O Dinis - Portuguese Food from Heaven

It all started as a quick day trip…

My wife participates on online auctions, where she finds great deals for stuff that we need for the new house.

She’d told me at the beginning of the week that she put a bid on dresser to replace the one in our room. It looked fantastic and it was the same brand and style as her dresser, so we could not let it pass.

What she later found out, was that the auction was to be held in Easton, Massachussets!!

She politely asked if we could go, and I saw it as an opportunity to spend more time with her on a quick day trip.

I plugged the address on my GPS and away we went to Easton MA.

The day was beautiful and traffic was very light, so we were cruising through Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachussets.

!22 Miles later, we rolled into a gated community where we got our dresser and a night stand.

We loaded the two pieces of furniture on my car and we were immediately on our way back home.

As it was almost around lunch time, we decided to stop at a Portuguese restaurant in Rhode Island that I had researched online before the trip.

 O Dinis Portuguese Cuisine

O Dinis Portuguese Cuisine

When we got there, we had a hard time finding a parking spot as it is not really a big place and parking is on the street.

We knew that the fact that there wasn’t any parking spaces, meant that the restaurant was pack and that were not going to be disappointed.

 Not too big, not too small…

Not too big, not too small…

We sat by the window and ordered a couple of Portuguese beers and a Chouriço Grelhado (Grilled Portuguese Sausage) as an appetizer.

The beers were nice and cold and the sausage was delectable. As always, my wife said that she was full even before we got to our main dishes!

She went for the Carne de Porco Alentejana (Marinated pork and fried potatoes with steamed littlenecks). I told her that was a big dish and that I though that it would be too much for her…

 Carne de Porco Alentejana

Carne de Porco Alentejana

I decided to go for the Bife á Casa (Panseared sirloin steak in a beer and garlic sauce served with French fries, fried egg and rice)

 Bife a Casa

Bife a Casa

Both dishes were probably some of the best food we have ever eaten around the New England area. The Alentejada was so flavorful that I almost kicked myself for not ordering that. My steak was juicy and cooked to perfection. I had a hard time finishing the dish but I wasn’t going to tell my wife about it.

As I though, my wife was not able to finish hers and we asked the nice waitress for a doggie bag.

She came back and asked if we wanted some coffee or some dessert. We were so full that we were about to decline, but I asked for a list anyways. She started going down the list and we had to stop her when she got to the Passion Fruit Moose.

I didn’t take a picture of the dessert as it was gone in a few seconds. It was that good!!

We told our waitress that we had come all the way from Connecticut and she was kind enough to give us some cordials on the house. She went as far as to give us a kiss as we were leaving (a very Portuguese tradition).

What a great dinning experience!!

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We definitely have to go back some time in the future. The only regrettably thing is how far it is. I wish they have a franchise around our area.

We left Rhode Island with a full belly and a warm heart. I love O Dinis!

Nom-Eez

We wanted to go out with our children and their respective girlfriends and we were looking for something different... We had been to Mecha Noodle Bar in Fairfield, CT, but my wife and I thought that it would be too expensive for the seven of us.

We went looking for similar places online and found Nom-eez in Bridgeport. Closer than any other place we could find.

One of my sons made the comment that from the looks of it, it seemed like a "Hipster-type" of place.

Boy, was he right!!

Nom-Eez

We got there and the first thing to notice is that there are no tables. You sit bar style on heavy metal and wood stools.  This means that if the place is full, you are probably going to sit next to a stranger. No problem for us, as there were seven of us and the place was not full on a Sunday evening.

The staff was very nice. We told them we were waiting for some other people and they offer us ice water.

My wife noticed that the register was manned by a couple of white people and because this is a noodle bar, the kitchen staff was mostly Latin American people!!

Her comment was: "I thought you said it was a Vietnamese Place..."

There was some indecision about what to order, but in the end, we were all there for the Pho.

The menu has some nice selections of Noodles and Soups and the appetizers are quite varied and interesting.

We ordered the Pork Belly Baos, The Pho-Ramen, the Wonton Soup and the Shrimp and Coconut Soup. My son's girlfriend is Vegan and she ordered the Stir-Fry.

Pork Belly Bao

My wife said that she was not hungry and ordered an iced coffee.

The food took time to get to us, and like most noodle bars, the portions are huge!!

Pho-Ramnen

These could easily be shared and feed probably more than two people.

The Pho-Ramen is a richer version of their pho made with Ramen noodles, pork belly, and a perfect egg.

Shrimp and Coconut Soup

My Shrimp and coconut soup had the flavor of Kaffir lime, turmeric, lemon grass, and ginger. The shrimp dumplings, thick rice noodles, bean sprouts, mint, papaya, and lime complemented the flavors to make an excellent dinner.

Like I mentioned, is a "Hipster place". Which kind of makes it a little on the expensive side. With entrees between $10 and $15.

They had Peking Duck on the menu ($32) so I probably have to go back sometime...

The pork belly baos were really nice and fresh and the experience was absolutely delicious.

It's a place to go with your significant other and not with a large family! ;-)

Nom eez is located at 2992 Fairfield Avenue in Bridgeport CT.

Little Thai Kitchen and Finding Inspiration

Behind the arch of glory sets the day;The river lies in curves of silver light, The fields Elysian glitter in a spray Of golden dust; the gilded dome is bright,….

—Willa Cather

Well, here it comes!! I promised myself that I was going to start posting more to the blog, so let us call this one my first salvo.

The truth is, that with everything that is happening in the world is hard to feel inspired. One tends to worry about where we are going and if the ending is actually coming faster than we think.

I have not taken too many pictures. I am in what we photographers and artist call "Been stuck in a rut”.

I was watching this video by the photographer Ed Verosky on Finding Inspiration and he is absolutely right...

The minute I went to look at other people’s photos/work I felt motivated to go out and produce some images.

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This one, right outside my house on a cold winter afternoon on our way to having some lunch with the family and my son’s girlfriend.

The poem on the beginning (which I thought was appropriate) is called Paris by Willa Cather.

 

Little Thai Kitchen

We had planned to go to this Thai restaurant in the city of Darien called **Little Thai Kitchen**.

We had visited the place before, but we wanted to take my son’s girlfriend out to a nice place.

We took advantage of the holiday (it was Martin Luther King Day yesterday) and decided to go down to Darien around 1:00 PM.

It was a cold day (temperature was around 28ºF/ -2º C) and cloudy, but the drive was very pleasant. A little bit of traffic with people coming back from the long weekend, but nothing too bad.

We got to the restaurant and there were a couple of occupied tables but we got to sit right away. The place is indeed a “Little Thai Kitchen” and by the time we sat down the tables were all full. I guess other people had the same idea as us. :-)

I ordered one of the best Thai Ice Teas I have ever had and Carlos, my son, decided to copy me.

Little Thai Kitchen

The restaurant has a Lunch Special where for $10 you get an appetizer and an entrée. I decided to get the Minced Chicken Lettuce Wraps and Drunken Noodles with Shrimp as my entrée.

Little Thai Kitchen

The food was absolutely fabulous as always. The lettuce wraps were very delectable and the drunken noodles were very fulfilling. My wife ordered the Chicken Pad Thai and she could not finish it.

These are not your ordinary lunch specials where you get a smaller plate. These are very delicious stomach filling plates!!

All five of us (my oldest could not come as he was working) ate for around $60. A real bargain!

I fully recommend the **Little Thai Kitchen** in Darien CT.