Category Archives: Saugatuck

Menu Moments: What To Eat At Tutti’s

If you haven’t been to Tutti’s, then you’re not a real Westporter.

There’s more than just great Italian food at this Saugatuck staple, steps from the train station.

As soon as you walk in, Tutti’s wants you to feel like you’re part of the family.

Tutti’s parking lot is filled during the Slice of Saugatuck. The restaurant is an important part of the neighborhood.

Which makes sense: It’s a family-run business. Owner and head chef Pasquale Funicello is responsible for Tutti’s homestyle cooking.

Pasquale was born in Salerno, and was introduced to the kitchen at age 10. He graduated from the Culinary Institute of Sorrento in 1972. He has been cooking delicious Italian meals in the Westport area almost since then.

Pasquale and his wife Maria — who  runs the front line with warmth and a smile — were the original owners of Angelina’s Trattoria in Westport, back in the 1980s.

Tutti’s owners Pasquale and Maria Funicello.

Tutti’s motto is “Good food, good friends” — and they live it daily.

Tutti’s happily accommodates special requests, and will make any entree gluten-free. They just want you to enjoy your meal.

Westport-based nutritionist Heather Bauer serves up her top healthy picks — of all types — below.

Heather’s Tips

Italian food is traditionally high in carbohydrates, so if you’re trying to lose weight it’s best to skip the bread, pizza and pasta dishes.

However, if you’re on maintenance you can add 1 to 2 slices of pizza, or share a pasta dish as your appetizer in addition to one of my recommendations below. Use this meal as your carb for the day, so avoid a carb serving at breakfast or lunch.

I also recommend avoiding creamy sauces, and choosing white wine or garlic- based sauces instead. Based on my eating plan, the red sauce will count as your carb, so choose piccata, cacciatore or marsala sauce.

However, if you want to have a little pasta and are in the weight loss phase, have pasta fagioli soup. It’s quite filling, and can satisfy your cravings.

One of the many delicious dishes at Tutti’s.

Appetizers 

  • Pasta fagioli soup
  • Small Caesar salad
    • This has an amazing homemade dressing, but request it on the side.
    • Keep the anchovies for an added boost of omega-3s.
  • House salad
    • If ordering for 1 person, choose the small size.
  • House salad with portobello and asparagus
    • Vegetarians: Order a large for your entree, and have the pasta fagioli or caprese as an appetizer.
  • Italian chopped salad

Appetizers to share:

Order your own house salad and share any of these:

  • Caprese
  • Cold antipasto
  • Prosciutto, red peppers and mozzarella
  • Prosciutto, artichoke and mozzarella

Tutti’s Caprese salad

Healthy Entrees

*For all entrees, request double veggies and skip the pasta

  • Any salad recommendation above can be ordered in the large size for entree. Add grilled chicken, grilled salmon (my favorite), grilled steak, shrimp or scallops.
    • Example: order the large Caesar salad with grilled salmon.
  • Chicken scallopini
    • The piccata style is a healthier option.
    • Order without butter.
  • Chicken parm
    • Order grilled and without breading.
  • Eggplant parmesan
    • Order grilled and without breading.
  • Grilled salmon with spinach
    • Request pesto sauce on the side.
  • Stuffed tomato (grilled chicken with veggies)
    • This is from the lunch menu; it’s more popular in the summer months.
  • Zuppa di Pesce
    • This is a filling entree that takes time to eat.

Side Veggies to Share:

  • Sauteed broccoli rabe
  • Sauteed spinach

Gluten-Free Options:
Any entree can be made gluten-free.

  • Pizza

Great New Festival Shines A Light On Cribari Bridge

Westport is filled with holiday treats. But the lights on the Cribari Bridge outshine nearly every other winter wonder.

Ever since Al DiGuido and a crew of volunteers first hung hundreds of bulbs all over the historic span nearly 20 years ago, however, the actual lighting has been a low-key affair.

This year, there will be a very impressive ceremony.

No, it won’t rival the Christmas tree lighting at Rockefeller Center.

Ours will be better.

The William F. Cribari Bridge, in all its holiday glory. (Photo/JD Dworkow)

This Friday (November 29, 6:30 p.m.), Westporters are invited to the Saugatuck Rowing Club. There on the patio — with a perfect view of the Cribari Bridge — there’s hot cocoa, spiked cocoa, Saugatuck Sweets sundaes, Donut Crazy donuts, cookies, popcorn, a hot dog cart, live music, a cash bar and more.

The actual lighting takes place at 8 p.m. But the party lasts till 9:30.

Kids go free. It’s $20 for adults — but 100% of the proceeds benefit Al’s Angels. That’s the organization founded by bridge lighter (and Saugatuck Sweets owner) Al DiGuido. All funds help children and families battling cancer, rare blood diseases, natural disasters and severe financial hardships.

The Cribari Bridge lights were created as a symbol of hope for all in town.

Let’s hope there’s a huge turnout of angels on Friday, when Al turns on the lights.

(For tickets and more information on Saugatuck Rowing Club’s Bridge Lighting Festival, click here.)

Another view. (Photo/Joel Treisman)

 

“Local Love” Is Back!

Last year — just in time for the holidays — local shoppers and diners enjoyed a spectacular discount coupon book. Dozens of area stores and restaurants offered deals — and part of the sales went to a plan to build a playground downtown.

“Local Love” returns for a second year. Card sales are already live. And the dream of a downtown playground is closer to reality. Plans are in place, with completion scheduled for this summer at Bedford Square.

The playground tie-in is strong. People buying the Local Love card can have their name — or their child’s — on a commemorative plaque there.

Artist’s rendering of the Bedford Square playground.

The “local” part of the campaign is important. Organizers Megan Rutstein and Melissa Post want to do the same thing with the card as they do with their multi-platform WestportMoms site: “keep our town vibrant, keep businesses alive, keep people connected, and celebrate everything this community has to offer.”

This is a true townwide effort. Megan and Melissa have partnered with civic officials, the Westport Downtown Merchants Association, and over 100 retailers, spas, fitness studios and restaurants.

The campaign runs from Saturday, December 7 through Sunday, December 15. Coupon books are $40; click here to purchase.

For a full list of participants, scroll down:

Appliances & Electronics

Stanton Miles (Vaccums) – 20% off

Arts, Art Classs & Flowers

Compo Flowers – 10% off orders $100+
One River Art School  – $75 off first month of a weekly class membership
Westport Country Playhouse – Buy 3 tickets, get the 4th free (25% off) – Box office only

Clothing & Accessories

Alala – 20% off
Anthropologie – 20% off
Athleta – 20% off
Bella Bridesmaids – 20% off (some exclusions)
Cotelac – 20% off
Fleet Feet – 20% off sneakers
Fred – 20% off; 10% off for members
Great Stuff – 20% off (some exclusions)
Groove – 20% off
J. Crew – 20% off
Joie – 20% off
Jojo Maman – Up to 50% off, plus gift in store
Madewell – 20% off (excludes denim)
Marine Layer – 20% off purchase over $425
NIC + ZOE – 20% off
Scout & Molly – 20% off
She La La – 20% off kids and women’s clothing; 10% off jewelry (excluding Julie Vos)
Soleil Toile – 20% off purchases over $150
Southern Tide – 20% off
South Moon Under – 20% off
Splash of Pink – 20% off
Theory – 20% off
West – 20% off
Winged Monkey – 20% off (excludes gowns and select other items)

Fleet Feet in Sconset Square is filled with running gear, and accessories.

Fitness

Bar Method – 15% off
Club Pilates – $10 membership fee, plus 15% off 3-month membership
CST 50 – 20% off a 5-pack (one-time use)
F45 Westport – 15% off class packs and membership
Gym Source (fitness equipment) – 20% off
Joyride Cycling + Fitness- 15% off
PureBarre – 15% off
Row House – 15% off
Solid Core – 15% off a 5-pack or a private in-studio 12 person class
Stretch Lab – 15% off
Upper Deck Fitness – 20% off

Hair & Nails

Amenity Nail & Spa – 20% off, plus free manicure with pedicure
Blow Dry Westport – 15% off products and services
Greg & Tony Salon – 15% off products and services
Hair Genies – 15% off
Le Boudoir – 15% off
Nail Factory – 15% off
Roots Salon – 15% off
Sharkey’s – 20% off services and retail products
Steven Mancini – 15% off products and services
Studio on Main – 15% off gift cards and retail
WHIP Salon – 15% off products and services

Don’t give lice for the holidays. Hair Genies can help!

Health, Beauty, & Spa

Artistex Salon & Spa – 15% off
The Brow Girl – 20% off
Dermatology Associates – 15% off botox and fillers (on Main Street)
Dream Spa – 20% off
European Wax – 15% off products and services
Modern Dermatology – 15% off all skincare products (excluding Alastin and SkinBetter)
New England Hemp Farm – 15% off
Restore Cryotherapy – 15% off all services
Westport Dental Associates (teeth whitening) – $399 ZOOM Teeth Whitening (40%+ discount); 2 Quip toothbrushes for $40 (normally $30 each); $20 off kids Sonicare with purchase of Adult Sonicare

Home Decor & Gifts

Belmondo – 20% off one-time purchase
Fig – 20% off
Party Harty – 20% off (excluding helium)
Redi-Cut Carpet – 20% off
Savannah Bee – 20% off honey products
She La La – 20% off kids and women’s clothing; 10% off jewelry (excluding Julie Vos)
Tusk – 20% off select items (designated in store)
William-Sonoma – 20% off

Savannah Bee Company: a honey of a local business.

Jewelry

Faye Kim Fine Jewelry – 20% off select items
Lux Bond & Green – 10% off (20% off select items)
Noya – 10% off select jewelry items
Silver Ribbon Jewelry – 10% off

Pet Care

Earth Animal – 20% off

Restaurants & Food Services

190 Main – 10% off
A&S Food – 10% off
Bagel Maven – 10% off
Black Duck – 10% off
The Boathouse (at Saugatuck Rowing Club) – 10% off
The Cottage – 10% off dinner
Field Trip Snacks – 20% off
Freshii – 10% off
Garelick & Herbs – 10% off
Gold’s Deli – 10% off restaurant dining
The Granola Bar – 10% off
Green & Tonic – 10% off menu; 30% off detox and cleanse
Ignazio’s – 10% off
Jesup Hall – 10% off
Joe’s Pizza – 10% off
Le Rouge by Aarti (chocolates) – 10% off
Match Burger Lobster – 10% off
The Meatball Shop – 10% off
Mystic Market – 10% off
OKO – 10% off lunch
Organic Market – 10% off
The Pearl – 10% off
Le Penguin – 10% off
Planet Pizza – 10% off
Rizzuto’s – 10% off
Rye Ridge Deli – 15% off
The Spotted Horse – 10% off
Stiles Market – 10% off butcher, deli and prepared foods
Tarrylodge – 10% off
Tavern on Main – 10% off
Wafu – 10% off
Westport Pizza – 10% off
Winfield Street & Deli – 10% off

Gold’s Deli: a Westport favorite for over 60 years.

Sporting Goods

ASF Sports and Outdoors – 20% off footwear
Fleet Feet – 20% off sneakers
Ski & Sport – 15% off ski rentals and 20% off (10% off Bogner)
Soccer & Rugby Imports – 20% off

Toys

Age of Reason – 20% off
The Toy Post – 20% off

Pic Of The Day #951

Saugatuck fire station mourns Westport firefighter Turk Aksoy (Photo/Lynn Untermeyer Miller)

Photo Challenge #256

There are some sights in Westport we pass by often, but don’t really “see.”

Once we spot them, though — or someone points them out to us — we will never again not notice them.

That’s the case with last week’s Photo Challenge. The wooden “06880” sign is part of a larger one that sits above the stores in Bridge Square, at the foot of the William F. Cribari Bridge where Bridge Street meets Riverside Avenue.

Once upon a time, it hung over Peter’s Bridge Market. There are other businesses there now — a Japanese restaurant and health food spot, for example — but much about Bridge Square remains unchanged. It’s a throwback, for sure. (Click here to see the image.)

Andrew Colabella, Robert Mitchell, Arthurt Hayes, Jonathan McClure, Amy Schneider and Mary Schmerker all knew that the “06880” sign is in Saugatuck. The next time you’re stopped in traffic there, look up.

You’ll never not notice it again.

Have you noticed this week’s Photo Challenge? If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Rose Porosoff)

Pic Of The Day #949

Westport train station (Photo/Joseph Thanhauser)

Pic Of The Day #947

Saugatuck River, early morning (Photo/Tom Cook)

Pic Of The Day #936

Moon over the Cribari Bridge, earlier tonight (Photo/Doris Ghitelman)

KJ’s Fitness For Kids

When Downunder closed recently, Karen Jewell was out of a job.

The former manager/kayak instructor soon began giving kayak and paddleboard lessons, rentals and tours out of nearby Bridgebrook Marina.

But the season ends soon. Karen needed another gig.

Karen Jewell

With her 30-year background in physical education — including certification as a speed and agility coach, core instructor and fitness trainer, plus her experience playing and coaching a variety of sports — and her passion for working with young kids, KJ’s Fitness for Kids Magazine seemed a natural “fit.”

The free online site is now live.

Aimed at 4- to 10-year-olds — “an overlooked group,” Karen says — it’s filled with content for athletes and non-athletes alike. Her goal is to provide information about movement and activities in a fun, engaging way.

KJ’s Magazine covers nutrition, education (what biceps and quads actually do), fun facts (how jump ropes began), and a daily fitness challenge (youngsters earn points, leading to prizes like t-shirts).

There’s a page for parents, teachers and coaches too.

Karen created the site entirely herself. She’s getting the word out through social media, networking and flyers.

Right now it’s local in scope. But she has visions of expanding far beyond this area.

Maybe even Down Under.

Meandering On The Saugatuck

Bistro du Soleil — the French-Mediterranean restaurant in the old post office on Riverside Avenue — has a loyal following. But it does not get enough attention, either for its food or the ever-changing art on its walls.

This Sunday (November 3, 4 to 7 p.m.), there’s a reception for Westport photographer Tom Kretsch’s photos of the Saugatuck River — the water that runs directly behind the restaurant.

His new exhibit is called “River Take Me Along.” Tom writes:

“The River that Flows Out” is the translation of the word Saugatuck. The Paugusset Indians gave this 23-mile river, with its origins in Danbury, its name.

This treasure of a resource served first as a place of early settlements by Native Americans. Later, settlers farmed along its banks. In the 19th century it was a large shipping port, with warehouses nestled by the edge.

Saugatuck River (Photo/Tom Kretsch)

Today this winding river, flowing through the heart of our community, serves as a wondrous resource for physical and spiritual reflection. From the fishermaen who cast their lines off the Cribari swing bridge to those who fly fish up stream, from the rowers who ply its waters both solo and in team sculls, to the many who simply stop and pause to sit on a bench by the library, the Saugatuck River holds a place in the hearts and souls of many Westporters.

Living close to its banks for 45 years sparked my interest to capture the many magical moods of this flowing body of water. Its ancient path that winds its way, sacred and slow, through woods, ponds, reservoirs and finally into Long Island Sound has provided me a palette to create my impressions of its spirit and soul.

From vantage points on a kayak floating slowly down the stream, to walking along its wooded banks, to standing on a bridge on a misty morning, the river can truly “take our breath away,” as Dar Williams sings eloquently in “The Hudson.”

Saugatuck in the mist. (Photo/Tom Kretsch)

In my series of images I have tried to create both impressionistic and realistic photographs of this ever-changing body of water. I hope the work will speak to you, and draw you into the beauty and spirit of the river.

I hope too it makes you pause and appreciate what a great natural resource this river is for all of us.

Perhaps it will inspire you to take time to explore the Saugatuck’s many nooks and crannies, or simply pause on a quiet summer evening, an early misty morning fog or deep in the fall foliage season to gaze at this gift we have been given.

My journey on this water is always evolving. I continue to look for those moments that speak to me; to capture the many hidden treasures it holds, and that can only be captured in the light that breathes life into our treasure, the Saugatuck River.

(The reception this Sunday is free, and open to the public. Tom Kretsch’s exhibit runs through December 28.)