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Entries in Lunch (198)


Rizzuto’s Italian Kitchen in Stamford

Rizzuto’s Italian Kitchen opened in Stamford this past November as the fourth location in Bill Rizzuto's casual Italian dining concept. With restaurants already in Bethel, Westport and West Hartford, tireless and engaging owner Bill Rizzuto chose the Stamford spot (near the Greenwich border) embracing the open space with tri-level dining, a formidable bar and a central beamy oven. Interested to see how they adapted to their Stamford address and eager to try our hand at making our own pizza, we dropped by for a behind-the-scenes look at their kitchen, the new gas-powered pizza oven and what objects of our affection that oven could create for us hungry souls.

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Hope Pizza in Stamford: Best Greek Pizza in Western CT?

"Gooey," that's what my late great mother craved in her pizza, and this woman loved food more than any person I've ever known. ("Don't talk to me," she would admonish. "I'm eating."}

Well, Mom would have devoured the pizza at Stamford's Hope Pizza, maybe the best of the thirty some Greek pizzerias hidden throughout Fairfield County. What makes Greek pizza gooey is what distinguishes it from the more heralded Connecticut Italian pizzas. Bearing no New Haven char, Colony heat, Batali chic, much less any passionate defenders or detractors in the food press or blogosphere, Greek Pizza flourishes under the radar, boasting few fancy frills, though, admittedly, more oil.

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Volta: Fun Euro Fare on Stamford’s Spring Street

Spring Street, all of a block long, was once anchored by Bennet's Steak House and Andy Robustelli’s World Travel services. Both were venerable downtown institutions, but dowdy matrons against the vibrant young rialto of restaurants and bars around the corner on Bedford Street. In their place Spring Street this year welcomed Mary Schaffer's luxe Italian Bar Russo and Giovanni Gentile's sleek euro-style café, Volta.

Designed by Giovanni himself, Volta’s pop interior complements the hip crowd, who one recent night were dining on such kewl stuff as brie and bacon crepes, grilled vegetable tartines, duck confit salads, and  creamy sweet potato vichyssoise.  With an Amy Whitehouse track in the background, “My life a wreck you’re making,” a beguiling model delicately sampled a gelato stracciatella while her debonair date sipped Remy XO.  

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The Whey Station Grilled Cheese Truck in Middletown

Jill Moskites works the grill while her husband, Josh, takes lunch orders from a hungry crowd.  It’s a cold Wednesday afternoon in October, perfect for what The Whey Station is serving up -- gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, hearty, “truckmade” soups and specialty hot dogs.  Fortunately for all of us, The Whey Station is the newest local addition to the handful of food trucks hitting the streets.

It’s a new endeavor for the Moskites, who until recently were familiar faces at their family’s gourmet foods shop, The Wild Raspberry in Cromwell, and together they have about 19 years restaurant and specialty foods experience.

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Chilibomb Opens in Fairfield: Calling All Chiliheads!

Calling all chiliheads:  On a portion of Fairfield's Black Rock Turnpike that should be dubbed “restaurant row,” sits a newly opened storefront restaurant, Chilibomb.

The brainchild of Stamford native, Peter Weberg Jr., Chilibomb is the first in the area to serve an impressive array of mouthwatering chilis in addition to having created an Oscar worthy brand for his business. Peter started making chili simply because, he liked it...a lot. From there, he started entering his chili into the numerous fairs and chili contests around the area.  You may have also known him back in the late 80’s when he ran a food truck called Buffalo Pete’s serving hot dogs ‘n’ chili.  After jobs in the food industry behind the scenes, he decided it was time to bring his chili dream to life. “Chilibomb,” aptly named after his hot selling chili of yester year, was finally coined and trademarked in 2008.

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Texas BBQ franchise opens in Bridgeport via

This just in from

The biggest barbecue fast food chain in the country is coming to Connecticut in the North End of Bridgeport. Dickey's Barbecue Pit will have its soft opening Sunday and its grand opening Dec. 8.

Cohen is a Dallas native, and often ate at Dickey's growing up. The first Dickey's Barbecue opened in Texas in 1941. The original location is still open for business, and Dickey's Barbecue is still owned and operated by the Dickey Family, according to the company website. The company began franchising in 1994.

Customers can expect to get their food in three minutes or less, Cohen said, but the meat is smoked for hours. The brisket, for example, is smoked for 14 hours before it hits a plate. "We have fall-off-the-bone ribs," Cohen said. "Most restaurants use a thermometer to test if the ribs are done. We test our ribs by picking them up and if they don't break in the middle, we know they're not ready to serve."

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Road Trip: Aberdeen Seafood & Dim Sum in White Plains

Upon our return to the United States this summer from living abroad for 13 years, with our most recent move from Hong Kong, my family and I were faced with a serious food challenge.  We hadn’t had access to good pizza, bagels and deli for years, so the first few weeks after we moved back, we became “born again” NY carb fanatics, showing our faces at every bagel and pizza joint north of NYC.   After a month or so, this eating frenzy thankfully began to wear off.  One of the things we miss most about Hong Kong is going out for Dim Sum, or yum cha, as it’s also called in Cantonese. After a friend mentioned Aberdeen Seafood & Dim Dum in White Plains, I knew we had to go to bridge East meets West food chain.

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A Good Crêpe is Hard to Find...A Guide to FC Crêpes

I’m tough on crêperies.  I can’t help it.  I’m constantly comparing their crêpes to the ones of my French childhood summers spent in Brittany, the northwest peninsula of France and the crêpe’s birthplace.  My great-grandmother made them in her two room farmhouse –– she poured the mixture of buckwheat flour, salt and water onto a billig, a hot, round, buttered, grill surface, then with her rozell, a small toothless rake, she spread this batter into a fifteen-inch-round sphere the thinness of butterfly wings.  As the batter bubbled there and the edges browned, she coaxed the half cooked, wobbly, crepe onto her long, wooden spatula and flipped it over, intact.  The crêpe continued cooking this way until completely golden, signaling to her to scrape this fragile delicacy gently off the billig with her spatula.  From here she held the hot crêpe between her fingertips and the spatula.  She then placed it onto a waiting plate, setting the crêpe down with the same carefulness as though she was putting a drowsy baby onto a pillow. 

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Caroline's Crêperie Opens in New Canaan

Walk under the blue awning and into the open doors of Caroline’s Crêperie and you’ll feel as if you’re walking into Caroline’s very own French home. With the warm, helpful service and Caroline herself standing at the helm making crêpes and welcoming clients into her buzzing restaurant, you can’t help but be charmed by this new restaurant on New Canaan's Elm Street. 

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ReNapoli: An Education in Pizza in Old Greenwich

What can pizza be? ReNapoli in Old Greenwich answers with one kitchen, two ovens, and three distinct pizza styles. Dining at ReNapoli isn’t just a meal, it's the equivalent of a three-credit course in pizza.

Owner and pizzaoilo Bruno DiFabio has been making pizza for thirty years. A fact made more interesting when you consider he is only 42.  A first generation Italian American, DiFabio was already working the lead sauté station at age 16 in his grandfather's restaurant kitchen. Fast forward a few decades, several restaurants, five World Pizza Championship titles and stints at the famed ovens of Spacca Napoli, Da Michele and Trianon in Naples, and you have the genesis of ReNapoli. 

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