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Entries in dessert (159)

Sunday
Jul132014

Best Local Ice Cream Shoppes in Lower Connecticut: 2014 Edition

We have expanded and updated last year’s popular roundup of the best ice parlors in lower Connecticut.  

New flavors abound for 2014.  One of our favorite scoop shops melted away, but thanks to our readers, we found a truly magical hidden gem in an unexpected place.  Here's the updated list of BEST LOCAL ICE CREAM PARLORS IN LOWER CONNECTICUT. 

Ice cream fans, don't miss our companion piece, the 2014 Edition of BEST DAIRY FARM ICE CREAM IN CT.

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Tuesday
Jul082014

Uncle Leo's Not Just Coffee & Donuts in Redding

A top secret doughnut recipe, a father and son business, and a dozen or so different types of doughnuts and New York-style bagels mean that mornings in Georgetown just got that much better, thanks to the arrival of Uncle Leo’s “Not Just” Coffee and Doughnuts.

Norwalk residents Leo Spinelli III (age 22) and his father Leo Spinelli, Jr., recently opened Uncle Leo's in the heart of Georgetown, at 19 Main Street, in the former Swirl Ice Cream location. The shop is a second coming for the father and son and the familiar Spinelli surname, who previously owned Spinelli’s Not Just Bagels in Norwalk that closed in 2009.

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Sunday
Jun292014

Romanacci Cafe in Norwalk: A Slice of Roma with a Casual Flair

It is a unique place that can transform itself from a casual, family friendly lunch and dinner spot to a young and hip late night stop after a dinner of popcorn at the movies.  Romanacci Cafe (which translates as “From Rome”) on the Norwalk-Westport border is such a place, offering Artisan pizzas, salads, Focaccia paninis, crepes and freshly made Italian pastries. 

Tucked into a strip center on the Post Road, Romanacci is the handiwork of two brothers, Graziano and Maurizio Ricci.  Both hail from Rome, where they attended culinary school and worked alongside their parents as well as in other family-run restaurants.

Graziano migrated to the US almost 18 years ago and eventually oversaw the kitchen in New Haven’s Hot Tomatoes. He subsequently convinced his younger brother, Maurizio, to join him as its maître d’, and they finally chased their dream of owning a restaurant. When the owner of Norwalk’s Osteria Romana decided to sell his business, the brothers decided to purchase the restaurant with the intention of bringing a younger attitude and clientele to complement Graziano’s fresh pastas, breads, and sauces. Osteria Romana continues to thrive with a loyal and regular crowd, outdoor seating and a cozy bar area. 

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Sunday
Jun222014

Connecticut's Best Dairy Farm Ice Cream: 2014 Edition

With summer finally here, we have updated and expanded our annual roundup of the best dairy farm ice cream in Connecticut.  

You can’t get closer to farm fresh ice cream than tasting it at farm.  Not only do you see the cows, you whiff them, and that aroma is part of the authenticity of the experience, if not the charm.  Sure, these farms aren’t close by.  But WTD.  They’re “Worth The Drive”   And worth the lick: usually the freshest, creamiest, and most flavorful retail ice cream available in Connecticut.

While Chocolate and Vanilla remain cash cows, dairy farms also offer a greater array of flavors than you’ll find at parlors or in the supermarket freezer case.  In fact, farmers have begun to rival restaurant chefs for sheer inventiveness and culinary dairying-doo.

So, for your and your family’s guilty or innocent pleasures, we submit our favorite cow-to-cone  ice creams …

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Thursday
Jun052014

Doughnut Day: Best Doughnuts in Fairfield County & Beyond

Friday June 6 is National Donut Day! Yes, it's an actual holiday... it started in 1938 and has been celebrated on the first Friday in June ever since.  Back then, making doughnuts proved a complicated ordeal, with people resorting to wine bottles as rolling pins and metal tins as cutting edges.  Today, however, several CT restaurants have made doughnuts an art form.

As a Stamford resident, I constantly heard people talk about the legendary donuts at the Lakeside Diner.  Their rounds are neither ornate nor revolutionary.  Instead, the old-fashioned donuts taste just like something Grandma would have pulled out of the oven.  The classic cake recipe has a dusting of granulated sugar that pleases children and adults alike.

On the other side of the spectrum, Orangeside of New Haven eschews tradition and bakes up SQUARE donuts.  It started out as an exercise in frugality; traditional round cutters proved expensive and the square shaped reduced the amount of scrap dough.  However, the original design became an instant hit, even recognized by Saveur Magazine as one of the top 50 donuts in the United States.

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Monday
May262014

gingerbitz Bakery Opens in New Canaan: A Sneak Peek

“gingerbitz” is opening its doors in what owners Andrew and Karen Zuckert call the store’s “dress rehearsal” and CTbites and Hearst Connecticut Media Group were invited for a sneak peek and sample several of Karen’s delicious creations.

Described as a bakery and café, gingerbitz is a welcome addition to New Canaan, which has yearned for a local bakery for many years. The longtime dream of New Canaan residents Andrew and Karen Zuckert, gingerbitz represents years of dedication. Karen is well known within Fairfield County for her amazing gingerbread houses that have graced many mantles, as well as featured at numerous holiday festivals. When the opportunity arose to open a bakery in town that would “broader showcase Karen’s talents,” the couple jumped at the opportunity. They painstakingly and meticulously renovated the location, developed relationships with vendors to provide organic products and Andrew embarked on his search for the perfect coffee.

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Thursday
Apr102014

Passover Macaroons & Soufflé Cake Recipes via Tabouli Grill

Passover begins April 14th as does the hunt for new and exciting crowd pleasing recipes for your Passover table. We found some excellent selection in the recently pubished e-book, 4 Bloggers Dish: Passover, Modern Twists on Traditional Flavors," but in case you still need a few more dessert options for your repertoire, here are the recipes for Macaroons and Chocolate Soufflé cake from Chef Judy Roll of Tabouli Grill. 

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Sunday
Apr062014

The NEW Versailles Bistro & Patisserie in Greenwich - From the Owners of Méli-Mélo

Almost a year ago, without notice or forewarning, a “For Sale” sign appeared on the window of Versailles Restaurant in Greenwich. At 6:15AM the following morning, Marc Penvenne was driving his usual route down Greenwich Avenue to his restaurant Méli-Mélo when he saw the sign. A few months earlier he started looking at several locations to open a second restaurant and now Versailles was available; he now knew the perfect location. Twenty years earlier, Penvenne was the manager at Versailles and left to open Méli-Mélo with his wife, Evelyne. Now, Marc and Evelyne are the proud owners of both Méli-Mélo and the re-invented Versailles Bistro and Patisserie.

When you enter the reimagined restaurant, the front area is a patisserie, complete with white marble-topped tables, bistro chairs and glass display cases filled with tantalizing pastries. Behind these cases is a coffee bar, serving some of the best café au lait in Greenwich. In the rear, the patisserie opens to a restaurant with bistro style dark wood tables and chairs plus a long leather lined banquette. The walls are adorned with photos of Paris and framed French posters dating from the first half of the 20th century.

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Saturday
Mar292014

Sono Baking Company Opening Darien Shop on Tokeneke Road

The Sono Baking Company is expanding their bakery mecca and opening up shop in Darien. This Sono institution has just signed a lease for a new shop at 49 Tokeneke Road. The Darien location will feature a cafe serving grab-n go-items as well as a full espresso bar to accompany their wide selection of baked goods, cakes, pastries, cookies and artisan breads. A selection of lunch offerings are also on the agenda, but that is still in the works. Owner John Barricelli says "We hope to be open by the middle of July 2014."  We hope so too. Who doesn't need a good espresso?  

The Darien outpost will be Sono Baking Company's 2nd satellite location beyond the Norwalk mother ship bakery and retail store. 

The Sono Baking Company 49 Tokeneke Road, Darien CT. 

Sono Baking Company and Cafe on Urbanspoon
Monday
Mar102014

Bonnat & Pralus Venezuelan Chocolate Tasting Re-Cap

Spending Valentine’s Day with your sweetheart is fantastic, tasting and learning about great chocolates with your sweetheart is even better. While many were eating at restaurants, enjoying romantic dinners at home, or enjoying a concert or sporting event, a group of chocolate novices and enthusiasts met at Olivette Oil in Darien and were educated on the finer points of high-end chocolates by Analiese Paik, trained chef, chocolate aficionado, and Editor of The Fairfield Green Food Guide.

The table was pre-set with five different chocolates, a rating card and a flavor wheel. Normally, the chocolates would have disappeared in a nano-second but the group was instructed to sit and relax. Analiese presented an incredibly detailed and comprehensive overview of the process that converts the bean pods of the Theobroma cacao (“food of the Gods”) tree to chocolate. All of the chocolates that we would sample were from Venezuela and included Bonnat Puerto Caello, Bonnat Chuao, Bonnat Hacienda El Rosario, Pralus Venezuela, and Pralus Chuao.

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