Did you know? Providence was the birthplace of the diner in 1872. The most beloved of all local diners is Haven Brothers, a trailer on wheels that parks nightly next to Providence City Hall. From blue collars to bluebloods, everyone stops at Haven Brothers, which serves burgers and other treats from the grill until the wee small hours.
Day 1 – Arrive in Providence, RI. Your first stop is the Scialo Brothers’ Bakery. From 1898 to 1932 more than 54,000 Italian immigrants arrived at the Port of Providence. In 1916 Luigi Scialo arrived from Italy and together with his brother, started Scialo Brothers’ Bakery. Since his death in 1993, Luigi’s daughters, Lois and Carol, have carried on the tradition. Upon our arrival, Lois or Carol will greet our coach and offer a history of the bakery. They will then lead us into the bakery where the bakers will give us a demonstration of baking and cake decorating. Enjoy the complimentary coffee and fresh-baked treats.
Next stop will be at Geppetto’s, an upscale pizzeria located on DePasquale Plaza. Our visit includes a tableside demonstration of the techniques in grilling the perfect pizza. Watch our chef prepare specialties and interact as he answers your food related questions and you munch on some of the best pizza in the whole world! Take home a complimentary bag of Geppetto’s Dough2Go gourmet pizza shells.
After lunch, enjoy time on your own to explore Federal Hill, “The Heartbeat of Providence.” Spend time in the array of boutiques or take the trolley to Providence Place Mall with more than 170 shops and restaurants. For history buffs there’s the Rhode Island State House, the Arcade, the Jon Brown House and the East Side of Providence with Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design Museum. Check into your Providence hotel for a two night stay.
Day 2 – Following breakfast in the hotel, we depart to Matunuck Oyster Bar and Farm where we get “up close and personal” with the oysters. Pull on your waders and walk out in the water to the oyster farm. Observe the different stages in growth of the shellfish, become educated on the importance of sustainable aquaculture and have fun while learning.
Then travel to West Kingston to the Kenyons Grist Mill where we find out about the Johnnycake and how the Native Americans taught us to make this delicious “pancake.” This 1886 gristmill still maintains the ritual started in 1909 of grinding corn to make flour and meal. After the tour, lunch on Johnnycake, Chowder and Clam Cakes, a true Rhode Island tradition.
Ahoy Mateys! Climb aboard for a Lighthouse Cruise. Our captain will take us throughout Narragansett Bay, sailing us close to these historic landmarks. Witness 10 Rhode Island Lighthouses during the 90-minute cruise. Bring your cameras!
Following the cruise, depart for Wickford Village. Established in 1709, the village provides picturesque waterfront streets lined with one-of-a-kind shops, galleries, antique stores, cafes and restaurants. Wickford Village offers a taste of New England as it was a century or more ago. Its historic homes from the 1700s, churches, gardens and picturesque harbor offer a glimpse of our nation’s history.
Dinner this evening is at the legendary Duffy’s Tavern. Located in the Wickford Seaport, Duffy’s is famous for fresh seafood and abundant portions. Sit outside on the patio and breath in the salt air. Live music will entertain you throughout the evening.
Day 3 – Enjoy breakfast in the hotel before departing for the Johnson and Wales Culinary Arts Museum in Providence. This is the premier museum devoted to the preservation of the history of the culinary and hospitality industries. Explore the Diner Museum, Stove Museum, a Pantheon of Chefs, a New England Tavern, Kitchen Gadgets and Appliances, Presidential Palate and State Dinners and Culinary Showpieces.
From the museum we travel to Wrights Farm, famous for their family-style chicken dinners, an all-you-can-eat meal of chicken and pasta, and a favorite stop for locals since the 1930s. Yankee Magazine featured the restaurant in an article exploring the vast appeal to Northern Rhode Island residents, of chicken served family-style. Perhaps it is attributed to tradition, life in a simpler time, and alternative to fast food, or is it just plain delicious? Come and sample for yourself.
After lunch, depart for home filled with the tastes of Rhode Island and renewed appreciation of the rich culture and history in the Ocean State.