Bites Out, Part One: The Whelk & SoNo Baking Company

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callops with Farro Verde, Tomatoes and Corn at The Whelk, Westport, CT
callops with Farro Verde, Tomatoes and Corn at The Whelk, Westport, CT
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I love to eat out. There aren’t many things that my husband can text me that can get me more excited than, “Want to eat out tonight?” Some may think that rather sad, but my long line of foodie family members understand. It’s not just the rest from cooking and cleaning up, it’s the thrill of seeing what’s out there in the food world that is yet unknown to me or, even better, is adored by me (Newtown, Connecticut’s Sal e Pepe Ricotta Gnocchi is unmatched to date).

 

I’ll admit I’ve eaten my way through summer, and as evidence, here are some of the highlights.

 

The Whelk

575 Riverside Avenue, Westport

 

Two of my cousins and I venture out once or twice a year for a girls’ night. It’s crammed with good food, wine and several months’ worth of talking. We use our time well and imagine our three mothers would be proud to see their daughters bonding during our brief but meaningful adventures.

 

Frogger: Cucumber Vodka, Cucumber Water, Lime and Ginger Syrup

 

Words can quite describe our delight with the Whelk. Cousin Claire finagled a table (one of the best tables, I might add) at this waterfront eatery, one of the hottest new restaurants in Westport. And by “hot” I mean it’s of the moment in the local food sourcing way – not the glamorous nightlife way. With only a glance at the drink menu, I knew this would be a memorable evening. Creativity, freshness and playful flavors (and that’s just in the cocktails!) set the tone for a fantastic dinner. Our server was amazing and knowledgeable, and we welcomed her expertise in navigating the small- and large-plate offerings on the menu.

 

 

 

 

 

Peeky-Toe Crab Fondue with Grits and Tobiko (flying fish roe flavored with Wasabi)

 

Cornmeal Fried Oysters with Oyster Bacon Butter

 

Hand-cut fries (we couldn’t resist)

 

Squid Ink Cavatelli with Chorizo and Red Shrimp (this was the only less-than-stellar dish; maybe it was the wormy appearance?)

 

Shrimp and Grits with Jalapeno Butter and Country Ham

 

Lamb Burger with Tomato Jam

 

Quinoa Cucumber Salad – delicious!

 

The Finale – I don’t remember what this was, but we ate and enjoyed it.

 

The SoNo Baking Company

101 Water Street, South Norwalk

 

My cousins and I stumbled into the SoNo Baking Company desperately seeking coffee the morning after our overnight. Our ravenous stomachs and caffeine-seeking brains were delighted to encounter this bakery by chance on our way to a morning of shopping in South Norwalk. Not only does this bakery turn out delicious cooked-to-order breakfasts (scrambled egg whites with cheddar on a fresh croissant), but the angels who work here pass out samples. Like whole pieces of cake layered with chocolate and white chocolate mousse.

 


Chocolate for breakfast.

 

A “sample” of freshly made cake with white and dark chocolate mousse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This article was originally published on Foodie plus 4.

 

In addition to being a foodie, Alethea Elkins is a wife, mother of four, sister to four brothers, daughter of a foodie father, and friend to many. On any given day you will find her either at the grocery store, planning to go to the grocery store, or wishing she had. Feeding a houseful of six has proved daunting, exhausting, but oh-so rewarding as she watches her four foodies flourishing in the kitchen. By posting their adventures, Elkins hopes to connect with others who are loving life with lots of flavor.

 

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