Monday, August 24, 2009

Food Frenzy Newport, Rhode Island (Part I)

It's been a week or so since we posted any tasty thoughts. I think we've been recovering from our attack on Newport, RI for a food frenzy. Below are a couple of mini restaurant reviews along with some tips on our favorite dishes.

I realize that lots of our California friends would not necessary think of going to Newport, RI, because frankly in my wildest dreams, as a west coast girl, I never imagined going there, but I have to say, Newport was a pleasant surprise. Even though it was a little tourist heavy down at the piers (it was August after all), there was much fun to be had between the restaurants, the cliff walks, mansions, sailing (it is the sailing capital of the US I believe), and tennis hall of fame (TBD next post!)

First Stop:

22 Bowen's Wine Bar & Grille
Overall, Great first stop. Indoor and outdoor seating. We ordered the Lobster Roll and the Burger special of the day. If you go, I'd say pass on the Lobster Roll, because there are much better options in town, and go for the burger.

The burger was packed with a smokey flavor thanks to the smoked Gouda, bacon, caramelized shallots and a garlic aioli. It was a top 5 burger ever.

Also a great spot to go for drinks or even eat at the nice air conditioned bar on the hot summer days.

Only complaint:
For Bowen's and the other restaurants down on the piers, it didn't seem like there were many options of spots to just sit out and have cocktails on the water. It seemed like you had to order food if you wanted to be outside with a good view.

Second Stop:

Cold Fusion Gelato
Definitely a stand out Gelato joint. I had the cake batter, and it tasted exactly like the frosting from my favorite cake in the world back in Pasadena, California (by Federico's). Husband got coffee heath bar and some type of caramel cream. We each ordered a small, and honestly, I only took a few bites. It was so rich and satisfying, but there was no way I could finish it (I'm ashamed to admit this, and wish I could have it back now!!!)

Third Stop:
Asterisk Restaurant
A fabulous casual indoor / outdoor restaurant with steaks, seafood, and even a little pizza & pasta. Great service and ambiance. Seemed like it was converted from funky old garage. They had a good martini and vodka list.

The appetizer was the stand out here.
*Shrimp stuffed with crab and wrapped in prosciutto served inside some crazy Parmeasan wrap over home made salsa. (photo above) Say no more. It was spectacular and frankly, it out shined the entrees.

The entrees were pretty good, we got a Steak Domenico style with the peppercorn sauce and Crispy Salmon over a orzo risotto in a Cabernet sauce. Both were unique and apparently locals favorites, but we wouldn't necessarily get them again.

Only complaints:
It seemed kind of secluded and parking was a real pain in the "As*terisk."

*Also our server was very helpful and told us about the best locals spot to go for breakfast the next day, Franklin Spa. A hole in the wall with good prices, friendly service and good eats. To be discussed in Newport Part II!

Have you been to Newport? Did you have a feeding frenzy on your summer vaca, tell us about it!!!

To Comment, click on the title and scroll down to click on "comment" and write up a storm!

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