Johnston frequently gets a bad rap. (Pun intended.) So, if you're laboring under the mistaken impression that it's all about an ex-cast member of MTV's Jersey Shore (aka, DJ Pauly D, who caused a pretty big ruckus when he popped into the store where I used to work a few years ago), gold chains or guidos, it's about time for a refresher - by way of three places you need to know about, and add to your Rhody agenda, toot sweet:
1. Does the thought of pumping your own gasoline fill you with dread? You're not alone. The problem, of course, is that self-serve stations dominate these days. **Shakes fist** If (like me) you're forever in search of locations where you don't have to get your hands dirty, then you'll want to know that I found a truly great one...in Johnston! It's called Mancini's and people literally flock there from surrounding cities and towns for the old time-y full service experience, complete with window cleaning (which, I assure you, no one offers anymore).
2. Right up the road from Mancini's is one of my personal favs, OPTX Eyewear. As someone who's worn glasses since grade 4, and been completely embarrassed to show my face in almost every pair since, OPTX has been life changing. I finally found a place with an impressive selection of flattering and stylish frames that people actually stop to compliment me about. (Uh, that never happened before.) And I don't even mind having my pic taken when I'm wearing my glasses these days. A very big deal. (PS - There's a laundry list of celebs from RI native, and Miss Universe 2012, Olivia Culpo to E! Fashion Police's Giuliana Rancic on Team OPTX too.)
3. My spies have been texting me recently about a new-ish restaurant open in Johnston since October of last year, Osteria Toscana. Like one of its sister restaurants, Trattoria Romana in Lincoln, it's tucked away in a plaza. Translation: Unless you're looking for it specifically, you'll probably drive right by and I'd hate for you to miss it and its Tuscan menu. I had dinner there last night with my friend S. and true story: the food and service were top shelf without being the least little bit stuffy or intimidating. Our waitress was a doll and everything, from the bread, olive oil, and olives to the tomato and mozzarella salad to the salmon with pasta, tomatoes, and artichoke hearts, was fresh and delicious. Absolutely no restaurant remorse of any kind.
More To See And Do In Johnston
Grab a coffee at the original Brewed Awakenings. Get your cardio in by walking Johnston Memorial Park. Cheat on your summer beach body diet at Firehouse Hot Dogs. Get spray tanned at Glistening Goddesses. (PattyJ Tip: 99.99% of the population looks better, and beach ready, with the right spray tan.) Take the kiddies duck pin bowling at Town Hall Lanes. Break your fast at the English Muffin. (Breakfast there is a rite of passage for any RI'er - native or transplant - btw.) Check out the family run Pezza Farm. (Being a farmer is en vogue now, but they've been at it for generations.)
Ciao for Now,
Photo Credits: DJ photo courtesy of Getty Images; OPTX interior photo courtesy of them; all other photos courtesy of the PattyJDotCom Instagram