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New England Clam Chowder

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Here is all we need to know, if it’s red it is not really clam chowder it is Manhattan tomato and clam soup. That’s it, the subject is dropped. If you like Tomato and clam soup, you also might like Clamato juice, as there is not much difference. New England clam chowder is cream colored and the one you might be used to eating.

I grew up in the Dorchester section of Boston and spent every summer of my life (Until I joined the Navy) at our summer house on Cape Cod (New Englanders just say “The Cape”) we’re snobby like that. Don’t hate me because we had a summer house, my friend had a summer house in Charlestown Google that and you’ll see why in Boston that is funny!

Visa Assistance

Every Friday night we had a Clam Boils on the beach, and the police only checked for one thing “GLASS” do not think about bringing it on the beach. The summer cops knew everybody and would come to your house and bring you back to the beach to clean it up if you forgot to because of over-consumption of beer as a minor. Our town was Yarmouth but there was no jail in Yarmouth so the police had to take us to the County Seat in Barnstable up the road. It was like Andy’s jail in Mayberry but without Otis. The cells were not locked and we could stay in the day-room if we wanted. Breakfast was 5 Star and really good… until our parents came to get us. (BTW nothing was written on any record.)

A beach clam boil, starts with a special 55-gallon drum, some friend will have an extra one in case you forgot to clean yours or left it on the beach and someone else took it home.

Ocean water (Never freshwater) in the drum, (Maybe not in 2017) driftwood and any other wood you can find for the cooking fire. Friday afternoon, low tide beach walk to collect Clams and quahog, muscles and crabs (But never the horseshoe crabs) Oh LOBSTERS if you know anyone who can afford them DO NOT even think about rowing out to some fisherman’s trap and taking any. Cattle Rustling in Texas would be a safer move than poaching someone’s trap. Now if you talk to the guy after he ran his trap line you could (Maybe) buy some of him. But remember it is Friday night and every restaurant is hawking lobster on their menu.

I

1925 Gastropub the bar.

1925 Gastropub the bar.

f anyone wanted to throw in some (Whole only) fish, that’s fine too. Vegetables, like celery corn on the cob, potatoes, turnips, cabbage, (Remember a lot of us are of Irish descent) and most anything else you’ve a mind to. Tomatoes only if you’re in New York City having a beach party in Central Park. (Remember that tomatoes and clam soup thing?)

No Paul, how in hell do we get from New England to the Philippines? A bunch of New Englanders were put on an Island in the Indian Ocean called Diego Garcia and we taught the Filipino contract workers (They were under contract to my Special Services Division) about Clam Boils and they already knew about San Magoo beer and eating. The main difference was southern lobsters that the workers taught us Kano’s Americana’s how to walk the reef and just pick up them up with only a net bag and a flash light. (Steal bottomed jungle boots too; after all it is a reef.) A storekeeper from Maine made sure that we all had a pair. BTW we ate more lobster than anything else, like the rich people at a lobster boil!

Now here in Olongapo City years later a new business has opened. The 4 month old 1925 Pub (AKA 1925 Gastro pub,) a new watering hole and eatery across from the Spanish Gate on Subic, has opened and it is well decorated and staffed with pleasant folks. While enjoying a 16 OZ SMB on tap (They had a very nice selection of imported beers too.) plus a large bowl of New England style Clam Chowder, that is made fresh daily. Plus this New Englander deemed it well made and good. BUT!!!!! While enjoying it I bit into a shell, not my first time that ever happened, as a matter of fact it was proof homemade and not canned. But it happened again and I noticed that there were tiny complete tiny shells in the bowl. A piece of broken shell was common at clam boils but in a restaurant? I called over the manager and explained that broken teeth will result and that could affect business. He explained that he cooked it the Filipino way leaving bones and shells in the all the food and that is just the way it was. Okay fine! You’ll survive without me but I will warn all my Kano friends. He seemed not to mind.

But in this very small world, at another restaurant I ran into my waitress from the 1925 PUB who no longer worked there, and she told Mayang that one week after I was there a young pre-teen girl was eating the chowder and started chocking on the tiny shell, By the grace of God, a customer used the Heimlich maneuver and cleared the shell from her throat. Forewarned is forearmed, but the beer was great!

Believe it or not beer and Clamato Juice is a popular drink in someplace that I don’t live! Maybe New York City?

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Paul Thompson

Paul Thompson; has resided in the Philippines since 1993, living close to Subic Bay. I’m married to a wonderful girl named Maria (AKA Mayang).Who is from Gordon Heights in Olongapo where she grew up with her Mom & Dad and seven siblings Our two daughters are both grown up and have left the nest, the eldest married to a wonderful guy named Chris, and they have blessed us with our granddaughter Heather Colleen Our youngest daughter and her husband Cecil have blessed us with a grandson named. Jayden Logan. I’m a retired U.S. NAVY Senior Chief after 22 years of active duty. After retirement from the Navy I lived for 7 years in Puerto Rico as a Night Club owner. Then Hurricane Hugo told me to find a new line of work, I was hired by Military Sealift Command and went back to sea in Asia as a Merchant Seaman for 10 years. After 30 plus years at sea I buried my anchor on a mountain in the Philippines and am now residing in Dinalupihan (or DinBat for short), Roosevelt, Bataan where we built our home. And last but not least, anything I writes will be pure "Tongue in Cheek "If anybody is offended, I'll lose no sleep over it, but here's a quick Mea Culpa in advance!

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Bob New York
Bob New York
3 years ago

Happy New Year Paul and everyone else as well. When I was a kid we used to dig clams at a beach on Long Island Sound. I don’t know if I would knowingly eat the clams from there these days with all the polution that is said to be in the water. I wonder what kind of buzz one would get from eating drugged clams from all of the hospital waste said to be contaminating the beaches. I like both kinds of clam chowder but obviously prefer Manhattan over New England. LOL Did you have ” clam bakes ” in… Read more »

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago
Reply to  Bob New York

Bob (NY)
Cape Cod juts out in to the Atlantic and pretty much was pollution free when I was a kid. We would (Our parents) bury clams and bake them, but the boil was far easier, plus the other food we would cook with it. Luckily I stayed out of NYC, so anytime I ordered Clam Chowder around America, and the world for that matter, no one ever served anything but New England style Chowder to me! But then it could have been my Boston accent, we drink beah not beeeeer. (LOL)

gary dadds
gary dadds
3 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Being a Brit clam chowder is rarely on the menu but whilst in Vancouver late last year had some and enjoyed it. They had both the red and white, from memory the red was called something else.

Bob Stone
Bob Stone
3 years ago

Paul, S&R here in the Philippines sells a New England Clam Chowder (minus the shells) in the restaurants in their stores. As a former “Dorchester boy” and a summer resident of Dennisport I too long for the taste of a good chowder or lobster stew. At 99p for a decent size serving it a steal just to transport myself “home” for a few minutes.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago
Reply to  Bob Stone

Bob;
Really, and you say it is good? I’ll be going by there today and I’ll try it. No shells… My that is odd! (LOL)
We have no S&R store in Subic, but there are two of their restaurants here!

Steve Ballantyne
Steve Ballantyne
3 years ago

Don’t like Clamato? Where is the firing squad when you need them? And clam chowder? Google it, you will see far more people prefer red, not me, but far more.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago

Steve: Clamato juice is the best I drink it every day here in Olongapo (Royal sells it) But mix it with be-ah (Boston spelling of Beeeer) I would never do. There is nothing wrong with the way be-ah tastes. As for Tomato soup Chowder it unworthy to be called real “chowda” as there is but one, and it is from New England. Except Rhode Island which was deeded to New York so they could have Ocean Front property to build those vulgar displays of wealth they called houses. Manhattan Clam & Tomato soup would be good as a Bloody Mary… Read more »

Greg Brawley
Greg Brawley
3 years ago

Your mention of the Cape brought back a memory of the summer of my 17th birthday….my sister had married a young AF 2nd LT and gone from his Texas posting to Otis AFB on the Cape. My eldest niece was born there….circa 1963. I made a bus trip from California to the Cape that summer to see the family’s “first” grandkid….and “my hosts”, living off-base in Falmouth at the time, wanted me to “experience” the lobster feed. My brother-in-law must have spent half his pay to take me to the Officer’s Club at Otis for a lobster dinner on my… Read more »

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago
Reply to  Greg Brawley

Greg;
In the time frame you mentioned, it was a four to five hour drive to the Sagamore Bridge, before the highway was built, now it’s 45 minutes to an hour depending traffic. Later my folks sold out in South Yarmouth and moved over to Falmouth, then we used the Bourn Bridge then they moved to West Wareham by the Borne Bridge.
I understand the summer you had, and will tell you I had the best childhood spending every summer there.

Jo Ess
Jo Ess
3 years ago

now..now.. da’ best article about chowda’, New England style. Being from Fall River (Foh’ Rivah’) I also enjoy the “creamy type chowda’, not the Manhattan style.. we also have our own style of New England boiled dinner – chouriço and linguiça added with kale soup (sometimes) on the side…although we do not have “da’ Cape”, we have Horseneck Beach and Westport (“weshpoht”) 🙂 Happy New Year to you and to your family, Mr. Paul T.

Jose

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago
Reply to  Jo Ess

Jo Ess;
Quick get to Logan and board the flight and get out quick, Boston is destroying you. Run, very fast but run!!! I did and it saved me! (LOL)

Jo Ess
Jo Ess
3 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

LOL.. I only travel out Massachusetts when it gets really wicked cold (like right now).

Jose

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago
Reply to  Jo Ess

Jo;
That wickard pissa cold, drove me out 50 years ago.But my brother in New Bedford still likes it there.

Cordillera Cowboy
Cordillera Cowboy
3 years ago

Being from the South, I don’t have a dog in the fight. So I can enjoy either with a clear conscience. Both were available, but we just called it red chowder or white chowder.
I never had the clamato stuff. But I’ve tried beer & tomato juice. Tastes OK to me. Most times I’ve seen folks drinking it though, is in the mornings. I think it’s touted as a hangover remedy.
Take care,
Pete

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago

Pete:
I lived in Virginia and South Carolina and never saw the red stuff on the menu. In Florida once in a while a restaurant would have it, but listed under New England Clam Chowda (The white stuff) By the way those three states did have some great seafood also. Georgia has a nice peach pie.(LOL)
Sit-N’-Bull restaurant (Not the bar) has some good seafood too! I had to say that!!!

Cordillera Cowboy
Cordillera Cowboy
3 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

“Sit-N’-Bull restaurant (Not the bar) has some good seafood too! I had to say that!!!”
LOL!

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago

Pete;
I told you I had too!

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
3 years ago

John;
I just returned from being sick after reading what you do to Clam Chowda! (LOL)

John Reyes
John Reyes
3 years ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Paul – How could you have missed it? I purposely threw in that comment about adding tuna in your bowl of clam chowder so that you’ll get sick and have an excuse to go to Baypointe Hospital & Medical Center to check out the pretty Pinay nurses there without arousing Mayang’s suspicion. Got you there! LOL

Bob Stone
Bob Stone
3 years ago

Paul, did you get to tadte the clam chowda at S&R? Just wondering what you thought of it?
Bob

John Reyes
John Reyes
3 years ago

I love both, Manhattan or New England, but the New England chowder had better be chunky, as in chunky strips of clams and potatoes. Has anyone tried adding a can of tuna and clam juice in your bowl of New England clam chowder? One other thing I love is crayfish chowder and banana bread. Have a great New Year, Paul!

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