Tag Archives: Hartford

Firebox (Hartford, CT)

Last month, after a day spent with friends in Connecticut, since we were already in the Hartford area, we decided it was a good opportunity to stop and check out the local food scene. Our destination was the old Billings Forge complex, a rather large red brick Romanesque Revival industrial complex that originally held the Billings and Spenser company (inventors of the modern drop forge process, and the Spencer Repeating Rifle). Since the mid-20th century, most of the complex has been housing, original a housing project, and then more recently redeveloped as a mixed income complex. But parts of the complex retained their industrial nature for decades, only recently getting converted to other uses, in this case, two restaurants: The Kitchen which provides a light cafe and job training, and Firebox, a local restaurant focusing on farm-to-table cuisine showcasing central Connecticut farms. We decided after reviewing menus to catch a late lunch at Firebox

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Polka Dot (White River Junction, VT)

It’s a White River Junction institution. We all drive by it. I’ve eaten there several times. I even have a t-shirt of it (from the Main Street Museum). But, somehow, I hadn’t yet reviewed it. I’m talking about the Polka Dot, which has been located on Main Street by the railroad tracks for a long time (I’m not sure when the Polka Dot name showed up, but the location has been an eatery of one sort or another since the 19th century). Sure, WRJ doesn’t have the train traffic it used to, and several other businesses have come and gone, but the Polka Dot has stayed on (even through the fire that demolished the rest of the block a few years ago)…

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Dana’s (Quechee, VT)

ince I’ve basically exhausted the list of Diners in the Upper Valley, I figured I should review some of the other breakfast joints. I’ll start with one of my favorites: Dana’s by the Gorge in Quechee, VT (umm, by the gorge…). Anyone who regularly dines with me knows that my favorite breakfast items are, roughly in order, biscuits and gravy, pancakes, and waffles. So usually when I’m visiting a place for the first time I’ll have one of these three items. However, Dana’s was different, since one menu item jumped out at me: the Vermont Rarebit (pictured at right). It’s basically an eggs Benedict dish, with the hollandaise sauce replaced with a Welsh-rarebit style cheddar sauce. Very delicious, and I seem to order this 90% of the time I’m there. And, in season, I visit there often enough that they are starting to recognize me.

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