cardiak's Profile

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Q's Restaurant, Norwalk, CT

Thanks so much for letting us know about this spot Steve!

I get a jonesing for pho every now and again, and now that the spot in Stamford looks like it's gone for good, this is the closest spot to me.

I will be checking it out soon.

Sep 14, 2014
cardiak in Southern New England

Saigon Cafe in Stamford

Thanks for the update; I haven't gotten the chance to get my Pho fix in a while and didn't know they changed hands. New website seems to say they still have Pho; so maybe they kept some of the staff.

http://www.ctfirstkitchen.com/menu.html

They also seem to be open till 10pm every night now; which would be nice for me to be able to pick up food on the way home from work, which I couldn't do before at Saigon Cafe.

Maybe this is my wake-up call to be sure I frequent these places more often; because if I have to drive to Bridgeport for Pho again, even if it's better, I'll be sad.

Dec 13, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Live Crab in Fairfield County?

Good luck Sarah, let me know how it goes.

This video is from a few years ago but you can see and listen to the guy, apparently it's pretty easy to catch em there:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rm1zZE...

Sep 06, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Live Crab in Fairfield County?

I see people in Bruce Park catching crabs with pieces of twine tied to chicken legs. They get the crabs nibbling on the chicken and then slowly lure them up where they can net em. I have no idea as to the legality of this or how safe they are to eat, it's just what I've seen. :)

Aug 28, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Is El Charito still around

Just FYI Roxlet, the storefront does offer a few more dishes than the truck; they now have a truck menu and storefront menu.

I haven't been to the truck in a while since the storefront is closer to me, but their food is still darn tasty!

Aug 19, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Paw Paw Fruit @ any Farmer's Markets in Fairfield County?

Ever since my friend had a paw paw fruit he's been going crazy trying to find them.

Anyone seen any around at farmer's markets or specialty grocery stores?

Aug 16, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Recs for the Hunter/Windham Area?

Hi Chowhounders,

I'm renting a house in Jewett, NY, which is in between Hunter and Windham for a week in November. I have a large group of friends that are coming up for varying stay lengths over the week.

We will be doing a lot of our own cooking, especially over the weekend where there will probably be about 16 of us there, but we may go out for a few meals, especially on some weeknights when there will be less (8-10) of us there.

I've done some Yelp searches, but I wanted to reach out to the Chow community for recommendations in two areas:

1) We're looking for a supermarket in the area, and possibly farmer's markets or other places where we can stock up for our own cooking endeavors.

2) Decent Restaurants that would accommodate larger groups that are relatively reasonable (we have people of varying economic means in our group, so fine dining is probably out)

We have some adventurous eaters among us, and some not so much; but we've enjoyed ourselves at ethnic spots in the past, so I'd love to hear what you guys have enjoyed in the area in any genre!

Thanks so much!

CHOW Reviews: The KitchenAid Classic Egg Slicer and other timeless gadgets

I own this Slicer (in black) and I use it almost exclusively to cut mushrooms.

There have been a few times where some larger, tougher creminis have made me a little wary of broken wires, but it's held up so far!

Aug 01, 2013
cardiak in Cookware

La Pizza Fritta Truck - Stamford

Very interesting. I'd love to hear anyone's reports on this; not sure I'll be able to get there anytime soon.

It's a good PoV I think, you take a food that a good amount of people are familiar with and look forward to, (at least in this area) that is not readily available and is not something that people typically make at home.

I looked a little bit at some pics on their facebook page and the portions look pretty big. Generally if you're going to indulge in a pizza fritta, it's probably a good thing that they're generally small, but there's a photo of a kid on there eating one and it looked like the size of a medium pizza.

That's a whole lotta fried dough. :)

Jul 31, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

chicken-fried steak in CT?

I've had it a bunch of times at different places; in CT I have had it at Cracker Barrel and it's tasty; if a little salty, but tender and you get that crunchy + saucy at the same time that I dig on a decent General Tso's.

A lot of IHOPs also have it, but that's a step down in quality from Cracker Barrel IMHO.

I haven't had one in texas or in the south, so it might be a dirty bastardization of a 'real' chicken fried steak... but they are tasty.

Jul 29, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

A few recent stops....

I mentioned this in a Mohegan thread a few weeks ago, but I had a pretty epic pancake experience at Hash House a Go Go at Mohegan.

I had the brown sugar banana pancake, and it was awesome. It was about the size of a car steering wheel, so I only ate about 2/3 of it, but it was awesome. :)

Jul 18, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Mohegan Sun

From my last trip to Mohegan a couple weeks ago:

First I went to the Asian food court right when I got there, I got the Vietnamese Pho and some steamed duck buns. This was an experiment just to see what was going on there, as I rarely saw non-Asians eating there.

The Pho was just ok; broth didn't have that signature aroma which left me feeling sad, but they did go all out and have the tripe, tendons, brisket, raw slices of round, and meatballs in the soup.

The steamed buns were pretty decent, but just FYI, everything there is packaged in plastic to-go containers, and the prices, while reasonable compared to a nice sit-down place, are not exactly in-line with the zero-frills, zero-service experience of ordering at a cash register, paying, waiting for your number to appear on the board, and then picking up your tray. (you clean your own table up as well)

Later that night I ate at the bar at Hash House a Go Go and got a truck driver special which includes an absolutely gigantic pancake. I got the bananas and brown sugar pancake and it was pretty damned awesome if you don't mind your breakfast food sweet.

Sort of like eating donuts, the first couple are delicious and then all of a sudden you don't even want to look at one. I made it through about 2/3 of it before getting totally sick of it. :)

Figured I'd share since these were some more off-the-wall choices over the traditional spots or the buffet.

I had heard the buffet had gone through a reboot; nice to hear some positives about it, maybe I'll check it out.

I do find it to be a very different experience here rather than Vegas, where the casinos have to fight to keep you there so they have to offer good food at good prices or you'll just bounce... if you're at Mohegan, you can't exactly just walk down the strip to the next casino, so the dynamic is a bit different.

Jun 24, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Where to stop to eat in CT?

I'd recommend Luncheria Valencia in Norwalk; they do Venezuelan "Beach Food" with arepas, burritos, sandwiches, empanadas, entrees, and they always have interesting specials.

It was featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives in 2009, back when it was a very small place, and they have since expanded to a much larger venue, and the food continues to be solid.

They now have a full bar with some interesting drinks as well.

The kitchen is open till 9pm on Fri-Sat, so I'm not sure if that falls in your 'late dinner' time slot or not.

http://www.valencialuncheria.com/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uf5wuB...

Saigon Cafe in Stamford

Just wanted to give a "6 Months Later" review on Cafe Saigon.

It's still standing, which I'm super pleased about. They've altered their hours, they're now only open for lunch on Mon-Thu, but now they are open Sundays, which they weren't before.

The youngish guy who runs the front of house is really friendly; he chats up customers and helps people who aren't really familiar with Vietnamese food to make their choices.

Their pho continues to be tasty. It may not be the best I've ever had, (especially after eating pho out in CA a few times) but for someone living in SW CT, it's fantastic to not have to drive to Bridgeport (to a frankly slightly sketchy spot in Pho Saigon) to get my pho on.

Here's to hoping they stick around for a long time; if you're in the area and you're in the mood, it scratches the itch.

That might sound like a cheesy endorsement, but I'm really hoping people continue to go there; I'll be devastated if I drive over there to get pho one day and they've closed up shop. :P

May 20, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Athens Pizza - Stamford - for sale

Ouch. They just did a facelift on the building a little while ago too. Not sure if they updated the inside, I never go in there. :P

There's a lot of traffic there with the two megamarts on either side of that corner, but I almost never see anyone going in and out of there.

Last time I had pizza from Athens was probably 10+ years ago.

When I worked in East Norwalk I used to go to Jordan's all the time; their pizza and their souvlaki were both pretty good.

May 20, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Virgil's BBQ coming to Mohegan Sun

I have been to Virgil's in NYC three times, and the first time I went I thought it was good; the next two times, years later, I was not impressed.

I've enjoyed my two meals at Dinosaur BBQ in Stamford more than my meals at Virgil's, and while I only ate there once, I enjoyed Bubba's as well.

I hope it's good, and that's too bad that the prices are going to be high. I think Mohegan needs more casual eateries. I'm not going to go to Johnny Rockets or Pepe's every time I go to Mohegan.

Though I do want to try the pho in the new Asian food court they have; has anyone been there yet?

Mar 01, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Any update on Dinosaur BBQ in Stamford?

A group of us went for lunch on a Saturday a couple weeks ago, (we had 10 adults and 2 children) and we had a very good time and the food did not disappoint.

I wasn't blown away, but everything was good.

Surprisingly good were the shrimp in the appetizer sampler and the bbq pork fried rice.

I had a bite of the mac n cheese from someone else's plate, I thought it was good, not amazing, others at my table were loving it.

My pulled pork sandwich was tasty, and I really enjoyed the cole slaw, which was fresh, crunchy, and not over-mayo'd.

Overall, I wouldn't expect your meal at this place to be a transcendent experience, but it beat the pants off of a lot of other informal casual eateries that I would feel comfortable bringing a loud group with kids.

And for the record, one of my buddies got the cuban and loved it; and we did get some wings to share. They're different (smoked and not fried, so different taste/texture profile, and the sauce was a spicy bbq not a vinegary buffalo) but quite good.

Jan 17, 2013
cardiak in Southern New England

Any update on Dinosaur BBQ in Stamford?

Great to hear some positive reviews. We'll give it a shot.

Dec 21, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Any update on Dinosaur BBQ in Stamford?

Anyone been here since they've opened and want to share their experience?

A group of friends and I are thinking about having a get-together here soon and I'd be interested to know what people thought, if anyone had anything especially great or not-so-great, etc.

I've heard that their wings are delicious.

Dec 18, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Saigon Cafe in Stamford

Went back to Saigon Cafe over the weekend to get my pho fix, and I was very happy to see in my container of broth, a holiday miracle... a pair of the meatballs! This was my only beef (no pun intended) from my last trip.

I dunno what they're made out of, they have that strange rubbery texture, but I love them!

So happy this place is here.

Dec 10, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

China White (Greenwich) Closed

That's good news; I hadn't had a chance to eat there after two times having to cancel... I thought I had missed my chance.

Dec 03, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Saigon Cafe in Stamford

I was able to get out of work early today and I ran over to Saigon Cafe.

Got a Bahn Mi and the Pho, and was very pleased. The third time was the charm; and it just looks like this is a lunch spot, but I will definitely be back.

The guy working out front was very friendly and was happy to chat and recommend items to another guy in there that didn't know much about Vietnamese food.

The Pho did not have the meatballs, it only had the rare beef and the well-done brisket, but that is really my only complaint.

I got it to-go, and I was impressed with their care in packing up the Pho.

You get a container of broth, another container with the noodles, onions, and beef, then another container with the sprouts, basil, and lime.

Traffic was crazy so when I got home I heated up the broth until it was just about boiling, then poured it over, squirted some sriracha in there, and enjoyed.

It really hit the spot, and it sure as hell beat going all the way to Bridgeport (which is a 45min drive for me).

Nov 21, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Saigon Cafe in Stamford

Thanks for the update chip; I'll try to make it down there on a weekend afternoon or on a day off.

I can deal with the Pho not having the tendon and the tripe and all that in it; when I get Pho I usually get the "special" that has everything in it just because there's rarely an option that has the brisket, the rare beef, and the meatballs, which are my favorites.

Nov 19, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Saigon Cafe in Stamford

Has anyone else been here?

I'm 0/2 in my attempts to stop by Saigon Cafe after work.

The first attempt was devastating; met a friend there around 6:45pm, and there was one guy working there, furiously trying to get a take out order for the guy in front of us.

After waiting for a solid 20 minutes, 90% of which, the guy was back in the kitchen, he finished up the 2 bahn mei and pho for the guy in front of us and asked us what we wanted, whereon he said he was sorry but that guy had gotten the last serving of pho, and all that was left was the really salty stuff at the bottom of the barrel.

I appreciated the honesty and his desire to not serve subpar food, but needless to say, it was very disappointing; the long wait definitely exacerbated the problem.

The next time I went by, it was a little after 7pm and they were closed already.

It sounds like I'm the only one that has had bad luck so far; I guess I'll try and get back during the day sometime.

I *really* want this place to be good and do well; having pho be a 10min drive for me instead of a 45min drive is huge!

Nov 15, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Greenwich, CT: Dinner for 4, Recs Needed

I've had a good time with friends at Ginger Man. (64 greenwich avenue) It will almost certainly be hopping, and you can feel free to be boisterous there.

Food is pretty good and while I'm not a beer guy, my friends who are really enjoy the beer selection there.

Nov 15, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Asiana/Penang Greenwich Ct

I've been to both spots a bunch of times and I think they're good; I lean towards Penang over Asiana in most cases.

I agree that Asiana is less focused; they are a bigger place and I believe they're trying to appeal to a broader range.

The big differences:

Asiana is a larger space and has a liquor license. Penang is smaller and does not serve alcohol.

Asiana offers sushi and just generally more choices across the board. Penang has a smaller menu but the food is a bit better quality in my opinion.

Asiana can sometimes be loud with a lot of families with kids. I usually find Penang quieter, and I just generally think I get taken care of a little better at Penang.

A little thing that always makes me smile about Penang is that I always order their vegetarian hot+sour soup to start (love it) and after taking the order, my server almost always goes immediately to get my soup and bring it back. 1min tops.

Oct 26, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Saigon Cafe in Stamford

Wow. I'm so excited to have Pho nearby.

I'm going to hit this place up at my earliest convenience and finally get my Pho fix. I will definitely try the Bahn Mi as well!

Hurray for Vietnamese closer than friggin Bridgeport!

Oct 18, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

SFOGLIATELLE: Who makes 'em best in Connecticut?

Another shoutout to DiMare. Sfogliatelles are quite good; as are the cannolis, both traditional and the the new nacho style.

I'll never forget when I was young, my dad was picking up some pastries for a party, and one of the owners was yelling in typical loving yet loud italian fashion... "Don't put in 'frigerator!"

My family still jokes about that today.

Oct 12, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Big E - 2012

Wow cheereeo, you just brought me back.

I haven't been to the Big E in many years, but I definitely remember a great pork chop sandwich from "The Pork Palace"

Sep 24, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England

Stamford CT chicken wings

I agree that Bobby V's and Bradford's have decent wings, but in my opinion, they cannot touch Candlelight. That said; Candlelight is not in or near Stamford. It's quite a ways from Stamford, into NY.

What sets them apart for me is the extra care they take. It's such a little thing, but consider how they cut the wings into the traditional two pieces but keep them barely connected so you know they came in as whole wings and were trimmed there.

I usually go for the hot sauce, and I think it's great. The place is a local's joint that has sort of exploded; it's a little dive-y with a couple of quirks and the menu is just mostly bar snacks and some sandwiches, but the wings are awesome and a lot of people know it.

The fact that they have a second building next door just for catering should say something.

Aug 29, 2012
cardiak in Southern New England