I can highly recommend visiting Providence in Rhode Island. It’s a lovely college town with a lively restaurant scene. In one of my earlier (Dutch) articles, I already introduced you to some of my favorite restaurants. But what’s more fun than to get local advice on places to eat?
Time for another interview with a local. I asked my very good friend Kim where you should go when you’re hungry and in her hometown Providence.
Timmy’s: this restaurant used to be Bob and Timmy’s Grilled Pizza, on Spruce Street. They don’t do delivery, but they do pick up. Their four cheese pizza is made with vodka sauce and is out of this world, probably my favourite pizza I’ve had outside of pizza in Italy.
Ran Zan on Hope Street; this sushi restaurant doesn’t have a super fancy roll selection, but really fresh, not very busy, super nice people, and very reasonably priced. There’s an ice cream place right next door that has great green tea ice cream.
Apsara, on Hope Street or Public Street (I’ve never been there; this is a different branch of the family, and people argue about which one is better); no delivery, but they do take out and you can eat in. Really cheap and tasty, huge portions. I love the nime chao, pad thai, various Thai curries.
Nick’s on Broadway: New American restaurant, very nice place, can be a little pricey. Great for brunch.
Persimmon: New American restaurant, small place. Special occasion dinner, or go there for a deal during Restaurant Week. Go here for a European style dinner experience.
East Side Pockets: right on Thayer Street, alas, no delivery. Their chicken kabob wrap and dolmas are to die for, and they give you baclava if you tip. This is probably the best value food-for-money in Providence. Absolutely delicious, pretty healthy, and the people are super nice.
Den Den and Den Den Korean Fried Chicken: the first restaurant is on Benefit Street on College Hill, one of my colleagues legit eats lunch there once a week. The chicken place is right on Thayer Street. Their spicy food is SPICY. Really good.
Fancy a home cooked meal?
If you feel like staying in and/or have an apartment instead of a hotel, here are some tips for liquor stores, supermarkets and take out food.
Whole Foods and East Side Marketplace – prices vary between the two; ESM can be cheaper, but sometimes their produce looks kind of shitty. ESM has good deals on meat sometimes.
Aldi is super cheap, and has some great generic stuff like smoked salmon, milk, cookies, dried fruit, staples like spices, cleaning supplies, etc. and branded stuff (smoothies, cheeses, junk food). Their coffee is hilariously disgusting so don’t buy that!
Gasbarro’s in Seekonk: absolutely massive selection; this is right over the border with Massachussets and probably the cheapest liquor store around here. Great for stocking up on spirits in particular, but also has a huge wine and beer selection.
Bottles: right next to East Side Marketplace. Free tastings of liquor on Thursdays from 5-7, beer on Fridays from 4-7, wine on Saturdays from 4-7. They have a great wine and beer selection, but it can pay to shop around – I’ve noticed some wines are several $ cheaper at High Spirits.
They do have deals like mix a six, where you get a discount if you buy a certain number of bottles of beer/wine, and they have a free membership, where everything $500 (I think?) you spend, you get a $25 store credit.
High Spirits: right next to Whole Foods on North Main. Good selection, but smaller than Bottles. Some stuff cheaper than Bottles, other more expensive.
www.foodler.com. Worth ordering from (but some have high delivery fees):
Kabob and Curry: Indian, via Foodler $7 delivery fee, $20 minimum order. Amazing naan and samosas (recommend the pea and potato samosas and naan and the ginger/honey naan, and the lentil soup is great, though a small portion).
Located right on Thayer Street (call ahead and take out is usually ready in 10-15 minutes). They also have a buffet on Sunday that’s supposed to be great. No surcharge for takeout, of course.
They also own Rasoi in Pawtucket and people argue over which one is best, but I prefer K&C.
Jr’s: American (burgers, fries, wings, etc.): $2 delivery, $10 minimum. Really tasty sliders and seasoned curly fries with good sauces. Can take a while before your order is ready.
Meeting Street Cafe: amazing and huge sandwiches and cookies, free delivery, $15 minimum. Located right off Thayer Street, I like the Thanksgiving sandwich.