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Market Place In Newtown: Food And Hospitality At Its Finest

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Seven years ago, owner Eli Hawli opened the first Market Place restaurant in Danbury. After much success, he soon expanded to offer locations in Woodbury; Avon; and Mount Snow, Vt.

During a visit to Newtown, Mr Hawli saw the Village at Lexington Gardens, 32 Church Hill Road, was underway and knew it would be the perfect spot for a Market Place in town.

“I always loved Newtown,” Mr Hawli said.

In December 2017, Market Place in Newtown officially opened and began serving customers of all ages its American-style cuisine.

Chef Anthony Michelin, who joined the staff earlier this year, says the restaurant’s “elevated comfort food” combines a variety of influences, including Asian, Mexican, and Italian.

After graduating from The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y., Mr Michelin dedicated the last decade to honing his craft and previously operated his own restaurant in the Hudson Valley that frequently worked with local farms.

Mr Michelin is now using his expertise at Market Place in Newtown to offer customers a dining experience full of high-quality products at reasonable price-points.

The restaurant has partnered with more than a dozen local farms, including Waldingfield Farm and Parmalee Hollow Farm. The diverse menu changes seasonally and labels its gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan items.

Market Place in Newtown also has a high standard for its service and hospitality towards patrons visiting the restaurant and bar.

Families, couples, and friends frequently fill the 125-seat capacity restaurant that features a main dining area, bar section, patio for outdoor dining, and private party room — the latter of which can be reserved for parties up to 30 people.

“[Eli] leads by example and does a great job keeping the staff on point at all locations,” Mr Michelin said.

“We are a family,’ Mr Hawli added. “We have close to 400 employees between all the locations now, but we are a tight family, and we are proud of that.”

Sample of the Menu

Appetizers: A customer favorite at Market Place in Newtown is the Ahi-Tuna-Avocado “Sushi Roll” for $16. The tuna is rolled with avocado in the center and a wonton wrapper on the outside, seared until crispy, and comes with General Tso’s ramen noodles, crushed cashews, wasabi aioli, and fresh scallions.

Soups: The Roasted Corn Chowder, for $10, is both gluten-free and vegan. The popular soup is made with fresh cilantro.

Salads: A top selling dish is the Quinoa Tabouli Salad for $14. It consists of red and white quinoa, English cucumbers, celery leaves, red radishes, heirloom tomatoes, red onions, Bulgarian feta cheese, organic-hydroponic Bibb lettuce, and lemon mint vinaigrette.

Brunch: Brunch is offered on Saturdays and Sundays with a specials menu that rotates often. On Sundays, there is live music by Robby LaPorta and Chris Manfredi of Field of Crows.

Meats & Poultry: Market Place offers an 8-ounce Allen Brother’s Shiraz Marinated Hanger Steak for $28. The meal includes house-cut herb wedge fries, sautéed crimini mushrooms, crispy onion rings, and red wine jus.

Fish: A standout entrée is the Blackened Mahi Mahi, for $26, with grilled pineapple salsa, cilantro rice pilaf, and a citrus vinaigrette.

Pasta: Among the different pasta options is the Roasted Red Pepper & Smoked Mozzarella Ravioli for $25. It is made with pasta from Villarina’s Pasta in Danbury and has crispy prosciutto, Kalamata olives, sun dried tomatoes, and a swiss chard pesto cream sauce.

Handhelds: There are nearly a dozen options available, all of which come with house-cut fries. The Crispy Fish Tacos consist of chipotle beer battered “Georges Bank” sole, guacamole, charred pineapple salsa, and a lime honey vinaigrette for $18.

Sides & Vegetables: Currently, all side options are gluten-free and vegetarian. The crispy Brussels sprouts, for $8, are one of the most popular selections this season and include a garlic aioli.

Drinks: Market Place in Newtown offers a variety of craft cocktails like its Organic Cucumber Cooler drink that consists of Prairie Organic Cucumber Vodka, house lemonade, Prosecco, and fresh cucumber for $11. Guests can also enjoy an assortment of sommelier-selected white, red sparkling, and rosé wines by the glass as well as old world and new world wine options in white and red varieties by the bottle. Happy hour is offered from 4 to 6 pm at the bar.

Dessert: All desserts are made in-house by Chef Anthony Michelin. Those that like a combination of salty and sweet will enjoy the “MP” Churro’s with Frangelico chocolate sauce and housemade popcorn. There is also cheesecake and crème brûlée that change flavors daily and a key lime tart.

Market Place, 32 Church Hill Road in the Village at Lexington Gardens, is open seven days a week. The kitchen is open weekdays from 11:30 am to 10 pm and weekends from 11:30 am to 11 pm, with the bar open after kitchen hours. Takeout, catering, and seating reservations are accepted by calling 203-491-2993. For more information, visit markethospitalitygroup.com or e-mail mpnewtown@markethospitalitygroup.com. Follow Market Place in Newtown on Instagram and Facebook @marketplacenewtown.

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