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Route 15 - am I driving right past some great chow-worthy places?

My family and I tend to drive from outside of Boston to New York on a fairly frequent basis and we have found that Route 15 and the associated parkways make for a wonderful drive.

Typically we save our appetites for NYC, but frequently I wonder if we might just be driving past some great places to stop and have a bite.

So, what do you say? Keep driving and hold out for NYC, or pull off and try the fare at....

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  1. TheWilbur Cross Merritt and the Hutch (hardly think of it as Route 15) form one of the nicest drives in New England and sure beat the hurly burly of 95. But Robert Moses carved a limited access inland "byway" that bypasses the commerce of the coastal interstate and the Post Road. So 95 is lots more Chow Worthy.

    Your instincts seem right. A pleasant drive and save the calories for the City.

    1 Reply
    1. re: louuuuu

      grab a box of donuts in Wallingford to enjoy while you head for NY http://www.neilsdonuts.com/

    2. Louis Lunch in New Haven, near Yale, is an historic place with great burgers, made in 100-year old cookers. They claim to have invented the burger, but that's another discussion. Worth taking 95 for. Quite unusual and memorable.


      1 Reply
      1. There's always "New Haven" pizza (which can be accessed from the Merritt...not only in New Haven but also now in Fairfield for Pepe's Pizza)... If you've never tried a white clam pizza, I'd vote for a stop.

        1. Since the Merritt (rte 15) is a scenic byway, you typically won't find anything right next to the exit ramps. You'll have to drive several miles away before you hit restaurants and businesses. However, there are two decent options -Barcelona Wine & Tapas Bar in the 1940's style HiHo motel in Fairfield - right off exit 44. Or the town of New Canaan is within a mile or so off the Merritt with some chowhound recommended places.

          1. I frequently drive the partkways between NYC & New Haven, and often stop for dinner at the Rye Ridge Deli in Stamford, right off Exit 35. Other than that, it's slim pickings.

            4 Replies
            1. re: benbenberi

              with Carnegie, Katz, Barney Greengrass only 45 minutes away?

              Tho some find it decent, Rye Ridge has taken its lumps on these boards not to mention receiving public censure. It has been cited about 25 times for Health violations. In fact the city closed it down couple of years ago after they failed to rectify a problem over three separate inspections. Hardly worth a detour or delay in getting to some of the best deli in America,

              1. re: louuuuu

                Whether a stop is a detour/delay depends entirely on your context. When I eat at Rye Ridge, it's because it's a convenient location on a route I'm traveling at a time I'm ready to have dinner, which nothing in Manhattan would be (since I'm neither starting, stopping, nor passing through there). Of course you can get better deli in Manhattan, and the OP may do well to time their eating accordingly. That's not a universally applicable option.

                1. re: benbenberi

                  wow dinner at RRD. Next time you are passing through. we can help guide you to a real restaurant.

                  1. re: benbenberi

                    You're right, benbenberi, it is easy off the Merritt and easy on. And timing is all. It's just that the OP wanted something special , and in that "context" I don't think Rye Ridge Merritts a special visit.

              2. if you are near Stamford during breakfast time, grab pancakes at Lakeside diner. AWESOME pancakes and waffles. Decent homemade donuts. Everything else sub par. But it's totally worth it for those pancakes.

                And it's only about 100 yards off of the Merritt (exit 34).

                Lakeside Diner
                1050 Long Ridge Rd, Stamford, CT 06903