Friday, March 14, 2014

A Taste of Fairfield & Bridgeport, CT

Now that I am a resident of Black Rock, CT--and mentally in a place where I can feel comfortable eating in establishments with Aidan--my husband and I have started branching out to neighborhood gems that are serving up great food.  True, it's a far cry from the days I could actually use two hands to eat (or use one hand as the other held a glass of wine, beer or a cocktail!) the days when my husband and I could actually engage in a full conversation without forgetting our train of thought or stopping every few bites to pop something into Aidan's mouth to prevent a flair up!  Yes, the Before Parenting (BP) days, Ah! Nonetheless, Aidan who is now 15 months--and a hop, skip and jump away from the dreaded "terrible two's" (yikes!)--is able to sit in a high chair and come join us (once all the silverware has dropped at least once, and the folded napkin is being used to secure his seat jik) making the experience a challenge, but definitely memorable!  So, the 3 Musketeers are the new "date night" and you know what I am totally ok with that!

Here are a few places we have made the efforts (making sure we have pampers, his own spoon & bowl, a toy, a bib and the other countless--but minimal things needed--which despite the fact you checked your list three hundred times you can bet your life that one of these items is bound to remain in the car or safely at home!) to visit and eat at.

Bangalore Restaurant & Bar offers a nice variety during their lunch buffet—yes has real table cloths, but Aidan did very well to not make it a hot mess!  Aidan enjoyed the flavors and vegetarian options and the staff is very nice!
Pho Saigon is everything you want: authentic food (great pho!), cheap bill, a neighborhood "hole in the wall" hence gem where a baby can wail and it will be fine...ok perhaps that's pushing it, but you get the drift! 
Mecha Noodle Bar was a delicious, but big mistake!  While it claims to be "good for children" they are clearly referring to children who do not require a high chair as everyone sits on a bench communal-style. Trendy spot indeed with a yummy cocktail, but won’t be frequenting here.
Bridgeport Lobster & Shellfish Co is a local fish market that offers a few stools to eat up some of their fresh, classics like fish & chips.  Their lobster roll was especially buttery and delish, no mayo....hmmmm   
Barnum Publick House was quite impressive for us as we try our best to avoid crowds.  Actually, when I noticed how packed the restaurant was I was seconds away from doing a bow face, glad we didn't.  Servers were accommodating and fellow customers were so busy chatting and enjoying the bottomless mimosas that Aidan felt right at home with his chitter chatter.
As I write this, I am proud of myself, my husband and Aidan.  We are breaking free and really making the most of being new parents who still want to live like "normal folks!"  True, we had to accept that one-on-one date nights won't be possible for a while--neither will establishments like Le Bernardin and Daniel-- but as long as we learn how best to include Aidan we can actually make these eating out experiences just as fun and special!  

A Pinch of Salt in February

Although February is the shortest month we certainly found a way of making it all fit!  The month was composed of an at-home teen cooking class upstate, a group cooking class, a neighborhood sampling event for 150 ppl in which A Pinch of Salt was a vendor and private and special sit-down dinner.  It is through these events that I am reminded of why I am a chef, the reward is endless!