A Rhode Island restaurant staycation


No vacation this year.

Inflation. Gas and airline ticket prices. Threat of Covid.

Time to stay close to home.

Need to do something to break the monotony, something we all enjoy.

We decided to make a list of our favorite Rhode Island restaurants – more particularly, the menu items at our favorite restaurants – and try to visit them all within the next month.

From around the block to the far reaches of Galilee, we have made our choices.

Here is our list. Make your own and enjoy.

TWIN OAKS: One of the few places you can bring a dozen people and order 12 different meals.

While the Baked Stuffed Shrimp and Open Steak are all time favorites, the Broiled Chopped Sirloin is by far the best bargain on the menu. (Don’t dare call it hamburger.)

The nine ounce serving at $8.50 or 16 ounce at $12.95 will satisfy the small or large appetite. Joyce will order it rare with a salad with Roquefort while I’ll get it medium rare with a baked potato and their delicious coleslaw.

You can’t beat the quality or the price.

GOVERNOR FRANCIS INN: Their BBQ Pork Ribs fall off the bone. Order a half rack which is plenty at $17.99.

Fresh bread is immediately brought to your table, followed by soup or salad. Joyce gets the salad. I love their corn chowder. Carrots and turnips are their specialty, along with fluffy mashed potatoes.

RIGATONI’S: That wonderful Italian restaurant a block from Governor Francis on Warwick Ave. is a popular pizza place. Joyce will order their Calamari a la Mama ($11.95), while I will get the Fresh Baked Scrod, served piping hot with seasoned bread crumbs, accompanied by spaghetti with their delicious sauce. ($14.45).

LEMONGRASS: There are so many delicious items on the menu, but my favorite is the Crispy Pork ($14.45), a huge portion lightly sprinkled with thin slices of Chinese veggies. Always start with Nim Chow.

IRON WORKS: You can have your steak, roast beef and prime rib.

Give me a perfectly cooked and seasoned meatloaf any day.

Iron Works Bacon Infused meatloaf, with mashed potatoes covered in a sweet gravy is pure heaven.

Add one of their original appetizers and you have a classic meal at the Jefferson Blvd., Warwick restaurant.

MATUNUCK OYSTER BAR: Time to travel. All the way to Matunuck where this popular restaurant that grew like Topsy sits in front of its own oyster pond. The restaurant serves other food, but hey, we go there for as fresh as they can be oysters.

You have to start with a Bloody Mary with an oyster sitting in it. Then try one of many oyster appetizers.

We like the Oyster Rockefellers, six for $11.95. And there are more oysters in their signature dish, Jambalaya, along with shrimp, chicken andouille sausage and Cajun spices ($20.95).

CHAMPLIN’S: Our final destination sits on the entrance to Galilee, where we watch the Block Island Ferry and fishing boats come and go. Our treasure is the Fisherman’s Platter, filled with clams (whole belly and strips) , scallops, shrimp fish and French fries, piled high and served hot and fresh. It costs $39.99 but is plenty for two people.

That’s our vacation. An adventure for every day of the week.

Make your list or try mine. It may not be Paris or Rome, but it is our little old Rhode Island.


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