Best Restaurants 2013: Experts' Picks

Our dining experts pick their favorite places to dine out in 26 categories.

 

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BEST BRUNCH:
Bernard's, Ridgefield
Firebox, Hartford
Fresh Salt, Old Saybrook
Heirloom, New Haven
The Restaurant at Water's Edge, Westbrook
HONORABLE MENTION:
Greenleaf Organic Bakery & Café, Wilton
Dressing Room, Westport
Thali, New Haven
Apricots, Farmington
The Schoolhouse at Cannondale, Wilton
Nicholas Roberts Gourmet Bistro, Wilton

FIREBOX, HARTFORD: "Short rib eggs Benedict, roasted beets with fried pork belly and brioche French toast are some of the innovative offerings you'll find on Firebox's farm-to-table brunch menu, along with your choice of fresh-squeezed mimosas. Try your bubbles with grapefruit juice." - Leeanne Griffin

 

MOST ROMANTIC:
Brasserie Pip, Ivoryton
Mayflower Inn, Washington
ON20, Hartford
Thomas Henkelmann, Greenwich
Union League Café, New Haven
HONORABLE MENTION:
Le Petit Café, BranfordArtisan, WestportFresh Salt, Old Saybrook;
Bee & Thistle Inn, Old LymeJohn Davenport's, New Haven
Paragon, MashantucketWinvian, Morris
BRASSERIE PIP, IVORYTON: "A hand-holding ride to the shore, a beautiful old inn, a cozy tavern and Noel Jones fabulous menu--who could ask for more when it's dinner for two?" - MaryEllen Fillo, columnist, Hartford Courant

 

BEST BREAFAST:
City Limits Diner, Stamford
Kitchen Little, Mystic
Home on the Range, Bridgeport
Patty's, Litchfield
Zinc, New Haven
HONORABLE MENTION:
Sugar & Olives, NorwalkBella's Café, New Haven
King's Breakfast & Lunch, Newtown;
Noah's, StoningtonChip's, Orange
HOME ON THE RANGE, BRIDGEPORT: "This is a little mom-and-pop place in Black Rock section of Bridgeport that makes the best bacon-and-egg sandwiches (and I'm very particular about bacon-and-egg sandwiches!)" - Elizabeth Keyser

 

BEST APPETIZERS:
Barcelona, New Haven & other locations
The Fez, Stamford
Good News Cafe, Woodbury
Molto, Fairfield
Zinc, New Haven
HONORABLE MENTION:
Ibiza Tapas, HamdenBricco, West HartfordLuce, MiddletownBistro Latino, Greenwich
Paragon, Mashantucket;  Brasitas, Stamford; The Spread, Norwalk
THE FEZ, STAMFORD: "You can make a meal on the appetizers alone in this brilliant Moroccan spot. Carmelized cauiiflower with raisins and toasted pine nuts; crisped chick peas and okra, homemade hummus you'll want to dunk your face in." - Beth Levine, freelance writer

 

BEST DESSERTS:
Brasserie Pip, Ivoryton
David Burke Prime, Mashantucket
Grants, West Hartford
Ibiza, New Haven
Union League Café, New Haven
HONORABLE MENTION:
Thomas Henkelmann, GreenwichZinc, New HavenCafé Routier, Old Saybrook; 
 The Whelk, Westport; Claire's Corner Copia, New Haven; Liana's Trattoria, Fairfield;
 
Elm Restaurant, New Canaan
IBIZA, NEW HAVEN: "Semi-frozen quince paste, passion fruit, cream cheese cake, cinnamon-rice pudding, orange reduction. Mere words on a page? No, the heavenly membrillo at Ibiza." - Andrew Brady, freelance food writer

 

BEST FOR FAMILIES:
City Limits Diner, Stamford
Joey Garlic's, Farmington & Newington
Rizzuto's, Westport & West Hartford
Ten Clams, Mystic
Wood-n-Tap, West Hartford & other locations
HONORABLE MENTION:
Tacos Mexico, Norwalk
J. Timothy's, Plainville
Recovery Room, New London
Filomena's, Waterford

WOOD-N-TAP, WEST HARTFORD: "From mini-burgers to New York strip, there's something for everyone at these pubs." - Leeanne Griffin

 

Best Restaurants 2013: Experts' Picks

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