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Seafood towns close to NYC?

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Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 10:11 AM

I'd like to drive to a town that has good seafood for a long weekend getaway. Does anyone have recommendations? Maine is way too far for me. I've heard that Rhode Island might be a decent option? The closer to NYC, the better (I hate driving).

Thanks in advance for any advice!

  1. sgordon Jul 9, 2013 04:52 PM

    All of Long Island.
    Most of the Connecticut coast.

    If you're doing CT, some good places to hit:

    Pepe's (New Haven) or The Spot (same owners, same menu, hidden behind Pepe's) for the clam pizza

    Lobster Landing (Clinton) - little hideaway down by a dock with the best lobster rolls in the state. (Get 'em CT style, hot lobster with drawn butter - mayonnaisey lobster salad crap is for Maine)

    Clam Castle - Jacques Pepin's (there's a serious opinion) favorite clam shack. Close to Lobster Landing, IIRC.

    Captain Scott's Lobster Dock (New London) - second-best lobster rolls in the state IMHO, also a number of other good things. Great place to hang out and have a steamed lobster (sorry, "lobstah") or two with the locals. Be prepared for a lot of 80s rock.

    There are a couple decent sit-down restaurants as well in Mystic. The Daniel Packer Inne is usually decent. Go Fish is very good sushi, but it's nothing you wouldn't find in NYC so no point in a traveller going there.

    Avoid Flood Tide, though - they were good once, but have been coasting on old rep for years. Very dated joint, and not very good, even after they got the "Kitchen Impossible" treatment from Food Network.

    For a fancy-fancy meal, Thomas Henkelmann in Greenwich. A little less fancy, Cafe Routier in Old Saybrook is very good.

    1 Reply
    1. re: sgordon
      f
      Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 07:12 PM

      I probably won't be doing sushi, but thank you very much for the specific restaurant suggestions. I am leaning towards CT for sure and I hope to check some of these out!

    2. RC51Mike Jul 9, 2013 01:56 PM

      Mystic is touristy but makes a nice weekend. S&P Oyster, and the Oyster Club both have good seafood. S&P is on the river at the bridge so nice views as well as seafood. Latitude 41 on the grounds of Mystic Seaport Musuem is pretty good. The museum is outstanding. Voodoo Grill is good too, right across the street from Oyster Club. Oyster Club doesn't have a view but is really nice. They do have an outdoor deck called the Treehouse where you can almost see the river.

      Next town east is Stonington, a littel less touristy with several good seafood/waterfront options.

      Further east, Newport, RI has scores of places on and off the water for good seafood in the most renowned nautical setting on the east coast. Plenty to see, shop and do. Do a search on Newport and Stonington you'll find several suggestions.

      Before Newport head to Matunick Oyster Bar for great, fresh seafood on the water.

      2 Replies
      1. re: RC51Mike
        Veggo Jul 9, 2013 02:29 PM

        Another vote for Newport, a memory maker. More than food.

        1. re: RC51Mike
          f
          Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 07:11 PM

          I don't mind touristy. Thanks for the info.

        2. s
          small h Jul 9, 2013 01:22 PM

          I took a trip through CT & RI a couple of summers ago. Here's the thread I started asking for suggestions and then reporting back:

          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/799032

          I was concentrating on seafood, too. And it's a very nice drive most of the way, even if you hate driving.

          26 Replies
          1. re: small h
            strangemd Jul 9, 2013 01:42 PM

            I would add one suggestion on Long Island, but one that would spare you the craziness and expense of the Hamptons. There is a small fishing village (now somewhat upscaled) on the North Fork of Long Island called Greenport, which has a number of charming Inns and B&Bs, as well as numerous seafood restaurants, clam bars, and high end dining establishments. You can also go out on a fishing boat in the morning and spend the day fishing with a number of different commercial boats, or spend the days sailing, or tour the local vinyards on the North Fork. Also, the Hampton Jitney takes you straight to Greenport from 5 different locations in Manhattan (2.5 hr ride). It's quite a charming little town.

            1. re: strangemd
              coll Jul 9, 2013 02:52 PM

              The Hampton Jitney is a good suggestion. The traffic on weekends is just as bad on the North Fork, sadly.

              1. re: coll
                Motosport Jul 11, 2013 07:57 AM

                I just took the 7BUS (Formerly Bolt Bus) from Lex and 40th to Riverhead. Got the bus @ 7:55 and arrived Riverhead @ 9:30. Wow!! Only $12 too. They also go to Southampton.

              2. re: strangemd
                f
                Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 07:10 PM

                I never knew that LI had good seafood. Thanks for the tip!

                1. re: Flower8
                  coll Jul 9, 2013 07:20 PM

                  That's so interesting. What did you think Long Island was known for, foodwise? I'm truly curious!

                  1. re: coll
                    s
                    Sneakeater Jul 9, 2013 07:31 PM

                    Ducks and potatoes?

                    1. re: Sneakeater
                      coll Jul 9, 2013 07:33 PM

                      Well, that's a good start!

                      1. re: coll
                        s
                        Sneakeater Jul 9, 2013 09:14 PM

                        They don't still grow potatoes on Long Island, do they?

                        When I was growing up there, they still did.

                        But that was a LONNNNGGGGGG time ago.

                        1. re: Sneakeater
                          f
                          foodwhisperer Jul 10, 2013 05:41 AM

                          They still grow potatoes on long island. But not much. There's a guy who sells Long Island Potato Chips,,, claims they are made from Long Island Potatoes. He grows potatoes ( out East) . But those Long Island Potatoes are only available for a couple of months a year.

                          1. re: foodwhisperer
                            coll Jul 10, 2013 05:45 AM

                            They found out they can make a LITTLE more money growing grapes for wine. But I do see some potato hopper trucks on both the North and South Forks each fall, filled to the brim.

                            1. re: coll
                              Motosport Jul 10, 2013 06:50 AM

                              There are many, MANY potato farms on the East end of Long Island, North and South Forks.
                              North Fork Potato chip company is flourishing. Foster farms on the South Fork used to make potato chips. I don't know if they still do.

                    2. re: coll
                      Phil Ogelos Jul 10, 2013 02:54 PM

                      iced tea, of course

                      1. re: Phil Ogelos
                        coll Jul 10, 2013 03:57 PM

                        You mean Long Island Iced Tea I assume? Yes it's something we are all very proud of.

                      2. re: coll
                        f
                        Flower8 Jul 12, 2013 09:26 AM

                        I didn't think Long Island had any specialty, really. I grew up in Queens and did eat in Long Island fairly often, but never thought of it as a seafood haven the way I think of New England.

                        1. re: Flower8
                          coll Jul 12, 2013 12:05 PM

                          The farther east you go, the more seafood predominates. Eastern Long Island is more like New England than it is the rest of the state.

                          1. re: coll
                            Veggo Jul 12, 2013 12:11 PM

                            How many fishermen live in South Hampton or Quogue?

                            1. re: Veggo
                              Motosport Jul 12, 2013 12:53 PM

                              Many commercial fisherman live in those two towns. Even more recreational fisherman.

                              1. re: Motosport
                                Veggo Jul 12, 2013 01:42 PM

                                Recreational fishermen are those who spend $$$$ and may or may not provide dinner.

                                1. re: Veggo
                                  Motosport Jul 12, 2013 02:39 PM

                                  Have you been to the inlet and seen the commercial fishing boats?

                                  1. re: Motosport
                                    Veggo Jul 12, 2013 02:46 PM

                                    They want the Holy Grail of a blue fin tuna, but they settle for an adult swordfish. By this time, bluefish are about 3-4 lbs, and are everywhere in the Sound.

                              2. re: Veggo
                                b
                                Bkeats Jul 12, 2013 12:59 PM

                                Lots. Who do you think uses those 60' tricked out Luhrs with the tuna towers?;)

                                1. re: Bkeats
                                  Veggo Jul 12, 2013 01:37 PM

                                  "Fish on!" Life is good there!

                                2. re: Veggo
                                  coll Jul 12, 2013 04:47 PM

                                  As I said, the further east you go. Montauk is where you will see more commercial than recreational. Not to say they aren't overloaded with the latter too.

                                  And yes, Shinnecock still has tons of commercial fishing too. Quogue, I'm sure there's a few, but not a hotbed of activity. Do you know something I don't know ;-)?

                                  1. re: coll
                                    Veggo Jul 12, 2013 04:52 PM

                                    Maybe the Shinnecock golf course?....:)

                                    1. re: Veggo
                                      coll Jul 12, 2013 07:13 PM

                                      Sorry I was talking about Shinnecock Bay, they have giant trawlers going out daily, hundreds of miles south some of them. Gone for a month at a time.

                                      The golf course I'm sure serves some good seafood though. A little too far inland for fishing.

                                      Quogue well, there's not much to say about that. Which is the way they like it!

                      3. re: small h
                        f
                        Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 07:09 PM

                        Sounds great. I don't know if I will be that far east if I can find closer alternatives, but i will keep your thread in mind if we do venture out there. Thx!

                      4. u
                        ukitali Jul 9, 2013 12:06 PM

                        Mystic, CT. I don't have any personal suggestions but a friend went recently and had a good time.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: ukitali
                          f
                          Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 12:11 PM

                          CT seems to be the winner. Thanks!

                        2. b
                          Bkeats Jul 9, 2013 12:04 PM

                          I spend a lot of time on the CT shoreline. If you look at the towns starting east of New Haven in Branford and going east until you hit the CT River in Saybrook, you will find a string of coastal villages. Classic NE look with big town greens and white church steeples with lots of seafood dining options. Everything from clam shacks to classic french. Lots of local seafood such as oysters, clams, lobster, stripers. Its about 2 hours even on a Friday night. You don't need to go as far as RI and its less crowded than the east end of LI. Suits me, but YMMV.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: Bkeats
                            f
                            Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 12:11 PM

                            Thank you so much. This sounds like exactly what I am looking for! Do you have any favorite locations or bed and breakfast suggestions?

                            1. re: Flower8
                              b
                              Bkeats Jul 9, 2013 02:13 PM

                              If you want recommendations, ask on the southern NE board. Otherwise the moderators will probably just move the responses anyways. Check the board out and you will find lots of suggestions for seafood.

                              1. re: Bkeats
                                f
                                Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 07:07 PM

                                There are a few recs below, but I will check out the NE board to ask about B&B's. Thx!

                                1. re: Flower8
                                  b
                                  Bkeats Jul 9, 2013 07:43 PM

                                  Here is a recent thread about clam shacks in CT.

                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/904445

                                  As to a place to stay, I haven't stayed there but I've been told that the Linden Point in Stony Creek is nice. Stony Creek is a picturesque water front village.

                                  I won't start the same war that would happen on the CT board, but I think Pepe's is highly overrated. If you want pizza, there are better places that don't have the same wait.

                                  1. re: Bkeats
                                    f
                                    Flower8 Jul 12, 2013 09:29 AM

                                    Thank you! I love specific tips. Also, that thread has my mouth watering. I can't wait to try some of them out.

                          2. coll Jul 9, 2013 11:04 AM

                            The Hamptons and Montauk, although on a weekend the traffic will be horrendous unless you go around 6AM.

                            12 Replies
                            1. re: coll
                              Motosport Jul 9, 2013 11:23 AM

                              Or take the bus or train.

                              1. re: Motosport
                                f
                                Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 11:43 AM

                                Good suggestion, but I dislike public transportation even more than driving. Not being snobby, just lazy.

                                1. re: Flower8
                                  coll Jul 9, 2013 01:20 PM

                                  Hampton Jitney is very comfortable and leaves from various locations in Manhattan.

                                  1. re: Flower8
                                    d
                                    dyrewolf Jul 12, 2013 02:10 PM

                                    If you're lazy... take the train. The Jitney is in the same traffic as a car though you can sit and read, the train just roll. On Fridays there is a 4PM that doesn't even need a transfer in Jamaica and a 7PM sunday (from East Hampton) that is the reverse express (Canonball)

                                    1. re: dyrewolf
                                      Veggo Jul 12, 2013 02:13 PM

                                      The Jitney is more comfy, and more private for literature and a flask.

                                      1. re: Veggo
                                        d
                                        dyrewolf Jul 12, 2013 02:52 PM

                                        Sit in the reserved cars on The Cannonball... if you don't have a helicopter or jet it is the best ride out east on a Friday afternoon. (though last friday I made it in under 2 hours. I was one of the few suckers that had to work so there was no one on the road

                                        1. re: dyrewolf
                                          Veggo Jul 12, 2013 02:55 PM

                                          Wolf, I'm taking copious notes for when my aircraft are in for scheduled maintenance...:)

                                          1. re: Veggo
                                            d
                                            dyrewolf Jul 12, 2013 03:04 PM

                                            The train is packed so if you're not in reserved it is uncivilized. This is the first year it goes direct from Penn, you used to be able to go to Hunterpoint Ave in Queens and get on the train that everyone would transfer onto at Jamaica.. it pulled out of Hunterspoint pretty full... Jamaica was a zoo. Reserved ends up being a nearly $50 seat... but I have boarded with a book and a bottle and it has been well worth it.

                                            There is a 7PM that is fast too on the way out.

                                            Sunday the reverse Canonball is a good plan if you're far east. By the time it gets to South it is pretty full.

                                            But good to have a plan if your jet is getting an oil change (ha)

                                            1. re: dyrewolf
                                              Veggo Jul 12, 2013 03:10 PM

                                              Your "book and a bottle" works on train or airplane. Cheers!

                                              1. re: dyrewolf
                                                sgordon Jul 13, 2013 01:51 PM

                                                "uncivilized" - ? What, are you like, the Queen reduced to travelling with the unwashed commoners?

                                  2. re: coll
                                    f
                                    Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 11:41 AM

                                    Interesting. I've always wanted to visit the Hamptons. Thanks for the tip on traffic.

                                    1. re: Flower8
                                      coll Jul 9, 2013 01:27 PM

                                      It's sort of cool to go when the sun is coming up, and you can just breeze into town.

                                  3. alkonost Jul 9, 2013 11:02 AM

                                    City Island, Bronx

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: alkonost
                                      f
                                      Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 11:38 AM

                                      I'm looking for something outside of the city so that I can make it a mini-vacation, but thank you. I have been to City Island and their seafood is decent.

                                    2. Motosport Jul 9, 2013 10:54 AM

                                      Freeport Long Island
                                      Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn

                                      5 Replies
                                      1. re: Motosport
                                        f
                                        Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 11:37 AM

                                        I never considered Long Island for seafood. Will look into it. Thanks!

                                        1. re: Motosport
                                          f
                                          foodwhisperer Jul 9, 2013 08:41 PM

                                          I think Sheepshead Bay or Freeport are good day trips, not for a getaway weekend. I was at Jordan's the other day in Sheepshead Bay for a lobster roll, a good spot that's reasonable.
                                          For weekend seafood, Anywhere from Fire island and East.
                                          Including Amagansett, East hampton and montauk. I love the Clam Bar right on 27 between Amagansett and Montauk. Sag Harbor was an old whaling town, nice for weekend. Or Shelter island.
                                          Newport RI is not a long ride and Scales and Shells is a great seafood restaurant.
                                          Atlantic City is on the shore and you can find something to eat from the sea. Or drive further to Maryland ( another hour and half) for great Maryland Crabcakes.

                                          1. re: foodwhisperer
                                            d
                                            dyrewolf Jul 12, 2013 02:08 PM

                                            If in the Hamptons, for good seafood, go to Dave's in Montauk ($$$$) or Vine St Cafe in Shelter Island. Many of the other places are just not that good, overpriced, crowded, trafficey to get there and so on

                                            1. re: dyrewolf
                                              strangemd Jul 12, 2013 02:28 PM

                                              Hey dyrewolf, I have a house on Shelter Island and spend pretty much every weekend out there. I wouldn't call Vine Street a seafood place, it's more of a high-end bistro. I would try 18 Bay which serves a really lovely tasting menu with most of the ingredients farmed or fished locally, or Clark's Fish House for strictly seafood (not expensive), or Commander Cody's seafood and rib shack for down and dirty and good.

                                              1. re: strangemd
                                                d
                                                dyrewolf Jul 12, 2013 02:50 PM

                                                I would not disagree with the categorization as a bistro... but when out east as I am a lot as well, I am generally disappointed in most places and regularly pleased by Vine St. I will have to put those recs on my list and give a try.

                                                Dave is great but way overpriced. Gosman's is thumbs down, etc....

                                        2. m
                                          MRS Jul 9, 2013 10:24 AM

                                          Abbott's in Noank, CT?

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: MRS
                                            f
                                            Flower8 Jul 9, 2013 10:30 AM

                                            Thank you! Is CT known for its seafood? Or is this just a good seafood restaurant that happens to be in CT..? Just asking bc I'd like to spend a few days there and eat at several places while I'm in the area.

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