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Edison Kitchen’s Hungry Patrons Will ‘Come Happy, Leave Happier’

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Edison Kitchen is a relatively new eatery in Downtown Bethel promising “authentic” and “genuine” culinary temptations, and its owner/chef Chris Bruno is probably a very familiar name to many Newtown residents.

Bruno, who owned Foundry Kitchen and Tavern in Sandy Hook Village from 2013 to 2017, knew he loved the 186 Greenwood Avenue building when he walked into it. The architecture stood out to him.

Sitting at a corner table one recent afternoon, Bruno shared that Edison Kitchen opened in December 2021, after a lot of hard work went into creating the space.

“We did it ourselves,” Bruno said, looking at some of the exposed brick walls. None of the brick was exposed until he and his team gutted the interior.

The kitchen alone was in good condition, Bruno said. In total the renovation took a quick six weeks. Now the space boasts a reclaimed wood bar, booth seating, and tables, all lit by atmospheric lights.

To Bruno’s recollection, the building has always been a restaurant, at least since the 1980s. It is on the corner of Greenwood Ave and Depot Place. Parking is available at the public parking area at the train station on Depot Place and across Greenwood Ave at the library. There is also street parking.

Bruno said Edison Kitchen’s oyster bar has been getting great responses from patrons.

“We have, unequivocally, the freshest seafood and oysters in the area,” Bruno shared.

Edison Kitchen serves up roughly eight main entrees, eight appetizers, steaks, and half-a-dozen salads, along with sandwiches.

It is open Monday to Wednesday from 11:30 am to 9:30 pm; Thursday to Saturday from 11:30 am to 10 pm; and on Sundays from 3 pm to 8 pm. Brunch is served on Sundays from 11 am to 3 pm.

Bruno, who lives in Danbury now and raised his two children — Meghan and Michael — in Bethel, said one of his favorite things about the interior space at Edison Kitchen is a mural. It reads, “Come happy, leave happier,” and it includes nods to some places and memories from his past, along with references to Bethel.

According to the restaurant’s website, edisonkitchenct.com, “Bruno has owned five very successful restaurants. He’s also consulted with or helped open over 20 additional restaurants throughout the Northeast and Canada. After all his years in the hospitality industry, Bruno likes to keep it simple and let the food speak for itself.”

As Bruno spoke, the restaurant’s staff was busy preparing the restaurant for the day. Smiles could be seen from across the space.

“They love what they do,” Bruno said about his “great team.”

A sample of some of the food options at Edison Kitchen includes: Portuguese Fish Stew, with shrimp, calamari, clams, fish, potatoes, linguica, tomato broth; Wild Boar Chop, with a gin blackberry reduction and poached pear; as well as the Togarashi Bowl, with tuna tartare or tofu/quinoa with pickled vegetables, avocado, ancho pepper relish, wakame, and spicy sesame dressing.

The eatery also offers Ahi Tuna Salad, sushi grade tuna, coriander peppercorn, and rosemary dry rub, house tomato salsa, and chick pea arugula salad; Indonesian Street Cart Chicken, spiced chicken with ginger pickles, curry mayo, and naan; and Seared Mahi Mahi with kumquat grape salsa.

“I love cooking,” Bruno said.

The first thing he ever cooked? Hot dogs with his twin sister Lynn when they were seven years old.

Chef John Setaro also serves up food at Edison Kitchen.

The food offerings are both traditional and modern, and in the warmer months food is sourced from local farms. Bruno described Edison Kitchen as “authentic” and “genuine” with quality ingredients that are allowed to shine.

More information about Edison Kitchen is available on its website, edisonkitchenct.com; its Facebook page, facebook.com/edisonkitchenct; and on its Instagram account instagram.com/edisonkitchen/?hl=en.

Education Editor Eliza Hallabeck can be reached at eliza@thebee.com.

Grace Muller, left, and Lisa Bara prep Edison Kitchen’s bar for clients just ahead of opening for the day on April 7. —Bee Photos, Hallabeck
Edison Kitchen owner and chef Chris Bruno.
One of the main interior spaces at Edison Kitchen in Bethel.
The outdoor patio at Edison Kitchen.
A mural inside Edison Kitchen reads “Come Happy, Leave Happier.”
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