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Restaurant Road Trip at Nouveau Monde Wine Bar + Bistro

Published: August 04, 2017 at 12:00 am

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Newtown resident Chef Plum stood outside of Nouveau Monde Wine Bar + Bistro on August 1 to film a new episode of his television segment Restaurant Road Trip, which airs Fridays on WTNH Channel 8, at 9 am and at 12:30 pm on CT Style.

"I'm Chef Plum and this week our Restaurant Road Trip brings us to my hometown," he introduced the program, while Dan Fish of Full Send Productions filmed him from a few steps away in the restaurant's parking lot.

Together, Chef Plum and Mr Fish worked on a number of different options for introductions and promotional videos for the upcoming segment.

As Chef Plum and Mr Fish worked to film the start of the next segment, people began to arrive. Earlier in the day, Chef Plum had promoted the event online, and roughly 30 local residents came to watch the segment being filmed, between 4 pm and 7 pm.

Before filming began, Chef Plum explained that the idea for the new Restaurant Road Trip segment came together after his last show, Edible Nutmeg on the Road, had ended. Edible Nutmeg on the Road featured where local food comes from, and how it is nurtured, according to a release for the show from 2016. Restaurant Road Trip is produced by Chef Plum, Ryan Kristafer, and Michah Bailey, with the filmmaking done by Mr Fish.

When Chef Plum and Mr Kristafer approached WTNH with the idea for the show, Chef Plum said they were told to start filming. The show is sponsored by Ergo Chef of Danbury, Asylum Distillery of Bridgeport, and the Connecticut Chef's Challenge, which benefits the Optimus Foundation.

Chef Plum said Restaurant Road Trip was created to highlight the "amazing food in this state."

The plan is to have 13 episodes of the segment, but Chef Plum said the team may film 13 more in the fall.

For the most part, Chef Plum said the group decides "on the fly" which restaurant to feature. The group then spreads the word about where they will be filming using its Facebook page and other announcements.

"The whole point is to show people and be proud of their hometown," said Chef Plum. "I really wanted to do something in Newtown, really bad."

While staff at Nouveau Monde Wine Bar + Bistro prepared to welcome the day's guests, Chef Plum said, "You don't have to go to Boston or New York for great food. We have it right here."

Nouveau Monde Wine Bar + Bistro owners Bill Towne and Peter Chang were both on hand when Mr Fish and Chef Plum filmed on August 1.

Mr Towne told Chef Plum the wine bar has been open for roughly 15 months and serves elevated comfort food along with its generous selection of wines. One of the dishes on the menu for August 1 was a house fettuccine with little neck clams. Mr Towne gave Chef Plum a brief tour of the restaurant before filming began.

Two of Asylum Distillery's three co-owners - Bridget Schulten and Neil Doocy - also visited the restaurant to see the filming of the show they sponsor.

"[Chef Plum has] a great following. It's a show we thought, going around Connecticut, would be a great fit," said Ms Schulten.

After working out more details about what would be filmed for the segment, Chef Plum and Mr Towne visited again in the restaurant's kitchen.

Each had a glass of wine in one hand.

"Cheers! Thanks for having us," Chef Plum said.

Then Chef Plum and Mr Fish started the filming.

"You gotta check this place out," Chef Plum began, facing the camera.

The Nouveau Monde Wine Bar + Bistro segment of Restaurant Road Trip is scheduled to air on August 18.

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