Food & Drink in Darien

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Led by their mom, Cassandra, brothers Mergim, Burim, Durim, and Agim turned a cache of generations-old family recipes into 4 Brothers Pizza & Mediterranean Restaurant. With these unique culinary formulas, the tight-knit clan infuses classic Mediterranean and Peloponnesian flavors into their sprawling lineup of Italian and Greek dishes, which includes flaky spanakopita, linguine with clam sauce, and creamy penne with chicken and broccoli. Each of the brothers also boasts a favorite pizza that bears their name, agreeing that whoever’s pie is the most popular gets to claim the remote control forever times infinity.

25 Old Kings Hwy N
Darien,
CT
US

The Rocco boys' love for pizza started in the Bronx, where they worked at their father’s pizzerias from a young age. Now, brothers Joe, Mike, and Frank are continuing their family's tradition at 10 locations of their own invention—all flaunting the Planet Pizza name tag.

A man can't build such a pizza universe without some serious pies. But inspiration isn't a problem for the Planet Pizza culinary team, who've molded more than 30 toppings into about 25 specialty circles, all available on gluten-free and whole-wheat crusts. In addition to specialty pizzas, the cooks concoct other menu choices such the compo salad with baby field greens, grape tomatoes, candied walnuts, gorgonzola, and dried cranberries or the buffalo chicken wrap loaded with strips of crispy chicken, lettuce, tomato, spicy wing sauce, and chunky blue cheese dressing are more convincing than Pluto as a mature planet.

882 Post Rd
Darien,
CT
US

The chefs at The Restaurant at Rowayton Seafood don't go far for their fruits de mer: usually, they just pop next door. Located directly adjacent to the restaurant that bears the same name, the Rowayton Seafood Fish Market occupies a former lobster shack that was reportedly once the oldest continually operating lobster co-op on Long Island Sound. Inside the market, fresh-cut fish filets from the sea are displayed alongside chilled trays of lobster, oysters, clams, and shrimp. As they shop, visitors are greeted with views of the water and the aromas of gourmet cuisine from next door, and educated staff members are available to answer any questions. An onsite deck allows patrons to chow down on eat-in fare and goods from the take-out market menu as weather permits, or they can post up at the counter in the market. Platters may be purchased for events, holidays, and special occasions.

89 Rowayton Ave
Norwalk,
CT
US

The center of a table topped in gleaming granite is not the usual place you’d find a bubbling cauldron. At Melting Pot, these cauldrons don't bubble with evil spells or dirty laundry, but with molten blends of cheese and lager.

The menu allows diners to create a decadent multi-course meal highlighted by fondue. First, they choose the cheese, then after a salad and entree comes what some call the real main course: chocolate fondue. Milk chocolate swirls with peanut butter, caramel, or marshmallow cream, waiting to engulf chunks of fruit and pound cake. Diners can also just enjoy cheese or chocolate fondue with a glass of wine without partaking in the full experience.

Amber lights suspended above warm wood tables make Melting Pot an apt choice for a romantic dinner or a celebratory evening out.

14 Grove St
Darien,
CT
US

The New York Times praised Tengda's Milford location—one of eight in a small regional chain—as "perfect for young-at-heart couples and groups," with a high-energy atmosphere bubbling around cuisine it called "very good." The chefs draw gustatory inspiration from China, Japan, and Thailand as they create their expansive menus of Pan-Asian fare, which include fiery stir-fries, grilled meats, and sushi and provide reading material for shy diners throughout a full meal. Moody red and yellow lights dapple sleek black tables and booths, and might occasionally catch knife-flipping and drink-slinging theatrics behind the sushi and cocktail bars.

25 Old Kings Hwy N
Darien,
CT
US

Backstreet Restaurant is a family-owned-and-operated establishment that offers classic, upscale American fare with a dash of international flair in a lively atmosphere. Yankee dinner diners can savor New York sirloin steak ($27) while globe-trotting carnivores can opt for a New Zealand rack of lamb encrusted with dijon and breadcrumbs ($27). Lunchtime hunger-havers may prefer to ensnare a crabwich—a louisiana crab cake on a sandwich ($11)—or tuck in a grilled or blackened salmon on a leafy bed of house salad ($16, dinner variation $22). Classic lunch salads, soups, pastas, and burgers are available alongside Italian- and California-omelette options for those in need of an edible eye-opener ($9). A full bar regularly churns out beers on tap for pre-, peri-, or postprandial potation.

22 Center St
Darien,
CT
US