Chef Colt Taylor Brings Fine Dining with a Hometown Vibe to Old Saybrook
Photo Courtesy of The Essex Restaurant
The Essex, a modern American restaurant by Chef Colt Taylor, has a new home in Old Saybrook. The restaurant, which was established in 2017 in Centerbrook, CT, reopened in its new location on December 3, 2021.
Set in the heart of downtown, across from the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center, the “new” Essex will continue to offer the modern, inventive cuisine that has made it a top restaurant in the region in a warm, intimate and inviting setting. Whether it’s a casual gathering with friends or family, a pre-theater dinner, a cocktail at the bar, or a tasting menu for a special evening, the Essex is a welcoming gathering place where guests can create memories while enjoying excellent food and drinks.
The Essex will feature the progressive cuisine that Chef Taylor is known for, with flavors of the Far East and Latin America influencing his constantly evolving menu. Inspired by the land, sea and deep heritage of the Connecticut River Valley, and with a commitment to using the freshest locally sourced products available from farm and sea, Chef Taylor promises an exciting culinary experience with new interpretations of timeless dishes.
The grand opening menu features unique starters, like toffee braised short ribs with seacoast mushroom cannelloni and pine nuts; or lobster & beet fusilli with beet butter, garlic and fines herbs. Main courses include fluke meuniere with capers, broccolini smoked mussels in a yuzu soy emulsion; steak frites with toffee glace; and Snake River Farms American Wagyu. Among the desserts, there’s chocolate Mille-feuille with chestnut praline. A tasting menu, as well as prix fixe and a la carte options, all are available.
“As parents of twins and new residents of Old Saybrook, my wife Katharine and I are excited about our new family endeavor, bringing The Essex to its new home, amidst a thriving community in a walkable downtown setting,” said Chef Taylor. “We’ve reimagined the space to reflect what diners want more of – fine dining in a relaxed setting. We’ll continue to push boundaries with New England cuisine that reflects the influence of global cuisines, while being mindful of the region’s history.”
The Essex features a Wine Spectator award-winning wine list, with more than 100 bottles, curated by wine director Katharine Taylor, as well as unique, classic craft cocktails at the bar. Guests can look forward to a series of monthly wine dinners in partnership with Spencer & Lynn Wine Merchants.
The new space has an open kitchen, with seating for 42 indoors, and an additional 20 seats in an outdoor patio, all in a comfortable and refined setting.
For more information, visit www.theessex.com.