Mystic Seaport serves up 700 gallons of chowder in seven varieties

About 700 gallons of chowder, ranging from staples like New England clam chowder to the more unique, like Bahamian Conch, were made for the three-day Chowder Days event going on this weekend at Mystic Seaport Museum.

The event, which has been going on for decades, started at the seaport's Chubb's Wharf with chowder, cider and museum staff dressed in costume, and has grown into a full-fledged affair that includes free hayrides on the seaport's 1929 Model A truck, lawn games and historical demonstrations.

Organizers said the event drew an estimated 1,200 people on Saturday, a cool, overcast day — ideal for slurping the seven different varieties of chowder on hand.

Elaine Davis of Fairfield, who came to the seaport to see the watercolors of British painter J.M.W. Turner currently on exhibit at the museum, tried the lobster bisque — one of the best she's had "by far" because it had the "right amount of sherry" — as well as the New England clam chowder and the vegan butternut squash bisque.

Michael St. Angelo, executive chef of Coastal Gourmet Catering, which made all the food, said he and his staff spent four days making chowder in preparation for the event.

While he always makes sure to have New England, Manhattan and Rhode Island clam chowders on the menu, he also enjoys "mixing it up a little" each year.

A few years back, St. Angelo created the Bahamian conch chowder, made with spicy tomato broth, conch, potatoes and garden vegetables, "that's been very well received," he said.

Chowder Days runs from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Monday. The cost of food is not included in museum admission (which is $28.95 for adults, $26.95 ages 65 and up, $24.95 ages 13-17, $18.95 ages 3-12, free for kids 2 and younger).

j.bergman@thday.com

From left, vegan butternut squash bisque, left, lobster bisque, center back, and New England clam chowder, right, are among several chowders and bisques available to choose from Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019, for the Chowder Tasting Trio during Chowder Days at the Mystic Seaport Museum.  (Dana Jensen/The Day)
From left, vegan butternut squash bisque, left, lobster bisque, center back, and New England clam chowder, right, are among several chowders and bisques available to choose from Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019, for the Chowder Tasting Trio during Chowder Days at the Mystic Seaport Museum. (Dana Jensen/The Day)

If you go

Chowder Days runs from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Monday. The cost of food is not included in museum admission (which is $28.95 for adults, $26.95 ages 65 and up, $24.95 ages 13-17, $18.95 ages 3-12, free for kids 2 and younger).

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