Chef Forrest Pasternack is the executive chef at Bailey’s Backyard in Ridgefield, CT. Before Baileys Backyard, he worked at some of New York’s finest restaurants including two-star Michelin-rated Aquavit. Chef Forrest Pasternack took time off his busy schedule to chat with Suburbs 101. We asked him for his favorite restaurants in Connecticut, Westchester County, and New York City. Here are the best restaurants in Connecticut and NY according to Chef Forrest Pasternack.
We are also very excited for the upcoming Greenwich Wine and Food Celebrity Chef Gala on October 7, 2022, where Chef Forrest Pasternack will be a celebrity guest chef.
Eat Where the Chefs Eat is a column where local Chefs and food industry insiders share their favorite restaurants in the New York metro area. Learn where your favorite chefs go when they aren’t in their own kitchens!
Best Restaurants in Connecticut according to Chef Forrest Pasternack
What are your favorite restaurants in Connecticut? What do you usually order at each restaurant?
My favorite restaurants in Connecticut are mostly smaller family-owned places where you could go every day.
Best Vietnamese Restaurant in Connecticut
For Vietnamese food, we go to Pho Vietnam in Danbury, CT. I have been going there for years and the food is always fantastic! The shrimp spring rolls with spicy peanut sauce are amazing, and always fresh and delicious. The Pho is always on point. The caramelized pork and bun bowls do not disappoint either!
Best Sushi in Connecticut
For Sushi, we go to Toro in Newtown, CT, or Ichiro in Danbury, CT. Both are good Japanese-American-style sushi. We usually order a bunch of special rolls and nigiri and they are both fantastic spots.
Best Pizza in CT
In Connecticut, you have to talk about pizza and there is nowhere better than taking a trip to New Haven, CT, and going to my favorite, Sally’s Apizza. The best pizza debate can get a little heated in Connecticut but I am an original location Sally’s guy! Give me an original cheese pie and I am a happy dude.
Best Mexican Restaurant in CT
For Mexican food, there is a Mexican restaurant called Don Rene Taqueria located in an old deli in Milford, CT. They serve their tacos in fresh tortillas. We usually get the rib eye, shrimp, or pork belly tacos with the esquites (Mexican street corn) and fresh juice.
Best Hotdogs in CT
For the best hotdogs (we have a 4 year old), we always go to JK’s in Danbury, CT. The hotdogs at JK’s are amazing with onions and chili and a little mustard. They serve a whole lot more than hotdogs- full breakfast, and lunch menus as well as malteds and milkshakes. Know that they are cash only though.
Best Ice Cream in CT
For the best ice cream in Connecticut, try Ferris Acres Creamery in Newtown, CT. They use their own cows to make the ice Cream and it is fab.
Best Restaurants in Westchester County according to Chef Forrest Pasternack
What are your favorite restaurants in Westchester? What do you usually order at each restaurant?
Best Thai Restaurant in Westchester County, NY
Our favorite Thai restaurant in Westchester is Red Lotus in New Rochelle, NY. They have great noodles! And Mango Sticky rice!
Best Brewery in Westchester County, NY
Captain Lawrence Brewery is fantastic in Elmsford, NY. I had the opportunity to work with Scott the owner on opening his second location The Barrel House in Mount Kisco and he makes some fantastic beer, try them all! They also have a distillery called Current Spirits and some excellent food as well, bbq, pizzas, burgers, etc. Great stuff.
Best Restaurants in New York City according to Chef Forrest Pasternack
What are your favorite restaurants in NYC? What do you usually order at each restaurant?
Best Chinese Restaurants in NYC
For Chinese food in Manhattan, we go to Wo Hop at 17 Mott street and Ping’s right down the street at 22 Mott street. Both Chinese restaurants are great. When I was a chef in NYC, Wo Hop was open late so we would usually end up there at some point!
Best Sushi in NYC
We love Sushi Azabu in Tribeca for traditional Japanese. We usually get the Omakase when we go there.
Best Burger in NYC
For burgers in NYC, we like Minetta Tavern and The Brindle Room.
Best Steak in NYC
For the best steak in NYC, we like Quality Meats. So good.
Best Chocolate in NYC
For the best chocolate in NYC, we go to Jacque Torres in DUMBO at 66 Water Street. The Chocolate, Hot Chocolate, and sweets are amazing! Definitely worth a visit.
Best Pizza in NYC
For New York-style pizza, my favorite pizzerias are right near one another and they are both very different. Both are located in Brooklyn, NY. Lucali and Luigi’s pizza are both worth the trip or do both on the same day!
Best Tasting Menu in NYC
My wife and I went to The Musket Room for a Women in Wine event. We had an amazing tasting menu done by Chef Mary Attea, every course and every wine was extraordinary. The Sweetbreads and Hamachi were some of the best I ever had and there were several wines selected by the Sommelier which were inventive and delicious to pair.
Catch Chef Luke Venner at this year’s Greenwich Wine + Food. Get your Greenwich Wine + Food tickets now!
Looking for Restaurant Recommendations from Chefs? Check out our other Eat Where the Chef Eats interviews:
Chef Luke Venner’s Favorite Restaurants in New York and Connecticut
Chef Peter Kelly’s Favorite Restaurants in Westchester
Best Restaurants in Fairfield County: Chef Robin Selden
Best Thai Restaurants in NYC: Grumpy Dumpling Chef Kook’s Faves
Best Restaurants in NY: According to Chef Ellen Sledge
Best Restaurants in Litchfield County, CT: According to Chef Evan Kalogiannis
Best Sushi in Greenwich, CT: According to Chef Scott Fratangelo
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