FOOD & DRINK Instagrammable America: The 22 Best Restaurants in Connecticut for Likable Food Pics OCTOBER 7, 2021 – 8:30 AM – 1 COMMENT 5 Kelli Acciardo By KELLI ACCIARDO @kelliacciardo Pepe's Pizza (Pepe's Pizza) Welcome to Instagrammable America, where we scour the states for the best places to eat and drink, because if you didn’t ‘gram it, did you even try it? Burgers, pizza, lobster rolls, repeat. Okay obviously Connecticut‘s culinary map offers a little more variety than this, but if we had to sum up The Nutmeg State’s ultimate food trifecta, these three items would definitely be at the head of the list. Followed closely by Connecticut-style hot dogs. Say what you will about pizza capitals of the country, but CT leads the charge on this one with award-winning pies in multiple cities. Lobster rolls get their own Connecticut spin, with warm buttered chunks of poached meat, in lieu of the cold lobster salad situation laden with mayo. And those burgers? As the story goes, the first was invented at New Haven mom and pop Louis’ Lunch in 1895—when Louis served up a specialty blend of ground steak trimmings between two slices of toast—and thus, the most recognizable American sandwich was rumored to be born. Everything You Need to Know About Squid Game Dalgona Candy and How to Make It Related: 30+ Extremely Likable Dishes and Drinks in New York City When it comes to the best restaurants in Connecticut—and their top Instagrammed dishes—we’ve rounded up a few of our favorites, with a little help from the pros. No one knows Connecticut’s beloved bites better than Stephanie Webster and Andrew Dominick of CTbites and Raenah Farina, aka Stamford Foodie. So, the next time you find your self hungry on the Gold Coast, or ravenous on Yelp googling best CT restaurants near me, consider these tried-and-true eateries first. And by all means, snap a pic for the ‘gram before digging in. Hoodoo Brown Barbecue in Ridgefield, CT It’s hard to narrow down in a blurb what Hoodoo Brown Barbecue does well. Let’s just say, everything. Regardless of your personal smoked meat preferences, do not miss their brisket, complete with a perfect rosy red smoke ring and outer bark effect, but it’s so damn juicy that it’s best described as wet.Then there’s the pork belly with a chicharron-like cracklin’ skin, served with a fresh salsa that they like to call “Hoodoo Voodoo.” And they have special days like Baby Back Wednesday, Prime Rib Thursday, French Dip Friday, and Tex Mex Tuesday (first Tuesday of each month) where they whip up birria tacos, BBQ empanadas, enchiladas, and more. I could go on and on about their Texas inspired ‘cue but it’s smart you go, order up a platter and try a bunch. —Andrew Dominick, CTbites Elm in New Canaan, CT We’ll start by saying: The closest thing you’ll get to a Double-Double, Animal-Style Burger outside of In-N-Out in LA, is in CT, at Elm. See evidence here. More than that though, Chef Luke Venner’s unparalleled pastas are the heart and soul of Elm. Although they change seasonally, all hell would break loose the day he takes the bucatini or hand-cut lumache sauced up in n’djua bolognese off the menu. —Kelli Acciardo, Parade Swyft in Kent, CT Sure Swyft has other things on their menu, and they are all tasty as heck, but their signature three-day fermented sourdough wood-fired, farm-driven, Neapolitan inspired pizzas are the bomb. The mozzarella is house-stretched, and the crust is perfectly charred with just the right amount of texture. Highlights include the Forager with king oyster mushrooms, delicata squash, bechamel, and sage, or The Alchemist with house made mozzarella, black garlic, miso, broccolini, and guanciale. We like everything they are doing here. —Stephanie Webster, CTbites Kissaki in Greenwich, CT Kissaki is well known for their superior omakase experience in New York City and the Hamptons, but they’ve thankfully brought their exceptional Japanese cuisine to CT with their Greenwich Ave location! The best seats in the small, yet stunning, house are arguably at the omakase counter, where you’ll get a bird‘s eye view of their Itamaes (sushi chefs) in action. All of the specialty nigiri that graces your tasting menu wooden plate is out of this world, as are the Kumamoto Oysters with honey dew gazpacho, daikon, Kaluga caviar and the Waygu Tartare with black garlic, puffed koji, horseradish creme fraiche.


Jimmy Fallon is spreading the good vibes — and hard cash — in the New Year.

Leonardo DiCaprio visits Kissaki in Water Mill with friends.