Sunday, August 21, 2016
Donut Crazy will open at the eastbound side of Metro-North’s Westport station in Saugatuck around Oct. 1, according to Westport Police Chief Foti Koskinas, pending approval of the Board of Selectman on Thursday. The store replaces Steam, which opened in January 2014 and closed in March this year. Donut Crazy, founded by Jason Wojnarowski, currently operates shops in Shelton, Stratford, and Bridgeport and plans to open in New Haven this fall, according to Koskinas. It offers coffee, tea, espresso, cappuccino and latte, juice and an assortment of takeout foods in addition to its wide range of donuts. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Saturday, August 20, 2016
The Groove, a children’s apparel and gift store, which opened at 420 Post Road West, across from Whole Foods, in October 2012, has moved a few doors away to a much larger space in a location previously occupied by a branch of Hudson Valley Bank. According to owner Corri Neckritz (above) the newly expanded store, which opens on Monday, has 3,000 square feet compared to approximately 1,300 square feet in the store being vacated. She added that a customer appreciation event, a 50 percent sale on most merchandise, will soon be in effect in the former space before it closes. She said the range of offerings addresses apparel needs of babies, teens and adults. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Friday, August 19, 2016
Today was the final day of business for Kibberia Restaurant and Café, 361 Post Road West, and Westport resident Wendy Levy showed up for a final order, served by employee Alia Metke, a 2015 Staples High School graduate. Nick Iskandar. an owner of the eat-in and takeout restaurant specializing in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine, said Thursday it was closing because its lease expired and “we cannot continue with the current costs of doing business in Westport.” Levy said she was one of its first customers three years ago and had frequented the Kibberia restaurant in Danbury. “When i read on WestportNow about the planned closing, I wanted to come here just one last time,” she said. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Thursday, August 18, 2016
By Dave Matlow
Kibberia, an eat-in and takeout restaurant specializing in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine at 361 Post Road West, will close at the end of the business day Friday, according to owner Nick Iskandar.
Iskandar, with brother Sam and sister-in-law Carole as chef, opened the restaurant in July 2013 in the space previously occupied by John’s Best Pizza. They also own a restaurant by the same name in Danbury.
“Our lease expired and we cannot continue with the current costs of doing business in Westport,” Nick Iskander said.
“Our business volume is good. if we were doing this amount of business in Danbury, for instance, we could continue because our costs are much lower there, but doing business in the Westport area is very expensive. We just cannot continue.”
Monday, August 15, 2016
To the Editor:
I have lived in Westport for 25 years and am president of SIR Development, LLC a new construction luxury home builder. I have noted that historic structures and their place in this town have been a constant debate.
During this time, hundreds of older homes have been demolished to make room for larger ones leaving a small inventory of older structures that retain the character of yesteryear. Some efforts have been made to create incentive programs for saving these structures through the existing 32–18 zoning regulations, but clearly the existing regulations fall short.
After seeing that 32-18 was deficient, we embarked on an effort to amend Section 32-18. With a specific property in mind, 25 Center St., we saw an opportunity to save an historic structure and provide a win-win for both the town and preservationists.
Knowing that the process was quite protracted, we proceeded in good faith with the town and the community to accomplish this goal.
Healthy Choice Organic Mattresses, 141 Post Road East, will close at the end of the week according to owner Dave Spittal. “We may open another store in the Westport area, maybe New Canaan, Stamford or Greenwich,” he said. He said the Westport store, which opened in September 2012 “is the worst of all our stores—it may be the parking, the model just did not work for us in Westport.” Healthy Choice Organic Mattresses stores are located in New York, Mt. Kisco, and Beacon, N.Y., Ridgewood and Summit, N.J., as well as Boston. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Tuesday, August 09, 2016
Vine Wine Room has opened at 190 Main St. in sspace formerly occupied by Luxe Wine Bar, which closed in April. Owner Sammy Alanz and partner Heather Buchheit-Ferrari. Trumbull residents, said this is a soft opening and a grand opening is planned for mid-September. According to Buchheit-Ferrari, the restaurant, which seats 30 inside and 16 on the patio, offers a full bar, appetizers, small plates and plans to add a raw bar. Alanz said menu offerings will expand. Hours are Monday to Thursday 4 p.m. to 1 a.m., Friday and Saturday 2 p.m. to 1 a.m., and Sunday 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Friday, August 05, 2016
Thursday, August 04, 2016
By Dave Matlow
A.S Fine Foods of Westport will open in October at 361 Post Road West, according to co-owner Albert Pizzirusso, a Westporter.
The location is in the shopping strip anchored on the east end by People’s United Bank and Kibberia Middle Eastern restaurant on the west.
Pizzirusso, a Westport resident for the past 15 years and a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America (CIA), class of 1992, is co-owner with Erik Cohen.
Pizzirusso said for 10 years following his graduation from CIA he worked at first class eateries in New York including Four Seasons, Rainbow Room and the Ritz Carlton.
Wednesday, August 03, 2016
By Keith M.Phaneufwww.ctmirror.org
The state Department of Economic and Community Development has responded with reassurances to a recent news report that Westport’s Bridgewater Associates — to which Connecticut just pledged $52 million in economic assistance — is slowing its hiring.
DECD spokesman Jim Watson said that the hedge fund still must comply with several job retention and creation benchmarks over the next five years, or risk the loss of as much as $17 million.
“All companies in all industries are subject to business fluctuations,” Watson said in a statement. “All experience periods of acceleration and slowdowns in hiring. DECD recognizes that fact and takes a longer-term approach in its agreements with companies.”
The state committed $22 million in bonding on May 27 to help the fund – which manages about $150 billion in assets – expand facilities in Westport, Wilton and Norwalk.
Tuesday, August 02, 2016
Bill Taibe and partner Massimo Tullio are planning a new restaurant in Westport’s Old Town Hall, 90 Post Road East. Taibe, who brought Le Farm, The Whelk, and Kawa Ni to Westport, is not certain of the format but, according to ctbites.com, he suggested the new menu might be “a celebration of classic tavern grub and drink.” Opening is projected for sometime late this year. The space was formerly occupied by Spruce Home & Garden. The lower level of the building houses Rothbard Ale + Lager, which describes itself as a “premiere European Gastropub,” offering dishes and drinks inspired by the Central European regions. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Monday, August 01, 2016
It was a nostalgic visit today to the now shuttered Oscar’s on Main Street for sisters (l-r) Ali Pappageorge, 44, and Melissa, 41, With them was Melissa’s daughter Taylor, 15, an 11th grade student at Fairfield’s Ludlowe High School. Melissa said her father, Lee, Oscar’s owner, is getting stronger every day at Yale-New Haven Hospital where he is battling lung cancer. A real estate sign saying the space is available for lease went up in the front window today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Oscar’s was almost hard to recognize late Sunday night after its Westport Main Street closing earlier in the day after 42 years. A sign on the front door gave a phone number for “any inquiries/vendor questions.” A Facebook posting said: “Our family would like to thank all of our supportive customers. You held us up today, and we want to thank you for that.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Friday, July 29, 2016
Tonight’s announced closing on Monday of Oscar’s Deli marks the end of a 42-year run for the Main Street icon and the last mom and pop store on the street. Owner Lee Papageorge, a nonsmoker, was diagnosed with lung cancer several months ago and is undergoing treatment at Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale-New Haven. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Thursday, July 28, 2016
There is a new name and logo for Westport’s Gault Energy & Stone, Westport’s oldest business. Founded in 1863, the company today unveiled a new name – Gault Family Companies – and said the new “G” logo reflects its rebranded lines of businesses—Energy & Home Solutions, Stone & Landscape Supplies, and Properties & Development. “Our new logo and expanded corporate structure captures our rich history and reveals our ambitious plans for the future,” said Sam Gault, the fifth generation Gault to head the company. Pictured with Gault (c ) are (l-r) Megan Donaher, sales coordinator and sixth generation, Bill Gault, chairman of the board and fourth generation, Meredith Donaher, marketing director and sixth generation, and Jim Donaher, vice president, fifth generation and father of Megan and Meredith. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Ray Dalio, founder of Westport’s Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund and Westport’s largest private employer, today sharply criticized a New York Times story portraying his company, as described by one employee, as a “cauldron of fear and intimidation.”
In a statement issued by his company, Dalio, who turns 67 on Monday, denounced the Wednesday front page story—which included details of an alleged sexual harassment complaint, skinny-dipping during a work retreat, and video surveillance—as an example of “media distortion of reality.” (See WestportNow July 26, 2016)
“To understand the background of this story, you should know that the New York Times reporters never made a serious attempt to understand how we operate. Instead they intentionally strung together a series of misleading ‘facts’ in ways they felt would create the most sensationalistic story,” Dalio said in the statement.
The Times reported on Dalio’s response to its story on its website today.
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Westport’s Bridgewater Associates is like a “cauldron of fear and intimidation,” according to an employee of the world’s largest hedge fund quoted by The New York Times.
In a front page story in Wednesday’s edition available online tonight, the newspaper said it had obtained through Freedom of Information requests a 34-year-old employee’s complaint made to the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, which it said has not been previously reported.
The complaint describes “an atmosphere of constant surveillance by video and recordings of all meetings — and the presence of patrolling security guards — that silence employees who do not fit the Bridgewater mold,” the Times said.
The employee contends that his male supervisor sexually harassed him for about a year by propositioning him for sex and talking about sex during work trips, according to the report.
Sunday, July 24, 2016
Pet Supplies Plus, 1870 Post Road East near the Fairfield town line, has closed. A sign in the window says: “Hey Neigbors: We would like to inform you that our time is up. We would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the last 20 years of your loyalty and support.” It said to watch for a new location “coming soon.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Sunday, July 17, 2016
Arby’s, Westport’s only drive-up fast food restaurant, is out at 1000 Post Road East and soon will be replaced by Starbucks, which is relocating from nearby 925 Post Road East. Arby’s took over the site in 2006 from Burger King, which had been there since at least 1995. The drive-through capability is especially important for Starbucks, which also has a standalone store a 1 Parker Harding Plaza. Arby’s closed on Thursday. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Thursday, July 14, 2016
Pink Lemon Blue Lime, a baby and child boutique, has opened at the rear of 180 Post Road East, between Bay Street and Imperial Avenue. According to store manager Darcy Callahan, the store originally opened in Darien in April 2013 but recently relocated to Westport. Owner Evelina Rogers, a Fairfield resident, and her husband are the parents of five children. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Bedford Square developer David Waldman today took WestportNow and Randy Herbertson, the new president of the Downtown Merchants Association, on a hard hat tour inside and outside of the former Westport Weston YMCA headquarters. He said main tenant Anthropoligie will move in first with completion now scheduled for April of 2017. Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com and WestportNow.com photos
Sunday, July 10, 2016
The annual three-day Westport Downtown Merchants Association summer sidewalk sale ended today with many merchants marking down merchandise in the final hours. This was the scene outside =Vineyard Vines, 90 Main St. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
Saturday, July 09, 2016
Sidewalks in Westport’s downtown area were crowded with shoppers today for the second day of the Westport Downtown Merchants Association annual sidewalk sale. It winds up Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Diners enjoy sidewalk dining today at the iconic Westport Main Street restaurant Tavern on Main. According to Dimitri Zervos, owner since 2006, “We’ve had the permit for three years, but this is the first season it’s in operation. We call it the Sidewalk Patio at Tavern on Main.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Friday, July 08, 2016
Among sidewalk sale vendors in Westport’s downtown area today were brother-sister entrepreneurs Roscoe and Tory Brown. Roscoe, entering his junior year at Syracuse where he majors in communications, is a 2014 Staples High School graduate while Tory is class of 2009. Their entrepreneurial business, The Two Oh Three, is described by its co-founders as Connecticut’s local lifestyle brand. They chat with Fairfield University senior Julia Vitte of Orange, who purchased a 203 cap. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
LF Stores, 26 Main St., was a popular attraction for female teens today as the Westport Downtown Merchants Association annual summer sidewalk sale was in full swing. It continues through Sunday. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Shoppers go through on sale merchandise today at Vineyard Vines, 90 Main St., as the annual Westport Downtown Merchants Association sidewalk sale got underway. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Thursday, July 07, 2016
By James Lomuscio
The attorney for a local developer barely got a few lines out tonight before Westport’s Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) denied a proposed 1,500-foot sewer line extension.
The sewer line was developer Felix Charney’s needed first step to construct 155 rental housing units on Hiawatha Lane Extension in the Saugatuck section of town.
The reason for the denial by a vote of 5 to 0: nothing had changed since the last denial 18 months ago. The town’s infrastructure is simply unable to handle the additional flow at present, commissioners agreed.
At issue is the failing sewage pipe that runs from Pump No. 2 near the Black Duck restaurant to the town’s sewage treatment plant.