Sunday, May 4, 2008

Restaurants: Sarabande, Fairfield, CT

***Please note that Sarabande is now closed.

Sarabande, a modern American bistro in Fairfield Center, is a restaurant I recently rediscovered. The menu, which changes seasonally and features appetizers, gourmet pizzas, entrees, and main course salads, has something for everyone. That is not to say it lacks focus; it features fresh, high quality ingredients artfully prepared to please a wide variety of tastes. Chef Phyllis Bodek even picks much of the produce used in the restaurant herself, at her friend's farm in Easton. In addition, the fresh bread that arrives at your table upon arrival is baked in-house.

Over the course of several visits, I've worked my way around the menu. On my most recent visit, I wasn't overly hungry, so I ordered a bowl of curried butternut squash soup (it hit the spot!), and the "Tonato Salad" from the list of nightly specials. "Tonato" is an Italian sauce made with tuna, and is usually served over veal or turkey. I'd enjoyed Veal Tonato while visiting friends in Italy, but had never seen it in any form on an American menu. Sarabande's twist on this Italian classic was a colorful salad of arugula, tomatoes, olives, and roasted red peppers with a creamy, delicious tonato sauce on the side. It instantly transported me back to Italy, and before I knew it I'd put my manners aside and used the last piece of fresh bread to mop up every last bit of sauce left behind on my plate!

The ambiance at Sarabande is appealing, and features a spacious front room with large picture windows looking onto the street, and a cozier back room with a long banquette along one wall. The small bar is adorned with pendant lighting and is a great place to have a glass of wine while waiting to be seated. There is also a small deck for outdoor seating in the warmer weather, although it was not open as of late April. The service is efficient and attentive, and the wine list has a nice variety of wines with plenty of moderately priced selections.

Sarabande's location is perfect for an evening out with your significant other or friends, as it is nestled on Unquowa Place, right off the Post Road. There is a parking lot adjacent to the restaurant, but there is always street parking if the lot is full. My husband and I recently enjoyed dinner there, and then took a walk down to Starbucks for a quick coffee & dessert before heading to the Community Theatre to see a movie. If I wasn't rushing to relieve a babysitter, we may have even walked over to O-Bar for a post-film cocktail. An entire evening's worth of activities within walking distance of a single parking spot---now that's a date!
Note: Sarabande is offering a 2008 spring special that can't be missed: Monday-Thursday evenings, enjoy a three-course dinner (starter, entree and dessert) for only $20.08!!

12 Unquowa Place
Fairfield, CT 06824

Lunch: Tuesday - Friday, 11:30 am - 2:15 pm
Dinner: Monday - Saturday, from 5:30 pm
Closed Sundays

1 comment:

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