The Porchetta Burger: Bareburger Debuts Its James Beard Winner

Restaurant Burgers Comfort Food Stamford Ridgefield Lunch

Lou Gorfain

Now, as an adult, card-carrying carnivore, I’m still leery of burger extenders, be they crumbs, flour, veggies or any other manner of filler.  So when asked to review Bareburger’s Porchetta Burger, half ground pork and half wild mushrooms, I approached the assignment with some hesitation.   Fifty percent filler?  No beef?  No red-pink medium rare interior when I cut into the patty?  No juices oozing at first bite?  Likely no deal.

At the Harbor Point location, I asked the kitchen to cut the Porchetta sandwich in half, so I could check the interior before biting in. To my surprise, the patty looked remarkably like a medium rare beef-burger. Traditionally the pork is wrapped about other savories, but in this version, the pork (wild boar sourced from Fossil Farms in Boonton, New Jersey) is ground in-house, then mixed with chopped wild mushrooms and seasonings (fennel, garlic, and rosemary).

Pub Fare Extraordinaire at Inishmor Pub in Colchester

Restaurant Colchester Pub Gastropub Lunch Bar Burgers Comfort Food Homepage

Hope Simmons

Meet Alex Levere—his roots may be French and German, but the luck of the Irish is clearly smiling upon him. He grew up in the restaurant industry on the shoreline, spent some time in Europe—specifically, you guessed it, in Ireland—in his early 20s, then Boston during his college years and beyond.

“Long story short, the economy crashed, I graduated, and there was nothing really going on, so I was bartending at a place, and they offered me an assistant management job. So, I took that, then I went to manager. Then I went to general manager and, right before the place was sinking, the head chef quit, so I took over the kitchen. I was like, I know I can do this, and I did it, but it was too little, too late. And that’s when we came across this place!” Now he’s turning out some truly inventive flavors at the Inishmor Pub in Colchester.

CTbites Is Hiring! Sales & Marketing Position Available

Stephanie Webster

CTbites is expanding and we are looking for dedicated, creative sales people to help grow the business. Candidates should have some ad sales and /or marketing experience. This job allows for very flexible hours and is ideal for someone looking for part time work with the option to work full time if desired. 

We are seeking applicants in both the Fairfield County and New Haven markets. Candidates need to be highly motivated, have excellent phone and communication skills, share our passion for the food community, and be able to develop strong relationships in local communities.

Connecticut Locations Where Dining Meets Travel Adventure via CT Magazine

Restaurant Travel

Connecticut Magazine

Dining out is a treat, for sure. But let’s ratchet it up a bit, shall we? Something beyond simply tables and chairs and a room. How about candlelight dining while luxuriously cruising along a waterway or perhaps relishing something special while riding the rails on a vintage train? Or what about lingering over your meal at an airport, hobnobbing with the jet-set scene as you have a front-row seat to their comings and goings? As Connecticut savors the summer season, we take a look how you can take yourself “out” to eat and savor both the journey and the food.

TRAINS: The Chocolate Decadence Sunset Tour

Guide To Lobsterbake & Clambake Caterers in Connecticut

Restaurant Catering Entertaining Best of CT Seafood Homepage

Stephanie Webster

Steamed clams, sweet mussels swimming in flavorful broth, freshly harvested sugar corn, creamy red potatoes, maybe a tangy fruit pie to top it all off and certainly lots and lots of warm, creamery butter. Add to all of these delights, the perfect setting, some decorations and maybe some help along the way serving it up and what do you have? The perfect summer gathering and we at CTBites certainly love those. That said, we have compiled this list of restaurants, shacks, and caterers for all of your seaworthy hankerings. Grab some friends, break out the bibs and the crackers, and drawwwww that butter, baby! Get ready to enjoy summer, New England style~

Nibble: CT Food Events for Week of July 23-30

Features Events Homepage

Emma Jane-Doody Stetson

Join James Beard Award winner Chef Jeff Michaud at Terrain Garden Cafe in Westport, as he hosts a dinner celebrating our summer favorite – rosé! Enjoy a cocktail hour followed by three-courses highlighting dishes from Chef Michaud’s cookbook, Eating Italy: A Chef’s Culinary Adventure, each one paired with a glass of rosé. Ticket info here.  Reservations required. $85 pp. 

To prepare for their opening in Darien, Blue Wave Taco, (205 Boston Post Road in Darien) is giving away free chicken tacos (one per person per car) from the drive-thru window this Wednesday, July 26 from 5pm to 8pm. One lucky visitor will walk away with a free taco every day for a year!!!

On Wednesday July 26, Sugar and Olives will teach you how to make Sweet Summer Sauces.  From 7-9pm, discover how to create Caramel three ways, a berry sauce, a peach melba, and a hot fudge sauce.  Tickets are available online for $80 each. 

Breakfast Tailgate at El Segundo in South Norwalk July 28

Features Events

Stephanie Webster

Join 95.9 the FOX and First Thing Fairfield County with Ken Tuccio for the 95.9 the FOX First Thing Breakfast Tailgate Friday, July 28 at El Segundo in the Iron Works Building in SoNo. We broadcast live from 6am-10am and Tailgate 10am-1pm!

This tailgate party celebrates the summer with amazing food, great beer, fun games and live music from Karma Darwin. And best of all its FREE!

Bobby B’s Roti Shop: Authentic Caribbean in Bridgeport

Restaurant Caribbean Bridgeport Delicious Dives Homepage

Peter Dunay

I will always remember the smell of orzo pasta in a pot of boiling water with a bouillon cube and an unhealthy amount of butter that came wafting from my Oma’s kitchen. It is one of those homey scents which flashes me back to that ripe old age of four where everything was fun, fresh, and free and I was innocent and invincible. While sitting in Bobby B's Roti Shop in Bridgeport, waiting for my meal, I noticed many people walking to the doorway, stopping, and taking a long inhale which ended with a broad young smile stretched across their face. It peaked my curiosity to know what they were feeling, and they all said, “Home.” Bobby B’s is a restaurant in Bridgeport serving curries, roti, and jerk straight from the Caribbean island of Trinidad and Tobago.

The Buzz Truck Announces Sale to Source Coffeehouse

Restaurant Food Truck Coffee Tea And Coffee Fairfield Bridgeport

Stephanie Webster

After nearly five years of bringing the buzz to coffee lovers across Fairfield County, The Buzz Truck LLC. is announcing the sale of its little black school bus to Source Coffeehouse, a beloved locally-owned, neighborhood coffee shop in the heart of Black Rock in Bridgeport, CT. The new Source Coffeebus is due to hit the road by Labor Day 2017.

“The Buzz Truck was a labor of love and we know that ‘Buzzy’ will be in great hands,” said Jessica Grutkowski, co-owner, The Buzz Truck LLC. “It’s hard to say good bye, but we’re ready for a new adventure. The team at Source has tons of experience and is a natural fit to help take our concept to the next level.”

Nibble: CT Food Events for Week of July 16-23

Features Events

Emma Jane-Doody Stetson

Milford Restaurant Week returns July 17-23.  Restaurants like Plan b, Bin 100, Bridge House, Stonebridge, and Fratelli’s will offer prix fixe menus.  Dinners will be $20.95 or $27.85 and in select restaurants a prix fixe lunch menu will be offered at $14.95. 

Meanwhile, Taste of Hartford will take place from July 17-30.  Participating restaurants throughout the Greater Hartford area, like Capital Grille, Coyote Flaco, On20, and Ted’s Montana Grill, will offer special multi-course, price-fixed menus. 

Visit Bloodroot in Bridgeport for a special Ethiopian menu on Wednesdays and Thursdays, while supplies last.

Cricket Car Hop Reopens in Stratford CT: Legendary Fried Hot Dogs Are Back

Restaurant Stratford Comfort Food Delicious Dives Hot Dogs Kid Friendly Burgers Homepage

Andrew Dominick

After being closed for 13 years, a Stratford legend has returned! 

Finally, and to much anticipation, Cricket Car Hop has reemerged in Lordship over Independence Day weekend to sling burgers, fries, shakes, and foot longs once again. 

The original, which opened in the mid-1950s, closed in 2004, and was located on Main Street, almost exactly a mile away from where they are now on Access Road. Running the show at the sequel version of the popular hot dog hut is co-owner Stacy DiCostanzo—who worked as a cook at Cricket from 1980 until it closed—and her husband, Ron, who handles day-to-day general manager duties. 

Chef Geoff Lazlo's Farm Egg Thin Crust Flat Bread Recipe

Recipe Features Recipe Chef

CTbites Team

Chef Geoff Lazlo, of Mill Street Bar and Table in Greenwich has created this Farm Egg Thin Crust Flat Bread recipe as part of The Westport Farmers' Market recipe program.  

The farm egg flat bread was inspired by the beautiful eggs we raise at the Back 40 Farm in Washington, CT.  It is essentially the pizza version of a bacon egg and cheese breakfast sandwich, which is why it is perfect for brunch. View additional farmers' market inspired recipes here. 

Celebrate Bastille Day w/ Ávert Brasserie's Steamed Mussels Recipe & A Party

Features Recipe Recipe French

Stephanie Webster

Ávert Brasserie in West Hartford is celebrating Bastille Day with a festival Abounding with French cuisine, musique, dance, and myriad attractions for the whole family. This farm fête populaire invites locals to revel in the flavors, sounds, and joie de vivre of France!

If you would like to host your own Bastille Day party, here is their great recipe for Steamed Mussels with Mustard, Curry and Cream. Yum. Check it out below. 

Reasons to Love A & S Italian Fine Foods Market

Restaurant Specialty Market Take Out To-Go Norwalk Stamford Westport Lunch Prepared Food Pasta Homepage

Sarah Green

If you’re in the market for the market of markets, well - A & S Italian Fine Foods could be the market of your dreams. Owner and head chef, Albert Pizzirusso and his wife Patricia opened their latest, Italian,  Fine Foods establishment late last summer and have been purveying first class fare ever since. Along with their business partner, Erik Cohen, the Pizzirussos are working their 3rd A & S market, located conveniently on the Westport/Norwalk border, very close to Whole Foods. (The other locations include a storefront in Stamford - run by Cohen and 2 out of 3 Carcomo brothers -  and a previously owned A & S deli in Norwalk.) Why shop here? ‘Cuz the food is outstanding - ‘nuff said. But naturally, I’ll say more...

Nibble: CT Food Events for Week of July 10-17

Features News Events

Emma Jane-Doody Stetson

On Tuesday July 11, Harry’s Wine & Liquor Market invites you to “An Evening in Provence Wine Dinner Featuring Domaines Bunan” at Martel Bistro & Bar.  The $85 all inclusive meal includes five courses as well as hors d’oeuvres to start.  Feast on Braised and Grilled Artichoke Salad with Goat Cheese and Arugula, Halibut Filet with Tomato-Parmesan Crust, Seared Scallops, and more.   

July means corn! Join Chef Chris Torla of Trumbull Kitchen on July 14th as he translates the summer’s most beloved harvest into a feast inspired by the tastes of Spain. Chef Torla, who has cooked alongside Modern Latin all-star Chef Rick Bayless, will draw inspiration from both the cornfield and beyond. Enjoy a multitude of small plates as we pay homage to the golden goddess of the season.

Tickets are $99 and all-inclusive except for Eventbrite fee. By purchasing this ticket, you are also making a donation to the CT Farmland Trust.

H'Cue Texas BBQ in Derby Brings Great BBQ To The Valley 

Restaurant BBQ Derby Lunch Comfort Food Kid Friendly homepage Homepage

James Gribbon

Barbeque took a circuitous route to land in Connecticut. The root word, possiblybarbacoa, is reportedly Carib indian for cooking food on a raised grate over a fire. This, then, is Barbeque: the verb. You may hear people using the word this way as we approach the Fourth of July: "hot dogs, hamburgers, we're having a barbeque." Historically correct or not, I am not down with the verb: "barbeque" is a noun. It is meat - deeply, carefully smoked - and the goal is a harmonic balance of aroma and flavor, the joining together of fire and food.

The path to opening the new H'Cue Texas BBQ in Derby has as many twists, turns, stops and starts as the route to its spiritual home in Lockhart, Texas.

Join CTbites for Happy Hour at Terrain's Garden Patio in Westport

Features Events CTbites Invites

CTbites Team

Keep the summer party going with your hosts, CTbites and Terrain Garden Cafe, as we celebrate the warmth and beauty of the season on July 26th 5:30-7:30pm.  Enjoy the most beautiful outdoor dining space in Fairfield County while sipping our signature Endless Summer cocktails along with a selection of wine and craft beers. Appetizers include: cheese/crudite spread, melon sprees prosciutto, shrimp ceviche bites and crispy chickpea and kale chips. 

5:30-7:30 PM.  $40 pp + tax. Bring friends, relax, sip, taste and enjoy. Tickets can be purchased here.

Beloved Chinese Restaurant, Lao Sze Chuan of Milford, Opening in Fairfield!!

Restaurant Chinese Fairfield Lunch Take Out To-Go Asian

Stephanie Webster

Fairfield HamletHub reported yesterday that Jinn's Fresh Noodle House at 923 Post Road, Fairfield, CT had closed, but there is always a silver lining in the restaurant biz. This one is particularly shiny, as the most beloved Chinese restaurant in the area is coming soon in its place. Lao Sze Chuan, which already has a popular location in Milford is hands down, the place to go when craving authentic Sichuan cuisine with high quality ingredients. Lao Sze Chuan is owned by the Tony Gourmet Group, with restaurants all over the world...and now in Fairfield. 

What do we like to eat there? Read our review of Lao Sze Chuan here, and find out. Get excited Fairfield County.