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Entries in Burgers (88)

Thursday
Aug182016

Little Pub Opens Today in Fairfield on Black Rock Turnpike

The Little Pub you know from Ridgefield, Wilton and Cos Cob is opening its fourth location in Fairfield at the intersection of Stillson Avenue and Black Rock Turnpike. This spot has some history as it housed the Angus restaurant for over 70 years. Owner, Doug Grabe says "It's a cute and cozy building in a perfect neighborhood for Little Pub and we’re really looking forward to serving the Fairfield community."

"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," says Grabe. In fact, the team re-purposed over 80 vintage beams from their Cos Cob renovation. A massive stone fireplace serves as the focal point for the main dining room, alongside some wonderful pub decor, including a vintage telephone booth.

What is unique to Fairfield is its size. The dining room is over 50% bigger than Wilton, with 130 seats. Grabe says "The bar alone is bigger than our entire Ridgefield footprint." 

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Friday
Jun242016

Burger Review: Prime Burger in South Norwalk

Are you looking for an inexpensive burger for lunch? Maybe some fries and a soda to join the burger? If they are all offered as a lunch special, even better. With my obsession with burgers, and my annual Best “10” burgers in southwest Connecticut behind me, I decided to try the moderately priced, newly opened Prime Burger in SoNo. Located next to The Spread, one of my Best “10” burgers, the SoNo location is the second in the area, after the original opened in Ridgefield several years ago.

Prime Burger offers beef, salmon, turkey, chicken and veggie burgers from $6.50-$8.00 with free (sauces, onion, lettuce, tomato, etc.) and $1.00 toppings (cheese, chili bacon, etc.), a la 5-Guys. The menu also includes hot dogs, grilled cheese, chicken tenders and salads (you can add a patty or grilled chicken). If you enter from the street your journey begins near the rear, where you place your order. I ordered the $10 lunch special, which included a cheeseburger, fries and a beverage.

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Sunday
May292016

2016 CTbites' Best "10" Burgers in Southwest CT

HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY AND HAMBURGER MONTH

The thermometer reads 90-degrees, the trees are in full bloom, the birds are chirping and the air is filled with the fragrant aroma of backyard grilling. It must be time for my Annual CTbites’ Southwest Connecticut Burger Review, now celebrating its 5th anniversary.

This year I again took a slightly different approach. Over the years I have rated, and continually update, every burger I eat in CT on a scale from 1-10. To achieve the highest score, the bun-to-bun experience needs to be flawless; meat, cheese, toppings, sauce, and bun, all must work in absolute unison. There are currently thirteen incredible burgers that received a perfect “10.” From two east coast interpretations of the west coast double-double, to a food truck creation served on an Ube bun to several with bacon-onion jam, all of these burgers were spectacular. The 2016 list includes six new burgers while four from last year's list did not make the cut. The final rankings from the the Winner to number thirteen take into account not only the burgers but also the fries or chips.

Here is the CTbites' list of the Best “10” Burgers in Southwest Connecticut.

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Thursday
May192016

Burger Report: Chef Geoff Lazlo's Burger at Mill Street Bar + Table

Mill Street Bar and Table opened in the Byram neighborhood in Greenwich last October, the brainchild of Executive Chef Geoff Lazlo in partnership with Bill and Leslie King, who head up the organic-centric Back 40 Group. Many in Connecticut know of his work with Bill Taibe at The Whelk in Westport, but his roots with organic gardening and cooking with the finest bounty of the season goes back to his love of gardening and his introduction to the use of these ingredients with Alice Waters at Chez Panisse, Michael Anthony at Gramercy Tavern, and Dan Barber at Stone Barns.

While the Executive Chef at The Whelk, his burger received my “Best of…” in 2013 and with his newest adventure firmly established in the Fairfield County culinary landscape it was time to see if his newest creation was as great…IT WAS!

Chef Lazlo’s latest rendition is the “8OZ PASTURED BEEF BURGER,” described on the menu to include house-made mustard, aioli, Cheddar cheese, served on a potato-brioche, and served with hand-cut fries.

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Tuesday
May032016

HAPA Burger is Creative, Bold and Delicious 

Almost a year ago I visited Hapa Food truck and ordered three tacos. Little did I know that the smiling face of owner Chris Gonzales, who prepared those delicious tacos was hiding an incredible talent of delivering bold, balanced and creative cuisine. After I finished the tacos he told me I needed to try the burger. I was too full at the time and told him I would come back. Shame on me for waiting a year. Since that time Hapa has developed quite a following and Chris recently opened Miro Kitchen in Fairfield, and a colleague who visited Miro told me it was fantastic.

Well…fast forward and I recently returned to Hapa for the burger. The smiling face of Chris was replaced by an equally smiling and friendly face of his wife, Nicole. I ordered the HAPA burger with fries and she asked if I liked Brussels sprouts, of course I do.

The HAPA burger consists of grass-fed beef topped with pork belly, Vermont cheddar, caramelized onions, lettuce, tomato, house aioli, encased in HAPA’s signature ube bun.

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Friday
Apr152016

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.

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Thursday
Apr072016

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. 

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Tuesday
Mar222016

Rothbard Ale + Larder's Patty Melt Extraordinaire: Find It In Westport

The patty melt was introduced at Tiny Naylors in California in the late 1940s and since its debut, it has experienced an intense and loyal following throughout the country. Described by some as the love child of the grilled cheese and the hamburger, it is, at its essence a pair of beef patties, melted Swiss cheese, grilled onions, all served between slices of buttered-griddled rye bread.

The Patty Melt at Rothbard Ale + Larder is a traditional interpretation with a few nuances. Two small patties were grilled and served between slices of buttered and griddled rye bread with caramelized onions, bacon, and melted Jarlsberg cheese. The bread was cut on the diagonal, and nestled inside each half was a mini-patty, smothered in its accompaniments. The thin patties were cooked to medium, still maintained a pink interior and were rich in flavor. The Jarlsberg cheese was thick, beautifully melted and delivered a wonderful level of creaminess and a deep, rich nuttiness. The caramelized onions were outstanding, sweet and soft from their low and slow preparation and when it intertwined with the mildly salty bacon delivered an incredible balance. People nervous about the bread versus bun…no need to worry, the buttered and griddled bread added great crunch and a delicious salty-butter flavor.

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Sunday
Mar132016

Zakarian's "Ugly Burger" at The National in Greenwich is a Beautiful Thing

There is a new King of the Hill of hamburgers in Greenwich.

Since celebrity chef Geoffrey Zakarian opened The National several months ago at the lower end of Greenwich Avenue, I have received numerous emails telling me about its burger. On a sunny day I ventured to Greenwich, grabbed a table and ordered “THE NATIONAL UGLY BURGER” which includes Cabot Cheddar cheese, crispy Shallots, Ntl Sauce, and served with malt vinegar chips. I ordered it medium-rare.

The burger arrived and it was served on a wooden cutting board, with a pickle speared through the top of the bun. The melted cheese was oozing around the edges, dripping towards the serving board. The sautéed shallots were peeking from under the cheese, partnered with the edges of a single lettuce leaf. If the taste was as good as the presentation, this would be a great burger. The burger was accompanied by the chips that were vertically arranged in a separate metal vase.

 

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Sunday
Mar062016

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.

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