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Round Up: Best Restaurants of 2010

I ate pretty well in 2010, and I shared the savory and sweet of it with you. Here’s my Best of 2010 that you should make a point of trying in 2011. From the elegant to the casual, from fine dining to taco trucks, there’s plenty of delicious dining in Fairfield County, and here’s the best I’ve tasted so far.

Best Newbie: This category was a cinch to decide. The Gray Goose in Southport knocked my socks off when I tried it this fall. Everything about it just works. The atmosphere, the service and, above all, the food. If you haven’t tried this six-month-old American-with-a-twist hot-spot, put it on your list. Here’s one more reason to try it. Co-owner Kevin McHugh told me, “If we can’t do a dish for $19.95 or under, we’re not doing it.” The Gray Goose is located at 246 Old Post Road, in Southport.

Best French: Café Lola in Fairfield had me at “bon appétit.” From the romantic, bohemian ambiance to the achingly authentic cuisine, Lola will have you falling head-over-heels in love. Café Lola is the perfect spot for a quiet, hideaway lunch or cozy dinner. Pay Café Lola a visit at 57 Unquowa Road, in Fairfield.

Best Mexican : Lolita in Greenwich, and her sister spot, Red Lulu in Norwalk, are as good as urban, upscale Mexican food gets. The menu is unrivaled in its creativity, and the interior will have you feeling as though you’ve travelled beyond Fairfield County. From the tequila-soaked granita palate cleanser to the complimentary cotton candy at the end, everything Lolita and Lulu do is a little bit different, a little bit better. These sisters will leave you smitten. Find Lolita at 230 Mill Street, in Greenwich and Lulu at 128 Washington Street, in Norwalk.

Best Pizza: I did a taste test recently and compared the two Colony Grill pizza restaurants. What I found was that both serve equally delicious pies. Colony Grill Stamford has an old-school, pared down atmosphere, while the Fairfield locale is bigger and brighter. What they share, however, is a consistently delicious pizza. The crust is thin and crispy and the toppings are creative. You can’t miss with either spot. Colony Grill Stamford is located at 172 Myrtle Avenue, and Colony Grill Fairfield is at 1520 Post Road.

Best Bargain: We have ourselves a tie. Two Fairfield County restaurants are so delicious, and so delectably affordable, that they both deserve a mention here. First, Fairfield’s Nauti Dolphin pizzeria is the best place in northern Fairfield County to grab a quick lunch for five bucks. Their pizza is fresh, and their salads are, too. Grab a whole pie, or eat by the slice. If you find yourself in Stamford and hungry for some truly authentic Mexican, check out El Charrito Taco Truck. This is as good as it gets, and two people can eat for ten bucks. It doesn’t get better. El Charrito is located—in spring, summer and fall—at 201 Richmond Hill Avenue, in Stamford. Nauti Dolphin Pizzeria is located in the Fairfield train station, at 1 Carter Henry Drive, in Fairfield.

Best Middle Eastern: Newcomer Safita is as authentic a Middle Eastern dining experience as you'll find in Fairfield County. They serve the smoothest hummos, the freshest tabouleh. This family run restaurant is hospitable and cozy, and the food is delicious. Find Safita at 2217 Post Road, in Fairfield.

Which were your favorite restaurants of 2010? Which places do you want to try in 2011? Tell me about them here, or email me at mmorelli@mainstreetconnect.us.

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