Each year, Breezy Gardens owners Kim and John Miczek plant and harvest more than 100 tons of pumpkins, many of them lifted from the earth by visitors to the farm's pick-your-own pumpkin patch. But pumpkins are just one of many crops: In the spring, chrysanthemums, lilies, and tulips emit subtle fragrances, and the summer months bring an abundance of edible color in the form of yellow squash, blueberries, and ruby-hued tomatoes. The Miczeks practice conscientious growing methods to support the quality of their bounty. Craftily planted determent crops distract insects from disturbing fruits and sleeping vegetables, and soil undergoes frequent analyses by the University of Massachusetts to reveal precise measurements of nutrients. In addition to supplying jack-o'-lanterns, Breezy Gardens gives a nod to colder months with Christmas trees, wreaths, statues, and dried floral arrangements.
Lauded for its signature Italian-style pizzas topped with everything from spaghetti and meatballs to mac 'n' cheese, Muncheez pads its menu with burgers, pastas, sandwiches, wraps, and specialty desserts. Diners can nosh on 1 of the 11 signature pizzas, which are flown to the table by a masked, mouthless superhero. Try the Buffalo Soldier, an alfredo-sauced pie topped with buffalo chicken and mozzarella ($7.99/small, $12.99/large), or the Aloha, a Hawaiian-style concoction of ham, bacon, pineapple, and pulled pork ($7.99/small, $12.99/large). Classic and veggie pizza pies also abound.
The culinary adventurers at Pho Dakao craft a menu thick with traditional and subtly French-influenced Vietnamese flavors. Patrons can strap on snorkeling gear, zip up wetsuits, and go swimming in a tank of caramelized catfish or salmon ($10.95) before quieting their rumbling stomachs with pineapple-laden bites of sweet-and-sour chicken ($10.95). Potted plants dot the dining room, where black tablecloths swath tables brimming with bowls of duck noodle soup ($8.50) or spicy beef udon noodles ($8.50). Outside, the sidewalk sprouts scarlet and black umbrellas that shade al fresco diners and their freshly completed ice sculptures as they sample filet mignon sautéed with garlic and soy sauce ($11.95).
The culinary savants at Webster House Restaurant dole out fresh seafood and juicy steaks, as well as vibrant Greek specialties. The menu boasts as many options as a cable provider working on commission, including seafood entrees such as a rich, crab-stuffed haddock filet ($13.50) and savory fried clams ($15.95). Landlubbers carve into a 12-ounce Angus new york strip steak crowned with onion rings ($15.95) or an open-face hot turkey sandwich ($10.95). Taste buds go international with nine Mediterranean dishes such as the broiled loin lamb chops ($14.50), and palates with vegetarian leanings can vacation with butternut-squash ravioli ($10.95) or a garden burger ($7.95) harvested from the verdant garden-burger fields of northern Maine.
After a stint in the kitchens of fine European restaurants, Aurelio Metohu started replicating his favorite Italian dishes in Worcester, where he's been working as the owner and head chef of Caffe Espresso Trattoria for more than 20 years. In the dining room, bruschetta on house-baked bread travels to tables alongside plates of veal marsala and delicate housemade cavatelli in a rich wine sauce. The restaurant's butter-yellow walls are dotted with paintings of Italian scenes and glowing reviews from newspapers and the diaries of pro wrestlers.