Singled out for having the state's best clam chowder in Connecticut magazine's Best of Connecticut feature, Close Harbour hooks customers with a menu anchored in mouth-watering seafood. Start with crab-and-parmesan-stuffed mushrooms ($7) or pull out your scrimshaw spoon for New England, Manhattan, or Rhode Island clam chowder ($4/cup). Filet of sole stuffed with lump blue-crab meat ($18) reconciles the sea's two most notorious enemies, and swordfish cipolla parries a seasoned swordfish steak with a heaping helping of caramelized onions ($17). Resist flatware hegemony by getting your hands on a toasted roll topped with butter-sautéed lobster (market price), or give in to the powerful lettuce lobby with a pan-seared sea-scallop salad ($14). Any fish in the joint can also be baked, grilled, broiled, fried, or seared and plated with stir-fried veggies for $15.
M.E.L.T. Fitness Studio's trainers see each body can be defined and molded with the appropriate exercises. Rather than a standard group workout for all their clients, they provide what they call group personal training, modifying and accentuating various exercises to the ability level of their students. They stick to a theme each day, reserving Tuesdays for fat-burning blasts, Fridays for abdominal work, and Saturdays for m.e.l.t.ed cardio, which burns as much fat as possible while building cardio endurance. Within that theme, they provide personal variations for each client to accommodate fitness level or injuries, very often naturally relieving chronic pain by carefully strengthening muscles around the affected area.
March Farms's hospitable agriculturists welcome families to a third-generation farm for autumnal activities as well as just-picked produce and fresh-baked treats. Admission grants visitors unlimited meandering through the sky-high stalks of a 5-acre corn maze. After picking a duo of gorgeous gourds, set up a picnic beside the hayloft playscape—a farm fantasy land complete with a miniature hayloft, schoolhouse, and playhouse, as well as a 450-foot tricycle track on which kids can pedal recklessly without worrying about state speed limits. Autumn adventurers can visit 11 a.m.–5 p.m. on weekends. Alternatively, treat noses to the aroma of the centrally located market and bakery, stocked with vegetables and fruits, such as a 4-quart basket of apples, fresh from Mother Earth's renewable cupboard. Baked treats are available daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., with delicacies including a six-pack of cider donuts or a three-pack of large cookies.
Voted Best Fish Market by readers of the Hartford Advocate, City Fish Market offers a menu of freshly prepared seafood meals. Lobster lovers can dig their claws into the hot lobster roll, pincered together with fries or a small chowder ($15.99). Ex-Red Coats can sample the fried fish and chips ($9.99) while pondering the best place to get their useless uniform tailored into a fashionable suit. Clammy hands find an accepting home around a bowl of fresh New England chowder ($3.50 half pint, $5.99 pint, $9.99 quart). Children can also wet their seafood appetites with kids' menu offerings such as clam strips and fries ($3.99).