Sign Me Up!

Sign Me Up For:

Our Sponsors





Our Partners


Search CT Bites
Our Sponsors


We Wrote A Book!

Entries in Beer (203)


Friday Froth: A First Look At The Hops Company in Derby

I was running late early on a Sunday afternoon when the obligatory traffic jam on I-95 caught me like doomed comet streaking toward the Sun and sudden annihilation. It took the sight of a wrecked Ferrari to remind me I'd forgotten my car. I was driving, yes, but the car I'd forgotten - like the aforementioned comet - was set in motion by gravity, not gasoline. Jack's Abby was hosting a pine car derby at The Hops Company in (quelle apropos), Derby, and I'd planned on making the campaign of my old car from Cub Scouts the B-story to this column. The lapse in memory had left me momentarily enraged until I remembered I'd just seen someone's red F430 Spider completely taco'd by the rear bumper of an 18-wheeler. Score one for perspective. 

The Hops Company is the work of Umberto Morale, who spent his early life in his native Rome before coming to the U.S. and bouncing between the restaurant scene, college, and Wall Street. He had the vision of an inclusive, German style beer hall in his head, and looked at properties all over the state before seeing the location in Derby and signing immediately.

Click to read more ...


Little Pub Opening in Fairfield on Black Rock Turnpike @ Dolan's Corner

If the "EXPECT BIG THINGS" train station platform signs or the Little Pub "adopt a highway" sign by exit 23 weren't enough of a hint, Owner, Doug Grabe, is happy to confirm that Little Pub is in fact coming to Fairfield's Dolan's Corner this summer.

Located at the intersection of Stillson Avenue and Black Rock Turnpike in Fairfield, "Dolan's Corner" was the original hub of Black Rock Turnpike's thriving business district and home to various incarnations of the Angus restaurant for almost 70 years. Grabe told CTbites,

"It's a cute and cozy building in a perfect neighborhood for Little Pub and we’re really looking forward to serving the community. And besides, how could an iconic Fairfield address known as "Dolan's Corner" not have a neighborhood pub?"

Little Pub Fairfield will share the traditional old world charm of our other little pubs with thick plaster walls, hand hewn beams, and antique iron light fixtures. "We have some really great stuff planned and of course, fun is mandatory," Says Grabe. 

Stay tuned for interior photos and opening news as the renovation gets underway. 

Click to read more ...


Rothbard Ale + Larder: Westport's European Gastropub

Rothbard Ale + Larder opened in Westport last November, the second restaurant by Chef Adam Roytman and his business partner, Joseph Farrell. The pair also own Walrus + Carpenter in Bridgeport. Roytman and Farrell’s original idea was to recreate a German beer hall, but as the concept of the restaurant progressed, the vision was slightly modified to design a restaurant that would offer comfort food based on the regional cuisines of central Europe including Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Alsace, Switzerland, with an occasional side trip to Italy.

Access to Rothbard is a throwback to a 1920's speakeasy, with its unassuming side entrance leading to the lower level. Once inside, you are surrounded by a central European ambience, with its reclaimed wood and brick walls and cement and metal beams protruding from the ceiling. To the left of the entrance is a bar with several high-tables plus nine stools in front of antler-topped beer taps, plus a refrigerator that houses up to 45 traditional and unique European beers including Einbecker, Tripel Karmeliet, Del Ducato, Christian Drouin and Abbaye. Wine, aperitifs, an array of Schnapps and Absinthe are also available. With low-lighting illuminating the entire space, the atmosphere is very European gastro-pubbish.


Click to read more ...


Barrel House in Stamford: Pizza, Beer and Burgers 

What is the result of combining an incredible selection of local beers, a wide choice of meats and vegetables to join delicious Mozzarella and red sauce atop a great pizza crust, with an atmosphere that is simultaneously relaxed and exciting? Barrel House in Stamford.

Barrel House opened last December in the space that formerly housed Market and Patrizia's restaurants with a focus on pizza, burgers and and a vast array of local small brewed beers. The second restaurant by the owners of Cotto Wine Bar down the street, Claudio and Silvy Ridolfi, designed a very different atmosphere and menu. Silvy told CTbites, “We wanted people to come to Barrel House and enjoy pizza and burgers with friends.” From the moment you walk through the door, you know this will be a lively and fun-filled experience.

Click to read more ...


Recap: Kent Falls Brewing Visits Little Pub in Ridgefield

This March only marks a year since Kent Falls Brewing Company released their first beer, and somehow it doesn't feel too early to call them "renowned." The Litchfield County operation has already become one of Connecticut's most productive, releasing 37 different beers and variants in their first ten months. That level of output is preposterous, and all the more remarkable not just due to the high volume of recipes, but for their excellence. Small wonder then, that Little Pub in Ridgefield chose to host the Kent Falls crew for a rare beer pairing dinner event early this February.  

Click to read more ...


Friday Froth: The Tale Of The Commodore from Ballast Point

Hello! Welcome back to Friday Froth, 2016 edition: the semi-weekly beer column eagerly awaited by literally tens of people. This week, as in most weeks, I will start off with discussion on a topic which has nothing at all to do with beer. Continue reading at your own peril. 

I have a friend who moved to Germany because of a girl. I think we can all agree emigrating from the country of your birth to one across a large ocean whose language you don't speak while relying on an intimate interpersonal relationship for success and happiness with no fall-back plan usually works out perfectly, and I'm sure you'll all be relieved to learn that has been precisely the case with him. If anything, he has more hair on his head than when he left - a fact about which we can all be magnanimous, and definitely not introduce small amounts of arsenic into the care packages of American peanut butter and bourbon whiskey we send him, because we are not envious monsters. 

Click to read more ...


Friday Froth: Beer CONN Comes To Bridgeport

Two sessions, fifty breweries, and over a hundred different beers - the second annual Beer CONN poured all day and into the night in Bridgeport. Separate afternoon and evening sessions and a limit on the number of tickets sold maximized elbow room and kept things easy just over the ice in the arena.

Out of state breweries like Stone, Shiner, and Jack's Abbey were represented, but the focus of the one day beer fest was on beers from the Constitution State. I attended the second session, which was not without surprises, including Brewscuits: dog biscuits made from spent grain used in brewing, and the Growler Getter, from Woodbridge, Conn. - a hard plastic tote capable of holding two 64oz. growlers, or three 32oz. growlitos. 

Click to read more ...


The Blind Rhino Sports Bar Opens in South Norwalk

When I hear “sports bar,” I think lots of big screen TVs, beers, burgers, wings, nachos, anything to go with my Jets or Giants jersey. The Blind Rhino, recently opened in South Norwalk on Main Street just north of Washington, is undoubtedly a sports bar, with 27 big screen TVs, shuffleboard, darts, and jerseys adorning the walls. At the same time, it has elevated the cuisine with impressive menu items, an array of craft beers and a variety of whiskeys.  Many sports bar staples are still on the menu, but with a twist!

Owner /Chef Jamie Pantanella oversees the cuisine.  He has worked in restaurants and catering all over New England for the past 22 years. His most recent restaurant experience includes The Brewhouse and Gingerman SoNo.  At The Blind Rhino, Pantanella hones his years of experience to offer his “highlight reel.”

The menu is not large, but each item is thoughtful and flavorful.  “While having sections like wings, appetizers, soups, and sandwiches seem to be par for the course, having items like Togareshi Dry Rub Wings, Cider Braised Pork Belly Sliders, and a Sliced Ribeye Cheese Steak is exactly how we want to take the dining experience to the next level,” says manager Casey Dohme.

Click to read more ...


Friday Froth: It's Porter Season...Here's What To Drink

I won't be mad if you tell me you don't like porters, but I will be disappointed. This is mainly because it robs me of the opportunity to order taster samples of this imperial, and that oatmeal version, and - oh man, you have to try this sour Baltic one... until you are half drunk from slamming six two ounce servings of 9% alcohol beer in four minutes, and the bartender hates us both. I am enthusiastic in my love for porter beers, and I want to share that joy. Being a pasty Irish dude, I am a natural ally of the darker, colder months, and the necessary extra layers of clothing work well in disguising the extra layers of me which come from downing 500-calorie pints two at a time. 

You may notice something funny going on with the names of several of the beers we're looking at this week, after that intro so, first, a quick bit of knowledge: all stouts are porters, but not all porters are stouts. If you'd like to do a deep dive on the subject, you can do worse than this.

Click to read more ...


9 Events to Check Out for CT Beer Week

Connecticut Beer Week has officially begun, and CTBites is here to bring you a sampling of events and other news of note. This week is a celebration of both beers made in Connecticut, and the restaurants and bars who help our small state be such a big part of the national beer scene. 

The hashtag for searching on social media is #CTBeerWeek, and a further list of events can be found here. Many links to further events and information are included below, and please let us know in the comments if there's anything we may have missed. 

1. Kent Falls Debuts Shruggie - Kent Falls will drop its brand-newest IPA, Shruggie (¯\_(ツ)_/¯) this week, starting in Litchfield on Nov. 18. Kent Falls calls this part of their "bartender interaction series." I may have agreed to order one through interpretive dance. Their next event will be at J. Timothy's.

2. Get Beer'd - J. Tim's will host a Beer'd Brewing tap takeover Nov. 17, including Elihue, This Side Of Paradise, and Midnight Oil.

Click to read more ...