Locali Pizza Bar & Kitchen (New Canaan) – Outstanding Apizza

DSC_2446A few weeks ago I posted a review over at http://www.ctbites.com on Locali Pizza Bar & Kitchen. Over the last few weeks I have returned numerous times to enjoy some of the best pizza in Fairfield County. The pizza that is baked in their enormous ceramic covered, wood-fired oven produces a wonderful charred crust with a crispiness that maintains the integrity of the pie with the delightful toppings. From a simple Marinara to a complex Spicy Capicola, Chef Anthony’s pizzas are setting the standard for true Neapolitan pizza.

BL OvenThere are three elements to a pizza, the dough, the sauce and the toppings. Miss one and the pizza fails, each must be perfect by themselves to create a flawless pie. And Locali hits the trifecta with several options for the last. The dough is delicious. The taste delivers just a touch of sweetness, the texture balances the slight bite and crispiness, and handles the 800+ degree oven to create a charred rim. The sauce accentuates the deep, rich flavors that only true DOP San Marzano tomatoes can offer and the toppings range from mild to spicy, blend these to create individual desires.

BL Margherita PizzaThe “Marinara” is the classic apizza featuring two of the ingredients, dough and sauce. The simplicity of this pie allows the guest to enjoy the ripe tomatoes, accented with a touch of garlic and sea salt. The “Margherita” apizza adds a few circles of house-made Mozzerella and Pecorino cheese, finished with basil leaves. The addition of the creamy Mozz mellowed the flavors and the basil added just a touch of earthiness.

BL Mushroom PizzaA totally different flavor profile is found in the “Wild Mushroom” pie. Void of tomatoes, this combination focusses on the deep, earthy flavors of a variety of wild mushroom, nestled in cheese and finished with a sprinkling of Pecorino. If you are looking for a spicy combination, order the “Spicy Capicola,” with toppings that include Mozzarella and Capicola and then finished with Mike’s Hot Honey. I never thought I would enjoy honey on a pizza, but its sweetness was the perfect complement and mellowed the spiciness of the Capicola.

BL MeatballsSave room for some of Chef Reuben’s creations. The “Local Kale” salad is one of the best around. The Locali version includes cranberries, walnuts, pomegranate, grapefruit sections, and Gorgonzola cheese and dressed with a Sherry vinaigrette.  A kale salad and Margherita is one of our go-to dinners for two. For an additional vegetable dish, we add the “Brussels Sprouts,” which include chopped

pistachio nuts for a little crunchiness. For a meat selection, order the meatballs that are some of the softest and most flavorful combination when paired with the Locali cheese curds.

Locali is a great addition to New Canaan and should not be missed.

Locali Pizza Bar + Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Joe’s Pizza (New Canaan) – Decades of Great Pizza

When the subject of pizza arises in my travels, Connecticut is always included in the discussion as a destination. Many consider New Haven the epicenter of Connecticut pizza with the Big Three, Sally’s, Modern and Pepe’s, each creating pizzas baked in their decades-old coal-fired ovens. But throughout our state there are numerous local establishments that also create fantastic pies. Many of these pizzerias are local hangouts, some are co-located within bars, a few offer pizza as a choice on independent Italian restaurants’ menus and still others have great pizza hidden amongst higher end menu items. Joe’s Pizza in New Canaan ranks as one of those local pizzerias that has delivered fantastic pizza for decades to the citizens of New Canaan.

Joe’s (a single word is all the regulars require) has been a fixture in town for two generations. After Joe retired, his son Lorenzo (Larry to friends and neighbors) took over the peel and oven. Over the last 18 years I have enjoyed 100s of Joe’s pies and I am not alone. During lunch Joe’s is overflowing with firemen, local officials, and police officers; teenagers are constantly crowding the counter whether after school, practice, into the early evening or on any given Friday and Saturday night; and the constant ringing of their phones from late afternoon through early evening indicate many residents are enjoying Larry’s pies for family dinner six days a week. In addition you will see Lorenzo and his staff at various town and school functions; they are a fixture in town.

Larry continues experimenting with toppings, techniques and increasing the menu offerings with non-traditional pizzeria items including several varieties of “Wings.” Great pizza begins with the dough and each day Lorenzo combines his secret recipe. It is a labor of love. The end result is a delightful combination of chewiness and softness plus a very mild flavor that adds just a little taste without interfering with the other ingredients. The sauce has always been house-made and many of the toppings are also created on the premises. Each day the sauce is started with plum tomatoes which are first roasted to enhance the flavors. Then the roasted tomatoes are brought to the back where the sauce is made every day. Lorenzo also makes is the sausage, which is a balance of spiciness and fennel flavor which I love on his pizza and he roasts the peppers on premises, and fresh, never canned mushrooms are hand sliced.

Several years ago Lorenzo installed new glass enclosed circulating gas fired ovens in the middle of the floor where all can watch the pizzas as they cook. This four-tiered steel monster has pizza stones on each level and allows constant attention to the pies. The temperature gauge reads between 550-600 degrees, less than traditional coal and wood fired ovens, but this temperature works well with his dough. Whether Lorenzo or one of his trusted assistants is creating one of hundreds of pies each day, the end result is fantastic. Toppings include traditional mushroom, sausage, pepperoni, meatball, peppers, fresh tomato, as well as specialty pies that target the non-traditional pizza customer with BBQ Chicken, black olives, garlic, bacon, salami, pineapple, broccoli, ham, spinach, anchovies, eggplant, and onion. The end product is a semi-crispy, semi-pliable crust with great ingredients and oozing cheese. Joe’s technique allows for a nice crust around the circumference. On the larger pies it is necessary to apply the “fold” method while the smaller pies allow for a non-fold execution.

My recommendation…I cannot choose between these two so I order half bacon and tomato and half sausage and peppers. You gotta have diversity. Eighteen years, hundreds of pies and I still look forward to each of them, and they deliver.

Joe's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Ching’s Table (New Canaan) – Hit or Miss

The food at Ching’s used to be consistency outstanding, each dish a balance of flavors and textures. Over the years, the perfection we used to see in each and every dish can falter in certain preparations. When the kitchen is on, the food is spectacular, but when they miss, well, it is just a ordinary Asian-inspired plate of food.

Eating at Ching’s can vary from and incredibly pleasant experience, to an evening where you question why you went. There are times when the staff treats you properly, they seat you, take your order, and serve your food. There are, unfortunately, other times, when the staff may ask you to move to accommodate a larger party, even if you are between courses; and this may happen more than once on a given meal. I also learned a long time ago to NEVER order all the food at once since the timing from the kitchen may cause the server to deliver your order in a haphazard manner, sometimes all at once, sometimes the appetizers after the entrees. As a result, table tops may get crowded quickly if certain dishes are ordered and delivered simultaneously since they require a good deal of geography. Reservations? Sometimes they matter and sometimes they just seat you and others as they please.

Some quick thoughts on my last visit:

  • Pork Dim Sum – Four pieces with good flavor and a delicate wrap;
  • Szechuan Dumplings- They have the best Szechuan dumplings in the area, different and larger than its sister restaurant in town, Sushi 25, with great peanut butter sauce and just a little kick in the filling;
  • Peking Duck – great preparation served with four wrappers. This dish is divided amongst three separate plates which occupied a good deal of the table. They were a little light on the amount of hoisin sauce and you should ask for more;
  • Chicken Chow Fun – tasteless preparation other than the bitterness of the chicken;
  • Tenderloin of Beef – really bad as well. The beef was prepared to requested doneness but was mealy in texture and the flavors were completely off;
  • Sesame Chicken – Excellent dish, great flavors, and a good coating to the chicken which presented a much better flavor than the chicken in the chow fun.

Overall the food is hit or miss, sometimes outstanding, and other times not very good. As far as eating in the restaurant, there are times when it is just not worth the aggravation. I now usually order a take out and enjoy a relaxing meal at home at my own pace.

Chings Table on Urbanspoon

My Top Five+ Fairfield County CT Dishes from 2013

2013 was an amazing year for food lovers in Fairfield County…several great restaurants opened, several chefs moved and are now creating incredible meals in new locations, several more restaurants announced their openings and I cannot wait.

During the year I enjoyed hundreds of courses in Connecticut and on my travels. With all of those flavors and textures, it was an incredibly difficult task in choosing my five favorite Fairfield County dishes for 2013. In fact, I did not since I couldn’t whittle the last one from this list, so it is six, plus three special categories.

Here are my favorite dishes from 2013:

  • elm – The “Tagliatelli Neri” is over the top umami heaven. The dish begins with hand-made cuttlefish ink pasta topped with Peekeytoe crab, sea urchin, sea urchin butter, Calabrian chili, garlic bread crumbs and brightened with Meyer lemon juice and oil. The flavors dance on the palate and textures from the silky pasta to the crunchy garlic bread crumbs, are like none I experienced anywhere else.
  • Match – “Pho” is an incredible Vietnamese soup that Fairfield County needs to embrace. The broth is made from oxtails, ginger, onion, cinnamon, and star anise. When served, thinly sliced rib eye is added and cooked and then finished with cilantro, noodles and Sriracha. This dish is absolutely magical in its complexity of flavors and textures.
  • South End – “Nonna’s Meatballs” are comprised of pork and veal (that’s right, no beef) that are lightly mixed with tons of sheep’s milk ricotta and Parmesan cheese, then lightly fried and cooked in a crushed tomato sauce. The soft and tender texture of South End’s meatballs separates them from all of the others…they are fantastic.
  • Nola –The “Poached Lobster & Cornbread Waffle” is one of my favorite combinations in the area with butter-poached lobster, Queso Fresco cheese, topped with a brown sauce served with sweet, crispy waffles. The outstanding flavors are complemented by the best brown sauce north of Mr. B’s Bistro in the French Quarter.
  • Mama’s Boy – The “Shrimp and Grits” just keep getting better. Perfectly prepared U15 white shrimp, red peppers, scallions, and Tasso sit atop Tennessee sourced grits and finished with a simple garlic butter, white wine, and cream sauce. The grits are my favorite and when paired with the shrimp create an outstanding dish.
  • Bar Sugo – The “Spaghetti Neri” includes squid ink pasta, smoked tomato sauce, shrimp, bread crumbs and Bottarga. The pasta and shrimp are complemented by the smokiness and spiciness of the tomato sauce, but the entire presentation is elevated by the Bottarga, which adds a delightful brininess to the dish.

Top Hamburger – The Whelk – Over 70 hamburgers comprised my 2013 Hamburger search and The Whelk’s hamburger was my favorite. Full of rich flavor, encased in a great bun and topped with some great cheese, onions and house made pickles.

Top Bolognese – Cava Wine Bar – My colleague at CTBites, Lou Gorfain, and I scoured lower Fairfield County for our Bolognese round-up and my personal favorite was Cava’s Gnocchi with Bolognese. What set this apart from the others was the soft, ricotta gnocchi that were pillows of deliciousness.

Top Pizza – Locali – This newcomer uses age-old pizza-making techniques, San Marzano DOP tomatoes and house made mozzarella. The flavors, texture and the perfect amount of char from the wood burning oven produce some of the best Neapolitan pizza this side of the Campo dei Fiori.

Locali Pizza Bar + Kitchen (New Canaan) – Outstanding Debut

DSC_2446Clean…Balanced…Flavorful…

Three words to describe the outstanding cuisine that Locali Pizza Bar + Kitchen, the latest addition to New Canaan’s Restaurant Row. This twenty-eight seat restaurant / pizza bar is already making its mark on the culinary landscape of New Canaan.

BL Mogan, Anthony, RubenExecutive Chef Mogan Anthony and his team are creating vibrant flavors and textural contrasts in many of their dishes, intermingled among other selections that are pleasantly soft and mild.

The interior design, with a strong focus on organic materials, creates a cozy and inviting environment with guests choosing between table or bar seating. In full view of the dining and bar area is the beautiful, hand-crafted ceramic encased Stefano Ferrara wood-fired brick oven.

BL OvenJoining Chef Mogan in the kitchen is Chef de Cuisine Ruben Liriano and Chef Antonio Legato oversees the wood burning pizza oven. Chef Mogan gained his training at the Four Seasons Hotel in Singapore and subsequently under Chef Jean Georges Vongericthen in three different locations, plus the Bedford Post and Village Social in Mt. Kisco. Chef Liriano fine-tuned his craft at A Voce in New York and spent six years under the tutelage of Mario Batali, most recently at Tarry Lodge in Westport.Chef Antonio is a third generation bread maker whose love for breads and pizzas started as a child. He perfected his art by obtaining APN (Authentic Neapolitan Pizza) certification, adhering to the strict standards of ingredients and methods of pizza makers (pizzaioli) for over 150 years.

The menu includes a variety of small plates, larger entrées, and six pizza combinations.

BL PeppersWe started the evening with two selections from the “Vegetables” section. While both presented a high level of crispiness, they were extremely different in their respective flavor profile. The “Fried Shishito Peppers” arrived nestled in a dollop of Romano aioli and finished with sesame seeds and a sprinkling of Halen Mon sea salt. About one out of every ten Shishito peppers is very spicy (many describe eating a plate of them as spicy “Russian Roulette”) so we worked carefully through this dish…fortunately, there were no “loaded chambers” on our plate. Each of the peppers was crunchy, mild in spiciness and the aioli added a soothing creaminess while the sesame seeds added a second level of crunch and a good nutty-earthiness.

BL Brussels SproutsThe second vegetable dish was the “Brussels Sprouts,” which was served atop Mortadella cream and Px Sherry and finished with crumbled pistachios. The Brussels sprouts were first sautéed, then the Px sherry was added and reduced to concentrate its inherent sweetness. The end product was a crispy exterior and a sweetness that worked unexpectedly well with the Mortadella cream, which added numerous flavors and a touch of tanginess. The pistachios supplemented the texture with further crunch and nutty-goodness.

BL TunaOur second round of “Small Plates” included three outstanding choices.  The “Pistachio Crusted Tuna” included four slices of perfectly seared tuna sitting atop yuzu mustard, and finished with scallion sections and New Canaan Olive Oil (http://newcanaanoliveoil.com/). The pistachio crust was a delicious change from other crusted-tuna dishes that many restaurants are serving. The yuzu mustard was a unique combination that combined the citrusy notes of the yuzu with the spiciness of the mustard to create a fantastic combination.

BL MeatballsMeatballs are also a popular item on many menus and Locali’s “Umami Meat Balls” are outstanding. The meatballs were soft and delicious and served with cheese curds and toasted polenta. The cheese curds replaced the traditional ricotta, and offered a bit of a tangy background. The polenta was first toasted to intensify the flavors and then slowly rehydrated. The nuttiness and crispiness from the toasting of the polenta added contrasts that were a perfect complement to the meatballs.

BL OctopusI order octopus whenever it is offered and Locali’s “Octopus Fra Diavolo” is one of the best. Chef Anthony enhanced the soft pieces of octopus with a spicy tomato sauce and then added a tangy element with the buttermilk Dolcelatte. While many chefs crisp the exterior to offset the soft interior, Locali’s octopus was soft throughout. The potatoes were a nice addition and added another soft component. The octopus was outstanding.

BL Mushroom PizzaWhile we waited for our pizzas, Chef Ruben brought a dish that he is currently developing; Squid Ink Pasta with Squid in a red sauce. Large bowtie-shaped pasta was paired with julienned squid and served in a red sauce. This was a great combination that will be enjoyed by many as soon as it graces the menu and reminded me to include pasta dishes on my next visit.

BL Margherita PizzaWe sampled two outstanding pizzas; the toppings were exceptionally fresh and the flavors were outstanding. The “Margherita Pizza” was a traditional combination of San Marzano tomatoes, Locali (house made) Mozzarella and finished with a touch of extra virgin olive oil. The crust was delicious, the texture maintained just a small amount of bite and was nicely charred. The center of the dough was less crispy and I would expect this was the result of the newness of the brick oven continuing its curing process. The “Wild Mushroom Pizza” was a simple combination, showcasing a variety of exotic wild mushrooms accented with garlic and combined with Locali Mozzarella and Pecorino Tartufu. The mushrooms delivered a wonderful earthiness and the garlic and cheeses were perfect complements to the pizza.

BL Salty CaramelAnd when the server approached and asked if we would like dessert, we chose two, the “Salty Caramel Pie” and the “Tiramisu.” The desserts were all created by Chef Mogan’s wife, Seleste Tan, who formerly worked at wd50 in NYC and the Four Season Hotel in Singapore. The salty caramel pie was a tribute to sweetness and textures. The filling was a smooth caramel-custard and the crunchy crust was a perfect complement to the sweetness of the filling. It was served with a little whipped cream, a slice of strawberry and dusted with powdered sugar. We enjoyed the “Tiramisu,” which was served in a large glass. This was a light and creamy rendition, with rum as the primary flavor. Both of these desserts were delicious.

Locali is a tremendous addition to New Canaan’s Restaurant Row. The food presents an array of flavors, from mild and mellow options to tantalizing choices with bold and complex combinations; each work well in highlighting the flavors of each of the ingredients in the dish. The pizzas are delicious, traditional Napolitano thin crusted gems that use the freshest ingredients to showcase their natural flavors. The food and vibe at Locali are fantastic and this will be a go-to restaurant in New Canaan.

Locali Pizza Bar + Kitchen – New Canaan – 32 Forest Street – New Canaan, CT 06840 – (203) 920-1440

Really Liked:

  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Umami Meatballs
  • Octopus Fra Diavolo
  • Farfalle with Squid
  • Margharita Pizza
  • Salty Caramel Pie

Liked:

  • Shishito Peppers
  • Pistachio Crusted Tuna
  • Wild Mushroom Pizza
  • Tiramisu

This review was originally posted on http://www.ctbites.com at:

http://www.ctbites.com/home/2013/12/8/locali-pizza-bar-kitchen-opens-in-new-canaan.html

Connecticut Sandwich Company (New Canaan) – Great New Addition

The Connecticut Sandwich Company opened at 78 Pine Street across from Zumbachs in the space formerly Tony’s Deli (moved across the street). I ordered a Pork Kimchee Sandwich (Roasted Pork, Kimchee and Garlic Dijonnaise) on a Wave Hill roll. First impression was the place has great potential. The roasted pork was pulled pork, perfectly cooked but a little over-salted. I could not find the kimchee but there was a good spiciness to the meat and when there was some garlic dijonnaise in a bite it was delicious. The choice of Wave Hill was the right one. Lighten the salt and play with the ratios and this will be a great sandwich.

Connecticut Sandwich Co. on Urbanspoon

Eclectic Luncheonette and Catering Opens in New Canaan

BL Corn souffleA stop at the newly opened Eclectic Luncheonette and Catering on Vitti Street offered a glimpse into the cuisine that owner/chef Robert Milano will bring to the east end of downtown New Canaan. The periwinkle exterior adds a bright, southern feel to this residential-commercial street; an inviting beginning to any visit. The interior is more sterile, offering 22 seats and a long counter where orders are placed.

The lunch menu consists of various salad combinations, sandwiches with melted cheese, soufflés and desserts. Most tend to include fried ingredients or cheese so be careful if you are looking for a lower caloric lunch; you can create your own salad from a list of a dozen ingredients.

BL Tomato SoupMy lunch started with a cup of the house made “Tomato Bisque.” The tomato-ey flavor was rich and delicious, the texture was silky from the addition of cream, and the diced scallions added a nice crunch with just a touch of spiciness.

Accompanying the soup was a “Beef Ossobuco Jalapeño Raspberry” sandwichserved on buttered and grilled Italian bread with melted white cheddar cheese and finished with a Jalapeño Raspberry BBQ sauce. The meat was delightfully tender. The sauce was very sweet and I would have preferred more spiciness from the Jalapeño peppers. The melted cheese was mild and added a little smoothness and the small slices of toasted bread were first schmeared with salted butter and grilled. Overall this was a very tasty sandwich.

BL Corn souffleLast, but not least, was the “Plain Corn Soufflé” (the menu allows for one of several toppings). This was more a quiche consistency than a soufflé, the filling was creamy, was full of flavor and a good addition to complete lunch. The corn added a good level of crunchiness to the dish.

With a few days under his belt Chef Robert is creating some interesting combinations. Hopefully the menu will expand to include lighter choices and the décor will develop into a softer, more relaxed atmosphere to appeal to the New Canaan lunch crowd.

This review was originally posted on http://www.ctbites.com at:

http://www.ctbites.com/home/2013/10/24/sneak-peek-at-eclectic-luncheonette-in-new-canaan.html

 

Picador 2.0 Opens – Italy Meets Spain

BL PastaMore culinary changes are occurring in New Canaan as Picador Restaurant on Elm Street was recently purchased by Ray Rivera, former Food and Beverage Manager at The Hyatt, and Leo Gaspar the owner of New Canaan’s Club Sandwich. Rivera and former owner Alan Basaran (owner of New Canaan’s Carpe Diem Restaurant) have known each other for years and a conversation eventually led to the Rivera and Gaspar purchasing the site.

The pair immediately hired Chef Corey Falcone, who was previously the chef/owner of Bella Luna, one of Stamford’s favorite Italian restaurants. This partnership culminates years of discussions between Rivera and Chef Corey who wanted to work together in a small restaurant. Rivera summed up his four year search for the perfect venue and cuisine, “I’m thrilled about our restaurant being on Elm Street in New Canaan and presenting international fare plus steaks and chops. Corey is excited to use his talents to fuse Spanish and Italian flavors and he is a master of the grill.”

Over a delicious plate of Fettuccini Carbonara, Chef Corey explained his vision of the restaurant. “I want people to come in, relax, enjoy great, consistent food. They should have the same quality food on a crowded Saturday night as they do on a Wednesday evening.” Born in the Bronx and self-taught in the kitchen, Chef Corey is comfortable modifying traditional and classic recipes. The Carbonara included imported pasta, diced onion, a little chicken stock, butter, just a touch of cream, diced Serrano ham, grated Romano and finished with the traditional scrambled egg. The dried pasta was perfectly prepared to al dente and the two minor modifications of the Serrano ham and Romano cheese added a slightly different and delicious variation to the traditional recipe. Likewise, the chef allowed the pasta to maintain the focal point and the dish was lightly sauced.

Will the name change from Picador? Maybe a slight modification. With a recent NY Times review that rated Picador “Very Good” it will be hard to change completely, maybe Picador Grill, but no decision has been made. And if the Carbonara is an indication, this restaurant will be very successful with any name.

Stay tuned as CTbites returns for a full review of the new Picador in a few weeks.

15 Elm St New Canaan, CT 06840 – (203) 972-9999

This review was originally posted on http://www.ctbites.com at:

http://www.ctbites.com/home/2013/10/10/picador-20-opens-in-new-canaan.html

Tony’s Deli (New Canaan) – My Go-To Sandwich Shop

Tony’s deli has two locations, Ridgefield and New Canaan, and the latter location is our go-to sandwich shop in town. With its recent relocation across the street to the storefront next to Zumbach’s, Tony’s is smaller but still serving some creative and delicious sandwiches and wraps. The sandwich menu is enormous, over 50 different pre-determined recommended combinations. Ordering a platter to enjoy with friends on a boat, by the pool or to snack on when buddies come over to play poker, I always go to Tony’s.

Over the years I’ve kept some of the combinations as Tony designed them, while others have been modified to meet the tastes of my friends and family. A few I really like:

  • My breakfast sandwich of choice is the Bacon, egg and cheese on a roll. A true classic, with a fried egg, a slice of white American cheese and a couple of strips of bacon on a seeded Kaiser roll. It may not be a difficult sandwich, but Tony’s does a great job.
  • White Russian – Roast beef, tomato, cole slaw, Russian dressing, bacon, horseradish and melted Swiss on a wedge. I was not crazy about the spiciness that the horseradish brought, so I started to order without. I like this version much better.
  • Ferrari – Fresh Mozzarella cheese, prosciutto, roasted peppers, olive paste, sundried tomatoes, pesto, fresh tomatoes, balsamic vinegar on a wedge. Like the White Russian, after a couple I was not that impressed with the Prosciutto and started ordering without. This vegetarian alternative is a favorite in the house.
  • New Canaan Rams Special – Roast beef, Russian dressing, horseradish, Cheddar cheese, lettuce and tomato. My alternative to the White Russian when I am looking for that English beef and horseradish combination.
  • Pine Street Special – Turkey, ham, roast beef, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, bacon, avocado and mayonnaise. This sandwich is full of flavor and the bacon and avocado add that salti-creaminess to a meat and cheese sandwich.
  • Right Off The Boat – Sopressata, imported Provolone cheese, cappicolo, sweet peppers (hot peppers are also available), tomato, onion, oil and vinegar. After one I gave up, Boar’s Head Italian meats just did not cut it for me.
  • Cranberry Turkey Wrap – Turkey, sprouts, tomato, bacon, Swiss cheese, Mayonnaise and cranberry sauce. This one has great flavor but gets a little messy with the mayo and cranberry sauce so ask for extra napkins
  • Russian Turkey Wrap – Turkey, Russian dressing, cole slaw, bacon, Swiss cheese and tomato. Put anything in a wrap and it is low-cal and healthier. If I need to avoid the wedge, this is my basic go-to wrap.

There are numerous grilled and breaded chicken sandwiches, but most of them are dressed with Blue Cheese and other dressings that are not my favorite. Maybe a little re-design of those in the future will bring them to this list.

Tony's Deli on Urbanspoon

Best Restaurant Burgers in SW Connecticut – #4 elm Restaurant (New Canaan)

Before Chef Brian Lewis opened elm restaurant I was forewarned that his hamburger was extraordinary. And yes it is. When the restaurant first opened the burger was still in the distance, but once the Sunday Brunch offerings were in place, this burger made a huge mark on my palate. It is an exceptional pairing of flavors and textures and is a further indication of the genius that Chef Lewis brings to the kitchen.

bl2 elmThe “elmburger” is another winning dish created by Chef Brian Lewis. The burger started with an incredibly flavorful meat topped with soft and sweet caramelized onions and a layer of melted Gruyere cheese. The caramelized onions were the best that I sampled on my travels and the Gruyere added a slight nuttiness to the dish. (The cheese changes often). Unlike any other burger in the area, the elmburger sits atop a swath of Sriracha aioli that added just a touch of heat (the only burger tasted that included a spicy component) to take the flavors to another level. The bun was toasted and a delicious addition to the meal. The burger was served with thick cut fries.

Read the entire list of best Restaurant Hamburgers at http://www.ctbites.com at:

http://www.ctbites.com/home/2013/5/19/ten-best-restaurant-burgers-greenwich-to-new-haven-2013.html

Elm Restaurant on Urbanspoon