Darien, CT New Restaurants
From south to north:
Scena opened this summer, next to the movie theater. I'd say it is very good, but not excellent. Wood fired pizza, wine, somewhat "creative Italian. Same owners as Cava in New Caanan.
Next to the Bagel place, Myrna, who ran Myrna's Mediterranean in Stamford closed there, and is opening a more upscale place in the space formerly leased by Cozi.
Some development on the corner opposite the train station. Rumored Italian, possibly named Bricco or something like that, I think I heard. There were rumors of Batali/Bastianich involvement, but I don't believe those have or will pan out.
Burgers Shakes and Fries open across from Starbucks. Great Burgers, beer, nothing fancy.
The formerCentro I beleive has re-opened or will be reopening as something else, but haven't been or heard anything about it.
Chipoltle closer to the Norwalk border. If you've had one chipotle, you've had them all, but a nice option for a burrito or taco, clean, quality, tasty, as long as you aren't a stickler for south-of-the-border authenticity.
On the other end of town, the Boathouse (or something), above Smokey Joe's BBQ. Basic fish, steamed or fried kind of a place, with BBQ from downstairs too. Haven't been, so don't know, but haven't heard raves from anywhere, and wouldn't have huge expectations.
Then there are all the extant places, from Coromandel, LTK, Matsuri, Ole Mole, Rory's, etc.
I've now been to scena 3 times and each time left v.impressed. The ricotta gnocchi ragu is killer. RIvalled the oxtail gnocchi i eat by the ton at tarry lodge. Also great is the lamb ravioli. I've also had the pleasure of devouring a huge wood fired berkshire pork porterhouse, which was on special one night and was served perfectly cooked (just cooked through but so juicy it was melt in your mouth) with some rosemary roast potatoes. The desserts are also first class. And finally the wine list is decent and reasonably priced.
Each time I've been it's been packed when I left. So it's obviously a hit with the locals in the culinary desert of darien - but it's head and shoulders above a lot of other places in the surrounding area too. Recommended.
The former Centro re-opened as Harper's last June. It was Harper's that was originally in that space before Centro moved in and the son of the former owner bought the place and returned it to it's classic American-fare roots.
I'd been to Harper's a few times and thought it was a nice spot, but nothing special. I recall enjoying a nice dinner salad, and they claim to have the best margaritas in town. (though I don't think there's much competition!)