Five New England Hotels With Excellent Food

As the weather warms upOne might seek a change of scenery – and some restaurants worth visiting. These five New England inns and boutique hotels, with stunning surroundings and convenient amenities, fit the bill, each serving food that’s guaranteed to drive from Boston.

Gurney Newport Resort & Marina

Newport, Rhode Island

Gurney’s Newport Resort and Marina is a coastal enclave on Goat Island, surrounded by sweeping views of Newport Harbor and Narragansett Bay. In fact, all 257 rooms and suites offer views of the water, with soothing beach tones finding their way into the minimalist décor.

Work up an appetite by exploring downtown Newport – a short walk away – and back to the hotel for drinks, oyster snacks, and more in the lounge with outdoor fire pits on the deck, which is set to reopen later this month.

Meanwhile, on-site restaurant Showfish looks to other beaches for inspiration, with its “Best of the Hamptons” menu based on Gurney’s Star Island in Montauk, New York. A lighted, window-panelled dining room invites diners to dine in for breakfast and lunch, with offerings of eggs Benedict (choose to add homemade crab hash), mint roast chicken, and confit-lit English pea risotto. Dinner also makes waves with an emphasis on seafood, such as the “angry lobster” featuring a pound and a half of lobster served with fluffy white bread for dunking in fermented sriracha and house-made fire, along with grilled halibut with lobsters, quinoa, and butter Miso brown blanc.

Mayflower Inn & Spa

Washington, Connecticut

Should winter trapped inside trigger the urge to splurge, take a dip at the Mayflower Inn & Spa. The Washington, Connecticut retreat features 30 rooms and three standalone cottages on a luxurious, country estate-like backdrop of 58 landscaped acres. Some suites offer fireplaces and private balconies overlooking the woods or gardens, with an on-site furniture store called Huntress offering a bit of retail therapy.

If relaxation and comfort are more your speed, the 20,000-square-foot wellness facility, Well at Mayflower Inn, features an indoor spa pool, as well as an outdoor pool for the warmer months, along with fitness classes, massages, and other treatments.

For dining, the aptly named Garden Room Restaurant overlooks Shakespeare Garden and delights in seasonal New England food. The upscale restaurant offers a sumptuous four-course menu – with dish options including chilled local oysters with marinated pork fat and mignonette foam, and duck breast with wine poached pears – as well as a six-course menu.

Those looking for snacks in a more relaxed atmosphere can enjoy the Tap Room, with pub fare and fun bar snacks. Menus rotate at both points frequently, which is even more reason for the return trip.

Red Lion Inn

Stockbridge, Massachusetts

While on trips to the Berkshires, why settle for one hotel when you can choose from a few unique inns in the small village of Stockbridge? Dating back to 1773, the 82-room Red Lion Inn’s main inn features rooms and suites that sing of antique and history-inspired details, from four-poster beds to ornate wall coverings. Then there’s the rustic country charm found among the 17 guest rooms of the detached Maple Glen Guesthouse, and unique village homes, perfect for booking a group vacation. To round out life in Norman Rockwell, choose Firehouse, a two-story guest house located in a former fire that was in use by the city until the 1950s.

Regardless of these retro-inspired napkins, the main house’s dining room currently serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner in a historic dining room showered with crystal chandeliers. Enjoy a sweet start to the day with Cinnamon French Toast made with Pittsfield Rye and Cinnamon Blend, served with English Cream and Berry Compote.

Lunch and dinner fare includes both traditional dishes and New England interpretations served on antique china, such as bowls of creamy homemade clam chowder and warm shepherd’s pie with venison and red wine topped with Duchess potatoes. Meanwhile, Widow Bingham’s more laid-back pub features filling favorites in a family-friendly setting, from turkey sandwiches with stuffing to fish and chips with beer-filled haddock from Barrington Brewery.

reluctant tiger

Manchester, Vermont

The name may sound hesitant, but feel free to stay at this luxurious 20-key hotel if your travels take you to Manchester Village in southern Vermont. Accommodations in the main house, the adjacent Carriage House, and the Mary Porter House include art-filled rooms where visitors rest by the fireplaces with a book in separate vintage-inspired sitting rooms. Additionally, the luxury suites feature bathtubs and private outdoor decks overlooking the grounds.

If you can pull yourself out of luxurious bedding, the on-site restaurant dishes out contemporary American fare for dinner, with an accompanying wine list that has received multiple shout-outs from Wine Spectator. Upscale dishes like lobster and fondue with pancetta slices and baguette for dipping, or crab-stuffed trout with creamy mushroom risotto and Chardonnay sauce, enriched with sustainably sourced, locally sourced ingredients. Grilled filet mignon with beef sourced from Boyden Farm up by Stowe might be the star of the menu, served with French fries and black garlic sauce.

Stage House Inn

South Berwick, Maine

The building that now houses the Stage House Inn in South Berwick, Maine, has seen a lot of life. First constructed as a family home, the venue was a pub (where the likes of President James Monroe and General Lafayette whistled), a convent, and more. In 2020, the new owners have revived the place as an inn rich with original details, from shelves to original stairs.

Spy on this past perfection at the on-site restaurant, Dufour, which is inspired by the building’s history as a nunnery of the Sisters of St. The fare has a French focus, from baked Camembert cheese coated in delicious pastry topped with local honey and topped with candied walnuts, pears and cranberry sauce, to rich rabbit sauce with hand-rolled garganelli pasta. The charcuterie plate, with a selection of local meats and cheeses along with Dufour home bread and pickles, is also the perfect snack.

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