On the occasion of my 60th birthday this past weekend, Darlene and I had the opportunity to go out to dinner at what is my favorite restaurant in Manchester, NH – Richard’s Bistro at 36 Lowell Street. Richard himself has been part of Manchester’s culinary tradition for a very long time and his Bistro, now in it’s 15th year, has always been, as is still, absolutely amazing. From the location to the atmosphere to the menu to the ambiance to the staff, every single detail is quite remarkable. Richard, and his executive chef Matthew Provencher, continue to find tantalizing treatments to old favorites as well as new tastes to explore. Having been there many times since we opened the Ash Street Inn 10 years ago, I can assure you that you are going to fall in love with Richard’s also!
Not that Richard’s is the only great choice to make when choosing a restaurant in Manchester. I did have to consider Darlene’s favorite restaurant, Piccola Italia Ristorante, just down the street at 827 Elm Street. Giovanni and Rosa Paolini have done a fantastic job bringing authentic Italian cuisine to Manchester in a setting that truly brings the tastes, sounds and sights of Italy to everyone. The menu is expansive and includes traditional and well as modern Italian favorites. From the paintings and decoration to the wonderful aromas wafting from the kitchen, you are immediately immersed in a Mediterranean setting. Everything is made from scratch and all the ingredients are the finest imaginable! I tend to order the house risotto with gorgonzola and pears but everything we have ever tried is great. Makes it hard to choose a place to eat.
But choose I did. Our dearest friends from college days were taking us out to dinner and insisted that I choose my “favorite” place so Richard’s won. And for someone turning 60, great friends, great drink and a great dinner are the makings of a meal of a lifetime!