The Best Restaurants in Stamford, Connecticut

group of friends enjoying one of the best restaurants in Stamford CTYou may or may not be desperately searching, “What are the best restaurants in Stamford, CT?”

 

It can be overwhelming to visit a new city and try to find food that tastes good and is well-loved by locals.

 

And after being in your shoes (many times), we’re here to help!

 

So, we came up with a list of the best restaurants to check out while you’re in the area.

 

And don’t worry!

 

We won’t load up the list with the most-expensive spots in the area. From comfort food to fine dining, we’ve included an array of favorites.

 

The Best Restaurants in Stamford, CT, by neighborhood

There are a lot of restaurants to choose from throughout the city.

 

So, below are our recommendations based on where you happen to be shortly before a meal:

  • South of I-95
  • Downtown
  • Springdale and North Stamford


Map design by Stanton House Inn with elements from Flaticon

Downtown Stamford restaurants

The dining scene in downtown Stamford centers on Bedford Street.

 

That said, there are plenty of options sprawled-out throughout the center of town.

Lorca Cafe

This Spanish-inspired pastry & coffee shop on Bedford Street is perfect for some coffee & churros on a rainy day.

 

Locals, from hipsters to investment bankers, keep Lorca busy throughout the day.

 

Between the atmosphere and the menu, you’ll be forgiven for forgetting you’re on Bedford Street and not at a cafe somewhere in Spain.

 

Sergios

An Albanian family has been running this pizza joint close to the Darien border for a long time. This writer found this family-run place during the pandemic, and joined long lines of people for their square-cut pizza, serving take-out only.

 

Three years later, Sergios still does not offer dine-in service. But the pizza is so good, I will drive over to pick it up and bring it back to the Inn in downtown Greenwich.

 

It’s that good.

Kyushu Ramen and Sushi

This writer first discovered this casual Asian restaurant because Mecha Noodle Bar, down the street, had a long wait for a table.

 

But this writer hasn’t returned to Mecha since discovering them.

 

Not knocking on Mecha at all. They’re one of the most romantic restaurants in Connecticut (especially the one in Fairfield).

 

And yet Kyushu Ramen and Sushi is locally-owned, and the service and food are both stellar.

 

This writer is a fan of their ramen. And their bao is quite good, as well.

Columbus Park Trattoria

 

Founded in 1985, Columbus Park Trattoria is a family-owned and run dining restaurant serving authentic Italian cuisine. 

 

Open for lunch and dinner, you can either stop in with coworkers on a break or bring your loved one by for dinner.

 

For lunch, you can opt for lighter antipasti dishes, including bruschetta, calamari, or a Tartar di Tonno. You could also do a classic soup and salad or opt for a heavier dish of pasta or entree. 

 

For dinner, you can look forward to a Salmone all’Aqua Pazza or an Ossobuco. The Rigatoni alla vodka is also a crowd favorite. Just make sure you leave room for dessert and treat yourself to a Crème Brulee or Tiramisu.

Barcelona Wine Bar

 

Set in gorgeous Downtown Stamford, Barcelona Wine Bar features scrumptious tapas, accompanied by a perfected wine list. 

 

Known for its rustic décor and menu, the tapas bar also has a patio for outdoor eating in the warmer months. What’s more romantic than sitting under the night sky surrounded by twinkling lights, delicious food, and top-notch wine?

 

People rave for the seafood paella, along with the hanger steak and Gambas Al Ajillo. And their happy hour menu is excellent.

Casa Villa

 

Noted for its authentic Mexican cuisine, Casa Villa is located in the heart of Stamford, making it easily accessible to everyone. 

 

With its burritos, tacos, fajitas, and quesadillas, it has all the classics that are prepared in a most delicious way. And when you stop in for a bite to eat, don’t forget to accompany your meal with a nice and cold margarita. 

 

Local favorites include the Tres Tacos Con Arroz and Frijoles. Still, you can’t go wrong with anything on the menu!

Cilantro Restaurant

 

Guests come from all over the state to enjoy Cilantro’s Latin-American cuisine. 

 

This Latin fusion restaurant was recommended on Restaurant Guru in 2021, known for their meats and fishes. They are also well-loved for their tapas and premiere dinner dishes.

 

And if you make it to the restaurant Monday through Friday, they have happy hour from 4PM to 7PM, where you can indulge in $5 sangria, margarita, select beer and wine, sliders, guacamole, quesadillas, ceviche, and more. 

The Capital Grille

 

This restaurant nestled on Tresser Blvd. serves up the much-anticipated New England clam chowder and lobster bisque, among other incredible dishes. 

 

The décor is stunning with African mahogany paneling and art deco chandeliers. The Capital Grille is an elegant dining experience, boasting a menu of dry-aged steaks, prime seafood, and an award-winning wine list.

 

brunch at one of the best restaurants in Stamford CT

Springdale and North Stamford

Much of the landmass of the City That Works sprawls north of downtown Stamford.

 

And like next door Greenwich, there are plenty of unique neighborhoods here, each with their own local hot spots.

 

A few top picks here include:

Olio

 

If you’re someone who loves to enjoy a delicious meal with the freshest of ingredients, look no further.

 

Olio is known for its conscientious sourcing of ingredients, finding much of what they use locally and organic. 

 

With a seasonally changing menu and constant new dishes, you can always look forward to something fresh and exciting, whether you’re a returning regular or a new customer. 

 

Olio makes all of their dishes from scratch. Yes, really. This includes breads, pastas, desserts, sauces, and more.

Madonia Restaurant

 

Dive into the Mediterranean by enjoying the delicious cuisine of Madonia Restaurant

 

This hot spot offers brunch, lunch, and dinner, with meals influenced by French, Spanish, and Italian cultures.

 

Its seasonal menu keeps things fresh for locals, so they can look forward to the best land and seafood bites of the season. 

 

Some of the notable meals that locals gravitate to are the gnocchi, chicken Milanese, risotto, and lobster BLT.

South of I-95

An area of contrasts, the neighborhoods that occupy southern Stamford play host to industrial architecture and wealthy enclaves.

 

From Harbor Point to the road to Shippan, some top picks here include:

Prime

 

Prime Stamford has won multiple awards for its outstanding menu and ambiance. With tempered glass walls, guests can enjoy dinner while taking in a full view of the water from nearly any seat. 

 

Chef Julio Genao has won awards as well as he serves up innovative meals and classic dishes.

 

Prime also offers a raw bar, fresh sushi, and USDA Prime 21-day dry-aged beef. It’s a common recommendation we make for waterfront restaurants in Stamford and Greenwich.

Cafe Silvium

Nick and Vincenzo Petrafesa of Cafe Silvium, 30-year residents of Stamford, are another fantastic option for Italian food. Cafe Silvium serves traditional Italian cuisine in the chic and inviting cafe. Most recipes come from the brothers’ hometown of Gravina di Puglia in the Italian region of Bari.

 

In this writer’s opinion, the Cove neighborhood’s informal Italian trattoria receives less praise than it merits.

 

That said, asking a local’s opinion on Italian cuisine in the area can be as fraught as asking their favorite sports teams.

Colony Grill

 

Did you think we’d whip up a food guide without adding in pizza?

 

We’d never fail you like that!

 

Head over to legendary Colony Grill for their incredible and unique pies. And we’re talking really unique here, with salad pizza and hot oil pizza. They also throw together a delicious cheese pizza and sausage pizza, so don’t be afraid of the menu.

 

And if you already have dinner plans, you can still have pizza. 

 

How, you may ask?

 

Breakfast pizza. Duh. 

 

How can you go wrong with eggs, cheese, and sausage (or bacon) on pizza for breakfast? You’ll thank us later.

 

After enjoying the best restaurants in Stamford, CT; find the best things to do here

Stamford, Connecticut, is a surprisingly pleasant city for a visit.

 

Spots like these incredible restaurants are ideal for creating unique memories.

 

And if you can’t fit them all into one trip, it just means you have to come back again!

Be sure to keep exploring Stamford:

 

And for all the best attractions, activities and things to do in Stamford, be sure to download your free copy of the Stamford Visitor’s Guide.