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Entries in Mediterranean (11)


Taberna Mediterranean Tapas and Wine Bar in Fairfield's Brick Walk

I have an affinity for those underexplored sweet spots that are slightly off the beaten path, tucked away, or unheard of. For whatever reason, Taberna, a Mediterranean tapas and wine bar located in the Brick Walk in downtown Fairfield hasn’t been widely discovered. Although I hadn’t heard of it many have, and those who have sing its praises.

Some of you might be familiar with the name, thinking it’s not in Fairfield, it’s in Bridgeport! And you would be correct, sort of... Prior to opening the Fairfield location, Chef Daniel Lopez and his brother Jaime owned and operated the Bridgeport restaurant for 8 years. Upon hearing that it was closing, longtime diners were happy to follow to the new larger venue with light-filled dining area, large bar and outdoor patio.

I was able to sit down and chat with Chef Lopez who was born and raised in Ecuador who revealed to me that he had been enamored with the flavors and cuisines of the Mediterranean since he was a child. In 1994 he and his brother emigrated to the states and immediately began working in the restaurant industry - for many well-known Fairfield County favorites.

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Getting to Know FRESKOS Modern Greek Food in Hamden

During my first job out of college, I frequented a diner for what became a weekly Greek salad lunch ritual. That may have been over ten years ago, but it inspired a life-long love affair with the dish. So when a friend suggested trying out newly opened FRESKOS in Hamden, I jumped at the chance to try their greek salad and was happily met with a heaping bowl filled with romaine lettuce and topped with chopped cucumbers, sliced tomatoes, stuffed grape leaves, and a big block of feta. Served with warm pita, and greek dressing, I have finally found my local antidote to that Greek salad craving.  

FRESKOS is a modern Greek fast casual restaurant, that leans towards light and fresh Greek dishes such as souvlaki and gyro sandwiches which are served with warm pita, red onion, tomato, tzaziki, and dill. In addition to sandwiches, FRESKOS focuses on seasonal salads and soups, such as the avgolemono soup, a traditional Greek soup with a chicken broth base filled with lemon, egg and rice. A FRESKOS original is a Greek Pita Pizza, which struck me as an apt Greek interpretation to its pizza-loving location just a stone's throw from New Haven.

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Bistro Mediterranean Opens in Norwalk: Tapas With Bold, Rich Flavors via Connecticut Magazine

Tapas remain such a hot trend that restaurants with no hint of Spanish heritage are salting menus with small bites and petite plates to share, partly because it’s so appealing to begin a meal with several appetizers (or to make an entire meal from a succession of tapas), and partly because small plates equal big business.

No harm in the best of one culture being imitated and adopted—but there’s also nothing like experiencing tapas in an authentic environment, prepared by a talented chef and served in an atmosphere that embodies a European cadence, with passion to delivering a superior dining experience the hallmark.

When all of that rings up at what can only be declared a bargain price—especially when contrasted with the threshold costs of fine dining in Connecticut circa 2015—it amounts to a mandate for discovery.

In this case, the restaurant to seek out is Bistro Mediterranean and Tapas Bar, which opened its third location earlier this year on Route 1 in Norwalk. The original is in East Haven, and thesecond bistro opened in Westbrook a year ago.

Read the complete review at 


Mediterraneo Opens at Hotel Zero Degrees in Norwalk


The coastal Mediterranean food we’ve come to know and love at the Greenwich Avenue restaurant Mediterraneo, has been successfully replicated inside Norwalk’s new urban-chic boutique Hotel Zero Degrees.

Restauranteur Ramze Zakka is the force behind Z Hospitality Group and its stable of sleek and popular restaurants, such as Acqua, Aurora, Mediterraneo, Sole, and Terra. In a notoriously difficult business, Zakka has been able to pile up the restaurant successes across Fairfield County (and Westchester) with equal emphasis on exceptional dining and desirable settings. Mediterraneo at Hotel Zero Degrees raises the bar on both of these counts. 

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EOS Greek Cuisine in Stamford Revamps Menu

EOS, the Greek goddess of the dawn, signifies the beginning of a new day. EOS Greek Cuisine, an upscale Greek restaurant in Stamford owned by the Glekas family, recently introduced its new menu and invited CTbites (along with several other bloggers for what we nicknamed "Bloggers' Row") for a tasting of several of these items. All of the dishes are based on family recipes with slight modifications to modernize the dishes while maintaining their Greek roots.

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Kouzina: New Greek / Mediterranean in New Canaan

Brian Herlihy and Gina Douvas followed their passion for cooking by opening Kouzina, a Greek/Mediterranean restaurant in New Canaan featuring the best of their family recipes.  This husband and wife team were raised in households where large family meals were a regular event (Gina in Astoria, Queens and Brian in Katonah), and each developed a love for cooking at an early age.  After numerous trips to Greece with Gina, Brian fell in love with the cuisine and their vision took shape. After Brian retired from the Pound Ridge Police department their dream became a reality and in June the couple opened Kouzina on Forest Street in New Canaan. Originally envisaged as a specialty food store and market that would sell olives, olive oils (from Gina’s family farm in Patras, Greece), cheeses, artisanal breads and prepared foods; the project expanded and now features a restaurant.

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Douro: Portugese-Mediterranean in Greenwich

Greenwich: just say that word and you can see fancy convertibles cars slowly driving through the Avenue, white gloved policeman directing traffic, and people carrying shopping bags awaiting for a whistle command to cross the streets. On and surrounding this fashionable Avenue, you will also see lots of eateries, among them Douro, a Portuguese inspired restaurant that opened doors in September of 2009.

With its typical blue tile sign outside the entrance, terracotta floors, and dark wooden tables, Douro might appear to be just another trendy Greenwich restaurant. Good looking people and a good looking staff fill this charming place. Douro sets its standards and fits its West Putman Avenue location like a glove, but this Portuguese/Mediterranean venue  is more than it seems.

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Rosh Hashanah Recipes from Tabouli Grill

The Jewish holidays are around the corner, and with the kids just barely back to school, it seemed as though we could all use a little assist with the Rosh Hashanah menu this year. Next week? Really?

Judy Roll of Tabouli Grill in Stamford has come to the rescue with three great recipes to fill out your holiday table. Here's what's on the menu: Cumin Roasted Cauliflower with Yellow Raisins and Toasted Pine Nuts, Bubbe’s Brisket, and Kasha Varnishke. If you really just don't feel like cooking, Tabouli Grill is also happy to do the work for you as you can see in their Rosh Hashanah Package below.

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Taberna Food & Wine Bar: A Bridgeport Surprise

A pleasant surprise is always welcome – especially on the third rainy day in a row at the end of April.

That is why Taberna Food & Wine Bar, tucked away in a residential neighborhood on the Fairfield Bridgeport line, was such a good find.  For a recent lunch date we entered through the upscale bar area into a bright, tasteful white-tablecloth dining room and immediately noticed we were the only diners.  Never a good sign, my companion and I wondered out loud how they could possibly serve a decent lunch when only two diners make up the lunch rush.  As the meal progressed two more tables filled, both business lunch types, but by then our initial reservations had abated, as we were deep into a delightful and delicious meal.

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Osianna Taverna: A Lunch Oasis with Great Value

Going out for lunch carries specific expectations. If you’ve gone beyond the decision to just get a bite to eat, other desires come into play:  In addition to good food, you want a certain atmosphere, efficient service, and ideally, a reasonable price. A recent mid-day visit to Osianna Mediterranean Taverna in Fairfield satisfied all our requirements for a delightfully laid back lunch with excellent food that nourished, but didn’t stuff us, and proved to be an exceptional value.

An energetic buzz greeted us when we entered the restaurant

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