Thursday, February 4, 2016

Valentine's Day 2016 in Fairfield County

 Where to spend Valentine's Day in Fairfield County?

We've got you covered!

Here's a list of some restaurants featuring some sweet specials for you and someone you love this Valentine's Day / Valentines's Day Weekend.

Saturday, February 13 and Sunday, February 14
$75pp prix fixe menu both evenings, wine pairings can be added for $30pp
Also serving regular menu
Sunday, February 14 offering Sunday brunch as well with bottomless Bloody Marys and Mimosas for $20pp

Saturday, February 13 and Sunday, February 14
Set Valentine’s Day Menu - $90pp

J House Greenwich and J House Restaurant

Valentine’s Day Getaway Package – Book February 13 – 14
Saturday into Sunday
$399 per couple
A King Deluxe Room
Dinner for Two on Saturday Night
Brunch for Two on Sunday Morning
Late Checkout Time at 2:00pm
Rejuvenating spa services may be added

Valentine’s Weekend Couples Massage – February 12 - 14
Friday, Saturday, Sunday
$300 per couple
90 minute massage
Email their spa director to book,

Valentine’s 3-Course Dinner – February 13 & 14
Saturday & Sunday
$75pp (plus tax and gratuity)
3-Course Prix Fixe
Prosecco Toast

Valentine’s Day Lovebirds Brunch – February 14
Sunday Only
11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
$40 pp (plus tax and gratuity)
2-Course Prix Fixe
Bottomless Bloodies and Belinis
Free Pancakes for Kids 10 and Under

Sign of the Whale
Saturday, February 13 – live music by Screaming Broccoli
Sunday, February 14 – brunch 11-3 with a DJ and live music, serving regular brunch menu, but offering complimentary dessert for all diners. 
Regular dinner service and menu in the evening.

Fresh Salt Restaurant to Host Horizontal Wine Dinner

Fresh Salt Wine Dinner to feature French & California Wine

At their upcoming "Horizontal" Wine dinner guests will enjoy a distinctive culinary journey featuring exquisite red and white wines from France and California, all made from the same grape variety, hence the term "horizontal".

The inspiration for this dinner is an event in 1976, when English wine merchant Stephen Spurrier organized a Wine Tasting Event in Paris that featured a blind tasting comparing French and Californian Wines.  The result of this publicity stunt shocked the wine world due to the success and top ranking of California Wines, and subsequently inspired the 2008 film “Bottle Shock.” Fresh Salt at Saybrook Point will pay homage to this historical event, and relive the flavor of old and new world wines coming together for one magical evening

The French & California Horizontal Wine Dinner at Saybrook Point will be held on Saturday, February 20 beginning with a cocktail reception at 6:30pm, followed by an exceptional five-course dinner served at 7:15pm. Bill Monahan from Allan S. Goodman Wines of East Hartford, Connecticut will lead the wine tasting portion of the evening, and point out variables in the wines such as soil, non-fruit complexity, oak as a flavoring agent, and food compatibility. Each participant will be provided a scorecard to compare and rank his or her wine experience, and an overall vote will be tallied at the end of the dinner.

 Guests will also savor Executive Chef John Cortesi’s creative dishes expertly prepared using the finest ingredients.

The first course features Corn Meal Crusted Fried Local Oysters with Vindaloo Remoulade and Julienne Boston Bibb Lettuce, paired with Grandes Perrieres, Sancerre, Loire Valley, 2014 (France) and Groth Vineyards, Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley, 2014 (California).

The second course offers a wonderful Pan-seared Monkfish Fillet, Napa Cabbage Spring Roll with Herb-encrusted Vine-ripened Tomatoes, and Drizzled Avocado Vinaigrette, paired with Maison Albert Bichot, Les Vaillons, Chablis Premier Cru, Burgundy, 2013 (France) and Chateau St. Jean, Chardonnay, Belle Terre Vineyard, Alexander Valley, 2011  (California).

The third courses features Slow-braised Ox Tail, Celery Root, Mashed Yukon Potato, and Sautéed Wild Mushrooms, paired with Pierre Amadieu, Vacqueyras “Les Gangeliere,” Southern Rhone Valley, 2012 (France) and Zaca Mesa, Rhone Blend “Z Cuvee,” Santa Ynez Valley, 2009 (California). The main entrée course of the dinner includes Rabbit Two Ways: Confit Flatbread with Goat Cheese & Roasted Tomato; and Loin wrapped in Prosciutto with shaved Fennel, Blistered Grape Tomatoes, and Crisp Leeks, paired with Peyredon Lagravette, Haut-Medoc, Bordeaux, 2011 (France) and Conn Creek, Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, 2013 (California).

Lastly, the evening concludes with an outstanding Layered French Crepe Cake with Grand Marnier Whipped Cream and Drizzled Chocolate Glaze.

Seaside Wine and Spirits from Old Saybrook will be in attendance, and guests can place orders for their favorite wine of the evening at specially reduced prices.

The French & California Horizontal Wine Dinner at Saybrook Point’s Fresh Salt is $99.50/person plus tax and service charge.

Reservations are necessary and may be made by calling 860.395.2000.

Where: Fresh Salt at Saybrook Point Inn
When: Saturday, February 20, 2016
Cost: $99.50 per person plus tax and service charge
Call: 860.395.2000 to reserve now

Fresh Salt at Saybrook Point

2 Bridge Street
Old Saybrook, CT 06475

About Saybrook Point 

Situated along the picturesque shores of historic Old Saybrook, Connecticut, Saybrook Point features a collection of 100 elegantly-appointed guestrooms, a rejuvenating full-service SANNO spa, and casual fine dining restaurant Fresh Salt, as well as a unique waterside Lighthouse Suite. In addition, the historic Three Stories and Tall Tales luxury guesthouses offer exquisite rooms that convey the story of famous local residents. The pristine Saybrook Point Marina, a landmark boating destination conveniently located at the mouth of the Connecticut River, serves as a focal point for the Inn. More information is available at

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Small Plate Tasting at NIXS Evergreen in South Windsor

Social Media Promotion

A Small Plate Sampling at NIXS new location  - NIXS Evergreen

Last weekend I had the opportunity to travel to South Windsor CT and visit NIXS new location in the Promenade Shops at Evergreen Walk. This was my first time at this picturesque shopping district and it won't be my last. Such unique little shops, with plenty of parking, and lots of great food places to NIXS Evergreen!

Needless to say, as soon as I received the invitation to visit for a sampling with a group of some other CT foodlovers, I was in!

The interior is beautiful with a hip industrial whimsical vibe.
I know. I know...
It doesn't sound quite like it goes together, but trust me, it does!

Polished concrete floors and comfortable overstuffed seating  in beautiful teal jewel tones, with steel gray side chairs, and basic black linens and silver accents.

With a great bar that features some cool blue accent lighting. And some great drink specials too!

And, speaking of drinks we each jumped right in and ordered some of the fun NIXS specialty cocktails, with names like Bazzle Dazzle, Dirty Rotten Scoundrel, Bad Wolf, and more.... !!!

That's my Bazzle Dazzle on the far left. It was great. A hearty cocktail with a gin base. 

We started off with some shared small plates for the table.

Pictured below are the Buffalo Wings, but they also offer a Honey Dijon and Ginger Soy.

NIXS Evergreen Buffalo Wings

And we ordered a couple of cheese trays for the table!

NIXS Evergreen Cheese Tray
Assorted Cheeses with Fig Jam, Almond Brittle (OMG SO GOOD) drizzled with honey
Toasted Crostini

Then we each ordered a smattering of small plates to divulge in all by ourselves!

NIXS Evergreen Veggie Quesadilla 

NIXS Evergreen Salad

And Chef Sean De LaRosa himself came out to visit and say hello to our table!

NIXS Evergreen Naked Spicy Tuna Tartar

NIXS Evergreen Buffalo Mac Attack

NIXS Evergreen Fish Tacos

And this was my selection  - The Tuna Tartar Tacos! These had a nice warm heat that was tempered by a bit of guacamole. Yup. They were soooo good!

NIXS Evergreen Tuna Tartar Tacos

NIXS Evergreen Sliders

And not ready to call it a night - we went with some desserts as well! Delicious ice cream sandwiches and some s'mores dip!

NIXS Evergreen Homemade (!!!) Ice Cream Sandwiches

NIXS Evergreen Smores Dip

We had such a great time sampling some of the great items NIXS Evergreen has to offer!

Assorted Small Plates at NIXS Evergreen

Be on the look out for some great Happy Hour specials, like the one they are currently featuring
Five for Five which offers five specialty appetizers at only $5.00 each and $5.00 drink specials too!
See details about their Happy Hour Special ==> HERE

Be sure you Play Nice and visit NIXS Evergreen soon!

NIXS Evergreen

The Promenade Shops at Evergreen Walk
538 Evergreen Way
South Windsor, CT 06074

Follow them on twitter

 Nixs is part of The Bostonian Hospitality Group, with locations in Boston, Nantucket, Hartford, South Windsor, Plymouth, and Newburyport. For more information, visit

 The Legend behind The Curse of William Fly

Nix's Mate is one of the smaller islands in the Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area. In 1726, upon his arrest, officials brought pirate captain William Fly to Boston, where he was executed. His body was then gibbetted on Nix's Mate to serve as a warning to sailors not to turn to piracy. Before his execution, Fly famously scolded the hangman for incorrectly securing the noose, then retied it himself. His body, with those of two other pirates, is buried on the island. Pleading not guilty to the end, one pirate predicted the Island would sink into the sea to prove his innocence. Since 1803, the island has disappeared each day in high tide.


Disclaimer: I was invited to the sampling by members of NIXS marketing team, however all opinions are my own.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

My Wine Stroll with New Haven's Flights of Fancy

Social Media Promotion

Flights of Fancy in New Haven

This year was the first year I was able to participate in New Haven's Wine Crawl "Flights of Fancy" through the Chapel Street Historic and Broadway District. As soon as the Wine Gods smiled down upon me I cleared my schedule and grabbed friends Gayle and Maggie and made plans for the night!

This totally affordable wine crawl costs only $20.00 ($15.00 if you saved your glass from last year) and gives you the opportunity to sample over 30 different wines, and visit some great boutiques, stores, and restaurants . In addition, you also get to admire some classic Gothic architecture as you stroll through sections of the Yale University campus.

Maggie and Gayle pose in front of a Yale entryway

We checked in at the Study at Yale Hotel, got our wine glass and entered ourselves in the raffle that featured prizes from many of the merchants we were visiting, as well as a grand prize drawing.

Check in at the Study at Yale

With maps in hand everyone set out to do some wine tasting and shopping on this fun wine stroll!

Let's get this party started!

In alphabetical order, here are the participating merchants and the wine they served, as well as any discounts or extras they were serving their visitors.

Because we like to stop and chat with every merchant, we weren't  able to visit every one - but here are some of the highlights of the Wine Stroll and the participating merchants.

Ashley's Ice Cream (280 York St.) 20% off purchase. Serving: Villa Rosa Moscato NV.

Barbour (27 Broadway) 10% off 1 item that evening only. Serving: PJ Valckenberg Gewurtztraminer.

Campus Customs (57 Broadway) 20% off purchase. Serving: Vicolo Montepulciano d'Abruzzo.

Canditopia (1022 Chapel St.) 20% off & free truffles with the wine tasting. Serving: Cascina Sant' Ubaldo Brachetto d'Acqui


Denali (13 Broadway) Offering 20% off 1 item. Serving: Societe Cooperative Castelmaure Corbieres Col des Vents.

Derek Simpson Goldsmith (1094 Chapel St.) Anniversary Sale 20-70% off. Serving:Tenuta Ulisse "Sognodiulisse" Chardonnay Malvasia.

Derek Simpson Goldsmith

Elm City Social (266 College St.) Offering Happy Hour pricing to participants. Serving:The Federalist Cabernet.

Elm City Social

Froyo World (46 High St.) 20% off your purchase. Serving: Adega de Pegoes Moscatel de Setubal NV.

GANT (268 York St.) 20% off 1 item that evening. Serving: Lockhart Cabernet Sauvignon.


Harvest (1104 Chapel St.) Free glass of Prosecco or Moscato with dinner purchase. Serving: Cape Point Vineyards "Stonehaven" Sauvignon Blanc.


Hello Boutique (1090 Chapel St.) Additonal 25% off the existing 15-50% sale items. Serving: Nik Weiss Urban Riesling.

Hello Boutique

Hull's Art Supply (1144 Chapel St.) 20% off 1 item. Serving: Sin Nombre Crianza.


Idiom Boutique (1014 Chapel St.) 20% off 1 item. Serving: Charles Smith Kung Fu Girl Riesling.

Idiom /Boutique

J. Crew (29 Broadway)Extra 40% off final sale styles*40% discount valid on the purchase of select final sale items in J.Crew stores from January 26, 2016, 12:01am ET through January 31, 2016, 11:59pm ET. In-store discount as advertised. Cannot be applied to previous purchases and cannot be redeemed for cash or combined with any other offer.  Serving: Groiss Gruner Veltliner.

J. Press (206 College St.) 25% off 1 item. Serving: Red Tail Ridge Sans Oak Chardonnay.

Kiko Milano (11 Broadway) Offering 20% off 1 item. Serving: Line 39 Petite Syrah.

L'Occitaine en Provence (1042 Chapel St.) 10% off total purchase. Serving: Laudun-Chusclan Cotes du Rhone Les Costes Rouge.

Lou Lou (23 Broadway) 30% off 1 item. Serving: Auspicion Cabernet Sauvignon.

Merwin's Art Supply (1052 Chapel St.) 20% off 1 item. Serving: Roc des Anges "L'Effet Papillon" Cotes du Rousillon Blanc.


SHiFT Cycling (199 Crown St.) Free class pass for participants and 20% off a 3-day pass. Serving: Ten Mile Bridge Red.

Tarry Lodge (278 Park St.) Offering complimentary Antipasti or Soft Serve with purchase of pizza, pasta or secondi. Serving: Laya Garnacha/Monastrell.

Tarry Lodge

Thali Too (65 Broadway) 20% off total check for participants. Serving: Castellargo Nero d'Avola.

The Green Teahouse (1008 Chapel St.) Free tea pastries & 15% off all merchandise. Serving: Hakutsuru Sake Junmai Excellent NV.

The Green Teahouse

Therapy (286 York St.) Offering 20-30% off 1 item. Serving: Laudun-Chusclan Cotes du Rhone Les Costes Blanc.


Trailblazer (296 Elm St.) Offering 20% off 1 item. Serving: Domaine des Cassagnoles VdP Cotes de Gascogne.


Wave (1406 Chapel St.) Offering 20% off 1 item. Serving: Real Companhia Velha Porca de Murca Douro Tinto.


Willoughby's Coffee & Tea (194 York St.) Official coffee sponsor of the event. Offering 20% off your purchse. Serving: Moobuzz Chardonnay.

The Wine Thief (181 Crown St) Stop by for various wine samples and pick up your favorite bottle from Flights. Most wines provided during event are from the Wine Thief.

The Wine Thief 

Yale University Bookstore (77 Broadway) Offering 20% off 1 general reading book or 1 apparel item. Not serving wine.

Yorkside Pizza (288 York St.) 1/2 price beer or wine. Spend $25 or more and receive free pitcher of soda. Serving: Josh Wines (Chardonnay & Legacy).

Yurway Boutique (1130 Chapel St.) 50% off sales items. Serving: Tortoise Creek Zinfandel.


Before the night was over we headed back to the Hotel at the Study at Yale to listen to some great music and enjoy getting together with all the strollers for the special drawing and prizes!


Congratulations to the winners!

Special shout out to Harvest who had a wide array of nibbling items and to the Green Teahouse for taking a fun picture of me and Gayle (and for some amazing organic cheesecake). (See that photo HERE on their facebook page).

And we LOVED seeing our babe Chef Sam (Samantha) Moore at Tarry Lodge! 

Chef Sam Moore
Look at that megawatt smile!

We had a beautiful night to enjoy this fun event. The weather was crisp and clear and the recent snow fall had mostly melted away or was cleared from the walkways.

The Lights on Broadway

Special thanks to the sponsors of this event, the Broadway Merchants Association, The Wine Thief, The Study at Yale Hotel. 

This was a wonderful evening organized by the Town Green Special Services District - don't miss their next one scheduled for July 14th, 2016!  (SAVE THE DATE). I'll be back with details as soon as they're available!

For more pictures of the Flights of Fancy visit the Home Place facebook page ==>> HERE

and while you're there, don't forget to "like" us!

Disclaimer: I was invited to Flights of Fancy by the event's marketing department. However, all views and opinions are my own.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Valentine's Day in West Hartford at A'vert and Treva

The most romantic day of the year is approaching! 

Valentine's Day!

Here's what some local Connecticut establishments in the Hartford area have in store for you and someone you love!

Both are offering a three course brunch menu (for $45 per person, including a glass of champagne), and a four course dinner menu (for $69 per person) on Valentine’s Day.

Treva Restaurant is Chef Dorjan Puka’s signature Italian Restaurant.

Its sister restaurant, A’vert Brasserie, features a French menu with romantic, bistro style dining.

Both restaurants are located in the heart of West Hartford.

A’vert Brasserie
35 A LaSalle Road
West Hartford, CT 06107
Phone: 860-904-6240
Valentine's Brunch==> Menu
Valentine's Dinner ==> Menu

Treva Restaurant
980 Farmington Ave
West Hartford, CT 06107 
Valentine's Brunch==> Menu
Valentine's Dinner ==> Menu

Reservations are recommended.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Savor CT New Event - Savor the Legends

Savor – A Celebration of Wine, Food & Spirits 

Announces a New Event: Savor the Legends  

Plan b presents an EXCLUSIVE opportunity to taste five years of Pappy Van Winkle!

Photo Courtesy Plan b

That's right! Savor CT adds a NEW event to this year's fun weekend lineup!

Savor, A celebration of Wine, Food & Spirits presented by Foxwoods Resort Casino, announced this week that Plan b will present a new Savor event, Savor the Legends.

This EXCLUSIVE event will offer guests the unique opportunity to taste five years of the very rare, legendary Pappy Van Winkle bourbon.

Savor’s host chef for the weekend is Robert Irvine from the Food Network’s show, Restaurant: Impossible.

Savor the Legends will be held at the Connecticut Convention Center on Thursday, April 7 from 7:00 – 9:30 p.m.

  • Bourbon Passports (tickets) for Savor the Legends are $125 and include:  
  • A taste of five limited and rare batches of Pappy Van Winkle, aged 10-, 12-, 15-, 20- and 23-years 
  • A special gift -- handmade, crystal Johnson’s Whiskey Tot  
  • Mingle with Robert Irvine 
  • Plan b’s award-winning bourbon cocktails  
  • Plan b’s Kentucky-inspired menu with Kentucky ham, hot browns, fried green tomatoes, BBQ pork, mini burgers, pecan pie and more 
  • A live DJ 

A portion of Savor’s proceeds will be donated to the Robert Irvine Foundation (, a not-for-profit organization that honors the men and women defending our country. The foundation’s mission is to support individuals and organizations committed to enriching the lives of our military personnel, and to create awareness throughout the community of the sacrifices made by those defending our freedom.

“To be able to taste five years of Pappy is an incredible opportunity for Savor guests;” said Vicky Cirilli Event Director for Savor, “it fits right in with Savor’s mission to offer guests only the highest quality wine, food and spirits.” 
Photo Courtesy Plan b

“Bourbon lovers will get to taste some batches that are very, very difficult to find, while supporting our local and fellow restaurants and non-profits like the Robert Irvine Foundation. It’s a win-win for everyone – good food, good booze and a good cause,” says Lena DiGenti, Chief Strategy Officer for Plan b. 

Tickets are on sale now at:

About The Connecticut Convention Center: 

The Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford is the state's premier meeting venue and the largest full-service convention facility between New York and Boston. Overlooking the beautiful Connecticut River, it features 140,000 square feet of exhibition space, a 40,000-square-foot ballroom and 25,000 square feet of meeting space, as well as ample sheltered parking. The venue is professionally managed for the State of Connecticut by Waterford Venue Services, an affiliate of Waterford Hotel Group. For more information, visit

About Foxwoods Resort Casino: 

Foxwoods Resort Casino, the presenting sponsor of Savor, is one of the premier hotel, gaming, shopping and entertainment destinations in the Northeast. As the largest resort casino in North America, Foxwoods offers a vast array of gaming in six casinos; AAA Four-Diamond hotels, restaurants from gourmet to express, world-renowned spas, awarding-winning golf, state-of-the-art theaters, and exclusive retailers. Perfect for both recreation and business, Foxwoods provides modern and versatile convention and meeting space to infuse new life into any meeting or event. At Foxwoods, you can be anyone and do everything with endless possibilities of experiences that are Anything but Ordinary.

Foxwoods Resort Casino is owned and operated by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation.

The Mashantucket Pequots are a native Algonquin people in Southeastern Connecticut known for their “Pequot spirit of survival.” Since opening one of the first Native American gaming halls in the country in 1986, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation (MPTN) has also developed a host of lucrative economic ventures including the Lake of Isles Golf Course and the Spa at Norwich Inn. The MPTN is one of Connecticut’s highest state tax payers and largest employers. The Tribe provides significant financial contributions to state and local nonprofit organizations that support neighboring communities. For a comprehensive look at Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation visit

About Plan b:  

Plan b was founded in 2006 by Al Gamble and Shawn Skehan. The award-winning, all-American burger, bourbon and beer bar provides a sophisticated dining experience in an upbeat, relaxed, neighborhood environment. There are nine locations in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Washington D.C. and Virginia.

Plan b offers fresh, never frozen beef that is ground in-house daily like old world butchers have done for centuries. All beef is hormone-free and antibiotic-free, fed a 100% vegetarian diet, fully raised in the U.S. and source verified. Plan b is also widely recognized for their extensive bar offerings, specializing in American boutique bourbons and hand-selected craft beers with certified Cicerones (beer sommeliers) on staff. For more information, please visit

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Bridal Trunk Show Featuring Sabrina Dahan in Westport CT

Sabrina Dahan Trunk Show at The Plumed Serpent 

Connecticut brides-to-be are the first to have the opportunity to try on gorgeous, one of a kind styles from Sabrina Dahan’s debut bridal collection at an exclusive Bridal Trunk Show at The Plumed Serpent in Westport CT on January 23rd and 24th 2016.

After launching in October 2015, Sabrina Dahan, has surely proved herself by turning the heads of 10+ top bridal salons nationwide. As a bride-to-be herself, Sabrina understands exactly what brides today are looking for! 

Her handmade, romantic, couture creations are the perfect fit and now local Connecticut and New York brides can meet the designer herself, try on the collection and place orders. 

January 23rd & 24th at The Plumed Serpent in Westport, Connecticut 
Reserve your spot now!

The Plumed Serpent
295 Post Road East, Playhouse Square
Westport, CT 06880


More about Sabrina Dahan 

Sabrina Dahan’s passion for bridal is apparent in her soft touch embroidered masterpieces that display immaculate technique, fit and attention to detail.  Inspired to launch a couture bridal line by her own love story and engagement, Dahan’s expert technique and keen eye comes from top notch schooling at Otis College of Art and Design and from her hands on experience in the bridal industry for several years.  Dahan has been the light and talent behind successes for top couture projects and design houses, including the likes of Monique Lhuillier. In pouring effortless luxury into each garment, Dahan draws upon inspiration from her sun-soaked southern California upbringing and Parisian summers with loved ones. As her collections come to life, Dahan's unique originality shines through embodying a sense of romance that will resonate with each bride embarking on her own love story.
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