/citrusy taste.  In a moment of pure inspiration I squeezed the blood orange on the rim into the vodka and that actually cut into the strong vodka taste a bit.  I enjoyed the pickle vodka more, actually, wouldn’t you know it?

Surprise, we ended with the briwats again.  Still a fabulous dessert that kicks baklava up a notch!  We really noticed this time a floral accent in the briwats and Thami told us it was orange blossom.  Thami also offered me a complementary port so I tried the 20 year old Tawny.  This was probably the smoothest port that I’ve ever had and I’d recommend it as a kick ass aperitif.

Before I wrap this up, I should mention that Kristien loved her sag and feta rolls that had Kalmata olives on the side and her small plate of succulent lamb chops with anchovy bread crumbs.  Tom enjoyed the meatball tagine and took any vestiges of the dish home to Upstate NY.   Linda enjoyed the chicken stuffed with feta and peppers that came with a side of cubed sweet potatoes–one of the specials that night.  As you see, Kristien was asked to come up and dance with Adina, their very sweet belly dancer!  I was actually hoping Tom or Linda would go up and dance!  I would have loved to have seen that and would have recorded it for all of you to see.  Sorry, next time maybe? ;)

Noms:  4.5

Cost:  $$$

 
 
The Fez
Address:  227 Summer Street
Stamford, CT 06901
Phone:  (203) 975-0479
Site:  http://thefez1.com

The Fez on Urbanspoon

Experience the divine trinity: Amazing food, wine & music – The Fez, Stamford

21 Nov

We’ve walked by The Fez several times since they opened this past summer uttering the words, “We have to try that place someday.” But it always seemed that when we had the chance, we’d say, “Hmm, not sure I’m in the mood for Moroccan food.” Now we know, that was a BIG mistake.  With their large and eclectic menu of snacks, small plates, and entrees inspired by a variety of flavors across the Mediterranean, there is something absolutely fabulous for whatever mood you’re in.

So no point in writing this huge blog post to work my way up to our final verdict. Let’s just get it out there now. The Fez is officially our favorite restaurant in Stamford to date with 4.5 noms. Yep, it’s that awesome. Here are the many reasons why:

Upon entering we were immediately struck by the amazing smell of  Mediterranean spices. One quick look to the left revealed the specials of the day on a little chalkboard. Walnut and currant glazed lamb chops with mushroom gnocchi caught my eye. Wow, I’d never seen such a unique combination.  A glance over the left revealed a small bar, intimate little tables, colorful Moroccan decor, and a small stage area for their vast array of nightly entertainment. We knew right away we were in for a great experience.

I know I’ve said this before, but we had an incredibly hard time choosing what to order, to the point where we were asking each other if we were hungry enough to eat six different dishes! We expressed our indecision to our first waitress, to which she offered up the owner and resident wine expert, Eric, to help us choose the perfect dishes and the perfect accompanying wine.  Meeting Eric was a very nice experience–pleasant, passionate, and smart. He informed us that the wine list isn’t up-to-date because they can’t keep up with his thirst for discovering and purchasing new wines, especially from Lebanon and South Africa. Love it! We let him take the reins on recommending a bottle based on our taste. He popped open a California blend that I didn’t love. His response? “No problem, I want you to love the wine, and if you don’t we’ll keep trying options until you do.” The next bottle was ‘the one.’ A medium-bodied blend from Lebanon, the 2007 Reserve du Couvent by Chateau Ksara had forward fruit flavors and a slight spiciness. The perfect pairing to what we were about to enjoy.

Danny and I started off by sharing two phenomenal dishes from the “snacks” section of the menu. The caramelized cauliflower with brown butter sauce, golden raisins, and pine nuts was a delicate and flavorful fusion of French and Moroccan flavors.  I typically don’t like cauliflower, but this was perfecto! Then, we thoroughly enjoyed the Pizzet Aroub, where Italy meets the Middle East– a unique combination of soft and perfectly sweet braised onions, sumac, olive oil, and pine nuts. On to the main dishes. I HAD to order the special I mentioned earlier–walnut and currant glazed lamb chops with mushroom gnocchi. Words cannot explain how intensely delicious this dish was. Perfectly cooked lamb (just under medium), slightly sweet and oh-so savory currant sauce, glazed walnuts, and hand-made gnocchi from the Bronx with an earthy mushroom sauce was one of the most fantastic flavor combinations my taste buds have enjoyed in a long time.  Danny ordered the grilled seven spice sirloin with tomato jam and fingerling potatoes. The sirloin was also fantastically seasoned and perfectly cooked at medium-rare, and the flavorful, but not overpowering, tomato jam was the perfect complement.  We then ended with Moroccan coffee, spiced with cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom and the Briwats for dessert, which is basically an Israeli baklava but not as teeth-hurtingly sweet. It was quite delicious!

After sharing our enjoyment with our very friendly and knowledgable second waiter, Thami (who happens to actually be from Morocco), he informed us that before they even opened they had a French chef from a 4-star hotel in Dubai and a Moroccan chef working together to craft and test this perfect menu… and perfect it was.

And, to finish off this divine trinity was the entertainment. We we were lucky enough to be there on a Friday night, which is belly dancing night (as is Thursday). Around 9:00 the beautiful Moroccan music suddenly became louder, then a roar from the diners as the beautiful and smiling Adina danced her way around the tables. I was impressed by her skill level.  And she didn’t just dance up there on the stage for the world to adore her. She also came out to the tables and had a great time dancing with a few willing diners. In fact, when she saw me dancing in my seat a little (I can’t help myself), she came over and wisked me up on stage to dance with her. Of course, after eating all that food, I thought I was going to die, but it was a blast.

By the time we left we discovered that we’d been there for 2.5 hours! The time just flew by, and despite the line of people hoping to get in, they never once rushed us to leave.

Reservations are not just recommended, they are pretty much required on the weekend if you don’t want a long wait.  And be sure to check them out on the weekdays too since there’s entertainment every night, including jazz bands, turntables, and singer/songwriter night (last week they had one of Paul Simon’s guitarists playing).

So no more “not in the mood for Moroccan” excuses, The Fez is a MUST-DO for everyone!

Noms:  4.5

Cost:  $$$

 
 
The Fez
Address:  227 Summer Street
Stamford, CT 06901
Phone:  (203) 975-0479
Site:  http://thefez1.com
 
 

The Fez on Urbanspoon

%d bloggers like this: