• Taste of Rhode Island

    October 3, 2009

    Around lunchtime, Mal, my in-laws, and I headed over to the Taste of Rhode Island at the Newport Yachting Center. The event was basically a food festival that featured a variety of edible items, wine, beer, and dozens of restaurants from the Ocean State.


    Mal and I were lucky to have the opportunity to attend the event as “media.” Obviously, Mal was psyched! 😉

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    The event included the Stop & Shop Pavilion, where attendees could sample products and watch culinary demonstrations.


    I stopped by the Kashi table to try their Pumpkin Spice Flax granola bar, which I liked a lot! They’d be perfect for dessert– perhaps crumbled over a baked apple? Mmmmm!


    The event also had live music, games, and giveaways.

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    Taste of Rhode Island was a pretty cool event, but not at all what I expected. In order to taste things at the event, attendees needed to buy $1 tokens to purchase food from the participating restaurants. However, the majority of the restaurants offered full-size fare for a semi-discounted price. For instance, a hamburger cost 4 tokens ($4).

    There’s nothing wrong with this type of purchasing method, I just didn’t expect the event to be run this way. I had hoped to try lots of different tastes instead of just one or two items that would probably fill me up. Mal and my in-laws felt the same way, so we headed to a nearby restaurant for lunch.


    My father-in-law suggested Benjamin’s for lunch.


    I’ve probably walked by Benjamin’s a zillion times, but never realized it was there. The restaurant is located on the second floor above Poor Richard’s on Thames Street.


    From the outside, Benjamin’s doesn’t look like anything special, so I didn’t expect it to be a nice place. I actually thought it was going to be a total dive!

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    To start, the four of us ordered a round of Newport Storm Octoberfest brews.


    It was lovely medium-bodied beer.


    For lunch, I ordered a cup of pumpkin bisque and a garden salad with honey mustard on the side.


    The pumpkin bisque was absolutely divine! It reminded me of warm pumpkin pie, but smoother and creamier– almost like pumpkin mousse.


    The garden salad was actually pretty pathetic. There were hardly any veggies in it besides the half-dead greens. I barely ate any of it. Boo! 👿

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    Lunch called for a photo opp (obviously). 😉


    After lunch, Mal and I did some shopping on Thames Street. We hit Banana Republic, J.Crew, and The Gap. I wasn’t impressed with the sales, but Mal ended up buying a belt from Banana Republic. I got him 30% off with my Luxe card!

    During our shopping adventure, we stopped into a couple of art galleries. We were surprised (and delighted) to stumble upon a few original pieces from Yuri Tremler. Unfortunately, we can only afford Ikea-quality paintings by him. 😕


    Even still, I love his work!


    Not surprisingly, lunch didn’t really fill me up, so Mal and I shared a cup of ice cream from Ben & Jerry’s. We tried the limited-edition “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” flavor, which is made from “an outrageous symphony of decadent chocolate ice cream, peanut butter cookie dough, butter brickle and white chocolate chunks.” It hit the spot!


    Our dinner reservations aren’t until 8:15 this evening, so we’re lounging around for the next couple of hours.

    My in-laws just cracked open a bottle of wine, so I guess it’s cocktail hour! Might as well take part! 😉

    Life is good. 😎

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    { 33 comments… read them below or add one }

    Emily October 3, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    Pumpkin bisque??!! You have the best luck finding yummy pumpkin dishes!! 🙂


    Marisa (Trim The Fat) October 3, 2009 at 6:37 pm

    Sorry about the event; cool that you went in as “media” though!

    The pumpkin spice Kashi bars are my fave!

    Enjoy your cocktail hour:)


    Nicole October 3, 2009 at 6:38 pm

    I love vacations! I’m glad that you are having a nice one!


    Lindsay October 3, 2009 at 6:40 pm

    Mmm tha pumkin bisque looks so good!


    Dori October 3, 2009 at 6:42 pm

    Need that soup. It should always be cocktail hour. It is for me.


    Food Makes Fun Fuel October 3, 2009 at 6:44 pm

    Pumpkin bisque sounds so great. I love seasonal dishes. Happy cocktail hour! haha


    Courtney October 3, 2009 at 6:44 pm

    I adore those kashi pumpkin flax!!! Delish in Greek yogurt!!
    adventures in tri-ing


    Diana October 3, 2009 at 6:45 pm

    That pumpkin bisque looks good and so does the ice cream ahah
    It’s a shame the restaurant wasn’t all that but hey, it happens! 🙂


    Cara (Cara Craves...) October 3, 2009 at 7:27 pm

    Oh my goodness…I want to try that ice cream.
    That sounds like the best combo of flavors…totally yum!


    Madeline @ Greens and Jeans October 3, 2009 at 7:38 pm

    holy moly that pumpkin bisque looks good! I miss running on the cliff walkway! your pictures are bringing back so many memories!


    Julie October 3, 2009 at 7:59 pm

    What a fun day! That bisque looks amazinggggg


    Meg C. October 3, 2009 at 8:15 pm

    i love newport… it’s so cute! sorry today was such a crappy weather day. that pumpkin bisque looks awesome though, and that yellow brick road ice cream does too. i think i have to go get some of that asap!


    Cara October 3, 2009 at 8:17 pm

    That pumpkin soup looks divine. Can’t wait to hear your exciting news!!


    kay (eating machine) October 3, 2009 at 8:28 pm

    mmm that soup sounds yummy!


    Meredith (Pursuing Balance) October 3, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    That pumpkin bisque looks so rich!


    Jessica @ How Sweet It Is October 3, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    Wow pumpkin bisque? YUMM!!


    Kelsey October 3, 2009 at 10:12 pm

    haha oh my god pumpkin in soup form is my kind of meal!
    the paintings are gorgeous! ive never heard of that artist before, but now im going to research and ‘browse’ :]


    Bekah October 3, 2009 at 10:21 pm

    Looks like a fun, relaxing vaca.
    can’t wait to hear the exciting news! (this is the first time i’ve stumbled upon a picture of your hubby, you guys are so cute! love seeing a happy couple. 🙂 )

    chocolate, with peanut butter cookie dough? not surprised it hit the spot.


    Lynn (The Actors Diet) October 3, 2009 at 10:41 pm

    that soup looks insane!


    Melissa October 3, 2009 at 10:55 pm

    I was about to leave a comment on how great the soup looked….and it seems like everyone else thought so too. I crave pumpkin from October-the end of November!


    Lizzy October 3, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    i wish the event would have been better, but atleast it was fun to go as “media”


    Kat (Kat's Daily Plate) October 3, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    Looks like you are really enjoying your trip… You and Mal make such a cute couple!


    BroccoliHut October 3, 2009 at 11:58 pm

    Yum! I love pumpkin based soups! Oh wait, I like anything even remotely related to pumpkin…


    Karina (Like Some Cat from Japan) October 4, 2009 at 12:18 am

    Oh fall and its’ pumpkins! I love it!
    It looks like you are having a great time, sure hope you are


    Keri October 4, 2009 at 12:23 am

    Why can’t anywhere I live have fun foodie events like that?! That pumpkin soup sounds SO delicious! Any ideas as to what is in it and if it can be recreated? If you attempt at making any of these pumpkin dishes you have been consuming you best be letting us know the recipes! 🙂


    Stef October 4, 2009 at 1:22 am

    I love reading your blog and all your positive energy. I have been following you for a couple months now. I just wanted to let you know that I awarded your blog with the Kreativ Blogger Award.


    Katelyn October 4, 2009 at 8:42 am

    The pumpkin bisque looks so good and instantly made me jealous! 🙂 However, I agree the salad doesn’t look very good. Sorry about that!


    Cynthia (It All Changes) October 4, 2009 at 9:07 am

    I get annoyed when garden salads aren’t salads but more lettuce or greens.

    Hope you had a great time at dinner 🙂


    CaSaundra October 4, 2009 at 9:09 am

    You always go to such fun events!! And you review/recap so great, it almost makes me feel as if I attented the event myself 🙂 (wish I did!)


    Katie (ARunningStart) October 4, 2009 at 10:05 am

    That soup looks so good! I really need to get more creative with my friend Mr. Pumpkin. He’s got so many ways he can be used that I never even think of. 🙂 Looks like you guys are still having fun inspite of the weather.


    Tina October 4, 2009 at 3:20 pm

    I actually went to the Taste of Bethesda yesterday and I thought the same thing. I expected to try tons of different little samples, but ended up getting only one dish of pad thai that totally filled me up. It was delicious, but I wish I could’ve tried more.

    And that pumpkin soup! Never seen one that looks that good. And ohhh my, ever since I read about that B&J flavor I’ve been dying to try it!!


    Jenna October 4, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    sorry your lunch wasn’t good, but the ice cream sure makes up for it!



    Kelly April 28, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    I ate there during restaurant week. In fact I think we sat at the same table you did. It was a huge dissapointment. Worst lobster roll I have ever tasted, rubbery and double cooked. Too bad the food doesn’t match up to the decor!


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