Locals and visitors adore the iconic shoreline community of Mystic with its stunning natural vistas, beautifully maintained historic homes, unique museums and attractions, award-winning dining and charming shops. Enduring memories are forged with fun activities and meals, celebrations, romantic getaways, and family reunions. All of these things are still true even with social distance guidelines.
With warm weather’s arrival, now is a perfect time to enjoy an al fresco burger and fries from Engine Room, roasted chicken at Grass & Bone, omelets and salads at Mystic Diner, or fish and chips from Friar Tuck’s Tavern. Or maybe you’re in the mood for ramen and sushi from Samurai Noodle or charcuterie and croissants from Sift Bakeshop. Don’t decide yet because you can also dine outdoors at Jealous Monk, Pink Basil, or Rocks 21. Yum!
If you’d rather pick up food to enjoy at home, try hot or cold lobster rolls from The Mariner or Ryan’s Pub, or summer salads and Mason jar drinks from Chapter One. Maybe you’re in the mood for lobster and tomato fettuccini from Bravo Bravo or grab and go sandwiches from Captain Daniel Packer Inne. There’s nothing as magical as a meal of vegan tacos on the garden patio at S&P Oyster. Red 36, Dog Watch Café and Breakwater are open in Stonington. Wander around and check on social media to see what kinds of amazing food awaits you and if you need to order ahead or request a reservation for an outdoor table. Order directly from the restaurants rather than through a phone app and don’t forget Mystic Drawbridge Ice Cream for the perfect walking treat.
If you’re already downtown, notice how many stores have opened up. You’re welcome to come into the stores, a few at a time, with face masks on. There are wonderful people ready to help you from a safe distance. Don’t you miss shopping for the best art, clothes, and home furnishings? The store owners and employees miss you too. Big smiles are easy to see even through those face masks. Discover downtown’s newest addition, Danforth Pewter, American pewter from Vermont.
At Olde Mistick Village you’ll stroll along beautiful fresh air paths. Do you smell the enticing aroma of Mango’s Wood Fired Pizza and the cocoa scented air from Munson’s Chocolates? Notice the gorgeous ornaments, clothing, olive oil and children’s clothing in the stores. This is a terrific place to shop. Please wear your face mask and pay attention to the number of people allowed in the store at one time.
Keep a look out for a new donut shop at 46 W. Main St. from the folks at Sift Bakeshop and a coffee shop at 8 Steamboat Wharf. The folks who know Mystic well are sinking roots into new businesses for us to enjoy. Keep an eye on Oyster Club’s rooftop deck renovation for refreshing treehouse dining this summer.
Visit the outdoor exhibits at Mystic Seaport Museum and Mystic Aquarium or rent a kayak or SUP board. Charter a private boat for your family. Fields of Fire offers a challenging ropes course for the moderately athletic, and fresh air hiking is available at Barn Island Wildlife Management Area in Stonington and Bluff Point State Park in Groton.
Remember where you created your most cherished memories and make plans to go again. The best way to ensure our favorite places will remain in business for years to come is to support them right now. Your taste buds are getting tired of your own cooking anyway while delicious, freshly-prepared food is available for safe, contact-free take-out. You deserve a treat and Mystic restaurants will be open for 50% capacity indoor dining beginning June 17th.
Graduations, birthdays, and special occasions are opportunities for gift-giving. Before you buy through Amazon or a big box store, please consider shopping and eating locally. Some local stores offer online shopping and even free delivery. Check often as discounts, details, and hours of operation may change at any time. Local toy stores have the toys, puzzles, and creative kits your kids need. Kitch is packed with gorgeous, useful kitchen items. True Value Hardware, Keith’s Appliances, and Shore TV & Appliance all sell the new gas and charcoal grills you’ve been wishing for.
Ocean fresh oysters, lobsters, and fish are often available directly from harvesters. Lobsters are sometimes sold from boats at local docks and Mystic Oysters in Noank sells oysters and fish directly to the public on Fridays and Saturdays. The beautiful Mystic area is ripe with dairy farms, vegetable farms, and other fresh food producers. The Velvet Mill in Stonington has an outdoor Farmer’s Market on Saturdays from 10-1 and the Denison Farmers Market located adjacent the Denison Homestead Museum begins its season on Sunday, June 7th. Seriously, everything you want and need is right here.
Abbott’s in the Rough sells prepared food like their iconic lobsters food but also fresh groceries. Terra Firma Farm offers their own dairy products for pick up and Grass and Bone has online grocery ordering for curbside pick-up. McQuade’s Marketplace and Mystic Market have prepared foods you cook at home and fully cooked dishes for easy meals.
It’s also time to schedule haircuts, massages, manicures, pedicures, and other pampering services. Or buy gift cards for yourself or others. Florists and garden centers offer curbside pick-up and brighten any day. Please wear your face mask, maintain a safe distance from others, wash your hands often, and tip well for service. Check on the hours and days each business is open.
Important to note, public restrooms are open…the family restroom in Mystic River Park, the public restroom on Water Street in Downtown Mystic, and restrooms at Olde Mistick Village as well.
Mystic is OPEN for BUSINESS. Please come and safely enjoy all it has to offer.