When she was establishing Gigi's Italian Kitchen & Catering during the recession, owner Patty Pulver knew she would have to work hard to get people in the door. But her positive attitude and creative ideas—for example, clients can sign up to take the restaurant's toy-duck mascot on their family vacation and photo document their journey—were eventually overshadowed by the eatery's hearty Italian menu.
Patty's team artfully plates lunches and dinners, which include prime-rib entrees, homemade manicotti, and veal specialties, along with more than 15 paninis and sandwiches served exclusively during lunch. They also bend to their diner’s whims and assemble build-your-own pasta dishes from seven types of pasta, including a gluten-free option, and four sauces. On Wednesday nights, they challenge guests to fill their bellies with all-you-can-eat pasta, complemented by a signature red sauce, optional meatballs, and the hopes that the restaurant will let you curl up and take a nap under the table. Live guitar music serenades diners on Friday and Saturday nights, which further cultivates an atmosphere of merriment at the family-friendly hot spot.
For more than 25 years, Tasteful Connections Catering has outfitted events with spreads of artfully plated cuisine ranging delicate finger fare to hearty steak roasts, customized to meet specific party themes. Equipped with all the tools necessary to craft a memorable event—from the plates to the glassware to the ice sculpture of Arnold Schwarzenegger—the expert staff transforms offices and backyards into sophisticated partyscapes. The caterers are also armed to furnish larger events such as weddings, setting up bars and china and arranging for flowers, décor, and entertainment.
With 45 years of wicker-weaving experience, Ridge Rattan decorates homes and apartments with its own original pieces and other furnishings from well-known brands. Living up to their legacy as rattan workers and antique-basketball-hoop designers, the talented craftsmen fill floor space with handsome cane work in pieces such as a 20"x17" rattan bench ($250) or a 24-inch rattan glass-top end table ($175). Enhance a drab bedroom or den with elegant items from notable labels, such as armoires from American Drew and Lane Venture or sofa sets from Norwalk and Braxton Culler. Ridge Rattan also cradles bodies with seats made in-house, such as Mackey chairs ($300) and custom stools ($197), both personalized with the shopper's choice of finish, fabric, and hidden booby traps.
For more than 45 years, Unclaimed Freight's family of owners has stocked their expansive showroom with household furniture and mattresses from trusted brands. They can peddle designer merchandise at discount prices thanks to the fact that they purchase closeouts, canceled orders, discontinued products, and armoires that were mistakenly declared haunted. Mattresses from Therapedic and Spring Air slide into sturdy bed frames, while upholstered and leather couches in a variety of styles pair with occasional tables from Ashley or Harden.
Rusted Root is a six-member jam-centric rock band that transcends genres with influences from Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and parts of space still unidentified. With more than 3 million albums sold worldwide, Rusted Root has been crushing live shows with an energetic stage presence and incredible sound since their 1992 debut. The talented sound architects might blast eardrums with the high-paced jam "Ecstasy", soulfully bring the crowd "Back to the Earth", and perhaps even shindig on stage with the crowd favorite "Send Me on My Way", which happens to be NASA's choice as "wake-up" music for the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity.