Finally East Haddam has another choice beside Italian. Thanks to the hard work of Melissa Ziobron and the East Haddam EDC we've got new restaurants open in town to go to…and even on a Monday night!


Tonight was no different than many in my life and that of my bride: a long day of meetings with clients and colleagues filled with fielding issues on deals in the works by phone, emails, texts, and the like. By the end of a day like this neither my wife or I can muster the energy to cook. What's worse it's Monday when most restaurants are closed. Until now we've had little choice other than order a pizza which frankly we're plain tired of. 


Solution: Go to the new Hilltop BBQ and Steak House just one week old owned and operated by Ernie and Cindy Piatti that is now open in the former Knucklehead joint (now free of knuckleheads :).



As we entered the foyer we were pleasantly greeted by Nicole who seated us and served us this evening. The decor is upbeat and bright with rustic vertical wood siding emulating the BBQ road houses I've frequented in my travels south in the Carolina and Tennessee. There are many flat screens spaced along the perimeter walls with a variety of sports, music, and entertainment channels. There's even a small one above the urinal which I think is meant to discourage the need for those who can't help but write their name on the walls. There's a great bar that's separated from the main dining area so it's appropriate for families with young ones. 


Server extraordinaire Nicole


The menu was loaded with personal favorites: Ribs, steaks, brisket, pulled pork, burgers, French onion soup, many salads, appetizers, and great deserts. We were torn so we opted for the great sampler that gave a little of a lot we were undecided about: Memphis Style Ribs (not smoked), St. Louis Style Ribs (Smoked…both varieties were perfectly cooked), pulled pork, brisket, and sweet potato fries (best we've ever had). On the table was a variety of 3 homemade BBQ sauces: Sweet, House, and HOT (the hot and house being my favorites). The ribs fell off the bone like you'd expect at a great BBQ house and they give you a bucket so the bones don't crowd your plate. The pulled pork was both sweet and savory, perhaps a mix of shoulder and butt and it was hard to decide which sauce to use next. 

Nicole (ask for her by name) was a bright and cheery server who never let you want for anything…including desert. Nicole offered us two varieties of cheesecake, key lime pie, and pecan pie. Unfortunately they were out of key lime pie so we opted for another favorite: Pecan Pie with whipped cream. It was simply over the moon. We noted a hint of Southern Comfort, a very nice crust, and filling moist and delicious with crunchy pecans on top. It felt like we were transported to the south tonight in some kind of East Haddam time machine. 

We loved that we were offered Foxon Park soda in bottles which is brewed right here in CT and of course any mixed drink that could be slid down the glossy topped bar. 

Lizzy and I can't wait to go back. Maybe to try the steak. Perhaps a burger at lunch. 


Ernie & Cindy Piatti-Owner Operators (and apparently happily married)

Get down to the Hilltop BBQ and Steakhouse soon. Say hi to Ernie and Cindy and tell them Mick sent you. They need you, East Haddam and Moodus residents to support them. If you don't, then you'll be back to a choice of Pizza, pizza, and, oh yeah, pizza. Not that I don't like pizza, I in fact love it, but too much of anything ain't good for you. 


The Hilltop BBQ and Steakhouse does not have a website yet but will have one soon. 


(Sorry about the less than perfect photos...I didn't have my Nikon with me...just my iPhone in low light)