A day in the Mill City (Manchester NH) April 08
The local weathermen here in RI forecasted a typical late April Day here in Rhode Island for yesterday, apparently Southern New Hampshire was going to experience the same.
I decided to take a day trip to Manchester, New Hamsphire's largest city to see a New Hamsphire Fisher Cats game since it's only an hour and 45 minutes away. The New Hampshire Fisher Cats are the AA minor league team for the Toronto Blue Jays. They hosted the Bowie Baysox (AA for The Orioles).
The Ballpark is only 3 years old and this is my 2nd visit. My first visit was the year it opened in 2005 and the ballpark seemed "unfinished" when I first visited. Now it's complete and established with a Sam Adams bar and grill out in Center Field and a brand new Hilton Hotel next to that. I managed to dodge the $10 parking lots and found off street parking about 1/4 mile from the ballpark.
I decided to have lunch at the ballpark to save my appetite for dinner. There are some new concession stands at the ballpark one of which is "the Chowdah House" i ordered a so so lobster roll and an ok cup of chowdah. which ran me about $16 I also got a Smuttynose Pale Ale which was actually quite hoppy and I believe would have more appropriatey been labeled an "India Pale" or a "Bitter". Around the 5th inning, I tried Maine's Shipyard Export Ale which had some underlying hoppiness but not quite as sharp as the first beer.
After some rather weak pitching by the Fisher Cat's starter, the Mid relief came to the rescue and they beat the Baysox 6-2.
After the ballgame, I had plans to meet Cecif
at the Legendary Red Arrow Diner
in downtown Manchester. I had about an hour and a half to kill before hand so I strolled around the downtown area perusing a couple of shops that were actually open including a really cool sports memorabilia store.
I arrived at The Red Arrow and noticed that many famous celebrities have eaten there including Adam Sandler among others.
I arrived a few minutes early, and when Cecif called my cell and said she was a few minutes away, a booth was just being cleared away in the small and somewhat crowded 24 hour diner as it was preparing for the dinner rush.
For those who don't know, Manchester has a significantly large French Canadian population, so of course being a regionalist I ordered the Pork Pie with a side of Baked Beans, as well as Sweet Potato Fries which Cecif picked at.
The Pork Pie had a very moist flaky crust, and the brown gravy did not overwhelm the "oinky" ground pork interior. Cecif and I are in agreement that the beans contrary to prior discussion on the forum are definetely homemade, and are subtly sweet. The fresh cut sweet potato fries were also good and extremely addicting.
Cecif ordered the Chicken Fried Steak served with biscuits and a side of beans. Even though it was not "regionally appropriate" I didn't "melt" at the site of them contrary to what Bill Voss
previously inferred about me and besides Cecif really enjoyed them.
Our conversation consisted of Cecif's trip down South and how she wanted to check out Spoons BBQ in Charlotte for dinner but it was only open for lunch, this prompted a call the To The Travelin Man
who has the trade mark for Cecif's shared experience of being "Travelin Manned" in Charlotte. So while some folks were enjoying the roadfood tour in Ausin, we actually had a mini roadfood event at the Red Arrow Diner which we shared with the Travelin Man via cell phone.
Apparently being a first time visitor to the Red Arrow- the staff ring a bell in honor of that- they actually rang a bell twice since it was my first time there and although it was Cecif's 2nd visit- they failed to ring it upon her first visit.
Although we were too full to enjoy the Red Arrow's selection of Pies and Puddings, we did leave with a couple of homemade twinkies which I devoured when I got home later that evening.
We left the diner at around 7:30pm, and after a 15 minute walk to my car, I was home by 9:30pm.
I always enjoy sharing a meal with fellow roadfooders and I consider Cecif a friend among many others. I look forward to seeing everyone who is heading on the Connecticut Roadfood Tour next Saturday!
post edited by wanderingjew - 2013/10/04 20:40:45