We almost got it right! Fairfield is fortunate to have one of the finest public golf courses in the state in H. Smith Richardson Golf Course. Over the years, the course has continually been improved and attracts golfers within and outside our town. Last year the clubhouse, restaurant and pro shop were torn down and replaced with a brand new facility. As the course opened this year, golfers were welcomed with a new pro shop, new golf pro and staff — all of which were a breath of fresh air. Upon walking into the new restaurant and bar, you were at first glance struck by its grandeur… until you looked at the menu. While the previous clubhouse had its physical challenges, one of the things it did have was a great place for golfers to have a drink and a bite to eat with great pub-like food fitting for a public golf course. The new restaurant managed by Boca Grille could not be more ill-suited for this venue. It’s clear that the restaurant is not looking to cater to golfers offering expensive appetizers including the likes of lamb lollipop, charred octopus, seared ahi tuna and roasted bone marrow. Not to mention the entrees of veal chop ($39) and Chilean sea bass ($36). But if you really want your eyes (and wallet) opened, order the 10-ounce domestic Wagyu N.Y. strip for $80. You can get away with a $16 burger but forget about a Reuben, tuna or turkey club sandwich, as you won’t find these on the menu. The new facility has a beautiful expansive patio overlooking the 18th green. However, it’s restricted and reserved for those who can afford to dine here. There is no longer a clubhouse where golfers can gather not only for an affordable after-round bite and drink but also a place to gather. I don’t understand what the thought process was in granting the permit and enormous amount of space to Boca, but it clearly wasn’t in sync with what a public golf course should offer its residents and patrons.
We almost got it right