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New Haven pizza and Connecticut????

New Haven pizza and Connecticut????
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  • Post #61 - January 17th, 2012, 3:41 am
    Post #61 - January 17th, 2012, 3:41 am Post #61 - January 17th, 2012, 3:41 am
    A third memory jogged regarding O'Rourke's in Middletown. It certainly is a worthy stop, though be sure to check the hours (no dinner), plan ahead, and prepare to wait at peak times. (I was once turned away about 15 minutes before closing on a weekend.) This charming old diner is much beloved by folks who live there. It suffered a devastating fire a few years back and I believe that the townspeople chipped in to revive it. The menu offers haute diner food-locally sourced, Irish-inspired. I recall an excellent-must-have-been-house-made bread service with my omelet, for instance. In fact, I think it's more accurate to call it a bistro in a diner building than an actual diner. People complain about the prices, but not the value.

    I'd warn you off ION (It's Only Natural) Restaurant, which is a local and popular vegetarian/vegan spot. I've had two bad meals there, (four if you count tasting my DC's meals). Gloppy stir-fries, tasteless soups, meh salads.
    Man : I can't understand how a poet like you can eat that stuff.
    T. S. Eliot: Ah, but you're not a poet.
  • Post #62 - January 18th, 2012, 5:27 pm
    Post #62 - January 18th, 2012, 5:27 pm Post #62 - January 18th, 2012, 5:27 pm
    Josephine wrote:A third memory jogged regarding O'Rourke's in Middletown. It certainly is a worthy stop, though be sure to check the hours (no dinner), plan ahead, and prepare to wait at peak times. (I was once turned away about 15 minutes before closing on a weekend.) This charming old diner is much beloved by folks who live there. It suffered a devastating fire a few years back and I believe that the townspeople chipped in to revive it. The menu offers haute diner food-locally sourced, Irish-inspired. I recall an excellent-must-have-been-house-made bread service with my omelet, for instance. In fact, I think it's more accurate to call it a bistro in a diner building than an actual diner. People complain about the prices, but not the value.

    I'd warn you off ION (It's Only Natural) Restaurant, which is a local and popular vegetarian/vegan spot. I've had two bad meals there, (four if you count tasting my DC's meals). Gloppy stir-fries, tasteless soups, meh salads.



    I would have to agree with Josephine about both O'Rourke's and ION. O'Rourke's, while a local institution, isn't a diner in what I think of as the traditional sense. However, their corned beef is terrific.

    ION is one of those places that 40% like, 40% hate and 10% don't have taste buds you can trust. If you require a vegan friendly venue it is worth a stop. Otherwise, there are much better options in Middletown, Ct.

    Flip
    "Beer is proof God loves us, and wants us to be Happy"
    -Ben Franklin-
  • Post #63 - February 9th, 2012, 3:51 pm
    Post #63 - February 9th, 2012, 3:51 pm Post #63 - February 9th, 2012, 3:51 pm
    Perhaps this is the best place to deposit this bit of Yale information ...

    Adrian Miller wrote:I just had the vaunted "Yale chicken tenders" for lunch. Yalies have such a chicken tenders jones that there's a website solely devoted to letting the students know if chicken tenders are being served that day. It appears that the website's content is little more than a simple "Yes" or "No." I mean, really, does one need to know anything else?


    Is Yale serving hand-breaded chicken tenders in the dining hall today?
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #64 - February 18th, 2012, 5:22 pm
    Post #64 - February 18th, 2012, 5:22 pm Post #64 - February 18th, 2012, 5:22 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:Perhaps this is the best place to deposit this bit of Yale information ...

    Adrian Miller wrote:I just had the vaunted "Yale chicken tenders" for lunch. Yalies have such a chicken tenders jones that there's a website solely devoted to letting the students know if chicken tenders are being served that day. It appears that the website's content is little more than a simple "Yes" or "No." I mean, really, does one need to know anything else?


    Is Yale serving hand-breaded chicken tenders in the dining hall today?


    Funny. (Reminds me of the urban legend about the Ivy student who aced the admissions essay that asked, "What is your top academic asset?" The winning answer? "Brevity.")

    Far be it from me to defend the Bulldogs, but Yale has actually been a leader in the local, sustainable campus food movement. I read that Alice Waters' daughter Fanny was an early proponent of upgrading the cafeteria fare at Yale. My daughter attended a conference on sustainable college dining at Yale a few years ago. One of the things I remember hearing from her was that once Yale simplified the menus and upgraded the ingredients in one dining hall, students began mobbing it. When access to the sustainable dining hall was limited to those from certain dorms, students began forging dorm ID's to eat in the better dining hall. So chicken tenders may not be the whole story. Perhaps there is a diehard junk food constituency, though.
    Man : I can't understand how a poet like you can eat that stuff.
    T. S. Eliot: Ah, but you're not a poet.
  • Post #65 - February 20th, 2012, 4:27 pm
    Post #65 - February 20th, 2012, 4:27 pm Post #65 - February 20th, 2012, 4:27 pm
    Josephine wrote:
    Cathy2 wrote:Perhaps this is the best place to deposit this bit of Yale information ...

    Adrian Miller wrote:I just had the vaunted "Yale chicken tenders" for lunch. Yalies have such a chicken tenders jones that there's a website solely devoted to letting the students know if chicken tenders are being served that day. It appears that the website's content is little more than a simple "Yes" or "No." I mean, really, does one need to know anything else?


    Is Yale serving hand-breaded chicken tenders in the dining hall today?


    Funny. (Reminds me of the urban legend about the Ivy student who aced the admissions essay that asked, "What is your top academic asset?" The winning answer? "Brevity.")

    Far be it from me to defend the Bulldogs, but Yale has actually been a leader in the local, sustainable campus food movement. I read that Alice Waters' daughter Fanny was an early proponent of upgrading the cafeteria fare at Yale. My daughter attended a conference on sustainable college dining at Yale a few years ago. One of the things I remember hearing from her was that once Yale simplified the menus and upgraded the ingredients in one dining hall, students began mobbing it. When access to the sustainable dining hall was limited to those from certain dorms, students began forging dorm ID's to eat in the better dining hall. So chicken tenders may not be the whole story. Perhaps there is a diehard junk food constituency, though.



    Josephine,

    When I first moved to CT I worked for a meat distributor whose largest client in CT, other than the casinos, was Yale. Yale was was the largest consumer of our locally produced line of products. The program grew QUICKLY from one facility to most of the the facilities on campus.

    Flip

    Flip
    "Beer is proof God loves us, and wants us to be Happy"
    -Ben Franklin-
  • Post #66 - February 21st, 2012, 1:07 am
    Post #66 - February 21st, 2012, 1:07 am Post #66 - February 21st, 2012, 1:07 am
    My mom lives in New Haven and volunteers each week at the Thomas More chapel's soup kitchen. Yale's kitchens provide a ton of really great food to them on a continuing basis - and given the rising need, that's really important.
  • Post #67 - August 15th, 2012, 8:54 pm
    Post #67 - August 15th, 2012, 8:54 pm Post #67 - August 15th, 2012, 8:54 pm
    So I have to be in Stamford CT at the end of the month. I expect to be done w/biz ~5pm.

    Looks like the drive is <1 hour during non rush hour to New Haven.

    Seeing as I don't expect to be in this part of the US again for some time, I plan to take advantage and visit New Haven for a pie at Sally's &/or Pepe (I'm really hoping for &!!).

    Hearing about the lines has me concerned, how late are these places open? Can I place a to go order or is it dine in only? (I'd eat the pizza right away so not to let quality suffer)
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #68 - August 16th, 2012, 8:24 am
    Post #68 - August 16th, 2012, 8:24 am Post #68 - August 16th, 2012, 8:24 am
    A little googling indicates they are open to about 10-11pm, depending on the night of the week. No idea about take-out.

    It used to take me an hour to get to New Haven with no traffic from Greenwich, the next town west of Stamford.

    You may or may not know that Frank Pepe's has opened a number of other locations, including one in Fairfield, just off the CT turnpike, which would be about 20 minutes or so east of Stamford, if you are squeezed for time. No idea if it measures up to the original or not.
  • Post #69 - August 17th, 2012, 7:40 am
    Post #69 - August 17th, 2012, 7:40 am Post #69 - August 17th, 2012, 7:40 am
    Interestingly, earlier this week I was trying out Piece in Wicker Park with my daughter who lives nearby, and while we were waiting (an hour on a Tuesday night?), at the bar we struck up a conversation with a couple guys who were in from Connecticut. And of course, since Piece is ostensibly 'New Haven style' pizza, and ALSO because I have to travel to Hartford next week, I asked where he would recommend over by dere.

    He immediately said First & Last Tavern, and after checking the website I got my bearings and will check it out if my plane outbound isn't too late. I will report back. BTW, they stated that Piece was a good but not great representation of the style. Me? I thought Piece was very good. Styles notwithstanding, I'd rank it 3rd behind Slyce in Wauconda and my overall fave, Settebello in Henderson, NV.
  • Post #70 - August 17th, 2012, 9:09 am
    Post #70 - August 17th, 2012, 9:09 am Post #70 - August 17th, 2012, 9:09 am
    He immediately said First & Last Tavern, and after checking the website I got my bearings and will check it out if my plane outbound isn't too late
    .

    My only thought looking at the First & Last website is that it doesn't advertise being baked in a coal fired oven, which is usually considered to be key to a New Haven style.
  • Post #71 - August 29th, 2012, 10:05 am
    Post #71 - August 29th, 2012, 10:05 am Post #71 - August 29th, 2012, 10:05 am
    After a several-day swing through Vermont and New Hampshire, we returned to NYC via New Haven and stopped for our first ever visit to Frank Pepe. Although we were prepared for quite a wait on a warm Saturday night, the manager plucked us out of the long line (apparently we were the first party of two he could find) and seated us after only about 10 minutes outside.

    We wanted to have the full Pepe experience, so we ordered two pies; original tomato and clam. Like some previous posters have said, the clam pie was just so-so. Very salty, WAY too much garlic and clams that tasted well, not super-fresh. But the tomato pie made it worth the trip. Chewy, blistered crust. Simple, slightly chunky tomato sauce. A sprinkling of pecorino. Perfect. I'd drive back up there in a minute.
  • Post #72 - November 7th, 2017, 9:27 am
    Post #72 - November 7th, 2017, 9:27 am Post #72 - November 7th, 2017, 9:27 am
    I checked in on the original Frank Pepe while passing through New Haven on a NJ to Boston road trip recently. All is as it was, best I can tell. (Can't speak for the many, many other outposts now spread across I95 and I doubt this kind of thing is very "scaleable" as they say on Shark Tank.) I spoke at some length with two terrific lifer staff members; he and she have a combined 60 years slinging pies. Both had deep pizza knowledge, including about Chicago (the gentleman's kid lives here): Malnati's good, Piece a very respectable approximation of NH pizza, the VPN places like Spacca, etc. We talked dough hydration and coal vs. wood. They regret that FP is known for clam pie, a novelty, when pizza should be judged on a simple Margherita or similar. I'd forgotten, but the tomato pie with mushrooms is the nearest to what comes out of my oven on my best days. This is probably still my favorite single style of pie, but I'm open minded. Still a sucker for Marie's and Pequod's. There's a real brilliance to Detroit style and I'm glad we have some good examples here, now. The zucchini and anchovy at Bonci is awfully good.
  • Post #73 - November 28th, 2017, 7:04 pm
    Post #73 - November 28th, 2017, 7:04 pm Post #73 - November 28th, 2017, 7:04 pm
    JeffB wrote:I checked in on the original Frank Pepe while passing through New Haven on a NJ to Boston road trip recently. I spoke at some length with two terrific lifer staff members; he and she have a combined 60 years slinging pies. Both had deep pizza knowledge, including about Chicago (the gentleman's kid lives here): Piece a very respectable approximation of NH pizza

    My brother and I were watching a recent TV show all about New Haven pizza. We've only had Piece a few times in the past to represent that style. If Piece is a very respectable version of New Haven pizza, then we are not very impressed with that style. However, I definitely plan on visiting New Haven to try some of those famous joints for my apizza from the source which is almost always better. I have no interest in the claim pizza, but the tomato pie sounds great.

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