The Food Network sent CTbites' Amy Kundrat on a mission to select the quintessential dishes throughout the state of CT. Here are her picks for classic CT eats.
Though its New York neighbor gets more culinary street cred, Connecticut is a hotbed of local flavors, including a local take on the lobster roll, collegiate-level ice cream and coal-fired, clam-topped pizzas that lure fans from around the world to the Nutmeg State.
White Clam Pizza
Few other pizzas are as revered as Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana’s white clam pizza. Pepe has served its charred and chewy pizzas since 1925 on New Haven’s historic Wooster Street. The elder statesman of New Haven’s well-regarded pizza scene, Pepe’s continues to draw long lines trailing down the block for a chance to enjoy a taste of New Haven’s history from its coal-fired brick ovens. The clam pie, in particular, has inspired hundreds of imitators with few matching the intoxicating combination of Romano cheese, fresh garlic, olive oil, parsley and clams. Combining the Connecticut shoreline’s love of seafood with Pepe’s signature chewy and charred crust, Pepe’s is the place for an authentic Connecticut pizza experience.
Family-owned lunch counter Ted’s Restaurant is home to one of Central Connecticut’s specialties, the steamed burger. Ted’s has served its famous version of the steamed cheeseburger since 1959. Each is hand-packed and cooked using a custom-built steam cabinet. But the burger doesn’t become the famous Ted’s Steamed Cheeseburger until the beef is topped with its molten-cheese partner in crime. A 2-ounce block of cheddar cheese is also steamed, then poured over each burger, encapsulating the patty in an envelope of cheese. Rather than fries, Ted’s serves crispy home fries, with — you guessed it — steamed cheese.
Go to: Ted's Restaurant