Saturday, August 13, 2005

Mystic & Stonington, CT

Description: Mystic Outdoor Art Festival

How We Got There: Car - exit 90 off I-95 to Mystic then followed signs on Route 1 to Stonington about five minutes away

What We Did: Enjoyed lunch, walked half of the art festival and retreated to the car for air conditioning

First and foremost, it was a very hot day. At one point the temperature gauge in my car read 104 degrees. I have lost all tolerance for heat since leaving Texas. Plus, E and I were longing for the wonderful 70-degree weather we had in beautiful San Diego just over a month ago.

We parked in our usual place and noticed a busy new restaurant across the street - Rice Spice Noodles. We agreed to try it on a future trip since Eric really likes rice, and I really like noodles (works out well, doesn't it?) We began walking toward the festival and were quickly getting hot. We browsed some booths and found ourselves getting hotter. I noticed the attendance wasn't as high as past years. We're sure the heat was the reason.

This year's festival included works by approximately 300 artists. It always includes quite a few photographers selling photos of New England scenes - lighthouses, boats, beaches, etc. In addition, there are paintings of those same scenes available in many mediums - watercolor, oil and acrylic paints, for example. Other types of artwork, such as abstract paintings, metal sculptures, and jewelry, are included in the festival, as well as a section devoted to crafts. At least six blocks are covered with artists' booths along with food vendors selling everything from kettle corn to Del's lemonade.

Half way through our browsing, the Mystic drawbridge was raised to let a sailboat through. Pedestrian and auto traffic was held up until the bridge returned to its normal position. While waiting to cross over the bridge to the main downtown area to see more booths, I came to the conclusion we shouldn't wait for the bridge to go down. It simply was too hot. We turned around, walked back to the car and turned the air conditioning on high once we got in. The cool air felt so good.

Where We Ate: Noah's - Stonington, CT

We were all set to go to our usual lunch place in Stonington - Water Street Cafe. However, I made a last-minute suggestion to try another restaurant down the street - Noah's - and E agreed.

Noah's is a small restaurant, but we didn't have to wait for a table. The bar (which also has seating) is on one side, and the dining room is on the other. The walls displayed vibrant paintings - one series of paintings with pears was particularly interesting.

Our meal began with slices of two kinds of bread presented in a small basket along with butter. One type was sourdough, and it was good. E and I couldn't figure out the other type, but it was amazingly good. I wish I had asked what it was.

For lunch, I had the "Beggar's Purse" Special Salad - mixed greens with a vinaigrette topped with pears, walnuts and Danish bleu cheese wrapped in phyllo dough (the "purse"). It was light and very good. E had an Open Faced Steak Sandwich with a side of jasmine white rice. The sandwich was topped with cheese and peppers. E declared the sandwich good but better without the peppers (which shouldn't surprise me because he likes his sandwiches and burgers plain).

A board with the specials indicated "Save Room for Dessert" ... so we did. We told our server we'd take a peek at the dessert menu. After seeing all the selections, we decided to get a dessert each since we were leaning toward different things. E got a Banana Bavarian Cream Cake, and I got Spiced Pear Bread Pudding.

E made the better choice. His was a huge slice of cake which was slightly banana flavored (not overwhelming like I would have guessed) with layers of Bavarian cream. It was delicious. My bread pudding was served in a pot de crème cup, so it was a small serving. The dessert was actually more pudding than bread, and only the very bottom had the spiced pear flavor. It was good, but I would try something else next time ... and since our meal was very good, there will be a next time.


At 8/15/2005 9:53 AM, Anonymous Tanya said...

I agree it was hot hot hotter and hotest!

We actually drove down the shore a bit into westbrook and had dinner at the log cabin. Got HUGE portions with a monstrous bowl of pasta as part of the dinner. We thought the food was okay - didn't really blow us a way but it's between two of our favorites - Fish Tale and Westbrook Lobster - both great seafood places. Okay - I couldn't resist sharing my own restaurant choices, even in your blog!

I can't wait to see other updates!

At 8/19/2005 6:46 AM, Blogger Debra said...

Thanks for your mini-review! I've always wondered about the Log Cabin restaurant, so I appreciate your feedback.

At 6/21/2006 11:52 AM, Blogger Marc said...

I like Noah's almost as much as I like Stonington (to me, the perfect New England seaside village).

Noah's often gets fresh fish that is hard to find. I've had some pretty exotic fish there--sometimes great, sometimes, well, not my cup of tea. But I always love heading down to Noah's for an early dinner before watching the sun set from the end of Main Street at the point.

At 7/13/2009 5:15 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I appreciate u to you selected noodles Thanks for your mini-review



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