On my way home from a trip to Boston (see http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/652383), I tried some places near route 84 between Hartford and Waterbury. I had to force myself not to eat at Anatolia Restaurant (586 Plank Rd, Waterbury, 203-591-8450). I've been there a couple dozen times now, and consistently come away convinced that it's the best Turkish restaurant I currently know (soups are particularly brilliant), and it's right off the highway. But I forced myself to branch out, and grabbed some bites:
Pit stop BBQ 985 W Main St New Britain, CT 860-229-4111
Very good, totally authentic South Carolina pulled-pork sandwiches. That means sweet/spicy mustard sauce, and pork without much smoke flavor, served here on a hard roll.
Thai Palace 1387 Meriden Rd Wolcott CT 203-633-4133
This place has had several names, and may now be under new owners.
I begged for spicy. I asked for spicy IN THAI. And it came only slightly spicy. I complained, and the waitress assured me that NEXT TIME the kitchen would fit my bill. I asked her what special words I could say to her next time......seeing as how asking IN THAI didn't work for me this time. Nothing useful was suggested. But.......the place is great. Green curry with duck was nearly as good as at the legendary Sripraphai in Queens (the duck itself was better). The menu is small and unambitious.....just the golden oldies. But great care and skill are taken.
Angelina's Apizza 159 Manor Avenue (rite aid plaza) Waterbury, CT (203) 757-6886.
Quick slice, reheated, totally knocked my socks off. It wasn't just like 1972 pizza (ala Sal's in Mamaroneck), it was like the BEST 1972 pizza. Intense, almost sharp cheesey flavor, unapologetic oregano, crust ends crispy and cylindrical, like great bread sticks. Not thin-crust or gourmet in any way, this is a barebones place, but the pizza was like a time machine.
Next door to Angelina's, Sweet Maria's, a promising looking cake store, was closed http://www.sweet-marias.com