The Dish: Diner's Update

The latest Rhode Island food, drink, restaurant and dining news.

By Rachel Bimonte and Jamie Coelho

 

November–February 2017

12/1–12/30

Hope and Main has you covered when it comes to cooking for the holidays. With the release of its December class schedule, find which is right for you and learn something new just in time for party season.. Hope and Main is located at 691 Main St., Warren. To register for any one of the events, click here.

  • For $50, learn to prepare veggie noodles on Dec. 9 from 4–8 p.m. alongside Eileen Viera, who will put a healthy spin on pasta.
  • Trying to cut back this season? We don’t blame you — however, you should still enjoy the treats. Claire Moscrop will instruct you on how to make holiday treats a little healthier on Dec. 12 from 5–6:30 p.m. for $35.
  • Oh, honey: Dec. 12, Eileen Viera will talk about honey and its health benefits and you will be able to create your own honey jar.
  • On Dec. 18 and Dec. 22 — it’s cookie time. From 5–7:30 p.m., let your child create a masterpiece in the baking department. They will bake a variety of cookies from chocolate oatmeal and Italian cookies to chocolate peanut butter and more. The event is $50 and gives you a chance to wrap up some last-minute errands.
  • On Dec. 19, it is your turn to make your own cookie creations — join Claire Moscrop and prepare healthy, yet delicious cookies for you to munch on for $35 per person.
  • Hope and Main wants your child to enjoy winter break and learn something about food. From Dec. 27 through Dec. 30 from 11 a.m.–1:30 p.m., children can create meals, including chicken parmesan sandwiches, macaroni and cheese bites and banana muffins. This four-day event is $175.

12/9

Give back to a worthy cause while digging into a three-course meal including oysters and clams from Matunuck Oyster Bar and an entree and dessert from Belmont Market. COAAST (Creating Outreach About Addiction Support Together) is a nonprofit that is raising awareness of and lifting the stigma from the disease of addiction, and it is hosting its first gala on Dec. 9 at the Towers in Narragansett. The event includes a delicious meal, dancing and music, and guests will watch short vignettes that will be performed to showcase COAAST’s social impact. Tickets are $62.50 to $75 each, and can be purchased at cooast.org.

12/9

This Friday, Sons of Liberty in South Kingstown opens its distillery doors from 5-8 p.m. to host the fourth annual, Whiskey Wonderland Holiday Bazaar. Stocked full of Whiskey Wonderland favorites like craft cocktails and beer, local food, great live music and a barrel-tree lighting, this year’s celebration is featuring an even larger collection of local vendors for holiday gift-giving options. Admission is free and the festivities kick off at 5 p.m, and will carry on in the distillery’s new tasting room until 10 p.m. Local jazz group Spumante will be setting the mood with tunes inspired by Miles Davis and Charles Mingus as guests snack on raw bar selections provided by Matunuck Oyster Bar and fresh meats and produce from Open Season.

12/10

Join Foolproof Brewery for its third annual Barrel Reserve Night from 7–10 p.m. at the brewery in Pawtucket. The event features rare barrel-aged beers, a selection from local food artisans, an exclusive Barrel Reserve Night glass and more. Delsie Catering and Events will provide bites, and other artisans include Walrus and Carpenter Oysters, Sons of Liberty Spirits, D'Licious Desserts and more. Tickets are $40 per person.

12/10

Chef Jeanie Roland of Ella's Fine Food and Drink is hosting a holiday cooking class at noon. Attendees will learn how to make holiday cocktails, desserts, main dishes, morning dishes and much more. The class includes recipes, instruction, adult beverages, lunch and a q-and-a for $100 per person. Call 401-315-0606 for reservations.

12/10

Have the chance to sample from more than fifty craft breweries at the Foxwoods On Tap beer festival on Dec. 10 at Foxwoods Resort Casino. The venue hosts breweries including Allagash, Ballast Point, Goose Island, Two Roads and Lagunitas and will have food onsite that pairs nicely with beer: Italian sausage, turkey legs and more. There are two options for admission to this event: a VIP ticket for $55 includes four hours of tasting (1–5 p.m.), a food voucher, a hat and a souvenir sampling glass. The general admission ticket is $40 and includes three hours of tasting (2–5 p.m.) and a souvenir glass. Designated driver tickets will be available at the door and each ticket price goes up $10 at the door. You must be twenty-one plus to attend.

12/11 and 12/18

Elevate your usual Sunday tea by heading over to the Governor Henry Lippitt House Museum, 199 Hope St., Providence, for high tea. For $45 to $65 per person (depending on where you sit), guests can enjoy Delsie Catering and Events’ sweet and salty small bites, a cocktail, and teas from all over the world. The building has an old Victorian style that sets the tone for an afternoon of tea and conversation. Choose from two seating times each Sunday: 1 and 4 p.m. Advanced reservations must be made and you can make your reservations here.

12/12

The annual Pat's Pastured Grazing Dinner returns to Chez Pascal for the seventh year in a row with farmer Patrick McNiff. Enjoy five courses for $69 per person, not including tax, gratuity or beverages. Menu highlights include chopped chicken liver crostini with quince compote; braised pork and beef meatballs with caraway profiterole, pumpkin mostarda and Vermont raclette cheese; choucroute garnie of turkey leg confit, turkey kielbasa, turkey breast, house kraute, turnip puree and dijon; and classic whole roasted Cornish rock chicken with roasted root vegetables and smoked chicken jus. The restaurant will be open from 5:30–9 p.m., and this will be the only menu offered for the evening. No substitutions. Call 401-421-4422 for reservations.

12/14

Drink and dine for a cause this holiday season at Garde in Providence. Chef Robert Sisca and Hopkins Southdowns Farm team up to bring you a pairing of lamb and local libations on Wed., Dec. 14 at 6 p.m. Sip beverages from Newport Distilleries’ Thomas Tew Rum, Sea Fog American whiskey and a crisp Lookout Farm Hard Cider. Tickets are $10 per person and all proceeds will benefit Toys for Tots.

1/8

Pot au Feu is hosting the Ecole de Cuisine Cooking Class on Sun., Jan. 8 from 11 a.m.–8 p.m. for professional instruction for amateur cooks. The class is $495 per person and includes instruction, class materials, a chef's coat, lunch with the chef, a wine seminar, wine tasting and a five-course graduation dinner for four people. Learn more and register here, or call 401-273-8953.

1/23, 2/6, 3/6, 3/27

Chef Joe Simone of Simone’s, 275 Child St., Warren, released his fall and winter cooking classes. With chef Joe’s Mediterranean cooking style, students of the cooking classes will see dishes in a new perspective while still keeping them classic. On Jan. 23, cue the freezing weather but also hot, fresh soups; chef Joe teaches you how to make Simone’s soups with handmade stocks. Don’t stress about Valentine’s Day because chef Joe has you covered: On Feb. 6, learn how to make a romantic dinner for two. Instead of getting brunch out, learn to make it yourself on March 6, Mediterranean style. Lastly, on March 27, go seafood crazy and learn to craft a pasta dish with mussels and clams. Every event is held on Monday nights at at 6:30 p.m. Each class is $60 per person; to reserve a seat, call 401-247-1200 or email hello@simonesri.com.

1/28

Taste the best wine and food the East Bay has to offer at the Taste of the East Bay on Jan. 28 from 5-8 p.m. at Hope and Main in Warren. The fundraiser help families most in need in our community. In the event of a weather related cancelation, the date is February 4. All proceeds benefit East Bay Coalition for the Homeless.

2/1–2/28

We can’t decide what is more important: a United States Passport or a #BestDonutsRI Passport. We’ll let you decide. Click here to get a RI Food Fights passport for only $15. Grab your doughnut-loving friends and travel around Rhode Island from Feb. 1–28 to receive a complimentary doughnut from participating bakeries and doughnut shops.  

 

ONGOING EVENTS

Each month, a family recipe will be featured as a special for the month at Sardella's in Newport. Ten percent of the proceeds will go to the King Center of Newport. The recipe will be featured on the menu for an entire month, on Facebook and at sardellas.com. A $100 gift card will be awarded each month for the winning recipe. Recipes and history may be emailed to patrick@sardellas.com or mailed to Patrick Fitzgerald, Sardella's Italian Restaurant, 30 Memorial Blvd. West, Newport, RI 02840. The Family Kitchen Recipe of the Month will kick off on January 1, 2017. Deadline for recipes is December 15, 2016.

The Arcade in Providence has launched a series of six indoor farmers markets on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in partnership with New Harvest Coffee Roasters and New Harvest Coffee and Spirits. The markets will feature a rotating lineup of local farmers, food vendors and more. Upcoming dates include November 20 and 27, and December 4, 11 and 18.

PVD Food Truck Events and the Hot Club have teamed up for Food Truck Sunday Fundays every Sunday from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. Learn more here.

The Mooring Seafood Kitchen and Bar in Newport is offering two off-season specials including a Half-Price Raw Bar and Paella for Two. Wednesdays from Nov. 16 through March 29, enjoy oysters, littlenecks, shrimp, lobster and more for half price. On Thursdays from Nov. 17 through March 30, enjoy old-world style paella with a whole lobster, clams, mussels, chicken, shrimp, calamari, rice, sausage and saffron-garlic sofrito all day for $49 or for $65 with a pitcher of house-made sangria.

The Boat House, 227 Schooner Dr., Tiverton, is offering half-price appetizers, Sun.–Thurs. from 4–6 p.m., now through May 24. With appetizers in the $6–$8 range, you can enjoy a number of healthy, light choices. Some of the dishes include: Bolognese, octopus and potato salad, truffle linguini, littleneck clams and more.

Fluke Wine, Bar and Kitchen, 41 Bowens Wharf, Newport, is offering some great November specials. Fluke’s $15 Bistro Menu is available Wed.–Fri. nights, featuring either steak or skate frites. It’s never too early to start thinking about the holiday season; you can email info@flukewinebar.com to have Fluke host your holiday party and create a tasty menu for you and your guests. Stop in or call 401-849-7778 for more info.

Join Ella’s Fine Food and Drink for Whimsical Weekdays. Tues.–Fri. from 4–6 p.m. in the lounge and 5–6 p.m. in the dining room, guests can enjoy Ella’s entire menu for half off. Head over to Ella’s, located at 2 Tower St., Westerly, for this special deal.

Matunuck Oyster Bar is now taking reservations online here. The waterfront oyster bar, located at 629 Succotash Rd., South Kingstown, is open to online reservations, but also has a dedicated area of the restaurant for walk-in guests. Monday through Thursday from 4–6 p.m. guests can purchase Matunuck’s own oysters for $1 each.

Trio restaurant, located at 15 Kingston Rd., Narragansett, is bringing back its prix-fixe Pier menu. From that menu, customers can order an entree, dessert and draft beer or house wine for $24.95 on Monday through Thursday nights from 4–9 p.m. The full Trio menu, however, is still available during this special. Trio is also offering half-price appetizers and pizzas Monday through Friday from 4–6 p.m. To check out the prix-fixe Pier menu and the full menu, visit Trio’s website.

Sons of Liberty spirits distillery continues its sampling series, Freedom Fridays, which takes place on the last Friday of each month. Attendees can sample an assortment of award-winning spirits (including SOL’s new, limited-edition grapefruit hop flavored whiskey), enjoy food from Eddie’s BBQ, soak up live music from James and the Giants and participate in a variety of activities, including cornhole and foosball. Doors open at 5 p.m. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased upon entry. Call 401-284-4006 or visit solspirits.com for more information.

Chair 5, located within the Break Hotel at 1208 Ocean Rd., Narragansett, launched its new Wine Wednesdays series, every Wednesday at 6 p.m. For $15 per person, guests will receive three wine tastings, appetizers prepared by chef Basil Yu and experience a question and answer session with the Chair 5 team. For more details, call 401-363-9820.

 

LAUNCHES

Durk’s Bar BQ is coming soon in December. The restaurant will serve Texas style BBQ, lead by chef Jake Rojas of Tallulah on Thames and Tallulah’s Taqueria. Jay Carr of the Eddy is part owner and general manager of Durk’s. He has put together a bar program that focuses on American whiskey as well as a curated selection of craft beer and cocktails that pair well with BBQ.

The owners of Tavolo Wine Bar and Restaurant in Smithfield are opening a new restaurant, Tavolo Wine Bar and Tuscan Grille, at 289 Atwells Avenue on Federal Hill on December 8.

Preppy Pig BBQ in Warren launched brunch every Sunday from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Dishes include brisket and gravy over homemade buttermilk biscuits, a pulled pork Benedict and a collaboration with PVDonuts on the Ultimate Breakfast Sandwich, which includes slow smoked pork, Vermont cheddar and housemade apple butter sandwiched between the doughnut shop's maple bacon glazed doughnut. The Jamestown barbecue spot is also now open at 35 Narragansett Avenue.

Delizioso Deli and Cafe is now open in Smithfield, serving pizzas, sandwiches and boxed lunches. There is a second location in Cranston.

Jamestown FiSH launched Sunday brunch from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. through May. Expect European-inspired dishes including a smoked salmon eggs Benedict and Brioche Pain Perdu. View the brunch menu here.

Ella’s Fine Food and Drink in Westerly is hosting brunch on the last Sunday of each month. Come in anytime between 11 a.m.–8 p.m. for brunch/supper at Ella’s and try: Crab benedict; shrimp, grits and eggs; or Chile de arbol, braised pork, black beans and eggs. You may also explore Ella’s cocktail menu that will feature specials for brunch.

Broad Street in Providence gained a new eatery this October: Parkview Bakery Cafe. On the corner of Broad and Baker streets, you will find a cafe that offers coffee, bakery items, sandwiches and even pizza. The bakery is open daily from 7 a.m.–10 p.m. and until 11 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Find Parkview on Facebook and Instagram to see anything from decked out pumpkin spice lattes to burgers with fries and ham, egg and cheese on a croissant.

Coming soon to Providence is a pasta joint called Pastaio where pasta meets New England cuisine. The restaurant will be located on Parade Street. Follow it on Instagram and Facebook to stay in touch for grand opening details.

Newport Distilling Company has been on an eight-year-long journey to craft its newest product. Sea Fog: An AmeRIcan Whiskey is a mixture between American and Scottish traditions and radiates flavors of peat, vanilla, caramel and oak. Distribution of only 150 cases will be made available across many states including Rhode Island. For more information on the new item, visit the Newport Distilling Company’s website.

Newport Storm Brewery also launches its annual release, '16, a marriage of chocolate and beer made with milk sugar, vanilla, chocolate malt and cocoa nibs from Ecuador and Ghana.

Sons of Liberty Spirits Co. adds a new gala apple whiskey to its seasonal whiskey lineup. The distillery blended the apple pumice from more than 9,000 gala apples from two orchards in Connecticut with its barrel-aged whiskey. Sons of Liberty started its seasonal whiskeys because brewers have been brewing seasonal beers for so long and they figured, why not apply the concept to whiskey? This flavored whiskey is not far from you: Gala apple is available throughout Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts.

 

NOTABLES

Joseph Pestonit has been appointed as executive chef at Blend Providence, the new Latin restaurant located at 57 DePasquale Avenue on Federal Hill in Providence.

Besos Kitchen and Cocktails in East Greenwich welcomes a new executive chef, Joseph Caldarone. He has seventeen years of culinary experience and will introduce new menu items like pomodoro grilled pizza, blackened faroe salmon and gnocchi with grilled sirloin tips. Be sure to sip one of Besos craft cocktails, mixed with housemade infusions.

Newport Restaurant Group is making holiday shopping a little easier by offering gift cards that can be used at any of its nine restaurants. Cards may be purchased in any denomination; however, if you purchase $500 or more in gift cards, you'll get a $100 gift card free. The cards can be used at any of the following restaurants: 22 Bowen’s, the Boat House, Castle Hill Inn, Hemenway’s, Avvio Ristorante, the Mooring, Smoke House, Trio and Waterman Grille. The offer is valid now through Dec. 31, and if you decide to participate, the card can be mailed directly to the person you are gifting with a personalized note. Make holiday shopping easier and give the gift of food. To purchase gift cards, click here.

Chow Fun Food Group, which includes 10 Prime Steak and Sushi, Luxe Burger Bar, Harry’s Bar and Burger, XO Cafe and Rick’s Roadhouse, is offering 20 percent back on all gift card purchases over $100 or more from now through December 31.

 

TRANSITIONS

Friskie Fries opened a new storefront November 12 at 751 Hartford Ave. in Johnston, serving the same food truck favorites and more.

Laughing Gorilla Catering has taken over the popular breakfast spot Kitchen's space in Providence for the fall and winter seasons. Lunch and dinner is served inside the intimate restaurant.