Farm Fresh

leFarm’s Bill Taibe supports Connecticut’s farmers and food purveyors, even during this time of year

Bill Taibe opened Westport’s leFarm restaurant a little over a year ago and quickly gained a loyal following. After several years at Relish in Norwalk, Napa & Co. in Stamford and a stint at Larry Forgione’s American Place in NYC, he was ready to go out on his own. Taibe wanted to open a small neighborhood restaurant where he could develop his own simple, fresh cuisine, while supporting local farmers and suppliers as much as possible. Even in winter, 90 percent of the produce and ingredients he uses are from Connecticut.

“I wanted a restaurant that wasn’t trendy,” explains Taibe. “My goal was to create a timeless cuisine, ingredient-driven and of the moment.” He takes pride in sourcing his food from passionate growers, finding out as much about it as possible, even how the products are shipped. Taibe often changes the menu, which he says is dictated by what’s at the market each day. “I find certain ingredients, and then figure out what to do with them,” he explains.

It’s not always easy to plan a menu around fresh local ingredients this time of year, but Chef Taibe has put together a winter menu that you can re-create at home, along with wine pairing suggestions.