An insider's view of the Connecticut dining scene
May 7, 2014
07:51 AM
The Connecticut Table

Lots of Flavors at Taste of Manchester Pub Crawl-Style Event May 13

Lots of Flavors at Taste of Manchester Pub Crawl-Style Event May 13

Employees from Antonio's Pizza Restaurant at last year's Taste of Manchester.

There’s a lot of local flavor Manchester—from Italian to Mexican, with American and seafood in between, there’s a lot of great food in this town located between Hartford and the University of Connecticut in Storrs.

On Tuesday, May 13, many of these local eateries will come together for the fifth annual Taste of Manchester.

Put on by the Manchester Dog Owners Group, this fundraiser unites local businesses with hungry visitors for a night of food and fun.

It’s a pub crawl-style event, where restaurants and bars put together a spread of samples for people to try throughout the night.

With the cost of a ticket (just $25), you can get access to 21 restaurants—not a bad deal.

The event will take place from 5:30 to 9 p.m.

This year is the largest the Taste of Manchester has ever been, says event chair and Manchester Dog Owners Group President Alysia Duke.

It started with just eight participating restaurants and fewer than 200 tickets sold.

(Right and below, scenes from last year's Taste of Manchester, from the event website.)

This year, there will be 17 stops; some of the restaurants are opening their doors while others not on the parade route are setting up stands at localized locations.

Those restaurants include Antonio’s Pizza Restaurant, Center Perk, Hilltop BBQ and Steakhouse, Corey's Catsup & Mustard, Hungry Tiger Cafe and Restaurant, The Main Pub, Suso Latino Basket and La via del Gusto.

“There will be a lot of variety,” says Duke.

The goal is to sell 500 tickets, and Duke is confident the event will be sold out by Mother's Day (May 11). Currently, about two-thirds of the tickets are already sold.

“If people want to come, people should buy their tickets now,” says Duke.

Tickets can be bought on the event’s website. Tickets will also be for sale at the Highland Park Market this coming weekend.

The night will be capped off with an after-party at the Army and Navy Club. People can turn in their door prize tickets, acquired at every restaurant they visit throughout the night, to be entered for a number of prizes, including gift certificates to the restaurants and other local businesses.

People who stop by Antonio’s Pizza Restaurant, The Hungry Tiger Cafe and Restaurant, The Main Pub and Rocco’s Pizza, Bar and Grill (the four restaurants who have participated in Taste of Manchester every year) will be entered into the Golden Ticket Challenge. There will be four prizes in the challenge, including gift certificates to Bob’s Discount Furniture, Sean’s Fine Jewelry and Frame Dimensions.

(Last year's after-party, right.)

The first 350 guests at Taste of Manchester will be given goodie bags stuffed with coupons and information about the participating businesses. Duke assures that there will be some great deals in the bags.

Tickets for Taste of Manchester benefit the Manchester Dog Owners Group, a local organization that advocates for responsible dog ownership and canine recreation. The group manages the dog park in Mt. Nebo Park.

But the real benefit is for all of downtown Manchester. The pub crawl event will bring together local business, and hopefully introduce people to some of the great food offered there.

For more information, visit tasteofmanchesterct.com.

Those interested in volunteering at the event, (Taste of Manchester is completely run by volunteers) can email tasteofmanchesterct@gmail.com.

Contact me by email at khartman@connecticutmag.com and follow me on Twitter, and connect with Connecticut Magazine on Twitter, on Facebook and on Google +

Lots of Flavors at Taste of Manchester Pub Crawl-Style Event May 13

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