Katie Cerulle ’22
As an incoming freshman at Trinity College, getting acclimated to campus is hard, but joining a new city of restaurants is even tougher. Which restaurants are worth it? Where are the good ones? Are there any secret spots one should be aware of? This list of questions continues. Most students seem to get recommendations from older students, as they have experience eating at multiple restaurants in Hartford and can give professional advice.
This is how senior Jules Petrillo became acquainted with her favorite restaurant: Salute in Downtown Hartford. According to an interview with Petrillo, she was drowning in a sea of Google searches and Yelp reviews her freshman year trying to decide where to take her family to dinner on Homecoming Weekend.
“Take them to Salute; you have to try it!” her friend who was a junior suggested.
So, a young Jules took her hungry mother, father, and brother to a restaurant with red wallpaper, a full bar, and a warm atmosphere that screams “we’re all family here,” but not in an Olive Garden type of way.
According to the Salute website, the restaurant is “located in the heart of Hartford” and described as an “Italian hotspot” and “one of the most buzzed-about eateries in Connecticut.”
After her first time there, she was hooked, returning once a week since that warm, October day in 2018.
Some of her favorite parts about the restaurant are the friendly employees, specifically restaurant owner Jimmy, and all the waiters that know both her name and order by heart.
“I always get the six-ounce filet mignon with the potato lasagna, which is regular lasagna but with potatoes instead of pasta noodles, and a side of the macaroni and cheese with caramelized onions and bacon. It’s so good,” Petrillo said with a smile.
In addition to the delicious food, Petrillo said that she must mention the bar full of delicious house and seasonal cocktails that are guaranteed to wow. Her favorite is the Aperol Spritz. According to the restaurant’s website, the cocktail menu includes a Cosmopolitan, Manhattan, and Espresso Martini. The signature cocktails include the Cool as a Cucumber which is made with cucumber vodka and strawberry lemonade; it does not contain alcohol but is guaranteed to be a treat.
At the end of the meal, all customers get a free bag of handmade biscottis, a personal touch that sealed the deal for Petrillo.
“The free biscottis are just so thoughtful. Their employees consider every detail,” said Petrillo.
In her final words about her favorite place, Petrillo said that the restaurant offers amazing promos on most weeknights, including 20% off to Trinity students on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday nights and ½ off all bottles of wine on Wednesdays.
“And how awesome are the promos!” she concluded.
If you want to check out a local Harford favorite, make a reservation at Salute, located at 100 Trumbull Street in Downtown Hartford.