Originally posted by Michael Stern
I remember whole fraternities coming to Custy's and having lobster-eating contests.
I too remember Custy's, formerly on Post Road in North Kingstown, RI, and the hordes that would descend on it for the all-you-can-eat lobster. To be frank, that place always kind of made me queasy - perhaps I was too young to appreciate it before it closed. The Nordic Lodge attracts some of the same kind of competitive eating stunts as Michael describes from local fraternites at URI, or least it did in the past.
I'm not experienced enough to comment on the best
buffets in America, but I can think of a few notable ones in this area. The Blackstone Valley, in northern RI and central MA, has a tradition of establishments offering family-style chicken dinners. This generally consists of all you want of rolls, salad, pasta with tomato sauce, potatoes and roasted chicken. The most well-known of these is probably Wright’s Farm (http://www.wrightsfarm.com/) in Burrillville, RI,although I make no claims that they are the best. I haven't been in many years, but I recall the rolls and chicken as very good, the rest as okay - certainly more than acceptable if you have a number of hungry kids to feed. They are not to be confused with the extraordinary dairy and bakery Wright's Dairy Farm, located in nearby North Smithfield, a true RI classic (website at http://www.wrightsdairyfarm.com.)
I personally enjoy the lunch buffets that can be sometimes found in Indian restaurants - A Taste of India on Wickenden St. in Providence still does one, I believe, and there was another (probably more than one) in Central Sq., Cambridge, that I used to visit now and again. Often very good and reasonably healthy food that one can indulge in without feeling too guilty. But oh my, how I wish there was a barbeque buffet around here...