One of the oldest states in the country, Connecticut was a fortress of revolutionary sentiment during the American Revolution. The state has preserved many of its colonial-era homes, public buildings, and monuments.
Throughout the centuries, many restaurants throughout the state have stood the test of time. From historic inns to casual eateries still serving the same food that patrons loved hundreds of years before us, here are 9 of the most historic Connecticut restaurants.
Captain Daniel Packer Inne | Mystic
This cozy inn and restaurant was built in 1756 by a sailing ship rigger named Daniel Packer. The business stayed within his family for centuries up until the 1900s. Today, the restaurant is known for its charming English pub-style digs. Complete with old muskets, stone fireplaces, and wood beam ceilings.
The North House | Avon
This historic property, once known as the Avon Old Farms Inn, was built in 1757. Over time, the second-floor bedrooms were available for travelers staying at the inn. Since then, the inn became infamous for its Sunday brunch which is still served today. The beautiful property also serves as a popular event venue for weddings and other special occasions.
The Griswold Inn | Essex
One of the oldest operating inns in the country, The Griswold Inn opened its doors in 1776 and has been welcoming sailors and travelers to its restaurant ever since. The historic charm has been preserved passionately by the Paul family. Dining rooms are covered in historic paintings and artifacts. Upstairs, rooms for lodging are furnished with antiques and glimpses of water views.
Abagail's Grille and Wine Bar | Simsbury
This Colonial-era tavern was built in 1780 as the first stagecoach stop outside of Hartford. Steeped in history, the tavern has served as a meeting place to exchange news of the war, with many presidents stopping along their way to get to Boston. Today the restaurant is home to a bustling restaurant serving brunch, lunch, and dinner. Enjoy an elegant meal inside their white table cloth dining rooms or outside on their pretty patio.
J Timothy's Taverne | Plainville
Set in a historic 1789 building, J Timothy's has been a notoriously popular spot since it opened and was once known as the center of social life in central CT. Still popular today, the restaurant is known for its award-winning "dirt" wings that do not disappoint. A handful of interesting moments of history have transpired at J Timothy's including the first ESPN press conference where the company announced itself to the world.
Old Oak Tavern | Gaylordsville
Named for the historic meeting that took place under the oak tree in Gaylordwville during the American Revolution between George Washington and Marquis de Lafayette, the Old Oak Tavern was built almost 30 years later in 1805. Today it serves as a comforting reminder of the past, complete with its original wood beam structure and American comfort food classics like burgers and blueberry pie.
Roger Sherman Inn | New Canaan
The Roger Sherman Inn has been home to many different businesses over the years since it was built in the mid-1800s. From a house to an inn to a school, Roger Sherman Ross, a direct descendant of the colonial patriot bought the property and turned it into the restaurant and inn we call it today. Serving both brunch and dinner, Roger Sherman is known for its elevated fine dining experience and special occasion venue.
Hopkins Inn | Warren
Opened in 1847, the Hopkins Inn is a scenic spot sitting across from Lake Waramaug. The oldest section of the original building can be found by the bar and apartment wing. Today, the restaurant is known for its incredible Austrian cuisine thanks to long-time owners Franz and Beth Schober. The restaurant features charming wallpaper-adorned dining rooms and outdoor patio with unparalleled water views.
Louis' Lunch | New Haven
Having made minimal changes to its original rustic building, Louis' Lunch has become a landmark Connecticut restaurant most known as the birthplace of the American hamburger in the early 1900s. Visitors travel far and wide to take a step back in history at Louis' Lunch. Inside you'll find wooden booths, stone exposed walls, and signs advertising their strict no ketchup policy. Louis' is often regarded as one of the most beloved restaurants in New Haven having narrowly escaped a demolition project in the 1970s, Louis' Lunch was forced to move via truck to its Crown Street location that it occupies today. In an effort to help with the reconstruction, friends and supporters from around the world sent thousands of bricks to rebuild its revered walls. Each stone has its own unique story.