Pho Horn’s

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Pho Horn’s – Pawtucket, RI

I may have not held vigil when my restaurant friend Phở Paradise closed in Providence, but I still shed a salty, soupy tear while sitting there in an empty parking lot, reminiscing of the bygone days of broth and banh pho.

My pity party was short-lived because Rhode Island maintains a rich and vibrant Asian American population that tops 34,000 strong, and represents 3.2% of the total population. That means that the likelihood of other Vietnamese restaurants proudly serving bowls of bliss are high.

Phở Horn’s is no stranger to the Vietnamese restaurant community. From img_1731

Woonsocket to the East Bay, and as far south as Westerly, their Phở is worth the drive.

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Pho Horn’s – Pawtucket, RI

Phở originated in the early 20th century and was originally sold at dawn and dusk by roaming street vendors in Northern Vietnam. They shouldered mobile kitchens using  poles to hang wooden cabinets with soup, noodles, spices, and the necessary cookware to serve a composed bowl of phở.

Phở Horn’s is modestly appointed and focuses on the quality of the food and the cleanliness of the atmosphere. Quite frankly, these two reviewer considerations are paramount. In the spirit of sanitation, always follow this simple rule: if the bathroom is dirty, the kitchen is too!

Phở Horn’s maintains an extensive menu featuring a variety of soups, appetizers, noodle dishes, as well as beef, pork, chicken, seafood and vegetarian entrees.

I might have been late to the proverbial party, but I know when I’ve hit liquid gold.  Phở Horn’s is wicked thơm ngon!

 

 

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The Nook Coffee House

ForkintheRhode.com

ForkintheRhode.com

It’s never easy being the new Barista on the block is it? When your neighbors are Starbucks and Main Street Coffee, it can feel debilitating. It’s not like anyone kicked grinds in your face, but you feel small. The truth is that being new and small may have its advantages!

ForkintheRhode.com

ForkintheRhode.com

If I’ve learned anything as a consumer, it’s that similarity in product is often easy to find, but an excellent customer experience is not. When you can pair quality products with a memorable and enjoyable experience, then my friends, you’ve been to The Nook!

The coffee world is complicated. There are cup size decisions that require Rosetta Stone, and Java choices that demand Cliff notes on latte, espresso, cappuccino, café au lait, cortado, macchiato and even dirty chai (which quite frankly scares me).

ForkintheRhode.com

ForkintheRhode.com

Navigating this is all very exciting and generally satisfying, but to me, it all means nothing unless I can walk inside and feel welcome. At The Nook, the owner Shannon Wylie is reason why your experience will be a warm and inviting one.

Shannon’s pride is evident in every detail of her business, which includes the look and feel of the decor, the locally sourced coffee and tea products, and her infectious enthusiasm when developing relationships in the community.

ForkintheRhode.com

ForkintheRhode.com

I’m not sure whether Shannon is able to strike a perfect balance within the community because the business is small enough for her attentiveness to every detail, or just the fact that she’s so damn good at it, but in either case we benefit as consumers.

ForkintheRhode.com

ForkintheRhode.com

It is because of this that we should embrace The Nook as a welcome addition to Main Street East Greenwich, and feel fortunate that we may find something here that we don’t always get – a small town “hello” with our name attached to the end of it.

307 Main Street | East Greenwich, RI

nookcoffeehouse@gmail.com

Nook – Facebook

Fellini Pizzeria

Review by Sandi Cook –  Special contributor to Fork in the Rhode

Thanksgiving Pizza - Fellini Pizzeria

Thanksgiving Pizza – Fellini Pizzeria

Thanksgiving Pizza comes but once a year, and man is it worth the wait!  Every November my anticipation for this delicious slice of turkey day wonderment grows until the day before Thanksgiving arrives when I can get my special fix of this comfort food. This special pie has been on the menu for 10 years and is so popular that folks order their pies days in advance to be sure they can get their hands on one in time for Thanksgiving Eve dinner. Lines begin at lunch and get so long at times that the friendly staff provides a large thermos of hot chocolate and cups on a table outside to make the wait more comfortable. 

Fellini Specialty Pizzas

Fellini Specialty Pizzas

Although Fellini Pizzeria makes this special pie available only at Thanksgiving, they are also scoring it big with their over-sized thin crusted specialty pizzas such as the Kitchen Sink [ Penne pasta, garlic, parmesan, peppercorn, roasted red peppers, scallions, pepperoni & feta cheese], and the Turkey Club [ Smoked turkey breast w/ a creamy honey mustard sauce, topped w/ tomato, onion & bacon].  

So even with this year’s Nor’easter bearing down on Little Rhody, we made our way to Fellini’s to wait in line with all the other loyal Fellini Followers to get our slice of heaven. 

We arrived late in the afternoon and felt fortunate that the line was manageable. Surprisingly we were still able to order a pie, but shortly after we ordered, the line began to grow and they announced that only slices remained because whole pies were sold out for the rest of the day. Whew…. 

So what is Thanksgiving Pizza? It’s whole wheat, thin crusted pie layered with all the holiday fixings that Thanksgiving dinner is famous for. First they spread a generous layer of mozzarella cheese onto the hand thrown dough.  Next, they pipe just the right amount of mashed potato over the cheese. Then, chunks of oven-roasted turkey are spread onto the pie along with spoonfuls of stuffing, and topped with a generous drizzle of turkey gravy. Cranberry sauce is optional and provided once the pie is served.  

Our large pie arrived hot and hearty. The cranberry sauce slathered on the slices was a sweet compliment to the savory flavor of sage in the stuffing along with the salty smoothness of the turkey gravy and mashed potatoes.  The thin crust was perfectly crispy, with a great chew to it.  It held up quite well considering the weight of the toppings. Fellinis figured out the perfect proportion of toppings considering the slices reheated perfectly later that night.  

Fellini Pizzeria

Fellini Pizzeria

We asked if all the Thanksgiving Day toppings were scratch-made, but Fellinis graciously and humorously avoided answering our question by saying that it was a secret recipe.  Regardless, the unique pie is a total holiday winner and I recommend making Thanksgiving Pizza a yearly tradition in November and the rest of the menu a tradition during the rest of the year!

 

Fellini Pizzeria 166 Wickenden Street, Providence, RI 02903 401-751-6737