The Thrifty New England Traveler is a blog of VisitingNewEngland.com, the travel site for New England.

Budget Meal-Friendly Captain Parker Chowder to be Available in Many Cape Cod Restaurants and Delis

Picture of Capt. Parker's New England clam chowder

Capt. Parker's Clam Chowder (photo, courtesy Cape Public relations

New England clam chowder is not only wired into our New England DNA and part of our local essential food pyramid chain, but it is also a mighty filling, inexpensive meal when looking for something to eat in our region.  Although categorized as an appetizer, I have often been content with just a cup or bowl of clam chowder. It sure saves on money as a cup of this delicious New England version of soup often comes in at less than $5 and a bowl under $6

We have many favorite New England clam chowders at local restaurants. It is, in fact, difficult for a quality restaurant to mess up New England clam chowder (although a famous Connecticut waterfront restaurant that will go unnamed screwed up royally on our last visit).

If I had to choose three amazing New England clam chowders, however, they would be Legal Sea Foods (various locations), the Cape Neddick Lobster Pound in York Beach, Maine, and Captain Parker’s Restaurant and Pub in Yarmouth, Mass. Each restaurant makes a full-bodied, creamy, thick and full of clams that combines the right mix of ingredients — thus tasting better than other clam chowders we have experienced, in our opinion.

Marci Tyldesley, of Cape Public relations, just made our day by letting us know that Captain Parker’s chowder will be available in restaurants and delis from Plymouth to Provincetown. This will, no doubt, be a tremendous and tasty convenience when visiting the Cape Cod area. Here is the press release:

Yarmouth, Mass. – Captain Parker’s award-winning chowder will soon be served at dozens of delis and restaurants across Cape Cod and the South Shore. Gerry Manning, founder and owner of Captain Parker’s Pub and Restaurant in Yarmouth, launches the Captain Parker’s Chowder Company this month.

The chowder, known for its hearty creaminess and consistency, will be available in restaurants and delis from Plymouth to Provincetown, with plans to expand the wholesale operation to Boston and the South Coast in the coming months. The largest carrier will be MacRae Provisions, the exclusive distributor of Boars Head products on the Cape and Islands, which includes multiple delicatessens throughout the region. Other locations carrying the chowder include The Barnstable General Store, Brewster Pizza, Dennisport Lobster, The Red Nun (Chatham), The Windfall Market (Falmouth), Surf’s Up (Sandwich), Buncey’s Pizza and Sports Cafe (Dennis), School House Ice Cream (Harwich), Harwichport Pizza, The Osterville Village Café, Quanset Valley Golf (Mashpee), and Michael’s Creative Baking (Hyannis).

“It was a natural next step,” said Manning. “After 30 years in business and three decades of perfecting our chowder, it was time to expand. Over the years, people have been asking when we’d start distributing it beyond the restaurant. The 30th anniversary seemed like a fitting time to launch the venture.”

Manning attributes part of the chowder’s success to his head chef, Jimmy Gardner, who has been working at Captain Parker’s for 27 years. “Jimmy is a testament to the kind of family environment we’ve created here at Captain Parker’s,” said Manning. “And he’s worked tirelessly over the years to perfect the recipe. Customers know that they’ll get a consistently good and fresh cup of chowder every time they visit, and that’s been essential to our success.”

Restaurants and delis interested in carrying Captain Parker’s chowder should contact Gerry Manning at 508-364-8700 or gerrymanning@comcast.net.

Captain Parker’s Pub, perched on the banks of scenic Parkers River in Yarmouth, marks its 30th anniversary this summer. A perennial chowder festival winner, the restaurant is a three-time champion at the Boston Chowder Festival, a three-time champion at the Newport Chowder cook-off, and an eight-time champion at the Cape Cod Chowder Fest. The chowder was also named “America’s Best New England Clam Chowder” by The Food Network in 2010 and has been featured on the Rachel Ray television show and in her “$40 a Day” book. The famous chowder even gained notoriety as the topic of a question on the TV show Jeopardy.

Captain Parker’s is located at 668 Route 28 in West Yarmouth. Hours are Monday through Thursday 11:30 AM – 9 PM (summer 10 PM); Friday and Saturday 11:30 AM – 10 PM, and Sunday 11 AM – 9 PM (Summer 10 PM). The bar closes at 1 AM daily. For more information, call 508-364-8700, visit www.captainparkers.com or “like” them on Facebook.

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