Monday, May 14, 2012

Playhouse Restaurant Partners – lots of delicious to go around!

May 14, 2012

By Linda Kavanagh
Guest Blogger

Westport Country Playhouse is once again thrilled to be partnering with such talented restaurateurs and chefs. Westport has become quite the destination for arts and entertainment venues, retail therapy, and a thriving dining scene that continues to impress even the most discerning and adventurous palates.

Over 20 years ago the culinary landscape in Westport was forever changed by Chef Pietro Scotti and his ground-breaking Da Pietro’s Restaurant. The petit space, to this day, remains a dining destination for inspiring Italian cuisine, an award-winning wine list, and warm service. Pietro’s passion for food is infectious, as is his big smile and inviting way. Seasonal menu items and Pietro’s ability to grow with changing food trends is admirable, but it’s the classics that keep us coming back for more. Standout dishes include; escargots in puff pastry with garlic butter and Pernod; stuffed baby eggplant topped with gorgonzola cheese; fettuccine alla Bolognese; seared sea scallops with mushroom risotto; and braised sweet breads with pancetta, morel mushrooms and port wine reduction. Playhouse subscribers receive 20% off their entire check when Playhouse theater tickets are presented.

Rizzuto’s, a contemporary Italian restaurant featuring both traditional, and not so traditional fare, is located in the Saugatuck neighborhood of Westport.  Voted for having “The Best Happy Hour”, Rizzuto’s is indeed a favorite gathering place. The large bar entertains with 2 large screen HD TVs, superb wines by the glass, specialty cocktails made with a rotating selection of house made infused spirits, and some of the friendliest bartenders in the area. Rizzuto’s striking dining room, complete with a large stone fireplace and an open display kitchen, exudes an undeniable energy and the outdoor patio provides guests with open-air dining and a view of a busy downtown Saugatuck.  In addition to their popular Neapolitan pizza, house made pasta, icy raw bar selections, and extensive antipasto menu, Rizzuto’s highlights locally sourced ingredients whenever possible, including New England shellfish, Urban Oaks Farm produce and Beltane Farm cheese.  Playhouse subscribers receive 20% off their entire check when Playhouse theater tickets are presented.

Tavern on Main, located on Main Street in the heart of Westport’s shopping district offers Mediterranean tapas, hearty soups and salads, juicy burgers and overstuffed sandwiches, as well as entrees that run the gamut from pan-roasted free range chicken and grilled baby lamb chops, to pappardelle pasta with duck ragout and  sugar maple smoked barbeque brisket. One story up from street level, this delightful restaurant has maintained its New England charm replete with rickety wooden floors, cozy seating, a blazing fire, and a stunning patio that overlooks a bustling Main Street. An extensive martini menu and global wine list is offered and the Tavern’s intimate bar setting is a wonderful place for a post-show nightcap.  Playhouse subscribers receive 20% off their entire check when Playhouse theater tickets are presented.

Matsu Sushi offers some of the finest Japanese cuisine and the freshest sushi grade fish in Fairfield County. Owners Paul and Pauline Teoh have created a sleek, modern restaurant which includes a second floor private dining room, perfect for a pre-show dinner party. The copper oven dome is the focal point of the dining room and the high ceiling creates an open and airy feeling. The menu focuses mainly on sushi and sashimi, with additional fresh vegetable, seafood, poultry and meat preparations such as teriyaki, tempura, hibachi, and noodle dishes which are traditional in Japanese cuisine. Matsu Sushi is an active and supportive community leader, lending their time and food to many local events. Playhouse subscribers receive 20% off their entire check when Playhouse theater tickets are presented.

Hidden in plain sight, La Villa Trattoria offers rustic Italian cuisine in a charming setting. Situated on the corner of Bay Street and the Post Road, this unassuming little restaurant offers some of the finest Italian dishes prepared by Chef Michael Sornatale. Classics done right include; Eggplant Parmigiana; Clams Oreganato; Artichoke Salad; Chicken Breast stuffed with fontina and prosciutto, topped with marsala sauce; and “The Real Italian Meat Lasagna”. In true trattoria fashion, the décor is understated, accented by a hand painted mural by local artist Kim Salander of a seaside of Portofino, and the service is impeccable – La Villa Trattoria is a wonderful way to begin your evening before heading to the theatre.  Playhouse subscribers receive 20% off their entire check when Playhouse theater tickets are presented.

Chef Prasad Chirnomula is at again – only this time, our talented and charismatic chef has changed continents. Oaxaca Kitchen opened this past year and introduced Westport to the bold flavors of Mexico. Taking his cues from the chefs he learned from in Mexico, and applying his proficiency in the art of spice combinations and technique, Chirnomula has successfully won over customers and skeptics alike with his brand of sophisticated Mexican fare.  Start off with a spicy margarita spiked with crushed jalapenos and fresh cilantro. There are seven types of tacos to choose from, the “tiktaco” being a favorite, with cross-over flavors from India. A must try is the Mexican squash and chile poblano soup, as well as a rich “Barbacoa de res” made with hanger steak. The atmosphere is that of a neighborhood cantina, friendly and relaxed.  Playhouse subscribers receive 20% off their entire check when Playhouse theater tickets are presented.

We’ve crossed a few continents and oceans with our wonderful Restaurant Partners and hope that our subscribers will take advantage of their generous discounted offers designed especially for our theater enthusiasts and supporters.

Learn more about the many Playhouse subscription offerings so that you, too, can become a dining enthusiast and enjoy all that the Playhouse and these fine restaurants have to offer.

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