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Insider's Guide to Westport 2012

Here’s the fast track to living in town with the quiet authority of an insider.

Whether you’re a lifelong Westporter or a newly transplanted Manhattanite, there’s no denying the charms of this coastal gem and its gorgeous neighbors Weston and Wilton. From our beach playgrounds to our theaters, from our restaurants to our arts center, these towns have got it going on. In the spirit of keeping you plugged in, we’ve compiled some of the hottest deals and must-dos.

1. You Blow the Budget on Weekends...
Savvy sippers know that when you go out midweek (Girls’ Night Out, anyone?), you’ll reap the rewards of quieter, friendlier restaurants offering midweek perks. At Acqua, in Westport, Tuesday is Wine Appreciation Night with a 50 percent discount on bottles under $100 and 25 percent off bottles at or above $100. Bonda in Greenfield Hill, has resurrected the ever-popular Tuesday “Open That Bottle Night.” In this popular BYOB draw, the restaurant waives corkage fees. Raid your wine cellar or grab a bottle at the wine shop next door, which stays open late on Tuesdays.

2. You believe in Your Own Good Taste...
Avail yourself of a primo meal at a gentle price, complemented by BYO wones. Some faves: Tutti’s Ristorante (no corkage!), Bon Appetit Café ($12 corkage), and Nicholas Roberts American Bistro ($5 corkage; waived if you buy at Nicholas Roberts Fine Wines in Darien. At LeFarm, the wine selection is affordable and chosen with the evening’s menu in mind. You can bring your own wine with nominal fee ($20) and a small taste for the chef.

3. You Appreciate Fine Food But Not the Tab...
Locals in the know pack the tiny Dapietro’s during the week for a prix-fixe steal on Chef Pietro’s gourmet Italian fare. The two-course lunch, $12; the three-course, including dessert, only $15. A three-course dinner feast features homemade pastas, like fettuccine with black truffle, $33, drinks excluded. Also, Pietro’s cooking classes heat up in January and February.

4. You’re A Wine Snob But Short On Space...
Manolo offers to store your wine, up to six bottles, in its secure, temperature-controlled wine locker. The offer, at $60 per month, entitles you to free corkage and invites to exclusive wine dinners and events. Or Happy Hour, Tues.-Thurs., 4-7 p.m., when full bottles of house red and white run a meager $12 each, beer only $2 each

For the complete list of Insider Tips pick up the January/February 2012 edition of Westport Magazine today!