Perhaps not the most scientific of research methods but it appears Connecticut residents are national champs when it comes to pasta and pizza.
According to restaurant check-in data compiled by the social networking site Foursquare, Connecticut is in the Top 10 when it comes to pasta-eating cities in the nation.
In first place is Atlantic City, followed by Scranton, Pa. and Buffalo New York with Hartford in the Number Four spot, according to the data.
And as far as most beloved pasta chefs, a Connecticut chef was ranked Number One. Celebrity chef and restaurant and vineyard owner Joe Bastianich, who is also a judge on the Fox network reality series MasterChef and MasterChef Junior, shares the top honors with fellow celeb chef Mario Batali. Bastianich, who owns restaurants in New York and Los Angeles, resides in Greenwich. He is the son of famed chef Lidia Bastianich, an Emmy award-winning television host, author and restaurateur.
Now onto the pizza.
Editors at the online food magazine, The Daily Meal, have ranked the best 101 pizzas in America and guess who’s number one? Connecticut’s own Frank Pepe’s and its “White Clam Pie” of course!
The New Haven-based chain was one of three Elm City pizzerias to make the top end of the list.
Modern Apizza’s ”Italian Bomb” pie was ranked Number 11 and Sally’s Apizza “Tomato Pie” came in at Number 7.
Also making the list was Alforno in Old Saybrook.
Celebrity chef Joe Bastianich knows good food, good shows and a good state. The Greenwich resident is one of the three celebrity judges on the Fox network reality cooking shows “MasterChef” and the new ”Junior MasterChef.”
He had a mouthful to say recently as he Spilled the Beans with Java.
Graham Elliot, two-Michelin-starred chef and judge on FOX’s ‘MasterChef,’ and ‘Junior MasterChef’ is bringing his culinary expertise to Connecticut.
The Chicago restaurateur, who always sports those killer eyeglasses, is opening Primary Food & Drink in downtown Greenwich this winter. Elliot’s long-standing Director of Operations, Merlin Verrier, will serve as Executive Chef.
According to a release on the new eatery, the name of the restaurant comes from the dictionary definition of the word primary itself, meaning “first or highest in rank, quality or importance.” To that end, Primary Food & Drink’s philosophy is guided by three main principles: mastering basic, fundamental cooking techniques; using the highest-quality seasonal elements; and providing the greatest level of service and guest experience.
According to the release:
‘Primary will serve contemporary American seasonal cuisine in a refined yet casual atmosphere, featuring locally sourced ingredients whenever possible. The menu will showcase Elliot’s creative spins on well-known classics like Caesar salad, pot roast, beef stroganoff and buffalo chicken. A selection of classic cocktails and a wine list comprised primarily of American varietals will also be offered.’