When summer rolls around, we South Countyites like to pretend that we’re tourists right along with the out-of-towners. We indulge more often in Sunday brunch, take a picnic to the beach, or find a place near a water view to sip and sup. You can do all three in quite wonderful ways at the Cooked Goose, near Watch Hill.
Three years ago, owner Jennifer Gibson took over a successful catering business at this spot — they still do catering as well as breakfasts and lunches — and turned it into a neighborhood gathering spot, with daily newspapers, wi-fi, comfortable couches inside, and umbrella-covered tables outside. The staff is upbeat and welcoming, the food goes way beyond the ordinary, and there’s even a water view of Spring Pond, an inlet of Little Narragansett Bay.
|The Cooked Goose | 401.348.9888| 92 Watch Hill Rd, Westerly | Sun-Sat, 7 am-7 pm [summer] | Major credit cards | Beer + wine | Sidewalk-level accessible|
We often take these touristy opportunities when friends visit Rhode Island, and this time it was former locals Yvette and Gabriel. The Goose’s menu listings are so enticing that it took all of us quite a while to make our choices. While we pondered, Bill and Yvette were treated to respective carafes of caf and de-caf coffee, and I all but inhaled a cup of cocoa, liberally decorated with whipped cream and chocolate syrup and delightfully tasting of bittersweet chocolate, setting us off on stories of hot chocolate in Italy and France.
Bill has a thing for truffles, so the “Cooked Goose truffled eggs” ($10.95) were right up his alley, and his was the first firm decision. Yvette came next, with eggs Benedict Florentine ($8.95). Gabriel followed, after prompts from his tablemates for omelet fillings, with his own combo of mushrooms and asparagus ($7.50). And then I opted for the buttermilk pan-cakes, with add-ins of bananas and chocolate chips ($9.50).
The truffled eggs were baked in two cut-out circles of a large slice of country white bread — those circles were buttered and set on each side of the plate, reminiscent of goose eggs somehow. Fontina was melted on top, the asparagus was served on the side, and the white truffle oil was liberally sprinkled over all. Bill and I agreed that this was one of the few times we could truly taste the truffle oil, and it was delish.
Yvette, meanwhile, was exclaiming over the generous amount of fresh spinach under her poached eggs, the addition of sliced tomato, and the delicate Hollandaise sauce. We all nibbled at it and agreed with her.
I also liked Gabriel’s omelet, for the crisp asparagus inside that had been chopped so that the dish didn’t become too complicated to cut into. Both the eggs Benedict and the omelet were accompanied by large chunks of home-fried red bliss potatoes, nicely spiced and herbed with paprika and thyme.
My pancakes were the fluffy kind, a sweet ending to samples of everyone’s egg dishes, with plenty of chips in each bite. Other possible add-ins are blueberries, strawberries, dried cher-ries, and cinnamon sugar.