I had such a great time at The Chelsea in Fairfield CT the other night at a blogger dinner. It was a night of mind-blowing food, delicious cocktails and scintillating conversations.
The menu kept me at the edge of my seat all evening. Each dish came out with a myriad of unexpected flavors. At the Chelsea, you will not be in any danger of getting bored, as nothing seemed repetitive. There were reverent homages to the beautiful cuisine of Italy in the form of homemade pastas. The expertly executed Duck Buns and China Ribs took me on a delicious journey to China. While the Chelsea Burger is a strong American force to be reckoned with. Oh! and let’s not forget the whole section of the menu celebrating the scrumptious food from New Orleans!
They call such a place a gastropub. I call it freakin’ unbelievable! How can one kitchen produce such diverse flavors and cuisines in such a masterful way? I guess, the answers lies with the masters who perform such a miracle behind the scenes. Bravo chef Matt Storch! And bravo chef Eric Felitto!
Chef Storch is no stranger to any self-respecting foodie in Fairfield county CT. His keen enthusiasm for world cuisine and his years of solid culinary experience shape each dish that he conceives and presents. I have had the pleasure of watching him in action at countless occasions. I have attended cooking classes with him at Clarke Kitchens in SONO. I have witnessed his incredible understanding and knowledge in bringing out flavors and textures of ingredients to create the ultimate umami experience. At Chelsea, I could see that his approach is being competently fostered by chef Felitto. Heck! I am still thinking about what wonderful things the amoretti cookie did to the Ravioli!
Chef Eric Felitto and I met for the first time that evening. By the time he came out to meet us, I had already tasted some yummies that he sent out from his kitchen. And by then, his food had already spoken volumes about him. Chef Felitto told us that he strives to bring unusual experiences to his diners through the menu he has created. He has succeeded. He is so perfect for the Chelsea kitchen! He struck me as a little uneasy being in the limelight. But hey! if he continues to present such incredible food – he’d better get used to it!
It is clear to me that Chef Storch and chef Felitto are two peas in a pod. Their shared love for Asian cuisine is evident in the food we ate. So was their mastery over techniques and world ingredients. For instance the buns for the Duck Buns had the perfect texture and bite. At many restaurants they often tend to be too dry or too sticky on the palate or sometimes too doughy – thereby overwhelming the goodness they surround. But these buns were perfection! And don’t get me started on the kabocha doughnut with the burrata! Say what?!!!!
I could make a meal out of pretty much any dish at Chelsea. I deeply appreciated that even the little details are thought through from concept to execution – like the potatoes in the Chicken Scarpiello. It’s decadent crunch and texture were just what that flavorful dish needed to elevate to the level of perfection. And I simply loved how the potatoes soaked up all the lovely sauce on the plate making for irresistible bites!
Staying true to the seasons, the menu presented us with many delicious flavors of fall… and each warmed my soul through and through.
The Chelsea, Fairfield CT | http://thechelseaff.com