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Sunday
Jan042015

Lunch @ The New Harvest Wine Bar in New Haven

The New Haven outpost of Harvest Wine Bar is the fifth restaurant for siblings Kleber, Nube, and Vincente Siguenza, the the trio behind Cava in New Canaan, 55 Degrees in Fairfield, Scena in Darien, and sister restaurant Harvest Wine Bar in Greenwich. CTbites reviewed the Greenwich location almost a year ago, and many of the same culinary observations apply to this newly opened New Haven outpost on Chapel Street. I stopped in recently to experience the restaurant’s $19 two-course prix fixe lunch, perhaps one of the best downtown lunch options among New Haven’s fine dining restaurants.

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Sunday
Jan042015

Weekly Nibble: Vegetarian Wednesdays, Healthy Cooking Classes, Whole Foods Events & More

Good news. Walrus & Carpenter in Bridgeport is now open 7 days a week! Enjoy their infamous fried chicken, smoked meat and burgers, 365 days a year. 

Vegetarian Wednesdays are back at The Schoolhouse at Cannondale January 7th - March. Check out the first menu here. 

This year’s edition of WestportREADS centers on Dubliners by James Joyce.  CTBites will hold a dinner series in conjunction with the event.  “Dine Around Town: Dublin” kicks off with Terrain on Tuesday January 6 at 7pm.  

Sugar & Olives “Vegetarian or Bust” cooking class Wednesday January 7th, 7-9pm.  They’ll teach you how to make hearty vegetarian meals like quinoa paella and farro and risotto.  $80 per person.  

Friday January 9, Half Full Brewery in Stamford invites you to one of their famous open houses!  For just $15, enjoy open taps while playing corn hole and life-sized Jenga.  Feel free to bring your own food! 

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Friday
Jan022015

"Veggie Wednesdays" Are Back @ The Schoolhouse at Cannondale in Wilton

After the holidays it's time to get off to a great start in 2015 at the Schoolhouse at Cannondale Restaurant in Wilton, CT. Based on customer requests, they will again be offering Vegetarian Wednesdays. These meatless dinners will be offered each Wednesday begining JANUARY 7 and extend through MARCH! The 4 course prix fixed menu will be provided at a very reasonable price of $40. excluding tax & gratuity. 

Menu for January 7th can be seen below....

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Wednesday
Dec312014

Top 10 Wines of 2014 from Barcelona Wine & Spirits Director, Gretchen Thomas 

It’s been an intense year of traveling (I visited Spain five times!), tasting, and learning. And with our various locations in other Eastern US cities, I’ve been given the chance to taste limited wines that are exclusively available in their respective states, which, if anything, has reminded me that understanding wine is a giant task for those who don’t work in this field. After spending so many years devoted to tasting and learning about wines, I can still be surprised, impressed, and sometimes completely blown away. There are always new (to me) grapes varieties, regions, farming and vinifying techniques, and I’m sure next year won’t disappoint me with a chance to discover something else unknown and worth it. Since I am closing up my 2014 tasting journals and looking forward to a new year of “explore-a-tasting,” I am sharing the 10 most striking wines I tasted for the first time in 2014.

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Tuesday
Dec302014

Top CTbites Stories From 2014

From restaurant openings (and closings) to memorable food-centric events and a slew of our own guides and top ten lists, we trolled our analytics to bring you the most widely read stories from 2014. Take a trip down memory lane, or use this opportunity to catch up on some great articles you may have missed. Here are the Top Stories of 2014.  

Guides & “Best Of” Connecticut Food Roundups

The Best Tacos In Connecticut: The Ultimate Guide 

15 Great Spots for Happy hour in Fairfield County 

Top Ten Burgers From Greenwich To Westport: Part 1

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Saturday
Dec272014

Connecticut Magazine's "Experts' Picks" & Readers' Choice Dining Awards

Get ready to bite into the restaurants judged the best of the best in Connecticut by the "experts" from Connecticut Magazine, who range from veteran restaurant critics and food writers to contemporary bloggers who track the trends—and hottest, newest places—along with cookbook authors and even a former restaurant owner. And to make sure the state's hottest food destination (Fairfield County, of course) was well represented, our friends at Connecticut Magazine reached out to CTbites for key input.

Altogether, with some food savvy Connecticut Magazine editors sprinkled in, it's a group for which dining is a passion—and dining at the best places is an art that takes constantly having a collective finger on the pulse of the Connecticut dining scene.

Taken together, Connecticut Magazine's Readers' Choice Dining Awards and its Experts' Picks feature make for a beautiful January magazine, as they also provide a comprehensive view of the state's tastiest places to eat well.

Click, enjoy and let us know if Connecticut Magazine got it right:

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Thursday
Dec252014

CTbites Staff & Chef Picks for TOP EATS OF 2014

In terms of eating, the CTbites team of writers, photographers, and chef friends have managed to sample and savor more than most. 2014 has been a stellar year for restaurant openings as Fairfield County and the surrounding areas continue to draw great culinary talent.  Instead of coming up with a top ten list ourselves, we asked the CTbites extended family to share some of their most memorable meals and dining experiences this past year.

Here are our favorite meals and restaurants of 2014. 

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Wednesday
Dec242014

WestportREADS The Dubliners: Dine Around Town Dublin-Style in January

WestportREADS, sponsored annually by the Westport Library since 2001, is once again underway, this time with some of the best fiction ever written in the English language—Dubliners by James Joyce. Help celebrate the 100th anniversary of this classic book in January, which is full of exciting and thought-provoking programs related to the book, Dubliners by James Joyce. WestportREADS is funded by Jerry A. Tishman.

In conjunction with this event, CTbites is co-hosting a curated dinner series, “Dine Around Town: Dublin,” offering the opportunity to dine and sample many traditional and delicious Irish inspired dishes; Irish Beef Stew , Guinness Glazed Short Ribs, Filet Mignon Shepard’s Pie, Wild salmon Marinated in Irish Whiskey, in a private setting with local chefs and in their local restaurants.

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Tuesday
Dec232014

Holiday Flip Cocktail Recipe via Sean Nye of Match in SoNo

Looking for the perfect Holiday Cocktail recipe for your festivities? Sean Nye has mixed up a little something special for CTbites, from his new post, behind the bar of Match in South Norwalk. 

Sean hails most recently from Walrus & Carpenter, as well as Bodega and South End in New Canaan. Jusy sayin...the man knows how to make a drink. 

Enjoy this truly delicious recipe for the "Holiday Flip" made with Applejack Brandy, cardamaro and nutmeg. And if you're simply too tired from opening presents, just go order one at Match.

Holiday Flip Cocktail Recipe

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Sunday
Dec212014

VESPA Opens in Downtown Westport with Italian Inspired Fare 

Here's the buzz- VESPA (Italian for WASP) has arrived in Westport, so get ready for the sting. Perfectly situated on the corner of Post Road and the Saugatuck River, the brand spankin-new haunt from Westporter Bobby Werhane and his partner Kevin Lalumiere of Experience Hospitality Group shares its patio space with Bar Taco and nuzzles up snugly to the water's edge. VESPA is the group's second local restaurant (NEAT opened recently, right across the lot) and it's poised for success. 

We were invited to a "friends and family" soft opening where we enjoyed a large cross section of the very approachable and creative Italian inspired menu, prepared by Werhane's allstar kitchen team. Executive Chefs, Brian Reilly (Greenhouse Tavern and Noodle Cat) and Craig Wallen (Spasso and sous chef at Gramercy Tavern) work alongside Pasta Chef, Laura Bonechi (Jean-George's The Inn at Pound Ridge), and, by the way...her hand-rolled pasta is seriously crave-worthy. 

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