Hi, I'm Christiaan Hogendorn (or Chris Hogendorn for short), I'm an associate professor of economics at Wesleyan. This web page used to be my list of New England ice cream, pizza, and clam chowder restaurants that I visit, often with my daughter. I am still making these lists, but now I do it at Yelp.com. Here are links to my lists there:
Ice Cream List
Connecticut Pizza List
One ice cream / pizza / chowder / restaurant icon means food made with real heart, two means absolutely outstanding. My daughter and I are systematic about ice cream and chowder in New England, and pizza in Connecticut. Anything else is more haphazard.
Our list is meant to be exclusive like Michelin stars, so we may like a place very much and still not give it a listing. The date is the last time we visited.
We have visited 56 New England-style or Maine-style clam chowder places in New England and given awards to the following 11:
There are a few places that deserve mention for really excellent chowders of other types: Johnny Ad's, Old Saybrook, CT (Rhode Island), Davy's Locker, New Bedford, MA (fish), Bobette's Takeout, Milford, CT (mussel), Ceal's Clam Stand, Hampton Beach, NH (seafood), Maine Diner, Wells, ME (seafood).
- Hartford, CT: Tinker's Seafood, 10/07
- Hartford, CT: USS Chowder Pot IV, it's so kitschy, you'd think the chowder wouldn't be serious, but this is a very successful restaurant with "chowder" in the name, and they live up to it. We visit frequently.
- Hartford, CT: Sally's Fish Camp, 10/07
- Branford, CT: Lenny's Indian Head Inn, famous seafood restaurant, the chowder is very balanced, delicious broth, though slightly under-clammed and over-potatoed, 6/08
- East Lyme, CT: Flanders Fish Market, great clam chowder, but I didn't think much of the famous lobster bisque, and the crab cakes were terrible, 11/07
- Kennebunkport, ME: Mabel’s Lobster Claw, very nice, balanced New-England-style chowder. Also, this place has amazing blueberry pie. 4/09
- Wells, ME: Billy's Chowder House, nice New England-style chowder.
- Winslow, ME: The Lobster Trap, the bad news is that this restaurant seems to have chronic problems serving its chowder cold, but this is a formidable New England-style chowder. 12/07.
- Yarmouth, ME: Cindy's, this is real, classic Maine-style chowder, thin and clammy and wonderful. 8/08.
- Rye, NH: Petey's Summertime Seafood, famous seafood place, the clam chowder is tremendous, but the seafood and fish chowders are bland to my taste, 8/07
- Seabrook Beach, NH: Brown's Seabrook Lobster Pound, Maine-style clam chowder with excellent broth, but a rather stingy serving of very good ingredients. The fish chowder is just "milk and fish" as my mom would say. 8/08
We have visited 27 promising Connecticut pizza restaurants and given awards to the following 7 (plus 1 outside Connecticut):
- Berlin, CT: Bella Pizza, relatively unknown pizza restaurant, 5/07
- Litchfield, CT: D'Amico's Pizzeria, up-and-coming pizzeria, 12/07
- Meriden, CT: Sal’s Apizza Center, on East Main St., an excellent thin crust, sauce a little flat. 3/09
- New Haven, CT: Frank Pepe's Pizzeria Neapolitan, famous pizza restaurant
- New Haven, CT: Bar, brewpub with good pizza, 6/08
- West Hartford, CT: Barb's Pizza, we think this is the best pizza in West Hartford, and WH is a pretty good pizza town, we visit frequently.
- Wethersfield, CT: Mangia Pizzeria, formerly Bobby's Brick Oven, Bobby has got something very special here -- you have to try this place, I believe this is now the best pizza in greater Hartford!
- Willington, CT: Willington Pizza House, 6/07
- Trenton, NJ: DeLorenzo's Tomato Pies, 7/07
We have visited 33 New England homemade ice cream places and given awards to the following 14:
- Bolton, CT: Fish Family Farm Creamery and Dairy Farm, excellent texture at a working dairy farm, 6/07
- Bridgeport, CT: Timothy's Ice Cream, stunning ice cream at a fantastic old-fasioned parlor, 5/08
- Durham, CT: Durham Dari Serv, you have to ask which flavors are actually made here, usually just one or two. But they are fantastic, perfect consistency, really creamy, 6/08
- Hamden, CT: Kelly's Kone Connection, my favorite place in Hamden's "ice cream alley," very competant. 8/08
- Mystic, CT: Mystic Drawbridge, touristy and crowded in summer, but great ice cream, 5/07
- Pomfret, CT: We-Li-Kit Farm, excellent texture, flavorings not too subtle, 9/07
- Wethersfield, CT: Main Street Creamery, sometimes has blueberry, the greatest of all ice cream flavors, and our picture is on the ceiling, near the door! frequent visits.
- Hadley, MA: Cook Farm, good farm ice cream
- Cambridge, MA: Christina's Homemade Ice Cream, famous place, particularly good on flavorings. 8/08
- Gloucester, MA: Gloucester Ice Cream Company, large servings and perfect texture, flavorings standard. 8/08
- Sabbatus, ME: Jillson's Farm, texture isn't perfect, but they have maple, not maple walnut, and the flavoring is exquisite, 8/07
- Liberty, ME: John's Ice Cream, this is a real sleeper, with perfect texture and a lot of care with flavors. Fruit in sweet cream is a specialty, blackberries and cream is a rare example. 8/08
- Concord, NH: Granite State Candy Shoppe, homemade ice cream recently added to this old-time candy store. 9/08
- Portsmouth, NH: Annabelle's Ice Cream, excellent downtown ice cream shop
The following are some good local sources of food near Middletown, CT:
- Middletown, CT: It's Only Natural, famous vegetarian restaurant
Middletown, CT: oh please please can we get a good bread bakery???
- Meriden, CT: High Hill Orchard, great ecological apple orchard with some old varieties
- Glastonbury, CT: Daybreak Coffee Roasters, very nice selection of serious, medium-roasted coffee, especially nice Latin American selection
- Wethersfield, CT: City Fish Market, excellent fish market, wide selection, very fresh.
These are places that we previously gave awards to and are very sorry to see go out of buisiness.
- Middletown, CT: Son of the Moon, cheese and food shop, also makes very nice bread
- Middletown, CT: Son of the Moon, they only make clam chowder occasionally at this take-out gourmet food store, 9/20/07
- Portland, CT: 80 Licks Ice Cream, 7/07