Restaurant: River Falls
Location: 74 South Main St. Woonsocket, RI 02895
Price: Very reasonable
Will I eat there again? Probably
I must confess: I have lived in Rhode Island for close to 10 years now, and I had never been to Woonsocket, even though it is only 15 minutes from my house. Whether it is just out of the way, inconvenient, or god knows why, I had never been there. This felt rather wrong to me, so finally we made it up to the big city in the northeast corner of RI. Woonsocket was fine, but that's another story; we are here to talk about our dining destination, River Falls.
Not surprisingly, River Falls is located on the river and is right next to a waterfall (in one of the many, many old mill buildings that line the towns between Providence and Woonsocket). The whole restaurant is very tastefully decorated and laid out, with oversized soft chairs, appealing lines and dark wood, and what must be a great view over the river during the day. The front room when you enter is a square bar with 20-25 seats, 3 TVs and a few tables near the bar. A staircase up to a second dining level (where a band was setting up) transparently separates the bar area and the dining room.
The wine, beer, and cocktail list was of a healthy if predictable diversity (although they did have an offering from the local Wachusett Brewing Company as one of their 9 draft options). The menu is also standard, if quite large. From burgers, to grilled pizzas, to fried seafood, steaks, salads, and buffalo wings, most Rhode Islanders will feel right at home at River Falls.
What is unique about dining at River Falls is that everything is a bit classier, cleaner, more stylish, and tastier than you might expect. Think a Chili's on steroids, or Chelo's about 3 notches nicer. This is made even better because the prices at River Falls are just about the same as those mass-produced relatives.
We began our meal with the heart attack-inducing River Falls Combo Appetizer ($10.99 for fried potato chunks with steak, bacon, and cheddar chunks, buffalo wings (with actual breast meat!), and coconut shrimp). We calmed our pulses a bit with a caesar salad (not fancy, but fresh and tasty) and then finished up with a fried haddock sandwich. Again, the fish in the sandwich was substantial and well-prepared, and could have been far greasier. Not exactly a light meal, but it was remarkably enjoyable and at a good price.
River Falls is a well done American bar and restaurant. It is attractive, tasty, and well-priced, certainly worth checking out.