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Newport, RI, restaurants

We'll be in Newport for the Film Festival beginning June 3 and would appreciate recommendations for restaurants in the area. We'll be eating both lunch and dinner out. Thanks in advance.

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  1. It all depends on your price range and how upscale/downscale you want to go. For a fun atmosphere and great food you really can't go wrong with The Brick Alley Pub for either lunch or dinner. There are many other restaurants on the expensive side including Castle Hill Inn, Christie's, the Red Parrot, 22B, and Black Pearl.

    1. Pretty much any place in Newpoirt I've gone I've found there is something good to eat. Here are just a few suggestions.

      Red Parrot - it's hit or miss sometimes because it attracts huge crowds, and the food at times suffers, but if you can get an early dinner or late lunch reservation, the food is very good.

      Brick Alley Pub - fun atmoshere, good food, some really good pizza (shrimp pizza was amazing). Only down side is that it gets packed beyond imagination. It's a huge tourist spot, so beware. You might have upwards of an hour wait.

      Benjamin's - never mentioned along with Christie's or the Mooring or the other upscale places, but I had my best meal in Newport there. A breaded crabmeat stuffed flounder with a beurre blanc sauce. Amazing!

      A very underrated food place is the Newport Blues Cafe. I was down there during the seafood festival and we walked in not knowing what to expect, but we knew they had a band playing after. The food was top notch (a little pricey for the ambience - it's very loud, and they were setting up and doing soudn checks during out meal). We had a large group and the service was on point. I suggest the thin crust seafood pizza, blues nachos (incredible amount of food), I had the pan seared tuna which was served rare with and had delicious garlic mashed potatoes and a miso glaze. My grilfriend had the best chicken penne carbonara I've ever tasted. The bacon and sun dried tomatoes were everywhere! The St. Louis Ribs were also very good.

      There are also many little places you can run in and get a quick bowl of chowder or some raw apps. We went to one place where we sat outside under a tent and the bartender through out some appetizers for us, because he technically couldn't buy us back a drink. Can't remember the name of that place, but it was right off the sidewalk on the wharf side.

      Not sure where you are staying, but we stayed at the quaint little Jailhouse Inn. Breakfast ws served every morning and there were tons of choices. On the Weekends they had a wine and cheese hour from 5-6. That too saved us a lot of money.

      I really don't think you can go wrong.

      1. I have had good, but not great meals at the Red Parrot, but it's a good spot if you have a lot of people in your group with varying tastes. It can get very crowded, and the service can sometimes suffer because of it.

        My favorite spot in Newport is the Salvation Cafe. Small and funky, somewhat eclectic, really yummy food. Surprisingly good pad thai for a place that isn't strictly thai food. A really pretty outdoor patio outback as well. http://go.salvationcafe.com/

        1. Rhumbline
          The Mooring
          The West Deck

          1. Scales and Shells--no reservations--no credit cards--personal check or cash. Cafe Zelda--make reservations. Mama Luisa's--make reservations. All great for dinner and each is unique. I also like Salvation Cafe

            4 Replies
            1. re: september

              Is Scales and Shells still in operation? Friday this week we were wandering in Newport and looking at old haunts, but did not find Scales and Shells where I thought it was located. We walked up and down Thames St but no luck.

              1. re: feelinpeckish

                Scales and Shells is definitely still in business. I was there a few weeks ago - lobster fra diavolo was delicious as ever, but the price has creeped up to $60 (it still feeds 3 of us well). Skip lunch and get there at opening (5pm) or else expect a really long wait.

                We were just in Newport yesterday and checked out Pour Judgement for the first time. Nice place, decent beer selection (think Cisco Whale's Tale, Dogfish head ale and the like). I had the tuna nori roll ($8), listed as an appetizer but it was large enough for a light meal. I was surprised to see it deep fried, but it was done very deftly - light coating, rolled very tightly so none of the pieces ever fell apart. The Vietnamese dipping sauce was surprisingly tasty. DC had a grilled chicken sandwich with guacamole and salsa with fries which he deemed very good ($6).

                I would also heartily recommend Salvation Cafe - the whole place, no matter where you sit, is a fun experience.

                1. re: digga

                  Darned site....Couldn't link in my first post.

                  Scales & Shells
                  527 Thames St, Newport, RI 02840

                  Pour Judgement
                  32 Broadway, Newport, RI

                  Salvation Cafe
                  140 Broadway, Newport, RI 02840

                2. re: feelinpeckish

                  I glutted myself on the seafood there this past weekend. Their portion sizes have gotten a touch smaller this season, but their quality is still top notch. The seafood is always fresh, and most dishes well executed - though there are some standouts for me personally: the Sicilian littlenecks, lobster fra diavolo, scallops scampi, linguini with clams (white sauce), the broiled scrod... so tasty!

              2. If you like mexican, there is a kind of new restaurant right around the corner from the two main theaters that will be showing for the festival. It's called "Perro Salado" and it is excellent. This is no burrito stand or homogenized american chain type of mexican. The food is edgy and excellent and the atmosphere is comfortable and cool. It is situated in a 200 yr old house and the seating is spread throughout all of the little rooms. Like margarita's? Try the spicy cucumber margarita. Fantastic!

                I'm surprised that no one has mentioned this place. The web site is "under construction" but here is the link....


                2 Replies
                1. re: mattdp

                  Is this closer to where the Tennis HOF is? When I was there in October someone mentioned a "mexican" restaurant and said the food, while on the pricey side, was amazing. They too mentioned the wild drink selection. While I like the Red Parrot, we chose it on a bad night and I regret not trying the other place?

                  1. re: jhopp217

                    jhopp, It's on Charles st, just above the beginning of Thames, behind the Citizens Bank...I hope this makes sence to you...I'm not a native Newporter, I'm from the other side of the bridges..

                    Saying that the food is pricy is relative...compared to the red parrot...it's cheap. Pricewise I'd say it's closer to the Salvation cafe. My wife and I have had dinner there a couple of times with drinks, apps, and entre's for 100 bucks..

                2. Our favorites are:
                  The Rhumbline (great dinners)
                  Busker's (Irish Pub)
                  Mudville Pub (great burgers)

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Dana1949

                    The Rhumbline is teriffic for dinner. Also teriffic is Cafe Zelda although rather tight. The new Christies bears no remote resemblance to the original and if you remember the old one, the new will be pretty disappointing.

                  2. We've enjoyed a number of restaurants duing a couple of stays in Newport. I think our favorite was Sardellas, http://sardellas.com/. Lunch at the Black Pearl was also very nice.

                    1. anyone know if Percy's Bistro is still in business? If not, recommendations for something along those lines would be appreciated.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Ima Foodie

                        Percy's is gone. Try Pronto. It's further down Thames. The chef/owner is excellent. The menus changes regularly.

                        1. re: september

                          thanks. How's the Mooring these days?