It is a brand spanking New Year and before I set sail for the lovely Warren and Bristol, I wanted to reflect a bit, no A LOT, on the incredible conveniences of Barrington businesses. I thought and thought about all the spots I love and rely on in town and then stopped at my top 10. There are WAY more than 10 places, but I HAD to stop at some point, and there is something about the number ten — maybe that perfect number, the famous numerical rating system, some numerological coincidental jackpot number, David Letterman, etc. Okay it’s all coming back to me now. Phew, take 10 deep breaths.
We all know that word of mouth can reveal hidden gems. Sometimes, the best conveniences are not even advertised publicly, yet, secretly admired and ultimately disclosed by “Suzy-Round-The-Corner”. Okay Suzy, move over, it’s my turn! Suzy please! Here I go on my list of 10 Barrington “Go-tos” or “Must-haves”.
To be fair, interesting and never boring, I asked my friend Jackie Ignall to join in on the fun. Jackie is a newbie to town, “right off the ferry.” She moved to Barrington from NYC a year and a half ago with her husband and two boys. Jackie is uber cool, fun, lovely, a freelance writer and has her own travel, beauty and lifestyle blog, Wander + Lash. Wicked cool.
So locals, take a look-see at my Top 10 List rounded off by the new girl in towns top ten. Perhaps you will discover a new gem — or two or three or TEN.
From Lil’ Rhody Native, The Top 10 List (not in order of importance or preference):
Marc Berry and Staff at Grapes & Grains — Marc is so knowledgeable, hilarious, and you can actually buy incredible wines less than ten minutes with his expertise and hustle.
Cooking Classes with Claire Moscrop at Hope & Main – Claire, a Barrington business owner and resident, is a nutritionist extraordinaire and has created children and adult culinary classes that transport you around the world as you make various and super healthy recipes. It’s only a short drive to her pristine kitchen space at Hope & Main in Warren.
Maria at Milan Fine Clothiers – Maria is a talented tailor who designed clothing way back for Donna Karan. She can custom hem a jean, create a dress or perfect your man’s suit. While there, you can pick up incredible men’s accessories or gorgeous menswear selections.
Serenity Nails –Tired of making appointments? Me too. Here you can get a 15-minute very professional massage with no appointment needed. Just pop in and ask for “The Chair.” Try this right after returning home from work. 15 minutes is $13 and if extra stressed try the 30-minute massage for $26.
Catering and Prepared Foods from Blue Kangaroo– Their catering is professional, tasty and comes with no fuss. I love the take out and prepared foods as well (and so does David).
Independent Fitness with Chris Geagon– Chris has taken the “Just Do It” model and actually lives and breathes it, and has been for like the past 30 years. He trains all ages, abilities and sizes and custom creates your very own workout. NO EXCUSES. Make it burn. No pain, no gain.
Beautiful Hostess Gifts, wrapped and ready, from Daisy Dig’ins, Hollies and Linen and Concrete – The solution to the last minute, “Oh my goodness, I have nothing and the party is in an hour” gift panic. Or anytime you want to gift yourself or someone else can be found at these places.
Quench Juicery and Pilates Reformer at Studio 47 -This is the new way ladies “do coffee.” We do group reformer class, we laugh, we exercise, we firm, we tone, and we talk about Stuff. We leave with these divine vegan cocktails of fresh pressed juices from Quench for home savoring or as a detox après trip/holiday. We are happy.
Gray Jewelers– Dahling, my baubles are dirty! Not any more. Fly into Grays and get your baubles professionally sparkled, get your watch adjusted, or better yet buy a watch. Presto! While there, admire the endless rows of major bling, visions of leaving as a young Elizabeth Taylor in a flowing caftan with Richard Burton at your beck and call. If really lucky, create a wish list for your special someone and see it appear. Timeless watches, estate jewelry and pampered customer service.And now, last but never, ever least, my number 10 Barrington “Go-To” and “Must-Have”.
Narragansett Bay – See it, swim it, sail it, fish it, boat it, play in it. How fortunate we are to have this beautiful, resource in our backyard, forever there for us to explore and revel in its glory. No purchase necessary. The Big Apple approves too.
Top 10 Places from Big Apple Girl, Jackie Ignall
Table – Everything at this cozy bistro is always fresh and tasty. Owner Claude really goes above and beyond at making your meal a memorable one. Their salmon entree is my absolute favorite – perfect for when I want more fish in my diet and eat healthy. Plus, they do takeout.
Linen and Concrete — This new shop on Maple Ave carries beautiful housewares to refresh the home —think stylish pillows, serving ware and table linens — but I especially love coming here for the selection of stylish and cool jewelry, which also make great gifts.
Grapes & Grains– their staff is always so helpful and knowledgeable and manager Marc Berry actually got me hooked on some new varietals that I never drank before (goodbye sauvignon blanc). It’s also a spot where you can grab some beverages and pick up extra items such as chocolates, cured meats and locally made groceries from Hope & Main in Warren.
Barrington Books— love browsing this shop for toys and books for my kids, magazines, the latest best sellers and their good selection of gifts for the home.
Tillinghouse RISD Beach> – I only stumbled upon this beach a few months ago and it has become a family favorite for leisurely walks on the beach in the off season.
Cardioglow— Known for their dance cardio classes, this fitness studio carries a great selection of fashion-forward workout gear that will make you stand out in the crowd.
Tong-D – I miss a lot of the ethnic restaurant options living in a big city, and this Thai place is my go-to for take out when I don’t want to cook and want some flavorful spicy eats.
Persimmon Provisions— A great local butcher shop, but they also carry a good selection of gourmet cheeses, which are perfect for when you throw a last-minute gathering or have out of town guests.
Studio 47 — Whether it’s a barre class or a Pilates reformer, this studio will help tone you up and burn calories. They also offer good-for-you juice cleanses from Quench Juicery, which is great when you want a little detox or hit the reset button.
Black Pear— This new spot in town serves up a selection of good breakfast and lunch items, but I specifically love how they sell Seven Stars Bakery bread (no more trips to Providence for my favorite carbs) and pantry items made right here in Lil Rhody.
So, there ya’ have it! Happy New Year!