Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Comings & Goings: NEAT Opens on Wilton Road
NEAT Coffee and Craft Cocktails has opened at Westport’s 6 Wilton Road, the former firehouse that is a part of the National Hall redevelopment. Co-owned by Rachel Haughey who is owner of NEAT at 20 Grove St., Darien (see WestportNow June 27, 2014), she has teamed up with Bobby Werhane, owner of Experience Hospitality with whom NEAT has partnered and Kevin Lalumiere, according to chef Brian Reilly. The every day hours: 7 a.m. - 5 p.m. for coffee, pastries and light breakfast items, and from 5 p.m.-midnight for craft cocktails, bar snacks and sandwiches. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Monday, September 15, 2014
Comings & Goings: Senor Salsa Opens on PRW
Senor Salsa, a fresh Mexican grill, has opened at 221 Post Road West in the Westbank Center, the second Mexican cuisine restaurant to open in Westport in the past three weeks. (In late August Qdoba Mexican Grill opened at 275 Post Road East at Playhouse Square.) Senor Salsa Manager Miguel Rosas, who said he worked at Senor Salsa’s Fairfield location at 580 Post Road for the past 16 years, said the new eatery specializes in a variety of homemade salsas and fresh chicken. He said the application for a liquor license is pending but a BYOB (bring your own bottle) policy is in effect until the license is approved. The restaurant, owned by Garry Dean, is open every day— Sunday to Thursday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday and Saturday until 10 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Saturday, September 13, 2014
Amadeus Piano—the Official Opening
There was an official ribbon cutting Friday for Amadeus Piano, 240 Post Road East. Open since June, it sprecializes in piano tuning, repairs, restoration, refinishing, rentals, sales, storage and moving. Among those taking part were Second Selectman Avi Kaner (3rd l), Matthew Mandell (2nd l), president of the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce, and owner Yuri Feygin (c). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Friday, September 12, 2014
Westport Minuteman Owner May Sell Some or All of Company
Digital First Media, which operates the Westport Minuteman newspaper and website, announced today that it had retained an adviser to help it explore “strategic alternatives,” including a sale of some or all of the company.
Chief Executive John Paton said UBS Securities will help Digital First Media review alternatives that include selling the entire company, selling regional clusters, doing nothing or expanding the company. The company said there is no guarantee the process will result in any deals.
Digital First Media, based in New York, was formed in December 2013 with the merger of MediaNews Group and the former Journal Register Company.
It is the nation’s second-largest newspaper company, based on circulation, operating in 15 states, with 800 multi-platform news and information products, including 76 daily and Sunday newspapers—among them the New Haven Register—and 160 weeklies, including the Westport Minuteman and Fairfield Minuteman.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Women Entrepreneurs Meet at Library
There was an all-day workshop at the Westport Library today for women-owned business entrepreneurs. Among the speakers was Skyler Fernandes (r), founder and managing director of New York-based Simon Ventures, a capital investment firm. The event was hosted by Westporters Janis Collins and Jen Gabler, co-founders of Refinery, a nonprofit that “helps women-led businesses scale-up and grow their company,” according to Collins. She said more than 50 women attended the program, which was followed by a two hour networking session held at a women-owned restaurant, the Granola Bar in Playhouse Square. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Monday, September 08, 2014
Comings & Goings: Wheels Convenience Store to PRE
Wheels Convenience Store, owned by Trumbull-based Consumers Petroleum, will open in early October at 786 Post Road East, according to Gina Nero, the firm’s marketing manager. The space was previous occupied by the Citgo gas and service station, founded in the early 1930s by Joe DeMattia, and owned by the Mattia family for 80 years. It closed in April 2013. Nero said the convenience store will also have four fuel pumps in two bays featuring the Citgo brand. She said Consumers Petroleum has been owned by the same family for three generations.The owner, Rich Wiehl (pronounced “wheel”), opened his first convenience store under the Wheels name four years ago. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Thursday, September 04, 2014
Comings & Goings: Dojo Karate to PRE
Dojo Karate, a personal development center, has opened at 772 Post Road East next to the former location of Great Cakes in space formerly occupied by TriCycle. According to Sarah Malhotra (above), head trainer and a Nidan Black Belt who has been associated with Dojo Karate for the past seven years in its Stamford studio on Long Ridge Road, the Westport location offers classes in many disciplines including Tempo Karate, Brazilian Jujitsu and Kick Boxing. The owner, Manny Esmeraldo, opened the Stamford studio 20 years ago according to Malhotra. For further information: (203)557-8815 or http://www.thedojoct.com. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Tuesday, September 02, 2014
Comings & Goings: Pizzeria Bravo Opens
Pizzeria Bravo and Wine Bar has opened at 1460 Post Road East in the space formerly occupied by Munson’s Chocolates, which closed in April 2012 after 20 years in Westport. According to manager Seth Kulback (above), “Although the restaurant serves pizza, its wide ranging menu of italian cuisine includes such entrees as homemade pasta, lobster pot pie and seared tuna.” Owner Michael Sayyed of Stratford also owns Julian’s Brick Oven Pizza, 539 Riverside Ave., Westport and in Monroe. Bravo hours: Monday to Wednesday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Thursday to Saturday 11 a.m.-11 p.m,. and Sunday 11 a.m.- 9 p.m., with happy hours drinks Monday to Friday 3 p.m. - 6 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Qdoba Opens to Rave Reviews from High Schoolers
Four Staples High School juniors enjoy Mexican cuisine today at Qdoba Mexican Grill at Playhouse Square, 275 Post Road East, in the space formerly occupied by Pierre Deux, the first day the restaurant is open to the public. The 16-year-old students said they each ate at Qdoba in the past few days when attending one or more private events sponsored by Qdoba. “This stuff is great,” according to Reece Armstrong. They are (l-r) Mike Cusa, Reece Armstrong, Ben Hamer and Ryan Baer. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Access Health CT Chief Leaving for Fed Job
By Arielle Levin Beckerwww.ctmirror.org
Kevin Counihan: led Access Health CT through a relatively smooth launch. Ctmirror.org photo
Kevin Counihan is resigning as the chief executive of Connecticut’s health insurance exchange to lead the once-troubled federal Obamacare marketplace, officials announced today.
As CEO of the federal exchange, Counihan will assume responsibility for the HealthCare.gov insurance marketplace, a crucial piece of the Affordable Care Act that is used to enroll people in coverage in nearly three dozen states.
The federal exchange’s launch last fall was considered disastrous, and Counihan’s appointment comes less than three months before the Nov. 15 start of the second open enrollment period for private insurance.
Counihan will also run the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, a part of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that plays a key role in implementing the health law.
Click here for more of story
Newman’s Own Launches Salad Dressing Contest
Newman’s Own—the Westport-based brand that donates all profits to charity—today announced a Newman’s Own Salad Dressing “Greens for Good” Recipe Contest.
An announcement said the competition empowers salad aficionados to share their favorite salad recipe/dressing pairing and nominate a nonprofit organization to receive another kind of green: a $35,000 donation.
Beginning today, consumers can visit www.facebook.com/NewmansOwn and click on the Greens for Good tab to enter their original salad creation and Newman’s Own Salad Dressing pairing.
“Making good food and pursuing the common good have been at the core of Newman’s Own mission since Paul Newman mixed up his very first batch of great-tasting Newman’s Own salad dressing,” said David Best, executive vice president, Newman’s Own, Inc.
Monday, August 25, 2014
Himes Tours Westport’s Innovation HUB
U.S. Rep. Jim Himes today visited the Westport Innovation HUB in Saugatuck as part of his 17 towns in 17 days congressional break tour.
Congressman Jim Himes (2nd l.) meets today with entrepreneurs at Westport’s Innovation HUB, including founder Howard Steinberg (3rd r). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
He toured the facility and met with local entrepreneurs and small businesses based at the center’s shared workspace at 20 Ketchum St.
The HUB is home to more than 25 small business operators and its members assist each other with capital, local resources and expertise. A core group of six members are actively looking at investing and supporting startups in southwest Connecticut.
“The HUB is harnessing the entrepreneurial energy that is vital to creating jobs and keeping southwest Connecticut at the forefront of innovation,” Himes said.
Saturday, August 23, 2014
Westporter John Akers, former IBM Head, 79
UPDATE John F. Akers of Westport, chief executive of IBM for eight years during the company’s struggle to shift from the mainframe to the personal computer era, died Aug. 22 at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He was 79.
John F. Akers: led IBM in turbulent times. Contributed photo
A spokesman for IBM said the cause was a stroke, The New York Times said. Akers was a 39-year Westport resident, making his home on Sturges Highway. The family also has a summer home in Nantucket.
He was born in Boston on Dec. 28, 1934, to the late Kenneth F. and Mary J. (Reed) Akers. Kenneth Akers headed the Boston office of the National Fire Insurance Company of Hartford. John Akers graduated from Yale University in 1956, was an All-Ivy League hockey player and received Yale University Athletics’ George H.W. Bush, Lifetime of Achievement Award in 2001.
Following Yale, he joined the U.S. Navy, where he served as a carrier pilot from 1956 to 1960 attaining the rank of lieutenant.
Friday, August 22, 2014
CT Mirror Names New Editor
G. Claude Albert has been named editor of The Connecticut Mirror and The Connecticut News Project, Inc.
G. Claude Albert: 37 years at The Hartford Courant. Contributed photo
Albert is a former managing editor of The Hartford Courant, where he held a variety of leadership posts overseeing most aspects of the newsroom.
He also took a leading role in adapting the skills and culture of the newsroom to digital publishing. He has extensive experience editing in-depth journalism and leading initiatives focused on strategic planning, diversity and staff development.
“Claude’s commitment to journalism excellence is unparalleled in this state, and we’re thrilled to have him join us as we enter the next phase of growth,” Mirror CEO/Publisher Brett Orzechowski said. “His journalism career has always been mission-driven, which makes him a perfect fit for our organization.”
Thursday, August 21, 2014
Qdoba Mexican to Open Monday; All Proceeds to ALS
Qdoba Mexican Grill will open Monday at Playhouse Square, 275 Post Road East, according to Qdoba Regional Manager Chris Pace (above). He said the restaurant, with seating for 55, will be open only from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Monday and 100 percent of the proceeds will be donated to the ALS Foundation. He said employees have already conducted their own bucket-of-cold-water ceremony on behalf of the ALS campaign. Founded in 1995, the company was acquired in 2003 by Jack In the Box. Westport is the third location in Connecticut with the others in Norwalk and Fairfield. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com