If you’re looking for out of the ordinary food in a relaxed atmosphere away from the tourist crowds in Newport, you should definitely head for Spark. Based on many favorable reviews from other diners, my friend and I headed here during a trip to Newport on the first weekend of October 2008. We brought our own bottle of red wine and the staff opened it and served it in appropriately large balloon glasses.
We each had a salad and entrée and the bill was $30 apiece with tax and tip. The salads were only average - - the one topped with figs and fennel could have been cut into more bite-sized pieces and the beet and greens could have used a little more dressing (although I didn’t ask for more, which I’m sure they would have provided). We were served warm focaccia-style bread which was delicious.
Our entrees included pasta with lamb sausage and broccoli rabe (a pleasing contrast of rich and mildly bitter flavors) and spice-rubbed pork tenderloin slices over creamy polenta with fresh brussel sprouts. The pork was perfectly cooked and the brussel sprouts were crisp yet tender.
The atmosphere was lively, but not too noisy and the service was attentive. I’d highly recommend Spark as a great place to dine. On-Street parking is available along Broadway, although I’d advise allowing an extra 5 minutes to find a free spot.
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