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Road Trip: chow-worthy eats along I-95 from VA to Essex CT?

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Hi,

We will be driving along I-95 next week and are looking for any chowish suggestions, from hole-in-the-wall places to nicer digs.

I have looked some on this board, and I have already looked at Road Food and Holly Eats, but thought fellow chowhounds might have some more current suggstions.

Thanks in advance!

Liz

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  1. in connecticut, you might want to try the restaurant at rowayton seafood. exit 12 off i95 (north-bound side). make a right at the end of the exit and go straight for a mile or so. really good lobster roll. pair it with a beer. a vodka gimlet is better. shorts, boat shoes and a sunburn will get you in. pricey but worth it.

    there's a place in Old Saybrook called the Monkey Farm. this may be your one, "don't miss" place. old-fashioned road house with more character than a mark twain novel. very good food, very little money. cash only. not too far from the train station. one of my favorite stops.

    1 Reply
    1. re: steve h

      Hi Steve,

      Looked up both of them and I want to thank you for the suggestions. Will be rolling into Old Saybrook area Friday night and the Monkey Farm it is! May be able to stop by Rowayton as well on the way. Last time we were up that way we had some great steamers at Lenny's in Branford.

      Now to find some good pizza...

      Have a great 4th!

    2. Closest way to Essex from I-91 is exit 65 in Westbrook. Several upscale restaurants there like Pazzo, Boom and Cafe Routier, as well as family fish place Lenny&Joes. When you get to Essex, you can splurge at the Copper Beech Inn, have a good meal at Gabrielle's, or try the new wine bar at the Griswold Inn.
      If you go thru Old Saybrook, instead, try Jack's American Cafe on Main St., check out the many restaurants on Rt. 1, or drop in for al fresco fish at Johnny Ad's.

      2 Replies
      1. re: DonShirer

        is there a good lobster spot near old saybrook or that area??

        1. re: redgirl

          Saybrook Fish House, Westbrook Lobster and Lenny & Joes all have lobster
          on their menus, maybe not quite as good as the best Maine places, but
          but quite respectable. Lobster rolls at L&J's are good, too.

      2. Thanks for the lobster recommendations. I will check them out. Any suggestions for pizza or other regional delicacies?BTW - The "Gris" (Griswold) is a family fave in the area.

        2 Replies
        1. re: LizATL

          Sallys or Pepes in New Haven are world-famous, though I haven't been since my law school days. But I believe people drive up from Manhattan just to eat there.

          Sally's Apizza
          237 Wooster St, New Haven, CT
          Tel: (203) 624-5271

          Pepe's
          157 Wooster St
          New Haven, CT 06511

          203-865-5762

          1. re: Brian S

            Just read about Pepe's in the Stern's new book. Anyone know if it is still worth a trip? The white clam pizza they go on about does sound delicious...

        2. Westfair Fish & Chips, in Westport, CT. Total hole-in-the-wall in a mall on Route 1 across from a Stop & Shop, but very good, fresh, fried seafood dishes.

          Grayhound
          http://www.clamlove.com

          1. For very good pizza try Al Forno in Old Saybrook on rt #1 in the Benny's shopping plaza. Real brick oven.... rivials anything in the New Haven area.

            1 Reply
            1. re: jdgall

              Thanks. Al Forno looks good from what we've been able to find online. Any specific fave pizza's or is everything good?

            2. Pepe's in New Haven, white clam pie, is still the best. Expect to wait in line a while to get a seat. Very casual, but clams are FRESH and so is the Garlic!

              The SPOT next door is a spin off, just as good, if you don't have time to wait as long.

              Enjoy.

              1. You'll find about a billion recommendations and arguments for/against each pizza place in New Haven and I think that any of the frequently recommended ones are excellent - Sally's, Pepe's, etc. My favorite is Modern. My other favorite is BAR. You WILL stand in line if you're going to Pepe's or Sally's and unfortunately, Pepe's is too big for their britches and throws their delicious pie at you. You'll either think it's funny or want to punch the waitress. Modern Apizza is on State Street, BAR is on Crown Street. I would get sausage & mozz at Modern and mashed potato and then a plain mozz at BAR.

                Lenny's Indian Head (not to be confused with Lenny & Joe's fried fish) on Montowese Street in Branford, CT is great for a total hole-in-the wall local feel along the water. I feel that Lenny & Joe's on Rte 1 is completely overrated - there is always a wait, everything is fried and it's on Rte 1 - no atmosphere at all. At Lenny's Indian Head have the steamers and a lobster.

                I would also recommend Antonio's on Main Street in East Haven, CT. None of my family is ever disappointed and they accommodate special requests/off-menu things. Yum if I were going there tonight, I would probably have the veal saltimboca. Now I'm hungry for it.

                1. Try the calm pie, it is as good as Pepes in New Haven.