by Valerie Schroth
Apr 18, 2013
12:08 PMTable Hopping
Oak + Almond Opens in Norwalk
There’s a new kid on the block in Norwalk where Tuscan Oven used to be. The sleek new restaurant, called Oak + Almond, features a 16-foot communal table, counter seating, a private dining room with fireplace, and a garden room. There’s also a lovely stone patio with an open-air fireplace.
The place gets its name from the hardwoods that flame the open-hearth grill and brick oven. Executive chef Jeff Taibe, mostly recently of Southwest Café in Ridgefield, promises bold flavors and “real food,” with lots of fresh fish and seafood (chef Taibe spent much of his early career cooking at fish houses in the Caribbean), grass-fed beef, house-made pasta and artisan-cured meats and cheeses.
On the menu: local swordfish crudo with blood orange ponzu, pickled beets and avocado; funghi flatbread with charred green onion, fontina and balsamic; pork-and-ricotta meatballs with spicy tomato sauce; chittara pasta with lamb Bolognese, Moroccan spices and fresh mint; wood baked black cod with little neck clams, artichokes, fregola and prosciutto in a natural broth; and Oak + Almond's signature grass-fed hamburger with bacon, Gorgonzola dolce, cippolini jam and hand-cut fries.
If the chef’s name seems familiar, it should: Jeff's brother is Bill Taibe of Lefarm and The Whelk fame in Westport.
Culinary prowess seems to run in the family.
544 Main Ave. (Rte. 7) Norwalk, 203/846-4600, oakandalmond.com.Oak + Almond Opens in Norwalk