Family New Havening

Family New Havening

Family time at the around the haunts of New Haven such as the Chetstone gothic Victorian mansion, Georgie’s Diner, Sandy Point Bird Sanctuary, Pepe’s Pizza, East Rock, Lenny and Joe’s, Fairhaven Heights (Dragon), Lighthouse Point, Ragged Mountain in Meridan, and more fun along the CT shoreline. October 2018. Big thanks and love to Kate, Peter, Raven, Aunty, Roxie, Ruby, Cobra, Pink Lady and all who were in on it!

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Lighthouse Point Sunset

Lighthouse Point Sunset

Visited for the first time in October 2018 and was blown away. Lighthouse Point Park was an unbelievable Connecticut shoreline sunset spot. There are large rock formations that make the ideal perch to watch the sun dip down into the Sound. I would love to return for the full experience: the carousel was closed for the season and the beach was almost barren in the hauntingly beautiful autumnal glow, with only a local fisherman as our neighbor.

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Giuffrida Park

Giuffrida Park

Giuffrida Park is an escape to nature that rewards a modest effort with scenic overlooks of traprock cliffs, a reservoir and a waterfall. The trails are not the best marked, but the roughly 2 mile loop around the reservoir (blue blazes) is more of a rugged hiking adventure for that fact. The traprock rising high above the valley is a marvel. Would definitely recommend in spring / summer and especially autumn, for the leafpeepers paradise.

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Sandy Point Bird Sanctuary

Sandy Point Bird Sanctuary

Over 60 acres of barrier beach, tidal creek and marsh, the Sandy Point Beach & Bird Sanctuary, one of the sites featured on the Connecticut Coastal Birding Trail, has been designated an “important bird area”. I would also designate these two long sandy peninsulas arcing into New Haven harbor to be a “astonishingly beautiful bird area.” Sandy Point is a natural nesting & migratory ground for many species of birds on the Connecticut shoreline… ¬†You will find protected wetland & beach habitat teeming with birdlife, with footpath access & ample parking. ¬†Recommend taking a hike in this sanctuary of nature for birds and humans alike!

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West Haven Beaches

West Haven Beaches

West Haven has a scenic drive all along the coast and it’s worth the drive AND worth stopping along the way to take in the fresh salty air, and the beauty of Connecticut’s historic homes and rocky shoreline. For somebody who has lived in Guilford, West Haven beaches opened my eyes to some unseen CT beauty with lots of public access!

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Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana

Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana

We dined in with a party of 5 on a Tuesday night in mid-October 2018. There was a line stretched outside the door at around 7PM and we had to wait about 20 minutes for a table. This was not a problem as being exposed to the pizza aroma only intensified the gratification of eating the world’s best pizza. The service, white clam and red sauce veggie pizzas were all simply amazing and well worth triple that wait time.

Juicy tidbit: Local news was taping a segment beside the wood-burning oven while we dined. I asked our server what was going on with that, and we chatted about an unfortunate and odd pattern: the jinx of the spotlight. Several times, the Frank Pepe wood-burning oven cook that has appeared in such a taped news segment has had to be let go soon thereafter. Hubris? Goes right to their head? Coincidence?

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Lenny and Joe’s Long Wharf

Lenny and Joe’s Long Wharf

Pleasantly surprised that this branch of Lenny and Joe’s Fish Tale lived up to the best experience I have ever had at an L and J, which was this awesome dinner I had recently in their Westbook restaurant. The lower review average may be due to less New Haven guests “knowing what to expect.” The seafood was fresh (we had raw Blue Point oysters, clams, a fried shrimp roll, and a lobster roll) and the service was on point. The prices were totally in line with the other Lenny and Joe’s.

Note to the team of Lenny and Joe’s servers: As a restaurant industry professional who has “put my time in” (more than 2 decades experience) I would recommend NOT wearing shorts during work. Not only will a full length pant better protect the body from hot food in the event of catastrophic spill, full length pants will also shield the legs from idiotic male guests suffering from demented Hooters mindsets. Just my 2 cents.

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Bagelicious II

Bagelicious II

Bagelicious II had some great vegan options for my sister and her husband. The sandwiches on bagels were ready fast and served hot. The slightly spicy Italian was tasty on an everything bagel. Also enjoyed watching another guest drive away with their togo coffee accidentally left on top of the car!

Knowledge Corner: It’s my understanding (full disclosure – I am a III myself!) that the suffix “JR” is used when an entity is named after it’s parent, and “II” is used when an entity is named after a family member of a preceding generation. Therefore the original Bagelicious is probably Bagelicious II’s grandmother / grandfather.

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Georgie’s Diner

Georgie’s Diner

During a recent 4 day stay in New Haven, my family’s favorite meal was hands down at Georgie’s Diner. My sister and her husband were excited by the vegan bounty on the Georgie’s menu. She had a seasonal vegan hash made with butternut squash: he had a vegan reuben! The rest of my family had variations of eggs, all cooked to perfection. Cooking eggs isn’t easy!

I would give a sixth star to the staff who are probably the ones giving TLC, food and shelter to a wild cat behind the restaurant, by the train tracks. I wonder if that cat is named Georgie!

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