Tuesday, April 30, 2019
On the Road: Iggy’s Doughboys - Narragansett, Rhode Island
I have an acute obsession with exploring shore towns during their off season. With my aversion to crowded spaces, loud noises and humans – being at the beach in the swing months is really something I enjoy beyond measure. Last weekend, to celebrate our third year of dating – the boyfriend and I traveled up to Narragansett, Rhode Island to see what it was all about. We’re habitual about this April trip and often find ourselves in popular summer destinations before the bulk of businesses have re-opened. This visit was little exception.
Before we even hit the open road, I am planning what we are going to eat. Key words such as “brewery”, “ice cream” and “seafood” hit my browser before the hotel reservation is booked. And my travel partner in crime? HUGE donut guy. Lucky for him, it’s hard to search too far into Narragansett without reading reviews of Iggy’s. Described as a Doughboy & Chowder House, their website touts celebrating 30 years of existence, being featured on several news/media outlets, as well as actually selling their doughboy mix to make your very own versions of their specialties at home.
Normally a website with so many accolades and marketing banners would turn us off as a “tourist” trap, but head to a town where 70% of stores are closed and you’ll reconsider. On a morning walk, we walked right past one of their locations and while as you can see – it looked gorgeous in its new architecture, it also looked completely closed for the season still.
I loved Narragansett. The weather was crazy and we had an adventure getting to and from Block Island, but this place was really up there for me. I’m still mystified how one town can have so much shoreline and water views everywhere you turn. I’m not sure that I’ll ever get back there, but I hope that I do. After surviving a puke-filled ferry (not us), questionable lobster, and miles of walking in the whipping wind, we got back to the mainland, called Iggy’s and rejoiced in the delight of hearing that they were in fact opened for the afternoon.
Rolling up, we were in awe at the setup for the massive operation. It was pretty empty for our visit, but there was clear infrastructure there to handle the masses with ample seats and places for the line to form. Being April, the only way to order was at the takeout window, although the restaurant allowed you to snag a seat inside after pickup. The interior was well appointed, with a rolling fire in their fireplace. Hours and hours of being in the cold wind and fried dough near a fireplace was just what the doctor ordered.
As a note, the doughboys can be ordered as a ½ dozen or full dozen. Toppings are either plain, granulated sugar, sugar & cinnamon or powdered sugar. A ½ dozen with powdered sugar were $5.49 and not being sure if we’d have another dessert later in the day, we went with that. It probably took about 10 minutes after the order to get them, so it was very encouraging that they were being freshly fried.
What shocked me the most was how large each doughboy was and how heavy in weight. We were initially apprehensive that 6 wouldn’t be enough but I had to actually force feed myself to get the majority of a second one down. This place is great because they give you the powdered sugar in a container to allow you to decide how much additional sugar you prefer.
Taking a bite when they first arrived, they were hot, fresh and delicious, but without the powdered sugar they weren’t too remarkable. Dumping powdered sugar into a paper bag and shaking these things was not for the faint of heart, so be prepared to get messy. Once you add the topping, you’re in for a good time. The hot oil soaks that sugar right up and the flavor is amazing.
The edges are crispy, but the middle is doughy and the only improvement I could even dream to suggest would be an option to add a scoop of ice cream. I’m guessing it’s not cost effective for them, but it would have been great to be able to order a variety of the toppings, or even just one doughboy by piece, since they didn’t seem like they’d save well and we only were able to eat less than 4 without having to toss the rest regrettably.
Reading Yelp before we went, I am surprised how many critical reviews there were for this place. The building was gorgeous, the doughboys were freshly fried and the value was excellent. That said, I didn’t have to wait more than the time it took them to prepare my order so I can only guess what kind of hell that might be if I waited in a long line prior. The only regret that I have from the occasion is not trying their famous chowder, but there’s always the off season of 2020 for that.
Iggy's Doughboys & Chowder House
1151 Point Judith Rd.
Narraganett, RI 02882