Dining Out

Newport Restaurant Week Returns

Another great week of dining deals in Newport and Bristol County

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Newport Restaurant Week returns March 23-April 1, and brings with it countless opportunities to explore the local culinary landscape. The week offers three-course lunches for $16, and three-course dinners for $30. While all the standard favorites are on the roster for Newport – The Mooring, 22 Bowen’s Wharf, Café Zelda – there are plenty of participating restaurants in the East Bay, including Warren’s Trafford, Tiverton’s Boat House and Bristol’s Hourglass Brasserie. Full menus and the complete list of participants are available online.

Bristol Picks Up James Beard Nominations
Foodies all over were abuzz with the release of the contenders for the James Beard Foundation’s Restaurant and Chef Awards late last month. Once again, the foundation has recognized some local culinary stars. Bristol chefs Champe Speidel of Persimmon and Sai Viswanath of DeWolf Tavern have both been nominated as semi- finalists for Best Chef in the Northeast.

Both chefs have made recent appearances on the list. Speidel was a nominee last year, and Chef Sai was nominated in 2010. The list of 20 semi-finalists in this category will be narrowed down to finalists (that list will be announced on March 19) and winners will be announced at a May event at the James Beard House in New York City.

Above Average
Local chain Not Your Average Joe’s has recently opened a location in Seekonk. The company, based in Middleboro, Massachusetts, has a dozen locations, and offers affordable versions of upscale cuisine. While the menu definitely has a worldly perspective (dinner offerings include Mediterranean Chicken and Vietnamese Salmon), Not Your Average Joe’s also has a New England influence, serving Rhode Island Calamari and Chicken Mozambique, the perennial favorite Portuguese dish. The restaurant offers a happy hour deal weekdays from 3-6pm, when a selection of full-sized appetizers is available for half price in the lounge.

Sip for Less
Trafford in Warren is offering a way to dine well for less. The chic restaurant is offering half-price wines by the bottle every Tuesday, Wedneday and Thursday through April. Now you have one more reason – besides the stunning view, beautiful interior and impeccable food – to treat yourself.