Piolin Jr. Restaurant beckons patrons to try a taste of Peru with house specialties that incorporate authentic ingredients. Chefs at the family-friendly restaurant specialize in preparations of meat that stick to diners' ribs without adhesive and include grilled steaks and veal hearts, rotisserie chickens, stewed goat, and deep-fried fish. Entrees can pair with a bottle of Peruvian wine or a half-pitcher of chicha morada, a traditional beverage made from the juice of purple corn.
New to the area, chef Hector Avila prepares small plates and entrees inspired by the cuisines of Spain, France, and Italy at Le Bistro by Avila. He dresses fresh turbot or tilapia with beurre blanc sauce and enhances the flavors of roasted pork tenderloin with a chunky apple-cranberry relish made on-site. Desserts such as Belgian chocolate mousse or caramel-draped crème brulee provide a sweet finish, and servers pour wine atop a polished granite bar.
After stepping into Litchfield Inn's lobby, you can tell it isn't a quaint, rustic bed and breakfast: A gilded 9-ft. chandelier is suspended above a winding staircase, and Oriental rugs cover the floor, which is buffed to a reflective sheen. The opulence extends to the deluxe rooms, many of which are decorated with plush sofa chairs and hues of deep cornflower blue. The rooms are a cozy spot to share a bottle of wine and nibble chocolate-covered strawberries plucked from the inn's chocolate-strawberry vines.
Though they're slightly more spacious than the deluxe rooms, the Litchfield Inn's suites have the same modern conveniences, including 32-inch flat-screen TVs and iPod docking stations.
In the morning, guests can savor a breakfast from Bantam Bistro that may include cranberry pancakes and eggs Benedict. The onsite bistro's executive chef, Jonathan Gyles, prepares organic, artisanal fare in an intimate space warmed by a massive stone fireplace. Gourmet entrees range from sautéed long island duck breast ($30) to open-faced lasagna ($18) made with seasonal veggies.
Within the stately Litchfield Inn, Bantam Bistro's executive chef Jonathan Gyles lends Italian flair to gourmet American dishes crafted from local and organic ingredients, such as mushrooms from Mountaintop Mushrooms and cheese from Cato Corner Farm. The expansive menu includes dazzling charcuterie platters, fillets of Atlantic salmon and tails of Maine lobster, and pastas such as bucatini and agnolotti. Barkeeps pour sips of more than 118 wines and muddle peaches into Bantam's signature take on the classic old fashioned, whose amber tones glow in the flickering light of tabletop candles in leaf-etched votives. The dining room’s brick-lined fireplace gives chefs a cozy place to store canapés shaped like Christmas stockings, and sparkling chandeliers twinkle above Sunday brunch dishes nestled inside pristine silver chafing dishes.
The professional caterer and head chef at Kelly’s Kitchen tantalizes taste buds with mouthwatering gourmet dishes, which pair perfectly with pours from the restaurant’s wine list. The asiago chicken over a bed of pasta ($15.95) tempts diners with a savory sauce of tomatoes, mushrooms, and kalamata olives, and the delightfully fresh cobb salad ($12.95) draws together once-hostile factions of food groups in a delicious peace treaty between greens, grilled chicken, avocado, and blue cheese. The kitchen maestro heightens the flavor of juicy cuts of petite filet mignon ($22.95) with coconut shrimp and a cherry-pepper dipping sauce, and blends the saucy zest of a half rack of st. louis barbecue ribs ($14.95) with tangy potato salad and coleslaw. As guests munch and nibble on fine selections of homemade fare, they can rinse palates and salad forks with crisp, fruity Ruffino Lumina pinot grigio ($19) or deep red, mellow, and brooding yellow tail merlot ($15).
Passiflora’s eco-conscious menu brims with more than 140 varieties of tea and wholesome fare prepared with local and seasonal ingredients. For breakfast, a flourless veggie mini quiche sparks dozing synapses with the help of sourdough flax or gluten-free toast ($6.99). Patrons access free WiFi after fashioning an impromptu mouse pad out of lunchtime options, which include a basil pesto chicken panini ($8.99) or a homemade veggie burger ($8.99). Meanwhile, black, oolong, green, and white herb bundles from the vast tea menu bathe luxuriously in cups ($2–$4.25) and pots ($3.75–$6.75); smoothies such as cardamom-ginger-mango lassi ($6.50) tempt palates with flavors as smooth and complex as a calculus class taught by Marvin Gaye.
Wreathed by an idyllic white picket fence, Sweet Pea’s pale yellow Victorian homestead belies the progressive cuisine simmering within its the kitchen. Chefs drizzle center-cut meats and grilled fish with exotic flourishes, such as ginger-soy vinaigrette and dill aioli. In keeping with the rustic exterior, the sunlit dining room serves as an antique gallery, letting eyes feast as patrons savor pan-seared salmon or taste the wood finish on the 19th-century pendulum clock to ensure its authenticity.