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Sunday
Jan132013

Rustico Trattoria: Traditional, Tasty Italian in Westport (sponsored post)

Wherever you are from, a meal at RUSTICO is like coming home. From the kitchen of Chef Miguel Angelo D'Onofrio, exquisite and thoroughly Italian dishes are only a heartbeat away. This family owned and operated establishment has been open for a year showcasing Chef Miguel's talents and passion for Italian cuisine. 

Chef Miguel was born in Brazil and his mother is from Spain, but he is all ITALIAN on his father's side and these roots run deep. From traditional recipes, handed down from generation to generation yet modernized by Chef Miguel's creativity, a meal at RUSTICO is a delicious culinary experience. Using only the highest quality meats and fish - no hormones or antibiotics of any kind - and sourcing only the freshest ingredients, Chef Miguel prepares each dish to perfection. For 25 years he worked as an executive chef in Connecticut and was most recently co-owner of Finalmente Trattoria, also in Westport. Now in his own space he prepares dishes that originate from the passion that is Italia, RUSTICO is an extension of Chef Miguel's history.

The menu here represents the soul of the Italian kitchen. Come for lunch and try the PASTA e FAGIOLI - a true Italian classic- made with fresh, short tube pasta, cannellini beans and garlic. This Italian staple is comfort food Italian style, and Chef Miguel does comfort right.

Another lunchtime favorite is the MELANZANE GRATINATE, grilled eggplant topped with fresh mozzarella in a refreshing tomato sauce. Lunch or Pranzo classics also include several fresh PANINIS as well as soups, salads, fresh pastas and meat dishes. This is the perfect lunch location whether you are a busy business person in search of a meeting spot or just a group of friends looking for a great lunch locale.

The Cena, or dinner menu is more extensive and includes many of the chef's favorites.  Start, perhaps, with a glass of your favorite wine and the PEPERONE RIPIENO, sweet peppers are roasted to perfection and stuffed with spicy Italian sausage and sweet Gorgonzola, then baked and finally basted with a Balsamic glaze.

Next, enjoy the specialty of the house, the ORICHIETTE TOSCANA, the pasta dish that is a local favorite. Fresh Porcini mushrooms and speck are sautéed with fresh figs, artichokes, garlic and Parmeggiano Reggiano and then tossed in black truffle paste. With the tiny pasta cups as the perfect vessels to hold the mouth-watering sauce, this pasta masterpiece is a must. Other pasta choices include the exotic BLACK TIGER (with fresh black linguine, tiger shrimp, tomatoes and arugula in a white wine sauce), FETTUCINE di AGNELLO (with lamb meatballs and fresh mint in a tomato sauce), and other traditional LASAGNE, RAVIOLI or GNOCCHI dishes.

For meat lovers, RUSTICO offers a variety of Italian specialties including a wonderful OSSOBUCCO TOSCANA.  This OSSOBUCCO (Italian for "bone with a hole") follows the traditional Milanese recipe with the addition of tomatoes. Veal shanks are braised to fall-off-the-bone perfection, and cooked with vegetables in a red wine broth. RUSTICO serves the OSSOBUCCO with a saffron infused risotto to soak up the delectable potage.

Another favorite is the SCALOPPINE di VITELLO TARTUFATTO. Thin filets of veal are topped with Prosciutto di Parma and seasoned with sage and truffle paste and finally glazed in a Pinot Grigio sauce. VEAL CHOPS, CHICKEN and STEAK are also available, served with the chef's creative flair.

Chef Miguel is more than happy to accommodate diners with special dietary needs. Rustico's kitchen offers a thoughtful menu to enable Gluten-Free dining without compromise, and Gluten-Free pasta is available every night. 

At RUSTICO, you feel that you are part of the family. Leave your busy lives behind and take a culinary trip to Italia. Benvenuto e buon appetito!

Rustico Trattoria 1431 Post Road East, Westport. 203.292.9638

Rustico Trattoria on Urbanspoon

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Reader Comments (19)

"Sponsored post" means this is really an ad? And here I thought everything on this blog is unbiased

January 13, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterwestportfoodlover

You are correct on both fronts. 1. Everything on CTbites is completely unbiased. 2. Due to reason #1, we mark any paid content with 'sponsored post" so this is clear. However, is this case, we were very pleasantly surprised when we visited Rustico. The food is quite good. Check it out.

January 14, 2013 | Registered CommenterStephanie Webster

the food is not good at all. Looks good, but its not.

January 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterdiane harrick

I disagree. We have been eating with Chef Miguel for years and his food is consistently good.

January 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPatricia

I feel a line has been crossed. Ads are fine, and reviewing an advertiser is fine. Let us, however, recall that one of these photos was used recently in a giveaway contest. Let us also note, and I think this is what's troubling some folks, that the FORMAT of this grand advert is identical to all your other content, excepting "sponsored post" disclaimer.

Methinks, in conclusion, that selling ads is fine, and also that reviewing those advertisers is fine with no need to note the association. To utilize your standard review format for an advertised product is crossing the line.

As for the quality of the food, it's been quite awhile since I pretty much stopped expecting anything from Italian restaurants around here except for the magnificent Lianna's Trattoria (unsponsored post:)

January 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterrealguy

I think these sponsored articles in the identical format of your regular pieces truly compromises the integrity of your website. Many people truly rely on your reporting- and it is very easy to miss the sponsored disclaimer. It's a rel real disappointment.

January 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

Thank you all for your thoughtful comments. As CTbites grows, we will be testing out various formats for advertising opportunities on the site. We recognize, party due to your feedback, that this type of sponsored post needs to be more clearly called out as such. You can look forward to improvements in this type of "advertorial" in the future, and we will continue to include our readers as key sounding boards in this process.

Our reviews are based entirely on merit, and editorial integrity is our highest goal at CTbites. Again, we appreciate your thoughts on this.

January 14, 2013 | Registered CommenterStephanie Webster

Interesting that my comment was just deleted regarding charging restaurants for their reviews. Why was my comment deleted? Also, can you clarify on whether or not you offer paid reviews. Let's see how long this post lasts.

January 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSaturnalia

Never heard of this place before - what does sponsored post mean? Was the review written by them or you? I would still love to win tickets to the Mohegan SUn Winefest!!!

January 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKellie

Perhaps another spot on the CTbites home page would be more appropriate...like on the side with link to an article for those who want to read more. I agree that featuring advertorials as lead article is confusing and not what is expected from CTbites.

January 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterfriendlyfoodie

@ Saturnalia- CTbites has been from inception a purely editorial site driven by a passion for food. Our policy has to always been to review restaurants without their having any knowledge of our presence, and we have never accepted money for any review. This would go against everything we stand for. The CTbites team works tirelessly to create the content we bring to you, our readers...and largely without pay.

As part of our expansion in 2012-2013, advertising has been added to the site, and this is what you are seeing in the "sponsored post." This content is generated in unison with our advertiser, and the post is marked as such. As I said earlier in this thread, we are working to make this more transparent to our readers based on your feedback, and you will note changes in upcoming paid posts.

Let's move on...shall we?

January 14, 2013 | Registered CommenterStephanie Webster

You people are rediculous babies. This website has led me and I'm sure many of you complainers to some of my favorite spots in FFC...allow them to make a buck or two in the process. Sponsored Add was a pretty clear sign of what was happening here, skip the post if you don't like it.

January 15, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterstopwhining

Has there ever been a negative review of any restaurant on this site?

January 15, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

Look at the CTbites About Us statement. They do not post restaurants that would require a negative review. We've been here before....

January 15, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterreally??

I love Italian food! I also love wine. Would love to win tickets to the ct Mohegan sun wine fest!

January 15, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJen c

I think the post was clearly marked as sponsored - it's in the actual title. This is a great site, and I wouldn't have found some local favorites without it. And the owners of the website have bills to pay, families to feed, etc. I get the need to advertise, and as long as it's transparent I don't see the issue.

OK - and I'd love to win the Mohegen Sun Winefest tickets!

January 16, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

Never heard of this restaurant, but the dishes look amazing! Will have to try it --- hope to win some Mohegan Sun Winefest tickets, please!!!

January 18, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKellie

These dishes would be awesome after a day of wine tasting at the Sun Winefest. Hope I get the opportunity to go.

January 19, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSara S.

We eat a great deal of Italian food all over Fairfield County.....to be perfectly honest--- the food at Rustico is mediocre, at best.

January 28, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTST

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