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Sugar & Olives

Sugar & Olives, Norwalk

21 ½ Lois Street, Norwalk

Super-cool/super-yummy happens in this unassuming to the point of “you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me” factory building in Norwalk. But walk into this organic café/restaurant and you’ll better understand how Dorothy felt when she stumbled into Oz.

Who you’ll see eating here: Local cognoscenti, primarily from Westport.

Their specialty: For breakfast, organic crepes with a myriad of fillings.

What you should order: Caramel banana or brie asparagus crepe.

What you may not know but should:
1. When the owner’s in, she’ll offer free scones and cookies!
2. Bottomless cup of delicious French press coffee
3. One tiny red flag: they open at 8 AM, but don’t bother showing up until 9:30

Dining     Bars + Baristas     Norwalk    
Wednesday, January 27, 2010 • Permalink


Contes, Westport

1595 Post Road East, Westport (in The Westport Inn)

They claim to serve the best fish in Westport, and maybe they do. But go for the dancing on Friday night because, shoot, where else are you going to go?

Robin’s note: Word spreads fast among lonely hearts, so their clubs crowd the dance floor… which you may or may not enjoy.

Who you’ll see eating here: Married couples and swinging singles.

Their specialty: Fresh fish!

What you should eat: Fresh fish.

What you may not know but should: Since 1894 they’ve had a space at Fulton Fish market in Manhattan, from where the fish is shipped each day.

Dining     Westport    
Tuesday, January 26, 2010 • Permalink


105 Elm Street, New Canaan

This busy, hip Northern Italian restaurant in the center of downtown New Canaan offers delicious pizza, pasta, and open kitchen “theatre.”

Robin’s note: I love the energy of their town center location.

Who you’ll see eating here: Couples and families with older children.

Their specialty: Veal chop “Milanese,” and fresh cicatelli pasta with braised duck

What you should eat: Wood oven grilled pizza Saltimbocca, Maple-glazed Atlantic salmon

What you may not know but should: On Tuesday nights $100 or less bottles of wine are discounted 50%. $100+ slashed 25%.

Dining     New Canaan    
Friday, January 22, 2010 • Permalink

Westport Woman’s Club

Westport Woman's Club

44 Imperial Avenue, Westport

Robin’s Note: WWC instigated many things we now take for granted, such as classes for children with learning disabilities and Westport’s first school nurse and visiting nurse program.

Who they are: “Westport Woman’s Club has a successful history of answering calls for ‘help where needed’ and in recognizing areas of need before calls for help go out” – westportwomansclub.com

What they provide: The club offers grants and volunteer time (over 1,000 hours in 2009) to nearly 40 family-focused local charities.

Approximate number of employees: Volunteer organization

Biggest fundraising efforts:
Annual Yankee Doodle Fair
Curio Cottage Gift Shop
Clubhouse rentals for events


Give     Westport    
Tuesday, January 19, 2010 • Permalink


2420 Post Road, Darien
841 Old Post Road, Fairfield
50 East Putnam Avenue, Greenwich
564 South Avenue, New Canaan
370 West Avenue, Norwalk
909 Washington Boulevard, Stamford
59 Post Road East, Westport
404 Danbury Road, Wilton

Robin’s note: The personnel at the Westport Y are thoughtful, helpful, and committed. I’ve had many positive experiences with them for my own children and Fresh Air Fund children.

Who they are: “The… Y is dedicated to building strong kids, strong families, and strong communities, while promoting healthy lifestyles through camps, swim lessons, gymnastics, sports, and childcare. [They] emphasize caring, honesty, respect and responsibility in [their] programs and services.”—http://www.westportymca.org

What they provide: The Y offers scholarships and financial assistance for families and individuals with needs and/or financial constraints. Further, the Y’s programs are offered to all members of the community regardless of their ability to pay for membership or programs.

Approximate number of employees: Differs

Biggest fundraising efforts:
From Golf Classics to Annual Galas, benefits differ according to location.


Give     Darien     Fairfield     Greenwich     New Canaan     Norwalk     Stamford     Westport     Wilton    


Gabby, Greenwich

70 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich

An Eileen Fisher store for the label conscious, this store carries slouchy sweaters and comfy clothing by contemporary designers. Pants seem to be an afterthought.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Women from 20 to 60 who love the look of unstructured knits.

Their specialty: Slouchy sweaters.

What you should buy: Can’t get enough big sweaters.

What you may not know but should: They carry a tiny collection of beautiful Erickson Beamon necklaces.

Fashion     Greenwich    
Monday, January 18, 2010 • Permalink

Christopher Fischer

Christopher Fischer, Greenwich

103 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich

Every possible permutation of cashmere.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Women who love—really love—luxe cashmere.

Their specialty: Trim sweaters.

What you should buy: Cashmere-backed faux fur throw. More fabulous than real mink. A real mink would shed his pelt and make a small mink coat out of this.

What you may not know but should: Christopher Fischer cashmere is sold under other prestigious designer labels. http://www.christopherfischer.com

Fashion     Greenwich    
Sunday, January 17, 2010 • Permalink

Lucky Jeans


244 Greenwich Ave., Greenwich
49 Main Street, Westport

Convenient go-to store for reasonably priced, decent fitting jeans. The selection varies at each store—Greenwich carries irreverent onesies for kids.

Robin’s note: I own two pairs. They’re comfortable.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Women (and men) age 28+ who live near a Lucky Jeans store.

Their specialty: Jeans and hippy-wanna-be tunics.

What you should buy: Jeans.

What you may not know but should: Since its founding in 1996, the Lucky Brand Foundation has raised millions of dollars for disabled children. http://www.luckybrand.com

Fashion     Greenwich     Westport    

Cocoa Michelle

Cocoa Michelle, Westport

190 Main Street, Westport
54 Railroad Place, Westport

An elegant coffee/chocolate shop, this is a cozy place to sit with girlfriends over a cup of signature roast European-style coffee, a pastry from a prestigious NYC bakery, and artisan chocolates handcrafted on the premises. Mmm…

Robin’s note: Mentally prepare yourself for the price of the chocolates (they’re worth it).

Who you’ll see drinking/eating here: Regulars from Westport, Southport, and Weston.

Their specialty: Dark ganache with sea salt bonbon, coffee.

What you should order: Coffee and scones from Balthazar.

What you may not know but should: Michelle is possibly the only US purveyor of European sipping chocolate: melted chocolate, lightly sweet, that packs more caffeine than an espresso.


Bars + Baristas     Westport    
Saturday, January 16, 2010 • Permalink


Acqua, Westport


43 Main Street, Westport

Festive and fresco-ed, this two-story restaurant in downtown Westport offers wonderful Mediterranean cuisine on the shores of Saugatuck river.

Robin’s note: The first floor bar is one of the town’s few watering holes.

Who you’ll see eating here: Couples who have left the kids at home.

Their specialty: Seafood.

What you should order: Wood oven grilled pizza.

What you may not know but should: On Tuesday nights, $100 or less bottles of wine are discounted 50%. $100+ slashed 25%.


Dining     Westport    

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