Rhode Island Food
- Chris in Hartford Apr 14, 2006 04:18 PM
OK this is a list of my favorite Unique Rhode Island (southern New england) specialities. Please add yours or comment on mine. I would also appreciate any posts from unique foods in or around Hartford. The list is in no particular order. Post any interesting stuff your town or area is known for. Basically, I am looking for a reason to visit your town and try your best unique specialty.
1. Dell's Lemonade
2. Rhode Island Clam Chowder
3. Coffee Milk
4. NY System Weiners
5. Cold Pizza Strips (Bakery Style)
6. Casertas Pizza
7. clam boils w/chourico, hot dogs, buckwurst, potatoes and onions
9. clam cakes (My favorite is Aunt Carrie's)
10. chourico and Peppers sandwiches
I've only tried three, which means I should probably get out more:
Olneyville NY System (18 Harford Avenue, Olneyville section of Providence)
Sam's New York System (1301 Mineral Spring Ave, North Providence)
WienORama (1009 Oaklawn, Cranston)
I've listed them in order. Olneyville is best for flavor, service, atmosphere, and "banter," to say nothing of a great, great neon sign.
Sam's NY is a kinder, gentler place. Bright an airy. To me, the weiners are on par with Olneyville NY Systems'.
I've tried WienORama only once. Any restarant with "ORama" in the name wins points for attitude in my book. They back it up with a fine street-side neon sign, as well. The Weiners had a bit too much mustard for me, but they will fine-tune that on my next visit, I am sure.
I always liked Nick's New York System
280 Cowesett Ave, West Warwick, RI
The only place I did not like them was in Olneyville at the famous place. I convinced my wife to try one and I figured I would bring her to the place that made them famous. The meat was obnoxiously flavored (maybe just that day).
PS I would appreciate the list from Chicago. You never know where life will take you.
Our go-to weiner joint has always been the NY System on Smith St just past the State House. Neighborhood is sketchy during prime weiner eating hours (i.e. late night) but the weiners and atmosphere are top-notch. Last time we were there there was a guy with rivets in his ears. This being Mrs. W.'s first NY System weiner experience, I thought that was a fine added bonus.
Being a Pawtucket boy I don't have much experience with the weiner joints to the south of Providence but I serendipitously found Wein-o-Rama on Oaklawn Ave in Cvaaanston last year and it is a chowhound place for sure.
Grilled pizza has become synonimous with RI since a; forno popularized it.
RI style calamari
Olga's cup n saucer, especially the pizza
Has anyone been to the Italian place in RI ( I think cranston) that is in a VFW Hall. Mike's or something like that??? I have read about it many times but don't know if it is worth the drive. If you have been let us know where, what is good or if it is not good. Also is it bYOB????TIA
Mike's Kitchen in Cranston..that's correct. Most excellent. Last time I was there, you could buy alcohol from the VFW people and bring it back over to the Mike's side. Great fun (don't miss out on the polenta smothered with marinara sauce). Check out the hours first before making the trip.
The most obvious omission to me so far is the humble but uniquely RI johnny cake. Although not one of my favorites, stuffed clams "stuffies" are pretty RI or at least southern NE. RI has a unique way of making baked stuffed shrimp, simple cracker stuffing, that is ubiquitous state-wide. And I'm embarrassed to say that one of my favorite "must haves" when I'm back in RI is to stop in at a D'Angelos for what I think are the best steak & cheese grinders anywhere.
Dittos. I tried posting a link to Quahog.com a few weeks back but it was removed for reasons never explained.
Quahog has excellent lists of sources for weiners, pizza strips, clam chowder, etc. complete with reviews in many cases.
You can also read my Blizzard of '78 story on there.