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Sunday
Apr072013

Harvest Wine Bar Opens in Downtown Greenwich

Harvest Wine Bar, located on the lower end of Greenwich Avenue, elevates the restaurant offerings in downtown Greenwich to a much higher level. The Sigueza brothers, Vicente and Kleber, can now add another fantastic restaurant to their portfolio, which includes Cave Wine Bar in New Canaan, Scena Wine Bar in Darien and 55 Wine Bar in Fairfield. A beautiful casual dining space in the front area is dominated by a large brick wall and accentuated with wood tables and chairs.  You can continue walking to the rear of the restaurant and enjoy the long bar or tables, all with views through the large west-facing windows lining the entire rear wall of the restaurant.

Overseeing the kitchen is Chef Eben Leonard who is migrating from Scena Wine Bar where CTbites enjoyed his creativity and culinary talent on numerous occasions. His opening menu combines aspects from southern Europe, with a modern twist, to American classics.

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Saturday
Apr062013

Block Party @The Westport Playhouse: Food Trucks, Shake Shack, Beer & More..

Westport Country Playhouse will host a “2013 Season Kick-off Block Party,” on Saturday, April 13, 4 to 7 p.m., offering a fun, party-like atmosphere with food trucks, special ticket offers, and a look at the Playhouse’s “backstage experience.”  Admission is free and open to the public.

Three local food trucks, Skinny Pines Pizza, LobsterCRAFT, and Christophe’s Crepes, will be on site with their specialties available for purchase. Beaver Beer will provide a free tasting of their brews, and Shake Shack will offer complimentary custard.

“To celebrate our 2013 Season, we’re throwing open the doors to the theater and offering self-guided tours, special insight into this year’s five productions, and fun games and activities for adults and kids alike,” said Jennifer McCool, Playhouse community engagement coordinator. “Come party with the Playhouse!”

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Saturday
Apr062013

Voting Open for Caryn Stabinsky as Best Pastry Chef @ Food & Wine

Food and Wine Magazine is honoring one of Fairfield County's own with the nomination of elm Restaurant's Caryn Stabinsky as Best Pastry Chef - East Region. The magazine called Chef Stabinsky’s Carrot cake with walnut brittle and caramel ice cream a “Quintessential Dessert.”

For the many CTbites' readers who have marveled at her creative genius, now is the opportunity to show your admiration. Until 5PM on this Monday, April 8 Food and Wine has opened the voting to the public. Just follow this link http://www.foodandwine.com/the-peoples-pastry-east and cast your vote for one of our favorite pastry chefs, Caryn Stabinsky, of elm Restaurant in New Canaan.   

After voting, head over to elm and enjoy some of the most incredible desserts that you will taste anywhere, anytime.

Friday
Apr052013

Butchering Classes at Stone Barns Center

"Have you ever wondered where the tenderloin is on an animal, what the taste difference is between a leg of lamb and a lamb chop, or what to do with a bone-in shoulder roast?" Sharpen your knowledge and skills in understanding meat with Stone Barns two upcoming classes focusing on lamb and pig butchering led by butcher and writer Adam Danforth. For more information and to register, visit Stone Barns Center.

April 9Break it Down: Lamb - "Butchers sometimes say that once you learn the cuts of a lamb, you’ll understand any animal. Learn about all of the cuts on a lamb, how best to prepare them, and participate in a taste test."

 April 16Break it Down: Pig -  "Pigs are well-known for being used from "nose-to-tail." Fortify your butchering foundation, and taste the difference between the different parts for yourself."

Member adult $67.50
adult $75.00

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Friday
Apr052013

Friday Froth: Bouncing 'Round The Room

A while back, I was reading about the defenses ostensibly neutral Switzerland has constructed around its countryside. Mountainsides rigged for landslides, underground fortresses capable of protecting most of the population, alpine meadows, dotted with cows, under rocky peaks which would rotate away and send forth squadrons of attack aircraft from interior runways - the punctual, predicable Swiss were capable of some pretty heavy surprises. There's a part of the Jura mountains with a nickname I like: "Franches Montagnes": the Free Mountains, which holds another surprise, beer from Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes. 

An import this exotic is, of course, the work of Oxford, Connecticut's own B. United, which is how I had several pints of BFM's La Douze. "Douze" is French for "twelve" - from the Latin "duodecim" and giving us our word "dozen" - and was brewed for the BFM's twelfth anniversary. The best categorization I can offer for this one is a Belgian Pale Ale. Douze is an unassuming golden color and had a light head as it was poured when I encountered my first pint. There is a light floral aroma, but it's very subdued. Richness - that's what comes through on the first taste. The ethereal essence of Belgian yeast floats its bouquet above a surprisingly toasty body. 

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Friday
Apr052013

Chef Michael Lucente Launches Barcelona's New Menu in Greenwich

In search of my culinary Dulcinea, I heard there was a new "cocinero" in the town. So, instead of hopping on a faithful nag, I got in my fickle Mini Cooper and headed to the Greenwich Barcelona for the culinary offerings of new head-chef, Michael Lucente. Chef Michael comes to Barcelona after 10 years of experience, starting as a graduate from the Culinary Institute of America. He has been Sous Chef at BLT Steak in Westchester and Napa in Stamford and head chef at La Promenade des Anglais in New York. He had the exciting opportunity to Sous Chef on Iron Chef America in April of last year and joined Barcelona Greenwich in November. Greenwich, you're in luck. And so are Barcelona patrons everywhere as the revamping of Barcelona's signature menu is making tapas-cravers everywhere muy feliz.

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Thursday
Apr042013

Dan Aykroyd Coming to Total Wine in Norwalk This Saturday

Actor, musician, writer and now distiller Dan Aykroyd will be visiting Norwalk, Connecticut on Saturday, April 6th 2013. Total Wine & More will host Dan Aykroyd for a bottle signing from 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Aykroyd, known for his work on Saturday Night Live and in films including Trading PlacesGhostbusters and Driving Miss Daisy, has been involved with producing and distributing wine and spirits for more than seven years. He recently created Crystal Head Vodka (view hilarious promo here) as a result of his fascination with the supernatural. The super-premium vodka is made with water from a deep aquifer in Newfoundland, Canada, blended with selected grains for a creamy and slightly sweet finish, and triple crystal filtered through Herkimer diamonds, which, according to New Age belief systems, embody positive energy and goodwill.

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Thursday
Apr042013

GIVEAWAY!! 10 FREE Tix To Connecticut Chili Classic 2013

Wanna eat some of CT's best chili for FREE?

The Connecticut Chili Classic, presented by Craft Butchery, is around the corner. On Sunday, April 14, 2013 from 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM, 25 chili lovin' teams will compete for the title of Best Chili in CT. Local celebrity chefs Bill Taibe, Brian Lewis, and Michel Nischan will help judge the event alongside the popular vote of the guests in attendance. Info here.

CTbites is GIVING AWAY 10 FREE TICKETS to The Connecticut Chili Classic. HOW TO WIN?? Just post a comment anywhere on CTbites before April 12th, and mention the Chili Classic. We will randomly select 5 winners to get a pair of tix. Good luck!! 

Thursday
Apr042013

The Local Meatball Food Truck Rolls into Fairfield County

There is a new food truck on the block in Fairfield (well, not so much food truck as in food car – Smart Car to be exact).  The Local Meatball is rolling into town and making its debut this Saturday, April 6th, dishing out meatballs on the Town Green in Fairfield, made with local, organic ingredients.  Meatballs, a comfort food of many, no longer need to be served over spaghetti to complete a meal.  The Local Meatball is proving these balls stand great on their own!  

Wanting to share his passion for meatballs with the town, chef and Fairfield resident Michael DiStassio started The Local Meatball.  “Meatballs are such a simple idea, but they resonate with so many people,” says DiStassio.  The Local Meatball was revealed online on March 9th, National Meatball Day and “People have been so responsive to the idea,” added DiStassio.  

Working from his grandmother’s recipe, DiStassio has tweaked it slightly to come up with a variety of 5 different kinds of balls that will rotate weekly. 

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Wednesday
Apr032013

CTbites Awarded Best Website & Best Blog by The Connecticut Press Club

We are pleased to announce that CTbites has been awarded the distinction of Best Website in CT as well as Best Blog (for profit) by The CT Press Club. This honor is a testament to the dedication of the hard working group of foodies that makes up the CTbites writing team, and to you, the community for supporting us as we eat our way through CT.

This year, The CT Press Club divided the Best Blog & Website categories into 2 segments, "Corporate/ For Profit" & "Personal," so we would also like to congratulate our friends at OmNomCT for winning Best Personal Blog.

It's been a good year for food in CT. Carry on brave diners.