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"These are a few of my favorite things..." - (Connecticut, 2014)

kattyeyes Jan 5, 2014 06:23 AM

I thought it might be fun to share some of our favorite dishes and drinks from different places. It's been a while since we did.

Mondo (Middletown): the Toscano salad - mixed greens, fresh mozzarella, roasted peppers, cherry tomatoes, olives, artichokes and warm polenta croutons with balsamic vinaigrette. They dress and toss the salad the way a good salad should be served. And what's not to love about warm polenta croutons? Mmmmm. And, of course, their pizza--both the more creative (truffle!) and the Mondo special (kitchen sink).
http://www.mondomiddletown.com/our-me...

Napoli Pizza (Meriden): CALZONE. My favorite--broccoli and pepperoni ANYWHERE. I've been going at least 20 years now. It never changes. It's always OUTSTANDING. No one makes a calzone like Jerry. NO ONE. And his sauce is excellent!
http://www.yelp.com/biz/napoli-pizza-...

Los Mariachis (Wallingford):
There's a combo appetizer platter I can't see on the online menu--a couple of tacos, a tamale and something else. Try it! Their salsa is so spicy and fresh.
I love their spicy pork chimichanga and--very important--the Stan margarita. It's Don Julio 1942 Ultra Premium Tequila, Grand Marnier and Cointreau. SMOOOOTH as the day is long. Stan's the man!

Saybrook Soup & Sandwich Company (Old Saybrook):
Any sandwich from here gets my top billing, tho' I'm partial to the pork loin, pastrami and smoked turkey breast. I keep encouraging them to open a Middletown storefront. PLEASE. PLEASE!
http://www.yummmey.com/#menu

Napoli's calzone in three shots here...

Whatchoo got, food friends?

 
 
 
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  1. kattyeyes RE: kattyeyes Jan 5, 2014 06:28 AM

    How did I forget one of my favorite recent food finds?!

    Neil's Donuts (Wallingford): donut deliciousness to the extreme, especially the Boston cream! They split the donuts in half and fill them VERY GENEROUSLY! MOO. I like their seasonal coffee flavors, too. I miss caramel apple!

     
    8 Replies
    1. re: kattyeyes
      Joanie RE: kattyeyes Jan 22, 2014 08:20 AM

      We're driving from Boston to Poughkeepsie on Sat. via 84, is this donut shop a doable stop? Any other thoughts? I was just wondering what was in Western CT. Or maybe one breakfast stop in east CT and a snack in the west if you can help out.

      As far as favorite CT bites, Shady Glen cheeseburger in Manchester, crabcakes at J's in Hartford, dogs at Super Duper Weenie in Fairfield, also at Glenwood in Hamden. Just went to Deary Brothers in Putnam last summer, cool place.

      1. re: Joanie
        BiscuitBoy RE: Joanie Jan 22, 2014 09:03 AM

        Super Duper Weenie, and Gleenwood..YES

        1. re: Joanie
          kattyeyes RE: Joanie Jan 22, 2014 12:00 PM

          Sadly, Wallingford is out of range for you unless you REALLY want to take a detour--you can get there from 91 or 5 & 15.

          Dottie's Diner (never been/can't vouch) would be closer to your route. Maybe someone here can confirm whether it's worth a breakfast or snack stop:
          http://www.dottiesdiner.com/

          1. re: kattyeyes
            junescook RE: kattyeyes Jan 23, 2014 06:39 PM

            Unless you want to go looking for new yorkers and tv heads I wouldn't bother. There are better diners and coffee shops in Woodbury and probably regular restaurants where you'd spend less and get better food.

            1. re: junescook
              kattyeyes RE: junescook Jan 23, 2014 08:22 PM

              I think it would be a kick to bump into Dustin Hoffman, but I'm glad you chimed in because I only know it's there. Where else can we send Joanie for breakfast? :)

              P.S. I like your Christmas hat!

              1. re: kattyeyes
                Joanie RE: kattyeyes Jan 24, 2014 04:10 AM

                I think I'm gonna zip to the original Dottie's (the other location says it's closed Sat/Sun) and at least try a donut. Maybe stop at the Yankee Diner in Charlton MA for the earlier part of the trip.

                http://www.yankeediner.com/yankeedine...

                Thanks for the tip.

                1. re: Joanie
                  kattyeyes RE: Joanie Jan 24, 2014 06:06 AM

                  Please tell us about the donuts if you get to Dottie's. They look great from the pics--especially the eclair! :D Safe and tasty travels to ya!

                  1. re: kattyeyes
                    Joanie RE: kattyeyes Jan 27, 2014 08:50 AM

                    Made it there and they only 3 flavors when we arrived. Worth the detour I think. Writing a separate review later today, thanks for the tip.

      2. kattyeyes RE: kattyeyes Jan 5, 2014 06:33 AM

        I knew I forgot something special...
        Taino Smokehouse (Middletown): killer brisket, awesome burgers, handcut fries that remind of how we made them in my family when I was a kiddo. KEEP ON SMOKIN'! This almost makes it OK there's not scacciata there anymore. ;)

        1. BiscuitBoy RE: kattyeyes Jan 6, 2014 07:31 AM

          Current Favs:

          The Szechwan Wontons from Char Koon, Glastonbury...They look like little brains, served with some kind of peanut sauce

          The Lazy Burrito from Iguana Rana, Middletown...Topped with chili and french fries

          6 Replies
          1. re: BiscuitBoy
            Veggo RE: BiscuitBoy Jan 6, 2014 07:47 AM

            "Iguana Rana"? Funny name, a rana is a frog. I did enjoy 5 days back in CT last summer after a 6 year absence, and I basically camped out at the Glenwood and Pepe's. Oh, and #1 Fish. A bit out of kattyeye's territory, but in your old briar patch.

            1. re: Veggo
              BiscuitBoy RE: Veggo Jan 6, 2014 08:01 AM

              Ah, Glenwood, yes. Another fav is the steak sub from Frank&Mary's on Wooster St, but they're long gone. #1 Fish?

              1. re: BiscuitBoy
                Veggo RE: BiscuitBoy Jan 6, 2014 08:05 AM

                State St, near the Hamden-New Haven line. Incredible fresh, fresh fish. And the owner gardens and sells his produce there also, in season.

            2. re: BiscuitBoy
              kattyeyes RE: BiscuitBoy Jan 6, 2014 09:07 AM

              HA, yes, they DO look like little brains! But so delicious, I love them, too.

              I'm adding rugelach from Katz's in Woodbridge, too. Especially the apricot ones as that is my favorite flavor.

              1. re: kattyeyes
                kattyeyes RE: kattyeyes Jan 14, 2014 08:31 AM

                Awesome apricot ruglelach runoff--AHM NOM NOM NOM!
                Katz's in Woodbridge--these tasty treats are the kat's ass (yes, I shall sport them proudly, HA HA!)! :D

                 
              2. re: BiscuitBoy
                kattyeyes RE: BiscuitBoy Jan 15, 2014 07:20 PM

                A new one (for me) also from Iguanas Ranas in M'town:
                poblano corn chowder served in a tortilla bowl

                This woefully dimly-lit picture does it absolutely no justice, but what is not to love about a soup with a nibble-able bowl. My goodness!

                Their white bean soup with cilantro is equally excellent.

                Get one to stay and one to go for the next day. I did. :D

                 
              3. b
                brookerme RE: kattyeyes Jan 6, 2014 09:34 AM

                MM's Gyros in downtown Hartford

                combo plate: rice, choice of fresh, crisp salads, chicken or lamb roasted on a spit topped with store made tzatziki and hot sauce

                1 Reply
                1. re: brookerme
                  kattyeyes RE: brookerme Jan 6, 2014 10:33 AM

                  Hey there--would that be the same folks who used to be in the Richardson Mall food court (also downtown)? :) Those were great!

                2. p
                  praisethelard RE: kattyeyes Jan 6, 2014 10:46 AM

                  Mine are going to be pretty FFC-centric:

                  Oceanview Bistro in Norwalk: Rustic, simple, classic French food, in a very VERY laid back space (seriously, there's a strip club next door) and a BYOB policy. Service is also... shall we say, rustic, but the chef, Jean Paul, will make you feel right at home. Bonus: the BYOB thing is super easy because 99 Bottles is right down the strip mall.

                  Espresso Neat in Darien: Expensive and sometimes overly precious, yes, but damn, I wouldn't get my cortado from anywhere else.

                  Mecha Noodle Bar in Fairfield: Cute, small space, good friendly service, yummy ramen (especially the vegetarian!) and passable pho.

                  1. t
                    TnTinCT RE: kattyeyes Jan 6, 2014 11:17 AM

                    Pepperoni pizza from Little City in Simsbury. Maybe the best pepperoni pizza I've ever had. it curls up and makes little cups with crispy edges and has a great spice.

                    The tossed salad with italian dressing - ADD MOZZERELLA at Modern Pizza in New Haven. Something about that salty cheese elevates a simply dressed salad. (the great pizza following the salad is a given)

                    Seasonal only - the cheeseburger at Harry's Drive In in Colchester. Nothing says summer like hitting Harry's for the first time.

                    Gyoza at Meadow Asian in Simsbury - succulent and perfect texture.

                    Breakfast at Josie's in Kensington - new find this weekend. They make their own bread for toast and it's amazing.

                    1. DonShirer RE: kattyeyes Jan 6, 2014 05:09 PM

                      Always on the lookout for new ethnic places, in 2013 I was happy to find newly opened Pho Madison on Rt. 1 just north of Hamonasset Park.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: DonShirer
                        j
                        jdgall RE: DonShirer Jan 9, 2014 03:39 PM

                        Another great ethnic place is Rancheros Mexican Bistro in Guilford. Very authentic Mexican dishes.
                        Super breakfast at Simon's in Chester.
                        Fantastic French Bar Buchee in Madison
                        A market favorite is Bliss Gourmet meats in Westbrook. Top quality prime angus beef.....Great steaks!

                      2. Nikki NYC RE: kattyeyes Jan 16, 2014 12:36 PM

                        It's not fancy, but I looove the broccoli slice at Pinnoccio's in New Canaan.

                        1. geminigirl RE: kattyeyes Jan 27, 2014 04:27 PM

                          Tangiers in West Hartford, love the falafel sandwich with a cup of Turkish coffee, and the family is wonderful!

                          First time having the meat paella at Barcelona this weekend and it was delicious, but a little pricey.....I need to find a paella 101 recipe to try at home.

                          Also new to us but a nice find, River Tavern in Chester. The house cured pastrami was delicious, as was the warm apple fritters for dessert!

                          Looking forward to trying out some of the other posts, thanks!

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