Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Cozy Places to Eat Healthy in Stamford Area

In the winter, it's very important to get out of the house. When you do drag yourself out, it's important to find a cozy place to relax.

I was reminded of this yesterday as I was sitting in Meli-Melo in Greenwich eating carrot-ginger soup. It was gray out, and I was alone, but I was happy. MM's interior is a Provencale yellow, it was warm in by the kitchen, and the soup was-- well, let's just say, it's almost too painful to eat the soup, because eating it means I have to stop eating it, and it hurts to finish a bowl of soup that good and want more.

Capriccio in Stamford, pictured above, also matches the cozy bill: colorful, comfortable, delicious, light, affordable food-- and foreign language in the air.

In Capriccio on Saturday I heard the owner chatting in Italian to an impossibly beautiful couple with three kids. In Meli-Melo in Greenwich, I eavesdropped on a French woman musing for 5 minutes over which soups to get. After discussions with the owner, she eventually got 4 bowls of chicken noodle and 4 of zucchini/squash curry to go. She is returning this afternoon for 8 bowls of the asparagus soup, which they were making in a big pot on the stove right in the middle of the store. You so know I'll be stopping by to get that soup today so I can see what the big deal is.

I should have gotten a second bowl for lunch, but eating alone is a little awkward, and I didn’t want to look like a pig. Later on in the day, I realized I was being silly. If I want soup, I’m getting soup, so I returned and picked up two soups for dinner. The Mexican beef soup wasn’t bad, but the zucchini and squash curry was… like the carrot-ginger soup, way too good. It was real curry.

I'm adding "try all of Meli-Melo's twenty soups" to my list, a list which also includes "eat at every single Stamford restaurant."

Oh- one advantage Capriccio has over Meli-Melo? Capriccio has a FULL BAR. I just noticed that last weekend. I thought they only had beer and wine. I do wish Capriccio had better soups, at least in the winter. The two soups I’ve tried there have been mediocre, so really, go to MM for soup. Meli-Melo is on Greenwich Avenue and is open every day from 10-10. MM also has buckwheat crepes, in both salad/sandwich and dessert format. I recommend a dessert crepe with pumpkin ice cream, nutella, and whipped cream. However, Capriccio's lemon Torta della Nonna still wins out.

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