Tried and True Guide to Parent’s Weekend

Parent’s Weekend is always a little stressful–what exactly your parents are going to do for three days? I’m sure they’ll be busy with whatever you have planned for them, and they’re going to get hungry… so send them on a food tour of New Haven. We’ve compiled a list of our favorite places for every meal, so matter what they’re in the mood for, Chew Haven has you covered.  Stress = relieved, stomach = satisfied. Updated for Parent’s Weekend 2014!


Orangeside on Temple: Home to some of the best donuts in America. We love their burgers and bacon-egg-and-cheese. Service can be iffy, so make sure you have some time.  $

Zoi’s on Orange: amazing sandwiches and salads if you’re around TD, and we hear their breakfast is one of the best around $

The Pantry: take advantage of your parents’ car (or go on a nice long stroll with them) to show them one of the best breakfast spots in the Have. Lines are long on weekends, but early birds/patient parents will find it worth every minute. $

Maison Mathis:  show your parents how food-trendy you are and take them to brand-new Maison for one of their egg, avocado, horseradish aoli breakfast sandwiches. $$

Rudy’s: It’s far enough from central campus that you’ll be able to avoid the Parent’s Weekend crowds. Head here for amazing french toast and omelets. No matter how early it is, make sure to get the Belgian frites with Rudy’s signature sauces. $$

Heirloom: Home to perfect blueberry buttermilk pancakes, a fluffy fritatta, and one of the greatest comfort dishes around: grilled cheese with tomato soup. $$$

challah at me

Rudy’s french toast


Quick Lunch

Meat and Co.: These sandwiches will blow your mind. If you’re out late this weekend, they stay open until 3 am on Friday and Saturday!

Shake Shack: with a line much shorter than most of the Shake Shacks in NYC, stop here for a quick Shack Burger and special Yale concretes. $

Louie’s Lunch: a popular spot with visitors, try coming at a less popular time to try what’s allegedly the birthplace of the burger. Really cool interior but hard to find a table. $

Sababa: if you’re around TD, check out Sababa on Whitney Ave for incredible falafel and shawarma. $

Tikkaway Grill: like Chipotle but for Indian food, one of the best new additions to New Haven’s food scene. Tell Gopi we say hi! $

Book Trader’s: for the literary-inclined parents, order sandwiches like the Jane Rare. Lots of delicious baked goods too! Our favorites are their micro-muffins. $

Chicken + rice bowl at Tikkaway

Chicken + rice bowl at Tikkaway


Everything else


Pepe’s and Sally’s in Wooster square and Modern on State Street: Parent’s weekend is the perfect time to try these classic New Haven pizza spots, especially if your parents have a car and you have time to wait in line for some of the most famous pizza in the northeast. Try a calzone at Modern, too! $

Da Legna is another new favorite of ours, with artisanal pizzas and small plates that are perfect to mix and match. $

BAR: The bacon-mashed-potato white pizza is a must-try (although my parents prefer the simpler pizzas) and the BAR salad with candied walnuts and pear is delicious. Better to get takeout and picnic outside as they don’t take reservations for parties under 10 and there is often a long wait. $$

Funghi pizza at Da Legna

Funghi pizza at Da Legna


Miso: everyone who know’s what’s up will tell you that Miso has the best sushi in the Have. Students don’t frequent it enough with Sushi on Chapel right on campus, but it’s so worth the extra four blocks. $$

Sushi on Chapel: reliably good sushi and convenient location, but don’t come if you’re in a rush – the service is pretty slow. $$

Kumo (also hibachi): definitely come for the hibachi and ask for Tony as your chef! if your parents are the partying types, don’t be afraid to order M&D a scorpion bowl to share. $$$

International options:

Olea: Ibiza may have closed, but one of the owners opened a similar Spanish restaurant in the same location. This upscale restaurant on High Street does Spanish-Mediterranean like no one around. $$$$

Thai Taste and Bangkok Gardens (Thai): half a block away from eachother, these two Thai restaurants always satisfy and are nice to bring parents to. My grandma’s favorite New Haven dish is the Pad See Ew at Thai Taste. $

Rubamba (Latin): If your family has never had an arepa, solve this dire problem ASAP and take them to Rubamba. $

Skappo (Italian small plates): Family-owned and run, Skappo is a unique Italian spot whose small plates can be shared family-style. Don’t miss the black truffle crostini, the ricotta cheese gnocchi, and their meatballs (a special)! $$

Zaroka (Indian): If you’re in the mood for curry and amazing tandoori food, this is our favorite Indian restaurant in New Haven. The NYT also gave Zaroka their stamp of approval in a review last year. $$

Thali Too (vegetarian Indian food): Vegetarian parents will rejoice at Thali Too’s wide range of options, especially if it’s nice out and you can sit outside at their beautiful new patio. $$

Barcelona (Spanish tapas): Your parents will love this trendy tapas spot. The hangar steak is my favorite steak in New Haven, and the herbed goat cheese and mushrooms is a must-order dish. Don’t miss the octopus if you really know your Spanish cuisine. $$$

Soul de Cuba (Cuban): The menu at Soul de Cuba is unique, and we especially like their appetizers – don’t miss the ceviche and fried plantains. The food is on the salty side here, though, so don’t bring a parent with high blood pressure… $$$

Pacifico (Latin): We like to order from the tapas menu here. The shredded duck quesadilla, stone bowl guacamole, and tres leches for dessert are some of our favorites. $$$

Basta (Italian): You can’t go wrong at Basta, our favorite Italian restaurant in the Have. Anonna’s meatballs leave us dreaming about them for months afterwards, and the farfalle funghi is unbeatable. $$$

Union League Cafe (French): One word to describe this restaurant: classy. Come for the French food, the drinks, and dessert. $$$$

Roia (French/Italian): This beautiful new restaurant is definitely worth a visit. We loved the duck. But beware: their bathroom sinks are outside of their bathrooms, so you’ll face a public shaming if you don’t wash up after a bathroom break. $$$$

Scallops at Olea

Scallops at Olea


Oak Haven Table and Bar: We were excited when the owners of Oak Haven invited us to try their new restaurant last winter. The NY Times thought it was good too- we couldn’t agree more. It’s a 5 minute drive, located in the neighborhood of East Rock. $$$

Prime 16: This is next on my parents’ list, because I won’t shut up about the cajun patty melt. I recommend that or the cowboy burger, with truffle parmesan fries. SO GOOD. $$

Kitchen Zinc: For a relaxed, contemporary atmosphere and delicious artisanal pizzas, come to Kitchen Zinc. Their pizzas are delicious and can be made gluten-free! $$

Rudy’s: We love Rudy’s for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Highlights are their burgers and their insanely good fries with dozens of dipping sauces to choose from. Rudy’s also has a cool 1950s-diner atmosphere. $$

116 Crown: Although 116 Crown is known for its legendary cocktails, it’s also one of my favorite underrated spots for dinner. Personal pizzas, burrata, homemade pasta, and, of course, shoestring truffle fries. Unreal. $$

Caseus: A classic New Haven restaurant, bring your parents here as long as they’re lactose-tolerant. Must-order is the grilled cheese and/or mac and cheese. Their French Onion soup and their burgers are also great. $$$

Heirloom: Four words: baked local warm ricotta. Some more words: roast chicken, steak frites, hamburger. $$$$

Zinc: You can’t go wrong with Zinc. I always get their Vietnamese chicken with black rice, but the scallops are also tasty. For foodie parents who want organic food. $$$$

Meatball small plate at Oak Haven

Meatball small plate at Oak Haven



Mochi Store: My favorite is the strawberry/dark chocolate combo. $

Ashley’s: This delicious ice cream is a must-try when visiting Yale. $

Chocolat Maya: Our favorite chocolate/dessert/wine bar, which opened on High Street last year. Conveniently located near to Old Campus, so you don’t want to miss this.  $$

The Green Teahouse: This teahouse has food but we would go for the individual pots of tea with cookies on the side. Great alternative to a coffee shop with a soothing atmosphere. $$

Heirloom: The perfect spot for a nice sit-down dessert- don’t miss the hot apple cider donuts. YUM. $$

Sweet Mary’s bakery: Tucked away on Court St. just past the green, this adorable cupcake shop is perfect for your parents to pick up cupcakes for your suitemates. Also take a bite out of their delicious rice krispie treats. $$

Cupcakes at Sweet Mary's

Cupcakes at Sweet Mary’s

One thought on “Tried and True Guide to Parent’s Weekend

  1. Pingback: Restaurant Week: Heirloom at The Study | chew haven

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