Chicken Family-style in Blackstone River Valley -
Signature dish of Rhode Island’s Blackstone River Valley

Chicken family-style is an all-you-can-eat meal of roasted chicken, salad, pasta, potato, and rolls, arguably unique to the Blackstone River Valley.

Born at the home of Italian immigrants in Woonsocket in 1930s, this inexpensive meal of roasted chicken is the solution for family and friends, who’d love to get together, drink homemade wine and play Italian lawn bowling game of bocce during the Depression years. Originally, the meal includes roasted chicken with olive old and fresh rosemary. Pasta, salad and roasted potato were added and the meal became a tradition.

Today, only Blackstone River Valley offer exclusives, original traditional meal that is prepared, configured and presented in a particular way.

In January 1990, Yankee magazine ran an article about the meal that was noted “Nine out of ten weddings in northen Rhode Island feature chicken family-style”.

A proper chicken family-style dinner is served at the table. The meal starts with fresh bread and butter, then with “huge-bowl-salad”. Every restaurant have their own dressing, which usually is a variation on Italian or plain oil and vinegar. Then comes a bowl of pasta with herbed tomato sauce, and roasted potatoes. Just like the dressing, each restaurant offers their unique type of pasta.
Finally, the poultry parts come in bowls; the legs, thighs, and breasts are seasoned and roasted until the meat is falling-apart tender. Diners serve themselves, and if they run out, they can ask for more at no additional cost.

Since the meal was originally come up as an inexpensive dish, it remains its legacy until today. Per person, meals usually run about nine or ten bucks (as of 2004), and kids are even cheaper to feed. For a little more than the price of a typical fast-food meal, anyone can afford a wholesome banquet.

Restaurants Serving Family Style Chicken
 

Bocce Club
226 St. Louis Avenue,
Woonsocket, RI  02895
(401) 767-2000
Hours: Tuesday - Saturday 5 pm - 10 pm
Sunday 12 noon - 9 pm
Monday Closed
 
The Broaster House
263 Pond Street
Woonsocket, RI 02895
(401) 762-1717
Hours: Monday - Wednesday 4 pm - 8 pm
Thursday - Saturday 11 am-9 pm
Sunday 11 am - 8 pm
 
Cantina di Marco
405 Mendon Road
Cumberland, RI 02864
401-722-4170
Fax: 401-723-7771
Hours: Tuesday - Thursday & Saturday 4 pm
Friday & Sunday 11:30 am
Monday closed
 
Chelo’s of Woonsocket
490 Clinton Street
Woonsocket, RI 02865
(401) 769-6622
Hours: Sunday 11:30 am -10 pm
Price: $9.99; Children $5.99
Website

 

Chelo's of Apple Valley
445 Putnam Pike
Greenville, RI 02828
(401) 233-2340
Hours: Sunday 11:30 am - 10 pm
Price: $9.99, Children under 10: $5.99
Website

Chelo’s Newport Ave
45D Newport Ave.
Rumford, RI 02916
(401) 223-5050
Hours: Sunday 11:30 am - 10:30 pm
Website

 

Christopher's
614 North Main Street
Woonsocket, RI 02895
401-767-3201
Hours: Monday-Saturday 11 am - 10 pm
Friday 11 am.-11 pm
Sunday Noon-9 pm
 

 

Davenport’s Family Restaurant
1070 Mendon Road
Cumberland, RI 02864
401-334-1018
Fax: 401-333-0143
Hours: Sun. 11:30 am - 10 pm
Website

 

East Side Checker Club
579 Benefit Street
Pawtucket, RI 02861
401-726-9266
Hours: Sunday Noon - 8 pm
Lancellotta’s Banquet Restaurant
Charles Street, North Providence
RI 02904
401-723-6900
Hours: Sundays 12 – 6 pm
Wednesdays 4 – 8 pm
 
The Pines Restaurant
1204 Pound Hill Road
Slatersville, RI 02876
401-766-2122
Fax: 401-671-6273
Hours: Thursday 4:30 pm - 8 pm
Friday & Saturday 4 pm- 9 pm
Sunday 12 pm  8 pm
Website
Savini’s Restaurant & Banquets
476 Rathbun Street
Woonsocket, RI 02895
401-762-5201
Hours: Wed & Thurs 11 am- 9 pm
Friday & Saturday 11 am - 10 pm
Sunday Noon - 9 pm
Website
Spumoni's Italian Seafood Restaurant
1537 Newport Avenue
Pawtucket, RI 02861
401-726-4449
Fax: 401-728-9060
Hours: Sunday - Thursday 11:30 am - 9:30 pm
Friday & Saturday 11:30 am to 10:30 pm
Website
The Village Haven
90 School Street Forestdale, RI 02824
401-762-4242
Hours: Wed & Thurs 4 - 8:30 pm
Friday & Saturday 4 - 9 pm
Sunday Noon - 8 pm
Website
Wright's Farm Restaurant
84 Inman Road
Harrisville, Burrillville, RI 
Phone: (401) 769-2856
Hours: Thursday - Friday 4 pm - 9 pm
Saturday 12 pm - 9:30 pm
Sunday and Holidays 12 noon-8 pm
Website
   

 

 

 

 

 
 
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Blackstone Valley Visitor Center, On the banks of the Blackstone, 175 Main Street, Pawtucket, Rhode Island  02860 
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