New Haven Restaurant Week draws fresh faces to the Elm City food scene
Several employees at city restaurants told the News that they have seen a noticeable uptick in customers.
New Haven restaurants are offering a special deal this week, and customers across the city are excited.
Nov. 5 through Nov. 10 marks the annual New Haven Restaurant Week across the Elm City. Clientele from the city and state travel to indulge in the wide range of cuisines and their delectable prices. Twenty-five restaurants are participating in this year’s marquee dining celebration. Options vary in style and price depending on the restaurant, but most customers can enjoy two-course lunch meals for $25 or three-course dinners for $45 or $55.
Sofia Arbelaez ’27, who is from Miami and Memphis, said she craved the Cuban delicacies that fill the streets of Little Havana back home. She went with a friend to Soul de Cuba Cafe, only minutes away from her dorm in Vanderbilt Hall.
“The ropa vieja and pollo a la plancha were a taste of home,” she said. “The Latino music, art and energy allowed me to breach the Yale bubble and reconnect with my Miami roots through food.”
Jack Eidemueller ’27, who grew up in Vero Beach, Florida, said that he revels in the diversity of cuisine in New Haven. He visited Shell & Bones Oyster Bar and Grill with his parents during Restaurant Week. Eidemueller said he was impressed by the array of food options across New Haven and is looking forward to exploring the food scene more.
Shell and Bones hostess Jessie Scott, a newcomer to the New Haven community, said she was immediately impressed by the breadth of cuisines within the city when she moved.
“I love to hear the stories and inspiration behind all the different cuisines,” she said. “It is remarkable how people from all over the world are brought together in such a concentrated city setting.”
Scott said she has noticed an uptick in business over the last few days corresponding with Restaurant Week. She added that offering tasting menus has been a great opportunity to identify quality pairings for food.
Alli Greenberg, a waitress at Harvest Wine Bar, said she has been incredibly busy during the Restaurant Week wave. She said the bar has attracted clients from one or two hours away, all brought to New Haven by the city-wide promotion of local businesses.
“The schedule is so busy and hectic right now,” Greenberg told the News. “People from all over want to enjoy our cocktails, wine and generous portions.”
Deon Ross, manager of vintage Italian restaurant Olives and Oil said he sees New Haven Restaurant Week as a venue for culinary surprises and risks. The restaurant’s seafood pappardelle, osso buco and butternut squash bisque are scrumptious additions to their traditional Italian menu as the restaurant tries to “step out of the norm,” Ross said.
Sofia Prieto Black ’27, who said her favorite New Haven restaurant is Olives and Oil, appreciated the spot’s homey ambiance and feel-good music. Prieto Black and her friend, Julia Blum ’27, devoured the caccio e peppe and garlic bread.
“Yale first-years must try to flee their dining halls as much as they can!” she said. “It’s too easy to restrict yourself to the sensational options on campus — with these special promos, it’s never been better to go out and explore.”
New Haven Restaurant Week ends on Friday, Nov. 10.