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Jan 26, 2011 06:43 PM

Unique Eateries in Providence, RI...

Hey, all,

Taking a short trip to Providence with my girlfriend around Valentine's Day. We really enjoy unique, local, fancy/hole in the wall joints with strange and different foods than, say, The Cheesecake Factory. Not that that's not delicious. Ideally, things I can report back with on my food blog and say that I had a great time at. Reservations are okay, but we'd like to stay in the vicinity of the city. So where do you like to go?


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  1. Vicinity of the city is a wide range. You'll have to narrow this down some -- where will you be staying, will you have a car, do you prefer to walk to your destinations or drive, what's your budget, etc. There are plenty of options, most of which you can read about just by doing a quick search.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Gin n Tonic

      Okay- thanks.

      We're staying at the Westin, will have a car, would prefer to drive. Budget depends on the food. I tend to allocate a good part of my cash toward good food!

    2. I'll start by saying you need to get some NY System wieners -- most definitely blogworthy. The Zippy the Pinhead comic strip has featured at least a couple RI wiener joints.

      Also, try some pizza strips -- many convenience stores have a box sitting on the counter, but there are also bakeries that specialize in them. (They don't have cheese and are best eaten cold.) This is real RI food, and likely considered strange and different by visitors.

      If you have a car, take the short drive to Iggy's in Oakland Beach for some clamcakes.

      For a more complete meal, go to Twin's Pizza in North Providence. Order the pizza well done, and round out the meal with snail salad and grapenut custard pudding. Now, if that doesn't sound strange and different, I don't know what will!

      NY System Restaurant
      18 Plainfield St, Providence, RI 02909

      Twin's Pizza
      1000 Mineral Spring Ave, North Providence, RI 02904

      1 Reply
      1. re: Bob W

        If you want pizza strips, which I agree are amazing, you can get a whole box at Palmieri's bakery on the Hill, not to mention some incredible bread and wine biscuits.

      2. ok,heres a short list for you ;Tini,ami,lili marlenes,the avery for drinks,red fez,la latiere.theres more then hot dogs and pizza out there...

        1 Reply
        1. re: im hungry

          The OP asked for strange and different!

        2. I'm not really a fan of anything mentioned yet. I'd hit:

          Mike's Kitchen, inside the Cranston VFW, but worth the few extra minutes drive, great Italian
          Loie Fuller, amazing space, French bistro
          Julian's, amazing breakfast, funky interior, comically bad service
          La Laiterie, cozy, sort of locavore, make reservation
          Local 121 for cocktails
          Coffee Exchange, always mobbed, great coffee

          Mike's Kitchen
          170 Randall St, Cranston, RI 02920

          Local 121
          121 Washington St, Providence, RI 02903

          La Laiterie
          184-188 Wayland Avenue, Providence, RI 02906

          1 Reply
          1. re: invinotheresverde

            Mike's would be a great choice for a visitor. Classic RI food, decor, and clientele.

          2. I say what Bob W says.
            Also, Tommy's is good for distinctive RI pizza.
            Mike's Kitchen indeed excels in the "You almost forgot how good old-school basic Italian can be" category but if you do not go there, have lunch at the equally fine Gesualdi's out on Hartford Ave.

            Mike's Kitchen
            170 Randall St, Cranston, RI 02920

            634 Hartford Ave, Providence, RI 02909

            3 Replies
            1. re: atheorist

              Nobody - but nobody - can bread & fry chicken breast like Gesualdi's.

              634 Hartford Ave, Providence, RI 02909

              1. re: JaneRI

                Ooooh- definitely. She loves Italian!

                1. re: zammdogg

                  This is a DINER, make no mistake about it. I'd go for lunch and sometimes be the only female in the place, the rest were cops & construction workers (not that i'm complaining).

                  If she loves Italian, don't miss Mike's Kitchen, Randall St in Cranston. Odd hours, call them.