Photo by Salt Water New England

Friday, August 27, 2021

Favorite Chowder?

Photo by Salt Water New England

 

32 comments:

  1. The Black Pearl's clam chowder in Newport RI, thanks to a post I saw on your site years ago.

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    1. Those summer Sundays in 1968 always started with chowder, coffee and the NYT at the Black Pearl. Before it went upscale. That's continued to be my benchmark for decades, though I'm equally certain things have changed...

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  2. Of the two main kinds of clam chowder, only New England clam chowder is a chowder. Manhattan clam chowder is really clam soup. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

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  3. NE clam is my fave, but I find oysters assert themselves more against the creaminess. You end up with a fishier chowder. Not a problem yummmm. I add a splash of dry vermouth and lemon zest at the end of cooking.

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  4. Schooners in Hull is consistently the best we've had. There are plenty of restaurants that are prettier and have better views. But we've never had a bad meal at Schooners. A close second is The Snug in Hingham.

    My wife also likes clear chowder. The best she found was at Simply Simons in Swansea.

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  5. I love New England clam chowder that is full of clams. My father used to complain about "the 'duty' clam" in canned chowders. It is not chowder, but I never turn down oyster stew. There is also superb chowder to be found on the Oregon coast.

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    1. Yes! Georgie’s in Newport or the Sea Hag in Depoe Bat

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  6. My grandfather used to catch Tautog in RI and make a thin broth fish chowder. I prefer my chowder (clam, fish or corn) with a thinner broth.

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  7. The best I ever had was the quahog chowder at the Jared Coffin House, Nantucket, in the 1980s. It was fairly thin, milky and buttery, and its fresh briny flavor was unforgettably delicious.

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    1. I agree! All through the 1980's my parents took us to Nantucket for a week in August.

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  8. In my mind can't beat Land Ho in Orleans

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  9. Definitely New England over Manhattan, but i'm not picky. The best clam chowder i ever had was at a place in Provincetown, MA. it may not have been the best chowder in the world, but i spent the day walking various beaches along the Cape with friends, dead of winter, and we were all pretty well frozen - which made it that much better.

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  10. New England clam chowder is my favorite but the quality is all over the place. One of the more memorable versions I have had was at the Hog Island Oyster Co. in the Ferry Building in San Francisco (served with a big fat grilled cheese sandwich on toasted sourdough bread). Eventide Oyster Co. in Portland Maine has a terrific version. Generally speaking it seems that oyster houses, unless they are super-touristy, grasp that chowder should not be too thick and floury. In Moby-Dick Melville wrote, “Oh, sweet friends! hearken to me. It was made of small juicy clams, scarcely bigger than hazel nuts, mixed with pounded ship biscuit, and salted pork cut up into little flakes; the whole enriched with butter, and plentifully seasoned with pepper and salt.”

    I also like haddock chowder a lot although it is a bit less interesting than clam. There's a little place on the wharf in Correa, Maine that is our favorite.

    And clam and corn chowder is a fantastic variation on the theme.

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  11. The clam chowder at Boston Sail Loft is hard to beat.

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  12. New England NO BACON!!!! (with the Oyster Bar's marvelous biscuits)

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  13. Is anybody else incapable of creating a mental log of chowders? It seems like every time I leave a restaurant my memory is erased. I could have been to a local restaurant 100 times and I will not be able to remember their chowder!

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  14. I just had some excellent haddock chowder with biscuits and oyster crackers at Moody's Diner in Maine. It came with a side salad. They also have excellent baked beans with brown bread and Indian pudding as specials on certain days. I also went to the Red Arrow Diner in Manchester NH and the Miss Portland Diner in Maine on this same trip (dropping off my son at college). I love the plain food and nostalgia of real diners.

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  15. One August afternoon about 15 years ago, I was in an antiques store in Arundel, Maine, and the ladies behind the counter were talking about what they were going to make for supper that night. "I made corn chowder yesterday, should be pretty good tonight," said one. "Oh yeah, fresh corn?" replied the other. "Yep, added extra bacon too." I thought YUM! Made it myself the next day. Sauteed minced bacon & onions, corn off the cob, diced potatoes, milk, salt & pepper, some heavy cream. She was so right - it's better the next day.

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  16. Another vote for the Black Pearl in Newport.

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  17. Gilberts of Portland Maine! Thanks once again!

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  18. The Wee Packet in DennisPort. The Jared Coffin House comment brought up some treasured memories, their chowder being top notch, too.

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  19. Hands dow, Black Pearl in Newport.

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  20. While I have been eating the Pearl chowder for 50 years, the Thistle in Maine pretty great

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  21. If anybody wants to know why the Black Pearl's chowder is so good:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7MSPKBj5M4

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  22. Brewster Inn & Chowder House on the Cape is one of our favorites. Over the last 30 years we've tried numerous places all over the Cape, Nantucket, and Vineyard keep going back to Brewster. Will definitely try the Black Pearl next time we are in Newport.

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  23. Unless I missed it, no one has mentioned Rhode Island clam chowder (clear broth, no cream or tomato) which in my opinion is the best. Bill's in Westbrook has a good version. The potato cubes are small and cooked separate. When you order they add the potatoes to the stew so they are not all pasty and overcooked. Dutch Tavern in New London also has a good version.

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    1. Your Connecticut neighbors thank you for your recommendations. We will give them a try. I have a candidate for the worst New England Clam Chowder ever. I wonder if anyone remembers Howard Johnson's version. So thick you could stand a spoon up in it. I am not sure there were actually any clams in it at all. But their ice cream was always delicious!

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  24. The Causeway in Gloucester. Huge bowls of the best fish chowder anywhere.

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  25. JT Farnhams in Essex, MA. Just returned from a 7-day trip to Maine, and we had chowder at a number of places from Lubec, to Belfast, to Camden. All were pretty good, except for the chowder at Young's Lobster Pound in Belfast. I grew up in New England and love chowder. I've had chowder numerous ways in numerous places. But, I have never had chowder with whole-belly, soft shell clams. It was not good.

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