It only takes a couple of hours to drive from Clinton, Connecticut to Newport, Rhode Island. The Paradise Park RV Campground is just a few miles from Newport in Middletown. It’s a neat, small, grassy campground with full hook-up, good WIFI and no other amenities. The daily rate is on the high side and they charge $8 per day extra if you plan use your electric water heater. We opt to use our propane. It’s been awhile since we’ve used gas to heat our water and the pilot fails to light. But Chris goes all MacGyver with a toothpick, unplugs the valve and we have hot water!
|Kung Pao Ka Pow!|
We arrive at the late lunch/early dinner hour and the place is slow. At the counter we order, two spicy Stuffies, Kung Pao Calamari and Fried Clam Strips then take a seat in the dining area to await our food. The atmosphere is casual and the place begins to fill up. Our food is delivered piece meal. Each dish arrives as soon as it comes out of the kitchen so everything is absolutely hot and crisp. The Stuffies arrive first - clamshells packed with their spicy clam stuffing. They are tasty, with a good clam flavor and a bit of spice and very filling. The Kung Pao Calamari is tender with a light crispy batter the sauce is perfect, not too much or too little and the scallions and peanuts add a bit of zest and crunch. This is one amazing dish – the best ever! The fried clam strips are last to arrive, they are perfectly fried – tender and light. They come with fries but after the Stuffies and Calamari we have to leave them on the plate. This meal is so wonderful; we return a couple of days later and do it all over again (But we only order one Stuffie to share.)
(Another dining recommendation is Flo’s Calm Shack. We drop by and try their “Famous” Stuffies and Clam Cakes. It’s very disappointing, lots of stuffing and very little clam or anything else.)
|View from the Fort|
|Only the foundation remains of Whale Rock|
We spend a little time wandering the piers in Newport and stop at the Aquidneck Lobster Company, to check out the lobster tanks. Behind the store is the Lobster bar, and our tummies are craving lobster. We get a seat on the deck with 180-degree views of Newport Harbor. After ordering a couple of cocktails, we decide on the Prix Fix Special for two: Raw platter of Oysters, clams and Shrimp, Steamer Clams and two one and a quarter pound lobsters, we order one steamed and one stuffed and baked. This is a pricey special dinner and we are so not disappointed. The oysters, clams and shrimp are fresh and tasty and the cocktail sauce with a generous splash of horseradish is outstanding. The steamers are in a light broth with onions, and on the side - ramekins of clarified butter for dipping they are sweet and succulent. And then the main event, the LOBSTER… One steamed to perfection and the other baked with scallops and stuffing. These also come with lots of butter. A side of rice pilaf and a Caesar salad complete the meal. It’s a lot of food, but we enjoy every bite!
The Ocean State is pretty amazing... it may be the smallest state but it’s big on attractions… and amazing food… so we will add it to our list of places to return to… but we have a date with Cape Cod, so we’re off…