Rhode Island is often seen as an urban state with little in the way of open space. But this could not be further from the truth. Consider the stretch of Route 95 between the Providence area and the Connecticut border; this nearly 30-mile stretch of highway is easily one of the most rural and desolate sections of Route 95 between Maine and Virginia. And restaurants? Well, there are almost none between Warwick, a city that represents the outer edge of the greater Providence area, and Westerly, a restaurant-rich community that borders Connecticut. But all is not lost if you are in need of food between these two places; there is actually a rather interesting restaurant in the tiny village of Wyoming called Boucher's Wood River Inn, which is indeed a real oasis in the wide open spaces of Southwest Rhode Island.
Boucher's Wood River Inn seems to be the centerpiece of Wyoming, a rural, dusty community less than a mile off of Route 95. The rambling old structure is dates all the way back to 1850 and almost looks like it might have been a stagecoach stop in an earlier day. The space inside is as charming as the exterior of the building, with a dark and rustic barroom that seems like it would be more at home in the state of Wyoming rather than in Wyoming, RI, and a couple of comfortable dining areas, one of which has a similarly rustic feel and includes a large stone fireplace.
The food at Boucher's Wood River Inn is mostly traditional American, with all the familiar dishes that you would expect at a family-friendly restaurant such as this. Soups, salads, and sandwiches are all offered here, as well as a variety of steak, chicken, and seafood dishes. One rather unusual highlight of the menu is the bistro burger, which consists of two hamburger patties vying for space with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and onions. What makes this dish a bit offbeat is the fact that a knife sticks out of the burger, and several onion rings are tossed around it, like a tower. Add to this a whole mess of fries with the dish and you have a meal that will keep you filled up for many hours. Depending on when you go to Boucher's Wood River Inn, you might catch some live music, as they do have entertainment here.
While not a gourmet spot and probably not the type of place people go out of their way for, Boucher's Wood River Inn is a friendly, comfortable place with a good dose of history mixed in, and is a real find in a very quiet part of Rhode Island that has very little in the way of dining options. For those who have always wondered whether there is anyplace worth stopping at between Providence and the Connecticut border, Boucher's Wood River Inn might just be what you're looking for.
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