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Monday
Oct142013

Food Highlights from The Greenwich Wine + Food Festival

VIEW JFOOD'S PHOTO GALLERY BY CLICKING ABOVE IMAGE

What a great day at the Greenwich Wine + Food Festival presented by Serendipity Magazine wondering around the grounds, sampling food and wine from 100 different restaurants and wine shops, chatting with chefs, owners and fellow food lovers and listening to the chef interviews in our CTbites’ Blogger Lounge. Fairfield County chefs were well represented and each did our little neck of the culinary world proud. It is impossible to go through each of their offerings but several deserve individual shout outs. [VIEW MY PHOTO GALLERY HERE] In alphabetical order:

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Sunday
Oct132013

Sneak Peek at Greenwich's Golden View Firenze

The culinary landscape in Greenwich expands with the recent opening of Golden View Firenze at 249 Railroad Avenue with its owner, chef and menu direct from Florence, Italy. For many years Tommaso Grasso, owner of Golden View Open Bar overlooking the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, visited friends in the US and they recently convinced him to bring his upscale cuisine and vibe to Greenwich. He persuaded Italian chef Francesco Casu to join him from Florence, and the two have created a traditional and authentic Tuscan menu.

Entering the restaurant, you immediately feel the European influence in the décor. The sleek black and white tables and chairs were imported from Italy and the walls are all adorned with paintings also imported from Italy. The entire space has an inviting European hip ambience and is spacious for the forty guests who will dine on traditional Tuscan cuisine. The entire rear of the dining area is dedicated to the stainless steel kitchen with a Chef’s Counter for four lucky guests.

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Saturday
Oct122013

Muffin Tin Meals: Chicken Pot Pie, Turkey Meatloaf & Zucchini Leek Baked Noodles Recipes

Crisp fall days are upon us, and if you’re like most people, you’ve let go of that lazy end of summer vibe and are now into full-on rush mode.  Too busy for dinner?  Think again… We have you covered with these delicious, warm, could-even- be-eaten-for-breakfast muffin tin meals.  These tasty little bites are a snap to make, freeze beautifully, and are the perfect dinner or snack for your hungry posse: Chicken Pot Pie, Zucchini & Leek Baked Noodles, and Turkey Meatloaf. Your family will thank you.

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Friday
Oct112013

Come On Down to Westport’s Oktoberfest Biergarten on the Green Oct.19th

A chill in the air…days getting shorter…colorful leaves swirling….Welcome to October and the Westport Downtown Merchants Association’s 2nd annual Biergarten on the Green on Saturday October 19th 1:00-5:00 pm. Meet under the big tent on historic Veteran's Green right in downtown Westport, CT and sample some of the finest, award-winning local, national and international craft and micro brews.

A mini tasting mug will be provided for samples from breweries such as Blue Point on Long Island, Goose Island from Chicago, East Coast Brewing from New Jersey, and Beaver Beer from right here in Westport.  The Shock Top beer car will be back with the tap in the trunk and the Mohawk of wheat on the roof.   New breweries are added every day. 

Seasonal food such as knockwurst, bratwurst, pulled pork and chili will be available for purchase. The food experts from CTBites will present chefs from Tavern on Main, and The Spreaddemonstrating ways to pair the beverage of the day with delicious food; and the Zany Oompah Band will be back performing all the classics: waltzes, polkas and drinking songs for sing-a-long and dancing! 

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Thursday
Oct102013

Picador 2.0 Opens in New Canaan

More culinary changes are occurring in New Canaan as Picador Restaurant on Elm Street was recently purchased by Ray Rivera, former Food and Beverage Manager at The Hyatt, and Leo Gaspar the owner of New Canaan’s Club Sandwich. Rivera and former owner Alan Basaran (owner of New Canaan’s Carpe Diem Restaurant) have known each other for years and a conversation eventually led to the Rivera and Gaspar purchasing the site.

The pair immediately hired Chef Corey Falcone, who was previously the chef/owner of Bella Luna, one of Stamford’s favorite Italian restaurants. This partnership culminates years of discussions between Rivera and Chef Corey who wanted to work together in a small restaurant. Rivera summed up his four year search for the perfect venue and cuisine, “I’m thrilled about our restaurant being on Elm Street in New Canaan and presenting international fare plus steaks and chops. Corey is excited to use his talents to fuse Spanish and Italian flavors and he is a master of the grill.”

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Thursday
Oct102013

Wine, Whiskey and Craft Beer Tasting @ Stew Leonard's

Join the wine specialists from Stew Leonard's Wines of Norwalk as we celebrate harvest season with an October Wine, Whiskey and Craft Beer Tasting!  More than 50 wines and beers will be featured, as well as a special Compass Box blended whisky tasting, and a menu of seasonal fare freshly prepared by Stew Leonard’s culinary team.

The event takes place on Thursday, October 24, 2013 from 6:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. at Stew Leonard's food store, located at 100 Westport Avenue in Norwalk.  Tickets are $40 per person and all proceeds will benefit The Norwalk Exchange Club, which will use the funds raised to benefit local community organizations in the City of Norwalk.

Stew Leonard's Wine specialists have hand-picked a selection of more than 50 wines that complement the flavors of the fall harvest season. 

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Wednesday
Oct092013

Blogger Lounge Video Highlights: 15 Chefs & Industry Pros Talk Shop @ The Greenwich Wine + Food Festival

Hosting the CTbites Blogger Lounge at the Greenwich Wine+Food Festival has to be one of our fondest and possibly the most fun collaborations we've been a part of in our three years of eating, writing, photographing, interviewing, and convening chefs and restaurateurs for CTbites.

There is so much to share, so much to cover, so as a bit of a teaser of that excellent day, here are some video snippets of the great action from Saturday's Blogger Lounge. We will be sharing full interviews, our own coverage, and our fellow blogger coverage over the coming weeks, so stay tuned.

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Wednesday
Oct092013

Fork It Over Recap: Bill Taibe Transforms "El Whelk" for WFM Fundrasier

CLICK ON IMAGE ABOVE TO LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY

As the 3rd Fork It Over fundraising event for The Westport Farmers’ Market approached this past Sunday night, one could only wonder...what next? Market Director, Lori Cochran, and her team of chefs had served up 1) an old fashioned outdoor clam bake and 2) a 198 pound Pig, but what for round 3, and who would be the mystery chef? 

The early Sunday morning email revealed a promising location (The Whelk), but more seafood? Not so much. The Mexican straw hats and pinatas gave it away. We were crossing the border. The Whelk had been transformed into El Whelk and we were all in for a night of tacos, tequila, and tripe soup. [VIEW IMAGE GALLERY HERE]

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Tuesday
Oct082013

Lolita Cocina to Reinvent Itself As Rouge Brasserie & Oyster Bar in Byram Greenwich

This just in from CB5 Restaruant Group...

In true cb5 fashion, the global restaurant development group that’s been creating cutting edge, high concept places for eating and drinking and whatever, is making a bold move over the next few weeks. Their goth-meets-Mex restaurant Lolita, located in the Byram neighborhood of Greenwich, CT, will undergo a transcontinental transformation, morphing into a French Brasserie. But, not just any brasserie. The new spot will be named ROUGE Brasserie & Oyster Bar and will be a throwback to cb5’s original claim to bistro fame dating back to 2003.

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Tuesday
Oct082013

Recap: Community Plates Food for All 2013 Fundraiser = Foodie Heaven

I was officially stumped.  After driving up and down Fairfield Avenue, all I saw were seemingly abandoned industrial buildings and parking lots.  Where on earth was the Community Plates fundraiser?

“It’s wayyy in the back,” a friend texted me from inside the event.  We turned the car around and headed to the parking lot we had first pulled up to.  We slowly began following it back toward the water.  After about a tenth of a mile, we could just make out the figure of a man motioning us into a parking space.  Still skeptical, we climbed out of the car.  We spied a couple in fancy attire and followed them to a long, dimly lit building.

Once inside, the space was anything but.  Colorful art adorned chic white walls.  Music pulsed as blue lights dimly illuminated a sprawling room.  People in chic clothing mingled in small groups, cocktails in hand.  We’d found it.

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