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Options for Lunch/Brunch in Middletown this Sunday - with kids

Oops! Middletown CT :)

Options for Lunch/Brunch in Middletown this Sunday - with kids

Would very much appreciate any ideas. Four adults, two young kids. Downtown location preferred.


Any ideas for large groups in/around Hartford?

This place has good pho, if your group were into that, but it's nowhere near downtown Hartford.

Non-Korean getting jipped on the Panchan - how to handle?

OK, no more replies needed. I'll open my mouth and ask - duh. :)

And it's "banchan" - thanks for the correction.

Feb 14, 2011
Uncledave in Not About Food

Non-Korean getting jipped on the Panchan - how to handle?

I'm a white guy with an adventurous palate who loves Korean food. Went last night to Ichiban, the only place to get it near me in Hartford CT. It's not a great Korean restaurant - which requires a trip into NY -- but it gives me a fix.

I get my panchan with the meal, naturally. After the meal I head to the rest room and pass by many tables with Korean diners. Well, they each had several panchan items that were not brought to my table: the more adventurous (and costly) items like squid, and the little dried fishes. All that was brought to me were the kim chi, tofu, potato salad, etc.

I can give the benefit of the doubt to the restaurant that perhaps after bringing certain panchan to the tables of white folks that the food mostly goes to waste. Or perhaps more cynically they're keeping the best stuff for the home team.

I want the good stuff -- how do I handle this? I'm not sure of the average server's English skills there. I was thinking of having a Korean acquaintance write a note in Korean for me to bring that says "bring me the good stuff - pretend I'm Korean". (Chowhound used to sell a "chow passport" that took care of this in several languages - is that still available?

Feb 14, 2011
Uncledave in Not About Food

Suggestions for nice, quiet lunch place between Woodbury & Oxford, CT on Tuesday?

121 at the airport is probably your best bet.

It might be too casual for your meeting, but Hen of the Woods in Southbury is a little gem. Terrific homemade salads, soups and sandwiches.

Sake in Southbury is a decent option.

fresh duck in central CT?

Perhaps try The Meat House: -- they have a branch in Avon.

Meat House
655 Main St, Walpole, MA 02081

New Mexican in SoNo

Is this a "new Mexican" or "New Mexican" place?

Need choice for Montreal business dinner for six - on a Monday

Hello Montreal hounds,

I'm heading up for a conference the end of October. Need a Monday evening business dinner choice to take a client. We're all staying near the convention center, so someplace within a short cab ride would be ideal.

I won't know my guests' dining preferences, so I'd avoid ethnic choices one might find too exotic.

Any recommendations are most appreciated.

- Dave

Looking for Halvah

Tangiers market in West Hartford has many offerings - I believe they sell by the slice.

Best bet for late night in West Hartford, Farmington, etc?

Wood & Tap is a good, close-by choice. The downstairs tavern at Apricots is a cozy fun spot, but not really a party spot.

In West Hartford town there's plenty of choices. The new Irish pub McLaddens (I think that's the name) and Sidecar in town center. Plan B for beers and burgers. The Corner Pug.

Corner Pug
1046 New Britain Ave, West Hartford, CT 06110

Plan B
4 Railroad St, Simsbury, CT 06070

Gyro Palace-West Hartford, CT YUM!

I haven't been but your review certainly tamps my expectations. The only decent gyro in the area I've had is at Tangiers, but they just grill up the pre-sliced stuff.

Any organic apple picking in central CT?

Here's another apple picking post! :)

Anyone know of any pick-your-own orchards that offer organic choices? I've yet to come across one.

Thanks in advance for any help.

Breakfast review Top O' The Mornin Waterbury CT

I love this place. Don't pass up on the lunches either - I used to have lunch there 3 days a week when I worked nearby. I miss the "top" !!

Halfway between Hartford and Newton, MA?

Me, a Hartford area hound, has a cousin who relocated to Newton. We've both got families with small kids.

What are some places good for meeting and eating? Would appreciate some recommendations not just on family-friendly restaurants but also some recreational activities and attractions.


Astounding Yogurt from Simmons Family Farm (Farmington, CT)

I don't think so. I dropped by the farm and there was no retail shop that I could see. Maybe one could buy direct if one worked out an arrangement, but nobody was around for me to ask.

"Uncorked" wine bar opening July 1 -- West Hartford, Blue Back Sq

Looks like this could be a fun place -- love the concept. 70 wines on tap with WineStation technology, customers can self-service buy 1 oz tastes, 3 oz, or 6 oz pours using a pre-funded smart card.

"Besides its vast selection of wines, Uncorked will also offer a light food menu, consisting of items typically paired with wine, including an assortment of cheeses, chocolates, meats, salads and tapas."

About the WineStation...

Wave Hill Bread

They sold at the farmington farmer's market (at Hillstead Museum) this past summer and are on the vendor list for this summer:

Lunch before CT Wine Trail

I've had dinner at Boulders a couple of times, but the highlight was having my wedding there five years ago. We were about 25 adults, rehearsal dinner a la carte in the restaurant and then we had the whole dining for an early Sunday supper with a set menu with several options. Outstanding food and service for the event, couldn't have been happier. We brought a couple of cakes from Carole Peck's, since I'm crazy about their pastry chef.

I'd definitely recommend you take a trip there, and stay overnight if you're looking for a deliciously romantic time.

Regarding your point on CT wine, no doubt much fun can be had. It's hard to beat a day of berry-picking at white silo, followed by sipping wine and viewing the art. There's plenty of pleasantly drinkable choices around the state. The point I tried to get across is that, in my opinion, the best approach for a day of wine hopping around the state, since the vineyards are so spread out, is to select destinations by desired scenery/leisure options first, and the actual quality of the wine second.

Lunch before CT Wine Trail

As almost nobody would argue, CT wine is not much to get excited about. But certainly wine tasting is a fun outing. Therefore, I'd pick a vineyard based on the experience and surroundings vs. the quality of the wine - which, as somebody mentioned can be picked up in any wine store. (And if you're going to a store to buy wine, you'll have much better options than CT wine!).

For tops in scenery I'd say head to Hopkins Vineyards. It's on Lake Waramaug - simply gorgeous. You can get cheese and small plates in the cafe upstairs from the tasting room, and there's also a small inn and restaurant on the property. For a more ambitious meal the restaurant at the nearby Boulder's Inn is terrific. And Oliva Cafe in the little town of New Preston at the foot of the lake is very good.

There's a small state-run park on the shore of the lake which is a nice picnic spot.

And if you indeed head to the Litchfield area there are terrific options for dinner or strolling through cute towns (Litchfield, Kent, etc


As others have said, once you pick out your destination then many of us CT hounds can suggest a lunch meet-up spot.

Ferme - New Farm to Table Restaurant - Avon, CT

I went two weeks ago, finally and embarrassingly so, since it's just 3 miles from my house. Wifey and I went for our anniversary.

I would say it's a solid restaurant. It's the kind of place you expect to be better than it is as far as food goes given the menu, the farm-to-table positioning and the room/ambience. As a farm-to-table concept it doesn't compare cuisine-wise to 2T, ON20, or even Firebox.

But it has many things going for it which will have me coming back. 1) very decent food. 2) easy: getting a table, parking. 3) wide variety of menu items from casual sandwiches to more sumptuous entrees 4) Value, value, value.

I must emphasize point 4. Dang, this place is cheap for what you get. The above-mentioned french meatballs are indeed a standout on the menu. Served in small iron skillet with a rich congac sauce the delicious veal & pork meatballs are delightful. For a 1/2 entree order, which is a nice feature of the menu, you get four large meatballs which I'd say total 1/3 to 1/2 pounds. More than enough to feed a grown man. Price? Eight bucks. Wait, what? Are we back in 1981?

The scallops and shortribs over celery puree was also well composed, hearty and satisfying. The half serving was four large scallops and four nuggets of rib, over the puree with port glaze.

I saw very nice sandwich orders around the room. On the sandwich menu: reubens, duck quesadillas, house made veggie burgers, house-ground farm burgers, blackened-catfish tacos -- that kind of level. Served with fries and slaw. And the Price? Ready for this? Nine to ten bucks. Wow. A nothing-special burger at Elbow Room costs more. Heck, a Chipolte burrito is barely cheaper.

So, rather than a fine dining destination, I will consider this place a top choice on my rotation for a very satisfying, value-packed meal. And next to the main small dining room is a casual pub with some dining tables, a piano (there's live music some evenings), TV's etc. One of these evenings I'll sit at the bar with a pal watching a game, eating one of the various charcuterie platters and be very happy.

Hopefully they don't change a thing about the place.

Here's the menu:

1st Anniversary Road-trip: Boston and through CT

Quickest route from Boston is mass pike to 84, which would take you through Manchester which means you can go to Pepe's pizza there. You likely know Pepe's is one of the big pizza legends with original ancient location is in New Haven. I've not been to the Manchester outpost but many hounds here are saying it's the real deal. And you won't have to wait like you would in New Haven.

Sounds like if you're leaving Boston in the AM then CT is your lunch stop, and Pepe's would be a great choice. But if you're looking for dinner recos just let us know.

Astounding Yogurt from Simmons Family Farm (Farmington, CT)

OK, gotta make an embarrassing confession. This place is 2 miles from my home and in my five years living here in the valley I've yet to go buy his yogurt. (bought some tomatoes there once). So, SHAME on ME!! Thanks for bringing it to my attention -- I will get there this week.

Places I wish were Hartford Area-CT

I've been there once. It's on Park Rd. in Frog Hollow, so a bit funky, but a bit of a culinary adventure for our region. It's a Hispanic grocery store with a food court containing independently run stalls of various Latin American cuisines. From what I remember there's a couple of Mexican and Puerto Rican stalls, a Columbian one, and more. Cheap stuff too. Not surprisingly I was the only gringo in the place!

Places I wish were Hartford Area-CT

I suspect you'll find it much better than Puerto Vallarta. I do recall going to MA several years ago and not being impressed and then finding it to have improved when I went back this year. The mole enchiladas are the real standout. They paid attention to the refried beans and guac sides compared to other joints (eg Coyote Flaco's guac is way to oniony for me). But in general, yes, Mexican in Central CT is mediocre. Have you eaten much through El Mercado market?

"Lazy Man" Lobster - New trend in FFD CTY CT?

LOL, for an extra $5 the customer gets less.

Reminds me about how bottled water often costs more than other water-based drinks. Why when you ADD stuff to water does it become cheaper?

Places I wish were Hartford Area-CT

I'd put Braza is on the list. Great space and patio, and I'd think a strong clientele for good Brazillian. It's mediocre food at best.

And Ichiban, though my expectations for passable Korean food in this area is minimal.

Places I wish were Hartford Area-CT

Have you been to Monte Alban in the past year? I hear it's better than it used to be. Went recently and thought their mole enchiladas were very good.

Help with Anniversary dinner in Hartford or Farmington Valley this Friday

Was on my list to try for a while. Thought your idea was good, but called and the only available table was in the "small room" overlooking Constitution Plaza. No view of the main room, view of the river, or the jazz entertainment. Thought I'd pass for now, but do you know what this "little room" is like?

Help with Anniversary dinner in Hartford or Farmington Valley this Friday

Wifey and I have our 5 year anniversary this Friday and would love some suggestions from area hounds.

We live in Farmington so I'm looking for some picks in the valley or Hartford, but can be persuaded to take a trip further out. Just need to get home by 10:00 to bounce the sitter.

Budget is not a problem. Looking for nice anniversary dinner ambiance, can be trendy and/or romantic, just not loud. We're flexible on food type but wifey picks dishes that are not heavy or fried and loves a great salad course and sinful chocolaty dessert. She appreciates gorgeous plate presentations. Local farm-to-table choices is a nice bonus. (Yes, we've been to Firebox - great place.) We don't drink alcohol so wine list isn't a factor.

(Suggestions for gifts also welcome :)