When embarking on a Rhode Island vacation, you’re going to get hungry. You will of course want to know where to find the best restaurants in Rhode Island! If you’re looking for great RI places to eat, throughout the state, we’ve got them here.
Rhode Island has so many great spots for fresh caught seafood, classic RI diners, upscale restaurants, and everything in between, so whatever you’re in the mood for, you’re likely to easily find at one of these top restaurants in Rhode Island.
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Best Restaurants in Rhode Island
Matunuck Oyster Bar, Wakefield RI
One of the top seafood restaurants in Rhode Island, Matunuck Oyster Bar is always a good choice for where to eat in RI! Comfortable, yet classy, Matunuck Oyster Bar is well-suited for either dressing up on a date night or coming as you are to meet with friends at the end of the work day.
Priding themselves on their pond to plate offerings, the oysters are freshlty harvested from the same pond that provides the scenic views for this RI restaurant. On the menu at Matunuck Oyster Bar is a fantastic raw bar (obviously) and several other excellent seafood offerings, such as seared scallops and blackened yellowfin tuna. Matunuck Oyster Bar is open lunch through dinner all throughout the week, and the complimentary valet service makes the entire dining experience completely seamless from start to finish!
Corner Cafe, Newport RI
Corner Cafe in Newport is one of the best breakfast places in Rhode Island. With limited seating and a typical wait time, this cute corner cafe (literally situated on the corner) is absolutely adorable and understandably popular.
You’ll find all the great breakfast staples served up all day, like omelettes, egg scrambles, pancakes, french toast, and more, plus lunch offerings like sandwiches, burgers, and even pizza if you’re not in the mood for breakfast. Open for breakfast and lunch only Sunday through Wednesday, with extended dinner hours Thursday through Saturday.
15 Point Road Restaurant, Portsmouth RI
For fantastic waterfront dining in Rhode Island, check out 15 Point Road Restaurant on the Sakonnet River. With a casual coastal elegance, this Portsmouth restaurant is a great spot for a delicious dinner with friends and family or for a nice dinner date with waterfront views.
On the menu at 15 Point Road Restaurant are seafood dishes like bacon wrapped scallops and baked stuffed shrimp, and meat dishes like filet mignon and pasta primavera. Closed on Mondays, 15 Point Road is open every other day for dinner, so if you’re looking for dinner restaurants in Portsmouth RI, this one must be on the list!
Hemenways Restaurant, Providence RI
Hemenways Restaurant is one of the best restaurants in Providence RI and beyond, with an upscale yet approachable atmosphere. The black and white checkered floors are absolutely gorgeous!
You’ll find some of the best seafood in Rhode Island on the menu at Hemenways, including a shellfish tower and oysters from the raw bar, Rhode Island style calamari, and lobster tortelloni. Hemenways is open for lunch and dinner seven days a week, and this is a great spot for a nice lunch with friends or a romantic dinner night out in RI!
The Coast Guard House Restaurant, Narragansett RI
For a scenic dining experience in Narragansett, The Coast Guard House Restaurant is unparalleled. Situated right next door to The Towers, the views of this iconic Rhode Island structure are complemented by the beautiful Narragansett Bay, and there’s indoor and outdoor dining (including privated igloos in cold weather months) to choose from.
The Coast Guard House Restaurant has everything on the menu from fresh caught RI seafood to cider braised pork shank, and is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner. If you’re looking for scenic dining in Rhode Island, The Coast Guard House Restaurant in Narragansett is the perfect spot!
Massimo Ristorante, Providence RI
Voted one of the best restaurants in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly, Massimo Ristorante is one of the best Italian restaurants in Providence. This gorgeous Federal Hill restaurant has a warm, upscale atmosphere that is perfect for meet ups with friends and family or romantic dinner dates.
Only the finest authentic Italian cuisine is served at Massimo Ristorante, with several items – including mozzarella and organic wines – imported in from Italy. While Massimo Ristorante is open lunch through dinner throughout the week, they are a popular RI Sunday brunch spot, so if you’re looking for the best brunch in Providence, add it to the list!
The Nordic, Charlestown RI
The Nordic in Charlestown is one of the best buffets in RI, and while it is on the pricier end of this list of Rhode Island restaurants, the experience of dining at this unique buffet is well worth it! Not only is there a generous buffet full of excellent food options, but the grounds are absolutely gorgeous. In fact, you can opt for off the menu ordering if you’d like to dine lakeside at The Nordic.
The buffet is all you can eat lobster, filet mignon, scallops, crab, shrimp, and so much more, with a 2 hour time limit! There’s even a delicious gourmet dessert bar to cap the whole experience. Open Friday through Sunday mid-April to mid-December, it’s a RI buffet that absolutely must not be missed!
The Classic Cafe, Providence RI
Breakfast is served all day at The Classic Cafe, with plenty of options for eggs, omelettes, pancakes and more. Open 8am-2pm seven days a week, you’ve got plenty of time to make it down to this RI restaurant for breakfast!
Iggy’s Doughboys and Chowder House, Narragansett & Warwick RI
With locations in Narragansett and Warwick, Iggy’s Doughboys and Chowder House has received several notable accolades, including one of the Best Seafood Dives in America and the Best Clams in Rhode Island. Iggy’s has a casual and homelike atmosphere at all of their locations.
Of course, you know Iggy’s is known for their doughboys and their chowder, but you’ll find other great RI seafood staples like clam cakes, lobster rolls, and more! Iggy’s is open lunch through dinner throughout the week, so there’s always time to get your seafood fix.
The Capital Grille, Providence RI
One of the best restaurants in Rhode Island for fine dining, The Capital Grille is a stunning place to eat in downtown Providence. With a sleek glass exterior and a trendy, contemporary dining room, The Capital Grille is the perfect restaurant to go to if you want to get a little dolled up in PVD.
The menu at The Capital Grille has a great variety of offerings from sea and land, including seared salmon, fresh oysters, and a porcini rubbed bone in ribeye – yum! The Capital Grille is open for lunch and dinner throughout the week, and dinner only on the weekends.
Modern Diner, Pawtucket RI
In addition to being known as one of the best diners in Rhode Island, Modern Diner is also the first diner to be accepted onto the National Register of Historic Places! A meal at this RI diner means a meal in a beautifully kept Sterling Streamliner, manufactured in the late 1930s or early 1940s. The atmosphere in this RI diner is fun and casual.
You’ll need to look on The Wall for the daily specials when you come in, but you’ll find some crowd favorites at Modern Diner include the lobster cheese grits and the blueberry stuffed french toast. Open 7am-1pm throughout the week, Modern Diner is an excellent breakfast and lunch spot in Pawtucket.
Stanley’s Famous Hamburgers, Central Falls RI
Looking for the best burger places in Rhode Island? Head to Central Falls RI for Stanley’s Famous Hamburgers immediately! Serving up some of the best burgers in the state since 1932, you’ll love this retro diner and it’s fantastic offerings.
In addition to all the classic burger options available on the menu at Stanley’s Famous Hamburgers, there are also plate and seafood specials. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday, this is one of the top Rhode Island restaurants for when that burger craving hits!
Madeira Restaurant, East Providence RI
Interested in authentic Portuguese food in Rhode Island? Madeira Restaurant in East Providence is it! The dining room is comfortable, with plenty of space, but the real star of the show at Madeira is always the incredible eats!
You’ll find authentic Portuguese offerings on the menu at Madeira Restaurant like Portuguese Sausage and seafood dishes that highlight what they call “a taste of Madeira in the heart of New England.” Open for lunch through dinner seven days a week, Madeira is a great place to eat in RI with family and friends or as a laid back date night.
Beehive Cafe, Bristol RI
For a cozy cafe experience in Rhode Island, the Beehive Cafe in Bristol works well. The intimate dining room is perfect for meeting up with friends for a nice breakfast or lunch.
You’ll find artisan baked goods, hearty breakfast and lunch sandwiches, and coffees, teas, cocktails, beer, and more on the menu at Beehive Cafe. Their lemon ricotta pancakes are always a hit! This Rhode Island cafe is great for a casual meet up with your favorite people, and because it’s open 7am-4pm throughout the week, there’s plenty of time to make it to Beehive Cafe.
Brick Alley Pub and Restaurant, Newport RI
One of the most popular places to eat in Rhode Island, Brick Alley Pub and Restaurant is an iconic part of the Newport restuarant scene, and locals and visitors alike love the Newport nostalgia that decorates the walls of this cozy RI pub! It’s also been named one of the best restaurants in RI by RI Monthly Magazine.
On the menu at this Newport RI place to eat are all the seafood staples you’d expect in coastal RI like calamari, clam chowder, scallops, and more, but you’ll also find pub-style comfort foods like fish and chips, beef short rib sandwich, burgers, and pub style pizzas. Open lunch through dinner, seven days a week, there’s always time to grab a bite and a pint at this cozy Newport pub!
There are Rhode Island restaurants to satisfy just about every craving, and this isn’t a comprehensive list by any means! This list of the top places to eat in RI will at least give you a great starting point while planning out what RI restaurants to try out during your next visit.
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Amy Hartle is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of New England With Love, a comprehensive resource for travel in the New England region. Amy has been exploring New England since 2001. She lived in Vermont for many years and is a graduate of Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. On this site, Amy aims to share her love of New England and help you to have the best possible adventures!
Amy has been writing about travel for over a decade, and is a full time blogger, publishing both Two Drifters and Let’s Adventure Baby. When not traveling the world or creating epic blog content, Amy can be found cuddling with her husband, son, and cats, & drinking a maple latte.