What are the best Coastal Rhode Island food experiences?

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As one can imagine, fresh seafood is always on the menu in Coastal Rhode Island. However, local farms are only a few hours away and the farm-to-table movement is strong here. Don’t miss these five top food experiences:

1. Clam chowder. No place does clam chowder like New Englanders. There’s a difference between the New England and Rhode Island versions, but part of the fun is discovering it on your own and deciding which you like better. (Hint: New England clam chowder is cream-based).

2. Farm-to-table cuisine. Thanks to the endless farms populating the area, there’s plenty of local fresh fruit, herbs and vegetables used in restaurants. The latest trend is restaurant-owned gardens — Seasons restaurant in Watch Hill and One Bellevue in Newport, for example, both have private gardens where chefs grow ingredients to use in daily plates.

3. Raw bars. There are few things as poetic as shucking oysters on the beach, but in Coastal Rhode Island it’s an everyday occurrence. No matter what town you end up in, there’s likely a raw bar waiting for you. Oyster season is generally in the summer, when you’ll find the freshest oysters at the bar.

4. Pubs. Rhode Island knows the meaning of a good bar and pub, and it’s likely where you’ll find some of the best food in the state, too. Enjoy fish and chips, clams and oysters and a fresh brew while you escape the heat on a hot summer day.

5. Seafood. The best places to find casual fare are along the ocean, and also where you’ll find the best seafood offerings. Fresh fish is caught and brought in daily and seafood menus will always include a catch of a day, fish and chips, and oysters if they’re in season.

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