Article by Sam Dostaler
The early November wind was whipping, some sleet had fallen earlier in the day but that wasn’t going to stop us from making the trip down to the Dog Watch Cafe in Stonington, Connecticut. Situated at Dodson’s Boatyard the Dog Watch Cafe offered our party a delicious meal in a cozy environment.
On this Saturday afternoon the crowd appeared to be mostly locals with the exception of a party of four sitting to our right that was visiting the Connecticut shore from Maine. Our group was seated in the main dining room with the bar to our left and views of the ocean to our right. During our meal the weather beaten windows afforded us views of anchored boats swaying on the choppy seas, rain moving majestically across the skyline and as we were leaving a vibrant sunset.
We did notice that the bar seating may be the most popular place in the entire restaurant as throughout our visit names were added and erased from a white board waiting list for seats.
Upon our arrival we were cheerfully greeted at the door by the hostess and after being seated we quickly went to work scanning the menu. With the chill of the outside still being shook off we were drawn to the Lobster Bisque as a starter to go along with the Scallops & Bacon appetizer.
Of the appetizers the highlight was no doubt the Scallops & Bacon. The dish included five scallops wrapped in maple smoked bacon and if that wasn’t enough some maple was drizzled on each scallop. Each bite was bursting with flavor and we had to do everything in our power to not eat each scallop in a single bite.
For the main course we elected to go with the Whole Belly Clams, Shrimp Scampi and Dogwatch Seafood Fra Diavolo.
The Whole Belly Clams came as a large helping and were fried to perfection. We also liked how the waiter offered a substitute for the coleslaw which we switched out for onion rings to go along with the french fries that already came with the dish.
A half dozen of sizable shrimp came as part of the Shrimp Scampi. With each bite the shrimp popped of freshness and there was enough shrimp that you were able to easily distribute it throughout the meal. Tossed in a white wine, butter herb sauce the dish had a sweet taste that is enjoyable throughout. We choose to go with linguine but the diner can also opt for the entree to be served over brown rice.