Restaurants in Manchester, CT

Just east of Hartford, the city of Manchester is home to a branch of Pepe’s Pizza (a brand that has expanded with no loss of quality) as well as to the unique Shady Glen Dairy Bar. Yes, Shady Glen is an ice cream shop, and a darn good one, but cheeseburgers are its specialty. Not unlike the Squeezeburger of Sacramento, California, this burger comes to the table or counter with virtual wings of cheese all around it, like some sort of hybrid cross of hamburger and big blooming flower. Curiously, Manchester is home to a Quebecois diner, Chez Ben, where poutine is made in the traditional way as well as in a breakfast version for which French fries are replaced by home fries and sausage accompanies the cheese curds.  You can even get that rustic Quebec favorite, creton (cold pork spread) with your toast in lieu of Smucker’s jelly. Note that north of Manchester in the town of Vernon is Rein’s deli, an old-fashioned source of high-rise smoked-meat sandwiches, chopped liver, matzoh balls, latkes, and New York cheesecake.

Manchester’s Most Famous Dishes

Cup of French fries with brown gravy and cheese curds

Poutine

Two mugs of coffee, each with a tiny glass pitcher of chilled milk to add

Coffee

Char-crusted pizza speckled with clams, garlic, and herbs

White Clam Pizza

Individual tomato pies contain stewed tomatoes and melted cheese enclosed in a savory pastry cup

Tomato Pie (South)

Manchester’s Best Restaurants

Pepe’s Pizzeria Napoletana of Manchester

MANCHESTER, CT

Chez Ben Diner

MANCHESTER, CT

Shady Glen

MANCHESTER, CT

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Picnic table holds a plastic cup with a balance of lemonade and ice tea ... Maine lobster roll

Yankee Grape-Nuts

Originally marketed in 1897 to compete with granula, which was the predecessor to granola, Grape-Nuts is an unlikely fun dessert. But in the world of Yankee cookery, the little...

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